Category Archives: Hotels

Taking it Easy with an Overnight Spa Break in Bath

Easter week, Kemey and I made a quick overnight trip to Bath for a bit of rest and relaxation with a dash of history and scaled down but nonetheless urban ease. Both of us had been to Bath before but ages ago and not together. We had so much fun during our brief stay in this compact and attractive city. It’s a great place for couples and super easy to get to from London. Of course, more time to explore Bath and the bucolic countryside nearby would have been ideal, but our overnight visit proved to be an amply replenishing pause before having to head back to the London grind. Continue reading

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Lunch at The Pig

Oozing with ye olde English shabby chic charm without coming across as twee, the look and feel of this “restaurant with rooms” very much did it for me. I could have staged a “you-can’t-make-me-leave” sit-in at the hotel’s ultra cosy lobby bar; I got a mini recharge from my brief amble through the kitchen garden and surrounding grounds; I would have loved to try a post-lunch treatment at the spa across the pond in the garden or maybe an expert-led forage in the forest for wild mushrooms.
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How to Pick the Right Hotel in London (OneTravel)

Someone who works in the hotel industry here in London recently explained to me that there are more than 80 luxury hotels within a 15 minute walk of each other in Central London. Expand the range a little, throw in … Continue reading

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Preview: Bompas & Parr Dine with the Dead and Toast with a Human Skull

Over my years writing about the London dining scene one thing’s proved a certain constant: any email landing in my inbox from the jellymongering of Bompas & Parr is a must-read missive. The latest announcement of foodie frivolity (this time with a slightly darkened tinge) is no exception with an invitation to “a magnificent feasting occasion offering guests the ultimate tribute to departed Londoners in a spectacular environment.” Continue reading

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New Fangled Old Fashioneds with Woodford Reserve

The Old Fashioned is pretty much my go-to cocktail these days. And if it’s made with Woodford Reserve, well then all the better. So an invitation to attend an Old Fashioned masterclass hosted by Woodford Reserve brand ambassador Tom Vernon at South Place Hotel’s SPIES Society bar and to enter a Classic American Cocktail competition based on my takeaway from the event was greatly appreciated. Continue reading

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STK London’s 777 Bar Menu, 5pm to 7pm

STK London has recently launched new “777” menu featuring seven small plates and seven drinks priced at £7 each offered at its bar between 5pm to 7pm Monday to Friday and presents a no fuss opportunity to have a night out with going overboard. Continue reading

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Skip the Hippest Lines in Stockholm with the Berns Hotel VIP Wristband (OneTravel)

If you’re only going to be in Stockholm for a short spell but keen to be immersed in the local scene ASAP, booking the Berns would prove an especially wise move. Set in the heart of historic Stockholm, the 150 … Continue reading

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Fine Dining with a View to Match at Galvin at Windows, London Hilton Park Lane

Twenty-eight storeys up, the Michelin star shines brightly (and rightly) from Galvin at Windows restaurant atop the London Hilton Park Lane where diners are just as likely to ooh and ah over the food and drink as they are about the panoramic views of the city. Continue reading

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Glam Rock Afternoon Tea at the K West Hotel

The new Glam Rock Afternoon Tea at the K West Hotel is an effortless combination of two seemingly diverse British delicacies: Ziggy Stardust and Finger Sandwiches. Continue reading

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Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge Added to National Geographic’s Top List of Lodges (OneTravel)

I’m just back from a few days of luxury safari at Earth Lodge in the Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve in South Africa. Yes, I was only there for a four nights. To be sure, I would have been delighted … Continue reading

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Sabi Sabi Safari

Making eye contact with a lion metres away from my seat in a topless Land Cruiser … lounging in a private plunge pool in the buff while smoking a Cuban and staring off into the unfenced and utterly vast savannah … losing track of how many rhinos and elephants I’d seen in the span of a couple of hours … having a multi course feast prepared by a Michelin starred chef and paired with some of the best South African wines available … getting one to most relaxing massages I’ve had in too long awhile … Sabi Sabi turned me into a blathering mess of wow. Continue reading

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New Afternoon Tea at the Intercontinental London Park Lane? It’s a Guiltless Pleasure.

Yes, the folks at the Park Lane Intercontinental have done it again: wowed my senses in one of London’s most elegantly comfortable public settings … and with gracious and polite service to boot! This new vegetarian (without ever stating so) afternoon tea was a delight and yet another point to be added to a now rather lengthy set of reasons to recommend the hotel as an ideal destination for making the most of your time in the West End. Continue reading

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2014 – Best of the Best

Going back over of the best sights, bites and more from the past 12 months was a fun and fruitful exercise in counting my blessings and strive for more. I hope my series of Best of 2014 lists may assist you in making the most of your time in the months to come. Cheers for reading tikichris in 2014! Continue reading

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Best Restaurants in London – 2014

Most of these ‘best of lists’ I’m doing have been compiled with some degree of difficulty often leaving me feeling guilty for excluding somewhere excellent that for whatever reason was nudged out by another place. However, making a concise and definite list of my favourite few London restaurants visited over this past year was an absolute breeze as five fantastic eateries clearly did stand out from the rest with respect to quality of food and overall dining experience. Continue reading

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Best Hotels – 2014

From the inner core of downtown DC to a sparsely settled archipelago at the junction of the North Atlantic and the Norwegian Sea – with loads of scenery and bon vivant adventures along the way – I stayed in some fantastic hotels this year. Continue reading

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Best Bars (Everywhere Else) – 2014

A blogger walks into a bar … and has an amazing time! No joke! Here’s a quick write up of some excellent places to have a drink in a handful of awesome destinations I had the pleasure of visiting this year. Continue reading

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Best Bars in London – 2014

The options for getting one’s drink on in London continued to broaden and improve in 2014. I truly was impressed with the libations on offer at so many bars around town this year. Continue reading

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Washington DC: Where to Eat in the Political Capital of the Western World (City AM)

Over the past few years, ravenous London scenesters have been snarfing down a vast array of steaks, burgers, hot dogs, shakes, pizzas, burritos and all sorts of other full-flavoured Americana from a diverse range of restaurants, pop-ups and food trucks. US food, as our Stateside cousins would say, is hot right now. Meanwhile, denizens of US capital Washington DC have been reinvigorating the very concept of what it means to eat American, as I discovered during my recent city break there. Continue reading

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Good Stuff

Good Stuff and lots of it! Here’s the low down on some fine things to see, sip or savour – all of which I’ve recently come across and thought were worth sharing with you. Enjoy. Continue reading

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Theo Randall’s Pasta and Wine Menu (Great British Chefs)

Theo Randall at the Intercontinental is THE place to head to for an upscale dinner focused on basic quality ingredients with a no-fuss approach to bringing out the best in Italian cuisine. Continue reading

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Jerusalem City Break: Best Hotel in Town?

While in Jerusalem, I stayed at the Arthur Hotel. This fairly new 54-room boutique hotel located in a pedestrianised street near to many of the city’s most popular attractions and historical sites was at the time of my visit the top ranked Jerusalem hotel on TripAdvisor. Did it live up to all those online raves? Continue reading

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The Hunt London Features Some of My Favourite Independent Businesses in London

The HUNT Guides are city guidebooks highlighting “authentic eating, shopping and lifestyle experiences” in a range of popular destinations with listings that are all independently owned. I contributed to The Hunt London, Third Edition which came out earlier this year. It was a delight to write about some of my favourite indie enterprises in London. Continue reading

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Hotel Cafe Royal and Valrhona Team Up for Exclusive Profile 66 Chocolate

French chocolatier Valrhona has co-branded with London’s Hotle Cafe Royal to develop an exclusive new chocolate: Profile 66. Only available at the hotel, Profile 66 is the creation of Andrew Blas and a team of Valrhona tasters. Continue reading

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DC Dining? It’s a Capital Idea!

A commission for City AM had me visiting Washington DC and rural Virginia at the end of September to write a piece about the exquisite Hay-Adams hotel and its relationship with regional food and drink suppliers. I’ll be sure to do a heads up post here on the blog when that article is published, but in the meanwhile I thought I’d share some of the best bits of my trip in a quickie roundup. Continue reading

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Win Dinner for Two at Pont Street Restaurant – Courtesy of Zomato

So, a couple of weeks back I had a very agreeable Friday night dinner for two at Belgraves hotel’s Pont Street restaurant. And now – thanks to a team up with online restaurant discovery guide, Zomato – I’m offering the chance to enjoy the same delicious experience to one lucky reader. Check it out! Continue reading

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Lobster Safari in the Koster Islands, West Sweden

The Koster Islands are situated off Sweden’s western mainland just south of Norway. It’s a beautiful part of the world – a rugged and ‘out there’ archipelago where wilderness and cultivation blend in such a way as to suggest that humans and nature actually can get along. Summer’s the main time folks visit this tranquil area, but I was there at the onset of autumn for the start of the lobster season. Lured by the prospect of catching (and eating!) the regionally renowned “black gold of the sea” lobsters for myself from one of the cleanest of nutritionally rich fjords in Scandinavia, I tagged along on a Lobster Safari “activity and dining experience” offered by the lovely little Hotel Koster on the island of Sydkoster. Continue reading

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Review: Pont Street Restaurant at Belgraves Hotel

Before making my rez for Friday night din-din at the Belgraves hotel’s Pont Street restaurant, I skimmed the web for a few reviews. Ouch! I’m not sure whether what I read was egregiously unfair or if Pont St subsequently got its act together, but my experience was way better than those perused online. Continue reading

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Did Madrid: Too Hot? Not!

We were in town for the Fiestas de la Paloma (part of Kemey’s planning – I can take no credit). As one of Europe’s biggest street parties, lots of people reckon it’s the most important festival in Madrid, if not the whole of Spain. We had a blast wriggling our wee hours way through the neighbourhood of La Latin – nexus of the celebrations – and being part of the festivities. Continue reading

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Did Madrid

Kemey and I are both enthusiastic fans of Spain. It’s very much one of our preferred destinations for holidays and city breaks and is a country we both know fairly well. However, Kemey had never been to (but always very much had wanted to visit) its dynamic and dignified capital. So back last month, to celebrate her birthday, we headed to Madrid for a long weekend of food, fun and flamenco. Like me, after my initiation to the charms of this magic place some years ago, Kemey was wowed. To be sure, our magnificently Madrileño weekend won’t be our last! Continue reading

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Far North Foodie Adventure in the Faroe Islands (Great British Chefs)

Chris takes us on a journey through the very scenic and serene Faroe Islands, a tiny island nation that’s also one of most fascinating places for food he has been to! Continue reading

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Brasserie Chavot: Epic Flavour and Subtle Finesse in Mayfair

Contemporary French cuisine made with quality ingredients sourced from the British Isles and France? It’s a gorgeous idea – especially when executed by a capable chef such as Eric Chavot. A recent opportunity to taste my way through much of the menu at Brasserie Chavot proved a veritable feast of epic flavour and subtle finesse. Continue reading

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Faroes and Away: My New Happy Place

Sometime between my trip to the Faroe Islands and writing up this series about the experience, I paid a visit to the dentist for a routine check up and cleaning. To say I’m not a fan of going to the dentist would be putting it mildly. Usually during a check up, I’ve got my eyes clinched tight and my hands clutching the arms of the chair with my lower legs and feet squirming around. In my mind, I’m concentrating as hard as I can on pleasant thoughts and such. This last time in the dentist’s chair, my mind went straight back to the Faroes. It’s my new ‘happy place’ I reckon and as scenic a mind’s eye destination as I could ever image. I was, for perhaps the first time during dental appointment, completely unfazed and all but unaware of the activity going on in my mouth. Continue reading

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Faroes and Away: Shhh …

It may seem mundane and not terribly exciting, but one of the main reasons I loved my time in the Faroes was the peace and quiet found there. Folks say that silence is golden. But during one particularly placid morning at my hotel, it was mostly deep green and soft brown with tiny dots of wild flower yellow and a soothing blue ocean view. Continue reading

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Faroes and Away: Koks Restaurant and Its New Nordic Kitchen

One especially delicious ‘just go’ reason to visit the Faroe Islands is the opportunity to dine at Koks restaurant. Located at Hotel Foroyar with sweeping views over the town of Torshavn and across the bay to the island of Nolsoy, the restaurant features haute cuisine dishes “designed to delight guests with the essence of Faroese culinary heritage” using ingredients almost exclusively sourced locally. For English speakers, the restaurant’s name might sound a bit unappetising, but don’t let that put you off … or expect anything salacious. It simply means “cooks” and is apt enough given the magic done there. Continue reading

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Faroes and Away: Just Go

Why the tiny (if staggeringly scenic) nation of the Faroe Islands wasn’t overrun with tourists during my visit in early August is beyond me – especially considering that my flight from Stansted was hardly more than two hours long and that I had never seen anywhere on earth quite as extraordinary or been anywhere quite as distinctive. That this archipelago of 18 islands jutting from the juncture of the North Atlantic and the Norwegian Sea is such an accessible yet sparsely populated and utterly gorgeous destination should be reason enough for you to stop whatever it is you’re doing right this instant and start making plans to see the Faroes for yourself. Continue reading

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