11 Feb 2013

Opera House turns red for Chinese New Year

6:30 pm on 11 February 2013

Sydney marked the Chinese New Year by lighting the Opera House with a red glow.

The building turned from white to red when New South Wales premier Barry O'Farrell and People's Republic of China consul-general Duan Jielong sounded a gong on Sydney harbour on Sunday for the start of the year of the snake.

Mr O'Farrell, who was dressed in a traditional Chinese black satin shirt, said New South Wales had the largest population of Chinese Australians.

AAP reports an estimated 80,000 Chinese tourists are spending Chinese New Year in Australia, especially in Sydney.

"The Sydney Opera is a world-renowned architectural masterpiece and symbol of Australia in the eyes of many Chinese people," Mr Duan said.

"Therefore I'm sure this beautiful message of friendship will be well received and cherished by Chinese people around the world."