Category Archives: Hotels

Find the Best Hotel in the Wembley Area

If you are planning any type of trip into Central London you are going to want to look at staying in the Wembley area for your trip. When you stay in Wembley you will be close to all of the … Continue reading

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5 London Hotels Offering Uniquely Urban Access (OneTravel)

Here’s a list of five upscale London hotels offering excellent access to the vibrant metropolis they call home – be it supreme convenience, gentile comfort or a more stylish than typical way to get around town. Read my complete post … Continue reading

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Wimbledon-Themed Afternoon Tea at The Landmark London

Earlier today I had the pleasure of enjoying afternoon tea in the light filled Winter Garden of five star hotel, The Landmark London. I reckon it’s one of London’s most elegant spaces to book an afternoon tea service, and proved to be an excellent setting for me to get through an initially awkward start and have a great conversation. Continue reading

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Hotels Near the Best Shopping in London

There are all kinds of reasons that you may want to visit the city of London. The history of the city and all of the wonderful tourist attractions you can take it are often more than enough for some people. … Continue reading

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UK Premiere of Roxanne by Paul Frankl

Shot in 35mm and on location in Soho, the film follows the relationship of transgender sex worker (played cool and convincing by Miss Cairo) and motherless 12 year-old Lily (spectacularly portrayed by Thea Lamb). It’s an ‘unlikely friendship’ kinda flick – not too dissimilar in theme to, say, About a Boy except the ‘boy’ in Roxanne is a girl and the ‘Hugh Grant’ character is Miss Cairo. Continue reading

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Affordable Hotel Stays in Edinburgh

If you are planning any type of a leisure trip or holiday to Scotland one of the places you may want to visit the most is Edinburgh. There is a great deal for you to see and do in the … Continue reading

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Hotel Marketing and the Mystery of Blogging

I had a great time speaking as a panellist at the Hotel Marketing Association’s recent Clearing up the Mystery of Blogging seminar at the Royal Garden Hotel. If I was able to share even a fraction of the insight some of the other panellists imparted, I did very well indeed! Continue reading

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Find Affordable Hotels in Wimbledon

One of the nicer areas of London to visit is Wimbledon. Whether you are coming to the area during the time of year of the famous tennis tournament, visiting another time of year to take in all of the sights … Continue reading

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Happy 150th to The Langham London

One of London’s most lauded luxury destinations, The Langham, celebrated a stately 150 years as a hotel last week. I tagged along for some of the birthday fun and had a peek at what’s new and upcoming for this upscale mainstay of impeccable hospitality. Continue reading

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Scents of Summer Afternoon Tea at Intercontinental London Park Lane

A new limited edition Scents of Summer afternoon tea is available now and running until the end of September at the Wellington Lounge of the Intercontinental London Park Lane. The colourfully presented tea features a bouquet of delicacies created by the hotel’s Executive Chef Ashely Wells in collaboration with Edward Bodenham, 9th generation of the world’s oldest family-run perfumers Floris. For a taste (and whiff) of the joys of summer, this afternoon tea offers a luxurious opportunity to while away some and come out smelling like a rose! Continue reading

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Five Years of Bar Boulud London

Now considered a mainstay of the Knightsbridge dining scene, Bar Boulud London at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park celebrated five years at the hotel last week by closing the restaurant to the public and putting on an anniversary dinner hosted by Chef Daniel Boulud for “special customers and guests, and a few select media.” What a pleasure it was to be included among the select few invited to attend. Continue reading

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Barcelona’s Spa at the Top of the World (OneTravel)

That the tallest building in Barcelona is the five-star waterfront Hotel Arts speaks volumes to this sensational city’s much-lauded reputation as the dream Mediterranean getaway. The 43-storey luxury hotel is situated at a marine between town and beach and caters capably to guests seeking both seaside chills and urban thrills. At the very top of the Arts is 43 The Spa. For rarefied pampering with a view to match, the spa’s signature 43 Sea Experience allows the body to unwind while the mind and spirit soar. Continue reading

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Barcelona Brief: The Stylishly Sumptuous Hotel Majestic

If you’re keen to hold convenient court in Barcelona’s elegant and central Eixample district (yet never realise it as long as the door to your room’s terrace is kept shut to not allow even a decibel of noise to seep in from the streets), then this five star hotel’s location is for you. Within easy reach of Las Ramblas; loads of upscale shops; Gaudi’s Casa Batlló, La Pedrera (Casa Milà) and Sagrada Familia; and the Barri Gòtic, it’s a fine location for sightseeing. The hotel is also only a minute’s stroll from Passeig de Gràcia station, where you can hope a train to the airport and be there in about a half hour. Continue reading

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Clearing up the Mystery of Blogging with the HMA at 17 June at Royal Garden Hotel

Aimed at an audience of bloggers, social media specialists, hospitality marketers and operators “who understand the importance of social media in matters relating to reputation management, promotion, consumer purchasing behaviour and the evolving service culture,” the seminar’s focus will be “experiences, case studies, pitfalls, best practice and how best to develop relationships for your specific marketing needs.” Following the panel discussion, there will be an opportunity to network. Continue reading

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Barcelona Brief: Ah-Inspiring Hotel Arts

The highest building in Barcelona? It’s the five-star, 43-storey Hotel Arts. At the top floor of this seaside beacon of luxury is 43 The Spa. For rarefied pampering with a view to match, the spa’s signature 43 Sea Experience allows the body to unwind while the mind and spirit soar. That guests can have a gorgeous al fresco lunch several floors down just minutes after … or a stroll the beach … or hit the far humbler but nonetheless inviting neighbourhood bars in nearby Barceloneta … or hop the Metro/hail a cab for more decidedly Barcelonan delights adds dreamy depth to such splendorous me-time. Continue reading

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Barcelona Brief: High on Generator

For my first of only two nights in Barcelona, I stayed at Generator … in the 8th floor penthouse … and absolutely loved it! If you hanker for a bit of luxury and a chance to spread out when in Barcelona (while still holding on to more than a few spare euros in your pocket), this suite is hard to beat. But whatever you might hope to achieve when booking a budget conscious visit to this bodacious city, you’d be smart to keep in mind Generator’s rather broad spectrum of possible overnight arrangements. Continue reading

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Barcelona Brief: Too Brief but Brilliant!

Just back from far too few but still wonderfully rejuvenating days in Barcelona, it’s easy to proclaim it as the ideal getaway. So ideal, I can’t stop thinking about what it might be like to getaway there for good! No matter your “thing” – art, food, beach, luxury, street life, shopping, history … etc etc ad nauseum – or whether you’re one to zealously guard a small budget or magnificently blow a big one, you can do so with flying colours in this captivating Catalan capital. And if you’re like me and want the best of it all in maximum dosage, then keep an eye out for upcoming posts in my Barcelona Brief. Continue reading

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Dammann Frères Teas at the Sofitel London St James’s Rose Lounge (espressoCrazy)

Man cannot live on coffee alone. And as much as I tried (often succeeded) in doing so, I must admit it’s nice to have a cup of something else every once in a while. Horses for courses and all that … Continue reading

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Le Vie della Zagara: Palazzo Adriano

Okay. I’ve covered the citrus side of my Sicilian excursion – with bits about Ciaculli mandarins, Ribera oranges, blood oranges, Interdonato lemons and Syracuse lemons – and now I want to talk about some of the other equally fruitful aspects of my trip. So in the next few posts of my Le Vie della Zagara series I’m going to highlight a handful of the more remarkable sights encountered while touring Sicily. First up is the quaint and scenic mountain village of Palazzo Adriano. Continue reading

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La Vie en Rose Afternoon Tea at the Sofitel London St James

On now and running throughout May is a new floral-inspired La Vie en Rose afternoon tea at the Rose Lounge at the Sofitel London St James hotel. I got a taste of this limited run luxury a couple of weeks back and very much enjoyed it. Here’s a waft of what made it such a treat for me. Continue reading

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Le Vie della Zagara: Limone di Siracusa

A fertile coastal plain stretching between the mountains and the sea with plenty of sea air and consistent year-round sunlight make conditions right for growing Limone di Siracusa, aka Syracuse lemons – some of the juiciest and zestiest on the market. Such conditions add up to a gorgeous place to visit too. The last of the low hanging PGI fruits picked along my journey across Sicily, here’s why I’m a sucker for the aroma and flavour of this mighty if diminutive squirt! Continue reading

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Le Vie della Zagara: Sicily’s Beautiful Blood Oranges

The three varietals of Sicilian blood oranges include the deeply crimson Moro, the Tarocco (a great all rounder and Italy’s most popular orange), and the sweet and succulent Sanguinello. During my time travelling Le Vie della Zagara, I got a taste of all three blood oranges (and more – keep reading!) while visiting two places involved in the production of aranchia rossa: the lavish San Giorgio Estate with its upscale luxury Aranjaya villa and the more pragmatic but nonetheless impressive processing facilities of Pannitteri & C. Both are located in the eastern area of Sicily within the province of Catania and bestowed with jaw-dropper views of smoking and snow-capped Mount Etna. Continue reading

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The Ultimate Foodie Safari in Sabi Sabi (City AM)

The streets of Mayfair may seem a world away from the remote South African bush, but for discerning gourmet travellers the metaphorical – if not physical – distance between the two has just become smaller. A new initiative at Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve invites some of the world’s top chefs into the kitchen at the area’s renowned Earth Lodge. The partnership was launched in February, with Michelin-starred Eric Chavot making the inaugural visit, taking a week-long break from his eponymous Mayfair brasserie (at The Westbury on Conduit Street) to share his experience with the cooks at Earth Lodge. Continue reading

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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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