Wednesday, 29 July 2015

The Lowry Hotel Review

The Lowry Hotel

This week, I stayed at the award winning five star, The Lowry Hotel, in the city of Manchester.

Overlooking Trinity Bridge on the River Irwell, the glass-fronted luxury hotel is luxurious and chic, and perfectly located right within easy reach of Manchester’s city centre.

From the outside, the building is striking and dominates the skyline with its curved, glass-fronted façade. Inside at the Lowry Hotel, the huge rooms have modern furnishings to match the architecture.  

 Views from my riverside room

I stayed on the fifth floor in a spacious superior deluxe king room with stunning views overlooking the river.  I loved the stylish but understated contemporary décor: a combination of neutral tones, dark wood and sleek furnishings like the very comfortable chic orange chaise and contemporary art work. The room was both clean and comfortable and had a large walk-in wardrobe, a satellite TV, and beautiful floor to ceiling window with spectacular city views. There was free wifi, a minibar, safe, tea and coffee making facilities as well as a useful iron and ironing board too.  The bathroom is equally large and features a marble bath, large shower and bathrobes are also provided.








If you’re feeling hungry then I suggest you head to the stunning riverside restaurant, The River Bar and Grill that serves guests a menu devised around the Josper grill. If you are not familiar with this type of grill, the Josper cooks food at 400°C behind a closed door to lock in ingredients’ natural flavours, delicious! They had a good range of food to choose from on the menu and a good choice of drinks too.  Guests can take in the stunning the views across the city from the Manchester’s longest bar, a large terrace that arcs around the side of the building and choose from one of the many cocktails on the menu.

There is also an in room dining option available 24 hours, for those who missed the dining menu that ends at 10pm. I arrived late to the hotel so I opted for in-room dining and had a classic: fish and chips and mushy peas and onion rings which was delicious.

Fabulous room service available


There is a varied breakfast menu too, choose from corn flakes, fruit or yogurt options to waffles or pancakes with coffee, tea or hot chocolate for drinks. I had the pancakes, bacon and syrup with hot chocolate, all very tasty!
 
Guests also have the option for in room dining for breakfast too

If you wish to de-stress during your stay at the Lowry then visit the impressive sauna and spa that offers a range of relaxing Elemis treatments for guests to enjoy. Afternoon tea is also another option offered within the restaurant too.  If you decide to venture out of the hotel and want to explore the city of Manchester but stuck on ideas, then I suggest visiting the nearby cathedral only 5 minutes away. The staff at The Lowry are very knowledgeable and on hand to suggest places to visit in the area if you are stuck on places to visit.

If you are looking for a luxury hotel in a stylish setting with stunning views, chic décor and top quality dining then head to The Lowry. I really enjoyed my stay at the Lowry and would recommend it to others.  The service was outstanding, all the staff were friendly and extremely helpful without being too overbearing, which can happen too often at luxury hotels. What I liked the most was the relaxed atmosphere during my time at The Lowry. This is often hard to create in a 5* hotel but The Lowry manages to do this well and still maintain its high standards, making it an ideal place to stay in Manchester.

To book your stay at The Lowry visit their website www.thelowryhotel.com



*Disclaimer: My stay at The Lowry Hotel was complimentary but all words and opinions are my own*

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Confetti.co.uk Masterclass #StyleItLikeAPro

Confetti.co.uk masterclass

On Tuesday I attended Confetti.co.uk #StyleItLikeAPro event, a masterclass on how to style the perfect wedding table display.

Confetti.co.uk is the place to go for wedding ideas, planning and advice so I knew I would be learning all the styling trade secrets from a team who really knows their stuff! 

The masterclass was held at the stylish luxury hotel, the Lowry Hotel in Manchester. After meeting the lovely team at Confetti and other bloggers, we chatted over chilled lemonade, miniature fish and chips and tasty macaroons.

Tasty snacks!

Then we were given the lowdown on the table displays. There were two beautiful tables each decorated with  distinctive themes: rustic and vintage. Confetti.co.uk shared their top three tips to consider when styling your table:

Texture: Incorporate different textures and patterns to add to your theme for example the material lace can soften the look of your display.
Height: It's important to have a variety of shape and sizes, so use props like candle sticks, boxes or table plans to create height to your table.
Details: Get creative by adding different details like favour bags, candle holders, ring boxes (rather than pillows) or cake toppers.

Rustic themed table

The rustic themed table display was full of textures, layers and lots of charming do-it-yourself details. I loved the lace draw string favour bag, a good alternative to the popular organza favour bags and compliments the rustic theme well. I also really liked the vintage inspired wooden wedding ring box, designed to carry both wedding rings and can easily slip into an inside the groom's pocket (so he won't loose it!) It's these small details that made the rustic table look so perfectly styled.

 Vintage themed table

The vintage display table incorporated a mixture of antique elegance and modern sophistication. I loved the use of romantic colours, the dark red and pink flowers completed the vintage inspired look.  I also liked the use of repurposing items and using them in different ways, for example the shelf was used for height as a prop and invitations displayed inside.

We then had the opportunity to style a table ourselves! Here was the table I helped design along with another blogger using all the tips we had learned that day:

 Our display table

We used the white stands and wooden box with vintage cream roses to create height to our table, the white patterned candle holders to demonstrate texture and pattern and LOVE plates and miniature glass bell jars to add detail to our table.

I really enjoyed the #StyleItLikeAPro masterclass and learned so many useful  techniques and top tips on styling wedding tables. The best part was knowing I could use these tips for styling and decorating any event and not just weddings!

The lovely team at Confetti are not only holding masterclasses but offering a lucky person the chance to win their dream wedding!  

The average cost of wedding in the UK has skyrocketed to around £40,000 so Confetti have partnered up with some fantastic companies to give a lucky bride the chance to win their entire wedding worth up to £40,000. 

The prize includes wedding venue, dress, groom's suit, stationery, photographer, videographer, reception entertainment, honeymoon and lots more.  To enter visit Confetti.co.uk website, good luck!



Monday, 20 July 2015

Outfit of the day - Summer Wedding

Dress - ASOS
Bag - Zara
Shoes - New Look

I spent the weekend up in the alps for a friend's wedding in Austria. The weather was scorching hot so I chose this pretty floral cream dress teamed with nude strappy heels. 

I loved the deep V-back detail on the dress, it was both flattering and stylish and the perfect dress for the occasion!



Outfit of the day - Workwear Wardrobe


Shirt - H&M
Skirt - H&M
Bag - Zara
Shoes - New Look

Now that Summer has arrived in London I can finally say goodbye knits and jumpers and hello lighter looser clothing!  But how do you dress in the office with scorching hot weather? Adjusting your workwear wardrobe to 

Dressing for the office during the summer is all about the right fabrics and white shirts are so simple and versatile - they go with everything! I wore this short sleeved classic white skirt and teamed with a jacquard pink skirt. If you're not a fan of skirts for the office, then go for foral print cropped trousers as another smarter alternative.




Sunday, 12 July 2015

Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa Review

View from our suite at the Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa
 
Are you planning a trip to Bangkok and looking to find an oasis away from the bright lights and hustle and bustle of the city? Then the Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa is the ideal place for you.

Located on the banks of the Chao Phraya River in Thonburi, as soon as you enter the resort you instantly forget you are in the heart of one of the largest and biggest cities in the world.


With 408 rooms at the Anantara, we stayed in the Riverfront Suite for three nights in mid June. This had a spacious living area, separate dining room and a wide balcony that had some of the most enchanting views of the river. I loved sitting out on the balcony taking in the stunning views of the beautiful resort gardens and using up endless opportunities to watch the sunset over the banks of the Grand Chao Phraya River. 





 


Our bedroom had a very comfortable king size bed with large windows revealing the beautiful views of the river. The largge ensuite bathroom was equally impressive, with dual vanity basins including both a rain shower and large bath tub. One of the best features of the room was with a free smart phone device that could be used both in the hotel room and also sightseeing around Bangkok too. I couldn’t believe that guests were allowed to make unlimited local and international calls and use the internet all for free! This was just one of many great services Anantara provides guests when they choose to stay at the resort.
  



 


Guests are really spoiled for choice for food and drinks with 10 restaurants and bars on the resort. I didn't get a chance to visit them all but a few of my favourites were Trader's Vic that serves delicious Mai Tai Sunday Brunch's in a relaxed atmosphere where guests can dine in the private tropical garden or the Polynesian inspired dining room with live music. Another favourite is Benihana, a japanese restaurant, where talented chefs create sumptuous Teppanyaki dishes with theatrical cooking displays for customers. On our first night we ate at the stunning Riverside Terrace, a restaurant overlooking the riverbank. We were treated to a delicious thai buffet and watched classical Thai dancers perform on a flame lit stage against the backdrop of the Chao Phraya River.
 



The Anantara offers guests the ideal combination of luxury and tranquillity. The resort is the perfect base to explore the 11 acres of beautiful gardens or if like me, you prefer to relax in the spa and experience the best in thai massage, scrubs and rice rituals! After a long flight from London, on our first day at the resort we had a couples treatment and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.



The resort also provides a complimentary private shuttle boat into the bustling heart of Bangkok. The boats leave every half-hour so you can leave the sanctuary of the resort and be in the heart of Bangkok’s shopping or nightlife very easily. I loved travelling by riverboat, it's a great benefit that the resort offers to its guests. We went to Asiatique a night market on the other side of the river which has numerous restaurants and lots of shops and boutiques. 


We also used the river boat to travel into the city and had cocktails at 200m-high roof top Sky Bar at LeBua, an amazing experience that is worth visiting so I would highly recommend!

The Anantara feels like a hideaway from the city itself and is the ideal way to experience Bangkok. You are only a shuttle boat ride away from the bustling heart of Bangkok so close enough to feel the energy of the city around you but still located in the peaceful and tranquil atmosphere of the resort.  The resort is beautiful, by day you can explore the 11 acres of gardens and by night the open-air corridors are lit by torches in the evening. I would encourage guests to take time to explore the natural beauty of the resort and stroll the grounds to see the beautiful flowers and tropical trees.



The hotel is certainly 5 star and the prices are to match but staying at Anantara is worth it and you certainly won’t be disappointed.  The service from staff is fantastic, absolutely faultless. From the moment we arrived we were welcomed by friendly staff and all throughout our stay, the staff really went above and beyond to make our experience in Bangkok a memorable one.

If you’re looking for a luxury hotel to stay in Bangkok chilled enough to relax by the pool but close enough to the city, then this is the one for you. I certainly look forward to visiting Bangkok again and staying at the Anantara Bangkok Riverside Resort & Spa!



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