Outings

Brooklands Hotel, Weybridge

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Last weekend I had a lovely start to the week! We had booked a Sunday Group Getaway at the Brooklands Hotel, for £110 each (based on 4 sharing). For that price: One night accommodation in a two bedroom suite, one treatment each (we all had the back massage), use of the spa facilities, use of bathrobes and slippers, afternoon tea, breakfast and a 2pm late check out.  I think it was such a good deal, and we booked it over six weeks ago.

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We arrived just after check in (about 3.30pm), and the room was ready. The room was huge, one of the biggest I’ve ever stayed in! One bedroom had a double bed, the other two singles, each had a big bathroom, there was a desk/office area, a living room area with sofa and TV, and a big table with six chairs plus our own huge decking area outside with table and chairs – which overlooked the racetrack!

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Our treatment was actually booked on the first day, so we all rushed down to the spa and had our twenty five minute back massage each (massages are always so nice and relaxing right?). The spa part was unusually busy, so all the chairs and beds were taken and the hot tub was full. We also wasn’t feeling the sauna and steam room (unusually placed in the changing room). So we headed back to our huge room, and just sat in our robes and slippers and chilled on the deck. We had bought our own prosecco, snacks and small bites to eat. Also to note – there is no pool here.

The hotel is actually next to/inside Mercedes Benz world, so I had great fun watching people drive and race around the track. That ended at 6pm, so it wasn’t at all noisy in the evening, it was very peaceful and relaxing.

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We had a very late night, also random point, the bed was so soft, like sleeping on a marshmallow (bit too soft for all of us).

The next day we had breakfast (the lovely thing was it was served until 11!), there was a whole mini room of food on offer! One side was full English (mmm fried bread!) and the other was continental, there was juices too, and we had hot drinks to the table. It was very tasty, and the restaurant wasn’t too busy.

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We also had decided we was getting a go in the hot tub before we left, so we changed and headed back to the spa. It was delightfully empty and quiet up there. We think everyone had left for room check out but as we had the late one, we was all good! So we claimed a round comfy bed, and chilled for a bit. The hot tub is outside but underneath a ceiling/awning and watched the cars (all Mercedes) and then got into the hot tub. So luxurious  on a Monday morning/afternoon and I had no Monday blues that week!

We spent a while here, ( so much nicer and calmer without loads of people) I did want to go to The Meditation Room (it was a twenty minute slot, but had to be pre-booked). So back to the room, (the showers was also very nice and powerful!) and changed. Packed and ready for afternoon tea.

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The restaurant was basically empty, but they took a while to bring the drinks and food out. It was nice, but I’ve had a lot better. The top tier of cakes etc, they were all too sweet and none of us managed to try everything. My favourite was the chocolate and caramel shortcake, but after that I had enough sugar.

Overall we had a great time, the room was amazing, the Monday at the spa part was great, the deal was definitely worth doing and we all wished it had been a two night stay. They do have other deals on at the moment, so for a treat for you and friends, I would recommend it!

 

 

 

Outings

Prosecco Festival, London

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A few weekends ago, I attended the first UK prosecco festival. I got tickets to the London one (it had travelled all over the UK for weeks). The London event was held at the Kia Oval – the cricket ground at Oval.

There was two different time sessions you could attend. One was 12.00-4.30pm, the other was 5.30 -11.00pm. I chose the afternoon session as just with getting home late on the tube and staying safe.

The ticket purchased before, got you entrance fee, your keepsake glass and booklet.

The keepsake glass was a branded prosecco festival glass, you keep this the whole time and get it filled. I like this idea, as seems less wastage and you have a souvenir.

The little book of fizz is the booklet, which had a small description of each prosecco available to try.

We had a quick bag search before entry. Then we was given our wristband, glass, which had our ‘Little book of fizz’ in and a complimentary token for a glass of prosecco.

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See now, this is where it got expensive! You had to buy tokens (the bars had a no cash policy). Each glass of prosecco would cost £5 a glass. We chose to do the deal, for 6 tokens, the glass of prosecco would be £4.50. There was also the option to buy bottles (not sure how many tokens they was!)

I did think the room was going to be a bit bigger! There was four bars, each with different proseccos and a specialty drink. There was a stage with a band. Chairs and tables. Room for dancing. We consulted our little book of fizz, and chose by the description that we liked the most.

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There was rose, Italian, Spanish, bellinis etc. They also had a table with a speciality syrup to add your prosecco. I can say, I learnt the hard way – do not put coconut syrup in your prosecco!! My friend tried bubblegum and that kind of worked!

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The band and music was good, and towards the end, the music was great. Dirty dancing, and old classics. Everyone was dancing. (It was about 90% female).

We was also led to belive there was an Italian street food festival. They lied! It was one stall serving food, we waited an hour for some chips! When people are drinking for four and half hours, they need food! One stall was absolutely ridiculous. A lot of people was complaining. We know it was the first festival, but they know how many tickets was sold!

I did like the festival, and glad I went. But it did turn out an expensive day! The food situation needs to be changed for definite next year. We had dinner on the way home, as some chips is not enough to soak up alcohol. It was very popular, and I heard all the tickets sold out, so it is back next year. But a few kinks need to be ironed out first.

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Outings

Another Day Out in London!

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A few weeks ago, I had a Friday off so my friend and I decided to have a day in London (again!). I had been looking around and found a place called Coppa Club, it’s in Tower Bridge. In the summer, they have these pretty cabanas outside, so I crossed my fingers and hoped for availability. We got one!

So I also looked around to see what else we could do.

The HMS Belfast (the big navy ship moored on the River Thames) was nearby and we both hadn’t visited before, so we also booked tickets for that.

We met at London Bridge station and had a nice walk to the Belfast where we stopped for some pretty Instagram photo opportunities (see above).

We “boarded” the HMS Belfast and took the headset they gave us. I had forgot how much of a workout looking round old boats/ships was! Up and down tiny stairs, various decks and the ship was huge.

I did like it, and you can see how cramped and small working conditions could be, but we both could have done without the creepy looking wax figures!

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We also went right to the top, and did some silly photos by the Union Jack flag. Also, by chance I think we chose the nicest day in September! Look how blue the sky was.

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We then walked to Coppa Club, so glad we went!

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We loved the outside cabana straight away. We was even seated early. We ordered a cocktail each, and decided on the same one. Wild Strawberry Spritz – Prosecco & Cartron wild strawberry liqueur, it was yum!

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We also decided on the small plates to share for lunch, so we got 3 dishes with chips. I didn’t get any photos of the food! But it was all really tasty.

The cabana was a 2 hour booking slot, so we made the most of it. We then had a pudding each, and a glass of prosecco. I chose Sticky toffee pudding and it had some really good honeycomb on top.

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It was just so nice there! The vibe was chilled, the sun was out, music was playing, the views – we could see the Shard one way and Tower Bridge the other! Then the cabana emptied – so we had the whole one to ourselves for a while! I think we could have stayed there all afternoon!

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It was a really nice day out, and the weather being so lovely just topped it all off! I really recommend the Coppa Club – I heard last winter they had igloos outside – and they got booked pretty sharpish. I can imagine why!

 

Outings

The Brunch Afternoon Tea – Piccadilly, London

 

2Last week my friend and I visited another afternoon tea! This time the twist was that it was a brunch inspired one. It was called the B n T.

It took place at Le Meridien Hotel, Piccadilly, it was served in the Terrace Grill & Bar. We had a table overlooking the street.

Whilst we was there, there was a special offer on – the afternoon tea, plus a hot tea and a cocktail for £27.50 each (usually £35), there was another option instead of a cocktail was bottomless prosecco for two hours!

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The food was so tasty, I enjoyed every ‘level’ of the tea! It was also one of the most filling afternoon tea’s I’ve ever had. I took a photo of the menu so you can see what we had.

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As you can see every dish was unique and different. Just what we like with afternoon teas – a bit of variety! I chose the Elderflower Fizz – which was yummy but very strong. My friend had the Berries & tea (which reminded us both of Mr Fogg’s).

I’ve included some close ups of each layer of the tea.

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I don’t know about you, but I love Afternoon Tea and I love brunch – so its a winning combination!

I would definitely recommend you check out this afternoon tea, if you are on the hunt for something a little different, and are ticking off all the tea’s – tick this one too!

Before our tea we also visited Oxford Street, where we peeped in T2, a few clothes shops and of course the famous Oxford Street Disney Store. So I did my own version of a ‘Disney wall’ that day!

 

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Outings · travel

Flashback Friday – Hampshire, United Kingdom (Forest Holidays)

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A few weeks ago, my fiancé and I, his brother and girlfriend hired a cabin at Forest Holidays. we chose the Blackwood Forest location, as that is the nearest one to us. I have previously stayed here, and also been to another site.

It had been booked for a good few months as they go quick! We did the three night stay – Friday to Monday. You can also do the Monday to Friday, or week long stays etc.

It really is such a lovely cabin, there are spacious, we had a 2 bedroom one which also has two bathrooms, space for two cars and the hot tub!

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There is decking out the back with a table, and a rack for disposable BBQ’s. You have a TV, on which you can add a internet package – which would then include wifi and sky movies.

There was 62 cabins at this site, but it doesn’t feel like it! They are all spread out and you have your own space. They encourage you go to for walks, there is lots of activities you can book, and there is also dog friendly cabins.

At the centre is the Forest Retreat – which is reception, a restaurant, bar and shop! This has tables inside and out, and is open all day.

Whilst we there, I organised a trip to the Bombay Sapphire Gin distillery, as we had booked with Forest Holidays, we actually got a discount on our ticket! This was a nice few hours out. It was quite a big site, and is actually one of the only distillery’s to win a BREAM award. You are given a map which has a chip in – this is then interactive with points all round where you listen to a spoken recording. You go inside the botanical gardens. A fun part was the Aroma card room – you smell lots of ingredients, whole punch a card and from that, it gives you an idea of what gin cocktail to choose at the end!

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I chose the orange and black peppercorn twist. Yum!

During the weekend, we ate lots (we did a foodshop before), drank and just relaxed. We chilled in the hot tub during the day and the evening.  There is scrabble and jenga left in the cabin for your use. we also went to the Forest retreat on the Sunday afternoon, and sat in the sun with a cider.

It was just a nice chilled out weekend, I highly recommend Forest Holidays if you ever wish to have a cabin getaway in the UK! They do have smaller cabins available for just two people, and there is also a treehouse with a cabin for up to twelve people!

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Outings · travel

Flashback Friday – Oxford, United Kingdom

 

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Last year a friend treated me to a two night UK break. It was a special birthday for me (the big 30!), and so she had booked it as a present.

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE hotels! This one was amazing – it was a converted prison! Well it was a castle, into a prison, into a hotel!

I took way too many photos of the room, as you can see! But all the little details was amazing – the carpet, the drawers, even the keepsake toiletries was amusing. (Forgot to take photo sadly). There was several different room options. We stayed in the main block, we think they had knocked down three cells and made one room.

 

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It really was a unique hotel, very boutique and also quiet! We went on a Thursday and Friday last June. The lobby was pretty, there was restaurants and bars.

You could also wonder round the grounds, and see more of the history and castle. On the bottom floor, was even a replica of an old cell room! There was also restaurants and bars right in the shadow of the hotel. Highly recommend the wine bar just out the front – 1855 Oxford.

The location was great, right in the middle of the city. We walked everywhere. Whilst we was there we visited the Ashmolean Museum, had a pub lunch along the river,  lots of nice food, went into the one of the smallest pubs and also managed to go on a punting boat! We hired one just for half hour, with one guy doing the punting. It’s cliché and touristy – but we enjoyed it! It was surprisingly calming and relaxing, but we wasn’t there in high season.

 

 

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I know I love holidays abroad, and I’m addicted to looking and planning future trips. But sometimes to break the year up, its nice to explore other parts of our country! Oxford was pretty, and felt very historic with all the university’s over town.

But the hotel was just amazing, a real find on my friends behalf! Even if you could stay one night, it’s well worth it! Look up Malmaison Oxford.

 

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Outings

Tipsy Tea, London

 

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The other weekend I took my friend out to Tipsy Tea in Mayfair, London. It was a special treat for her 30th birthday, and she had kindly taken me out on mine.

We are both afternoon tea lovers, and she has been to so many – it was hard finding one she hadn’t already been to!

This one was one of the best, as it wasn’t just about the food and the drink – although everything was delicious. This was an experience!

It is based on the traveller/adventurer Phileas Fogg, and this is his residence that you are visiting.

The outside of the building is very unassuming, and had I not looked up on Google maps before going – would have walked straight past! They tick you off a list, take your jacket and welcome you in!
The room is jam packed full of items from his travels, and I don’t want to post too many photos, as don’t want to ruin anyone else’s experience!
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So the Tipsy Tea is just that – all the teas are cocktails served in tea pots! And all the cocktails are tea based – check out the menu! I had the Woburn Abbey and my friend chose the Anna Maria Russell. We had a cup of each to try! Both was really nice and definitely interesting.

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You book for a two hour slot, and halfway through one of the staff sat down at the piano and began playing! Really felt like we had travelled back in time for a short while.

As I mentioned the food was really good, the salted caramel brownie was amazing! I’m all about the deserts!

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This was pricey, but it’s an experience, lovely unique afternoon tea and the room is small – so you do have to pre-book! But come on, who doesn’t like treating their friends and themselves every once in a while?!

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