The Adagio London Brentford, UK

Two weeks ago, I was invited the opening of the first ever Adagio Aparthotel in London Brentford. I’ve previously stayed in Adagio Aparthotel with my mum in Nice in France and I really enjoyed it so I was really looking forward to discovering what Adagio has to offer in London.

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Location:

The Adagio Aparthotel Brentford provides good links with Central London so it’s great for both business and leisure travellers. It is also located close to London Heathrow airport and within a mile of Kew Gardens. The closest tube station is 10minutes walk from the aparthotel.

Facilities:

Adagio Aparthotel Brentford offers all the comforts of home whilst you are away. The hotel features 100 apartments (a mixture of studios and one-bedroom apartments), virtual concierge, fitness centre, laundry facilities, open hot-desk work area next to reception and a restaurant where you can grab a breakfast or a drink from.

Aparthotels Adagio London Brentford’s design takes inspiration from its urban surroundings with a modern feel. All Adagio aparthotels aim to provide open areas where guests can work and meet, perhaps even take part in one of their spontaneous cooking sessions all within Adagios comfortable setting.

As soon as you enter, you are welcomed by friendly receptionists and beautiful, contemporary surroundings.

Room:

We stayed in a beautiful apartment located on the seventh floor. Our apartment had a fully-equipped kitchen, air conditioning, living area with flat screen smart TV, free WIFI and telephone. We also had a spacious bathroom with complimentary Malin + Goez toiletries.

The living area of the apartment consisted also had a large and comfortable bed so we slept very well.

We also had a large terrace featuring the panoramic views of London where the guests could enjoy a drink or sit down and relax with a good book.

Overall experience:

The hotel staff believe that ‘home is not a place, it is a feeling’ and they try to create a friendly, open surroundings for its guests. Although, we stayed at the Adagio Aparthotel Brentford only for 1 night, we had a great time. The hotel has everything that’s needed whilst away from home and I will definitely stay in Adagio Aparthotels in the future.

Address:

Key Eye Tower

Ealing Rd

Brentford TW8 0FL

Website:

https://www.adagio-city.com

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline

After-work tapas at James Cochran’s restaurant

As you all know I am a massive foodie. I work in the City of London (near Monument) and I always enjoy discovering hidden-gems where I can unwind after work. I recently visited EC3 restaurant by James Cochran who received 2 Michelin stars at The Ledbury. The restaurant was names in Fay Maschlers top 10 restaurants of 2016 and James Cochran definitely deserves this as he is an excellent chef. I was impressed by his tapas menu which I experienced after work a couple of weeks ago.

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Atmosphere: 

James Cochran’s restaurant has a very casual atmosphere. It has a modern decor with a few paintings and a vibrant, bright yellow chairs adding some chic to its interior. Its guests have an option to pop-in for some drinks or sangria which are served at its 16-seat bar in front of the restaurant or to have a meal / tapas. The restaurant also offers take-away menu.

Location:

James Cochran EC3 restaurant is located in the heart of City of London. It is just a few minutes walk from the Liverpool Street and Aldgate stations and easily accessible if you are travelling here by tube or bus.

Menu:

James Cochran offers its dinners original Scottish and Jamaican influenced dishes that are made from fresh, regional produce. During the summer, the restaurant offers its dinners tapas style dishes. There are 13 dishes to choose from and they are perfect for sharing with your friends or loved ones. I really like tapas as sharing food stimulates conversation and is great for any occasion. I was accompanied by my husband and we ordered 6 dishes between us:

  • pork kromeski served with peppers and mayo

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  • lamb kromeski with marmite mayo

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  • hackney n’duja Scotch egg

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  • Jamaican jerk buttermilk chicken

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  • smoked cornish mackarel with some picked fennel, pepper puree and coriander crumb

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  • smoked salmon with some apple, cod’s roe, radish, chorizo crumb and basil oil

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All of the dishes were tasty and delivered different culinary experience. My favorite were the pork and lamb kromeski – amazing croquettes dipped in batter and deep fried. The restaurant is also known for its hackney n’duja Scotch egg – it was top notch and had just the right ratio of meat to egg to crispy exterior. In addition, we both really enjoyed one of the restaurant’s signature dishes – the famed Jamaican jerk buttermilk chicken -it’s fragrant and had a perfect balance of heat, sweet and savory flavors.

The portion size of the dishes we ordered was just the right size to share between two of us. What appealed to me was that all of the dishes were reasonably priced so I will definitely return to try their A La Carte menu during the autumn.

Address:

19 Bevis Marks,

London

EC3A 7JA

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Pauline

Vietnamese meal at Pho & Bun in London, UK

Do you like oriental cuisine? I definitely do. During my honeymoon, I visited Vietnam with my husband and I was really impressed by how beautiful the country was and how friendly its’ citizens were. I like going out and discovering different restaurants so this Monday, I visited Pho & Bun for a dinner with my husband.

Atmosphere: 

Pho & Bun offers authentic Vietnamese food in a casual setting that will make you feel as if you’ve stepped foot in Vietnam.

Location: 

Pho & Bun is located in central London on the popular Shaftesbury Avenue which is a few minutes away from the Tottenham Court Road & Piccadilly Circus stations. It is also around a corner from both Chinatown and Soho. It is surrounded by many West End theatres, shops and tourist monuments so it is a great place to go to for a lunch or dinner if you are nearby.

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Menu:

Pho & Bun offers its dinners great selection of authentic Vietnamese street food at a reasonable price. There are 2 menus to choose from:

  • A La Care
  • 5 – courses tasting menu

We decided to order from the testing menu. Firstly, we selected 3 starters each to share.

  • Fresh summer roll with tiger prawn;
  • Pork & crab spring roll;
  • Mango salad with tiger prawn;
  • Chilli salt and pepper squid;
  • Sticky honey chicken wings;
  • Honey glazed spare ribs.

All starters were tasty but my favourite were the honey glazed spare ribs and pork and crab spring roll.

Secondly, we ordered our mains. I had some honey glazed BBQ pork with vermicelli. The dish was a combination of delicious pork, fresh vegetables and noodles seasoned with different herbs and spices.

A0BD95CE-9B3F-417C-B5AA-5B5E7C7A2934My husband ordered some Bun Sa Lemongrass beef rump steak with vermicelli.

We found both of these dishes really filling and tasty. I would recommend them especially when you are hungry as the portion size was really generous and we finished about half of our mains.

Lastly, we ordered some desserts. I had some mouth-watering pandan & coconut panna cotta whilst my husband decided to have some homemade soft yoghurt ice-cream. I love desserts and they were both delicious.

Overall experience:

Pho & Bun offers a range of original Vietnamese dishes with a  twist. The service was quick and friendly, atmosphere was casual so this restaurant is perfect for a casual dinning experience with your friends or family. What’s more, the restaurant is reasonably priced and our 5-course tasting menu was only £27.95 per person. I would definitely visit again!

Address: 

76 Shaftesbury Avenue,

W1D 6ND,

London

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Pauline

 

 

Beauty on the spot – the worst beauty treatment I’ve ever had in London

As you all know I love pampering myself and recently I booked a package for six G5 massage treatments at the Beauty on the Spot in Monument in London. I love beauty treatments and I’ve had G5 treatments on my legs before so I was quite glad when I found a place that was offering a package of 6 treatments, just around a corner from the office I work. I haven’t imagine that I would be as disappointed as I am now and it was the worst treatment I’ve ever had.

A bit of the background. G5 treatment is done using 5 different massaging heads in around 45 minutes. My treatment with your therapist took barely 8 minutes and she only used 2 out of 5 G5 heads. It’s a spam and you should avoid going to this place under all circumstances. The company offers their own short version of the treatment which perhaps they could call G2 but in my opinion it’s definitely not something they should sell as a G5 treatment if it takes you 8 minutes to complete and you only use 2 massaging heads… The treatment is called G5 as there are 5 interchangeable heads which they clearly do not use. For more information on this treatment you can watch some YouTube videos – definitely not what Beauty on the spot offers!

Although, I’ve made a formal written complaint and requested to cancel the additional five G5 massages that I paid for the management of the company still haven’t provided me with any response. The way they treat their Clients is disgusting and I hope that they will get closed down as this kind of places should not exist. Honestly, I would not recommend it to anyone to even consider going there. Look elsewhere or you will end up as disappointed as I am now! On top of that, I read on their website that they ‘do not offer refunds’ so I will most likely waste over £200 as I do not want to return there.

Do not go there my lovelies!

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Pauline

Our dinner at José Pizarro Restaurant in London

If you read my blog regularly you will know that I am a massive foodie. I love going out to the new restaurants and discovering hidden-gems on the dining scene. I recently joined my husband for a dinner-date at José Pizarro restaurant and today I would love to tell you about my experience.

Location:

José Pizarro has 3 restaurants in London:

  • Pizarro Restaurant near London Bridge;
  • José Pizarro Restaurant near Moorgate station
  • José Tapas Bar near London Bridge.

As I work near Monument, we decided to visit Pizarro restaurant on Bermondsey Street which is a short – 10 min walk from the London Bridge station.

Atmosphere:
Pizarro has a stylish décor and an informal atmosphere.

Diners are able to select their seats next to the window overlooking a picturesque church of St Mary Magdalen, at the bar, at the long communal table or the classic tables if they fancy a more intimate dinning experience. As we were on our dinner date, we decided to have a quiet table at the back of the restaurant which was overlooking an open kitchen so we could admire the chefs preparing our tasty dishes.

The menu:

The menu at Pizarro restaurant offers its diners a selection of tasty small and more substantial Spanish dishes, made using the seasonal products which can be served as starters and mains or as tapas for sharing.

To start with, we ordered a few tapas dishes to share from the Pica Pica and Starters menu:

  • Jamón Ibérico
  • Mushroom Croquetas
  • Butifarra negra & pulpo
  • Citrus prawn fritters

All of our starters were great but I absolutely loved the mushroom croquetas. They were the best croquetas I’ve tasted in a long time. You definitely need to try them when you visit Pizarro.

For my main I decided to have a fish of the day – Pescado del día – scallops with some aubergines. They were mouth watering and the flavours of cod and side worked perfectly together.

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My husband had a Castilian leg of suckling lamb with some mojo rojo and chickpeas. It was extremely tender and the portion was generous.

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Once we were done with our mains, it was a time for my favourite part of any meal – our desserts. I decided to be adventurous and ordered some cream cheese ice cream accompanied by some blackcurrant and camomile syrup. It was certainly different and not what I expected!

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My husband was less adventurous and just ordered some classic ice creams and enjoyed them.

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Overall experience:

We both enjoyed our dining experience. I my opinion, Pizarro is definitely one of the best Spanish eateries in London and it offers some great traditional dishes with a modern twist. The restaurant is perfect for a romantic dinner for two or a casual meeting with friends over some delicious tapas and quality Spanish wine. Throughout our meal the service was attentive and the waitress made sure that we had a wonderful evening. The restaurant is also conveniently located (especially if you travel to or work in the City of London) so I would definitely visit it again soon!

Website:
For more information and to book visit:

https://josepizarro.com/pizarro-restaurant/

Address:

194 Bermondsey St,

London

SE1 3TQ

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline

My hair transformation at The Chapel Hairdressers

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Are you looking for a top-notch hair transformation? I was. A few weeks ago, I finally decided to do something about my hair to bring a bit of life and color back to it. My friend-Amy recommended The Chapel Hairdressers in London. Over the years, the salon has won over 30 business and consumer awards including being ‘Best London Salon’ (Islington) and ‘Best UK Local Salon’ (Tunbridge Wells). I decided to listen to my friend’s recommendation and give it a go.

History:

The Chapel is owned by  Amanda Dicker who decided to develop the unique Chapel experience a while ago. She started thinking about her own brand back in 1994 and during a sabbatical year to travel the world she experienced her ‘eureka moment’ that would later have a huge impact on her business. She realized the key factor that made one place more memorable than another, wasn’t its location or décor but the people and service it provided. She then decided to provide her clients with moments of great hospitality in the oasis of her salons. Amanda opened her first salon, Number 9 Colour & Style a year later. In 2001, Amanda was struck by the architecture of the old Baptist chapel that transformed Number 9 into The Chapel at Tunbridge Wells. Followed by the success, in 2007 a Victorian pub was converted into the Islington salon in London and in 2011 an old school house in Sevenoaks was a location for a third salon.

Location: 

The Chapel Hairdressers is located at 3 prestigious locations in UK: Tunbridge Wells (flagship salon), Islingon, Sevenoaks. In addition, international guests in Verbier can have their hair done in the stunning scenery of the Swiss Alps.

As I live in London, I decided to visit The Chapel located in the heart of London in Islington, just a stone away from a tube station.

Services: 

The Chapel‘s vision is to provide all its clients with the best experience possible. The salon vision is to assign the best expert stylists to collaborate in confidence on each guests new cut, colour and style using only the best hair products from the companies such as Redken, Kerastase, Shu Uemura, Olaplex and Purelogy.

Appointment:

I decided to refresh my hair color and when I contacted The Chapel a friendly receptionist invited me for a skin test which was scheduled for 48 hours before my coloring.

Before my skin test appointment started, the receptionist brought me a drinks menu. Whilst relaxing at the beautiful lounge, in no time I received some sparkling water and a mince pie. After a few minutes, I was welcomed by a friendly stylist – Sian. She listened about what I wanted to achieve during our coloring session. We had in-depth conversation devoted to understanding my individual requirements where she provided me with her expert advice and showed me some images of how my hair could look like. We agreed for me to have some highlights to brighten me up and bring out some natural color. After the consultation, Sian conducted a skin test and applied a couple of drops of hair colorant onto my skin.

My follow-up appointment was scheduled 2 days after the initial consultation. As soon as I arrived, Sian welcomed me and took me to the lounge to confirm my requirements and what I wanted to achieve.

In the meantime, a friendly receptionist offered me a drinks menu and as it was almost Christmas I decided to have some mulled wine. The Chapel has four areas for each stage of the visit Relaxation, Education, Service and Tailored treatments (REST). On ground floor there is a reception area, lounge, bar as well as a treatment area for washing, cutting and styling.

On the lower ground floor there is a washing / coloring area and a relaxing lounge.

We started my appointment by coloring so Sian took me downstairs and prepared: a gloss to bring out some richness to my natural darker tones and refresh them, as well as a solid lighter color to add some lighter tones.

Whilst Sian was applying the mixtures, we were talking about her background, Christmas and our holiday plans-it felt like we knew each other for ages. Once my hair colorants were applied, Sian invited me to relax at the lounge whilst my color was developing. In the meantime, she prepared a few ‘potions’ (Olaplex and Kerastase treatments) to minimize the negative effects of coloring and restore the health of my hair. After 20 minutes, when the color developed, Sian washed it off and applied the treatments to my hair. Once, my hair was washed, Sian took me upstairs to cut and style my hair. As I was going out after the appointment, she applied some loose curls to my hair. When she finished, I looked like a new me and my hair looked fuller, healthier and I really liked my highlights.

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Prices:

The Chapel prices are calculated by time rather than individual treatments and they depend on the chosen stylist to create a more flexible bespoke service to its Clients. It also helps guests understand the cost of each appointment in advance. My highlights and cut appointment lasted 3 hours, by Sian told me that women’s cuts average an hour, while more complex cut and colour treatments can last 2-3 hours or upwards.

Final thoughts: 

I loved ever aspect of my hair transformation appointment at the Chapel. Although, it’s not cheap, the salon offers a personalized service and my hair looked amazing so it was worth every penny. In addition, whichever stylist you choose, they will be with you throughout the appointment to answer any questions you might have. I am already looking forward to visiting again and seeing Sian as she’s been wonderful.

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If you are interested in booking your hair transformation, please visit The Chapel’s website:

https://www.thechapel.co.uk/

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Pauline

CAKE Restaurant Payment app

Do you live or work in central London? If you do then I would like to tell you about CAKE – the new payment application for Londoners. I decided to give it a go as I go out regularly and the application promises to make it easier to enjoy London’s best restaurants and bars.

You can pay or split your bill all in one app.

Firstly, you can plan where to eat by browsing the places nearby or see a full list of places where you can pay with the app when you tap ‘Explore’.

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As soon as you are sure where you would like to go for your meal or drinks you can contact the venue to request a table.

There is a good selection of restaurants and bars to choose from. Some of the restaurants that CAKE collaborates with are:

  • Rum Kitchen
  • Bunga Bunga
  • Tonteria
  • Lima
  • 100 Kensington
  • Aroma Italia
  • Bar American

As my husband loves Indian food, on Tuesday we decided to book a table at Cinnamon Bazaar located in Covent Garden.

The experience:

After we had our meal at Cinnamon Bazaar we let our server know that we wanted to pay with CAKE. The payment was simple-when I opened a tab in the app and showed my reference number to my waiter who then connected my bill to the app. The payment amount owed was shown in the app and when I approved it the payment was made. There was also an option to split a bill with other dinners which would be really handy if you went out with friends.

Overall experience:

I really enjoyed using CAKE app as it gives anyone opportunity to browse and pay for your meal at many local cafes and restaurants. In addition, the app offers you the possibility to quickly split your bill if you decide to use it while out with your friends.

Hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline