Page 1


Issue 112

Dec ‘16 -J an’17

West End 2

A gazette magazine

Hazlehead | Queens Cross | Mannofield

Introducing local people to local businesses since 2005!

Disclaimer : Whilst we’d be flattered if you would like to borrow something from the gazette be polite and ask first! Thank you. We try our hardest to ensure accuracy of editorial content but no responsibility can be taken for any errors and/or omissions. The views expressed within the gazette are not necessarily those of the publisher or advertisers. When replying to offers, competitions and other correspondence, we would strongly recommend that you check published information with each organisation beforehand. All artwork is accepted on strict condition that permission has been given for use in this publication. We thank you for taking the time to read the small print. Hazlehead Queens Cross Mannofield

Merry Christmas, It’s almost here, are you ready? Needless to say I am not! I like waiting until at least December, usually after my son’s birthday on the 7th! This year my brother is doing the Christmas Dinner and all I have to bring is a pavlova - nice and easy. The only downside is we’ll have no leftovers to enjoy on Boxing Day, unless he kindly gives us a doggy bag! For those that still have some shopping to do I hope you will find the gift guide helpful and maybe grab a last minute bargain at one of the local shops. New Year I’ll be celebrating by dancing in Edinburgh so that’s something to look forward too. I made a lengthy journey to Peninver near Campbeltown the other weekend. I was very lucky with the weather. The scenery was stunning. Arran for once was in full view and we watched the seals basking in the sun! Five of them. The clarity of the sky meant the stars were on show not that I know which is which but it was truly spectacular. Anyway it is time to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, thank you for reading the magazine this year and I look forward to chatting to you all again in 2017. Go grab that cuppa and enjoy. Until the next year… Sue x

independent publisher : Sue Simpson All enquiries : mobile : 07813 964 875 email :

27 January | West End 2 + Kingswells (Feb-Mar) 27 February| West End 1 (Mar-Apr) 27 March | West End 2 + Kingswells (Apr-May) 27 April| West End 1 (June-July)



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A Rustic Christmas Simple festive decorations can be the most appealing, says interiors expert Katherine Sorrell Who doesn’t love a natural look? Unpretentious and understated, natural Christmas decorations suit every home, large or small, modern or traditional, and make a fabulous, timeless alternative to commercialised glitz and glitter. The ideal centrepiece is a real tree, best bought from a good local stockist. Choose one that’s as fresh as possible, make a new cut at the bottom, and display in a stand (a wicker basket is perfect) that holds a



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reservoir of water. (Tip: the Nordmann Fir holds its needles really well.) Decorate your tree generously without overloading, and keep to a limited colour scheme (white, red, green and brown are all great), using natural materials (see box). For a touch of sparkle, twine the tree with small, plain white fairy lights. Feeling inspired? Then make decorations with the family. Garlands of popcorn, nuts, gingerbread stars and paper strings of angels or snowflakes are adorable. Instead of shiny baubles, cut simple shapes from felt and blanket-stitch them around the outside, or make a wreath using garden clippings. Similarly, you can create wonderful decorations using sprigs of evergreen, ivy, pine cones (perhaps sprayed with artificial snow), rose hips, dried seed heads and twigs (lashed into a star shape). Or tie

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dried slices of apple and orange together with gardener’s string and add cinnamon sticks and star anise. If you’re short of time, all these will be in the shops, along with others such as birch bark candle holders, driftwood Christmas trees and needle felted and knitted owls, reindeer and robins. Wrap presents in brown paper and string, or lengths of fabric and cotton ribbon. Use cardboard luggage labels, and why not embellish the plain paper with potato printing in white – something children might enjoy? For receiving presents, there’s nothing nicer than knitted stockings hanging by the fire, perhaps with some widely available printed hessian sacks for larger gifts. Fresh flowers are fabulous at Christmas – hyacinths, amaryllis and poinsettias are classic and all look particularly special in white. Wrap pots in hessian tied with string or pop groups of them into a wicker basket; you can decorate the tops of the pots with silver moss.

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Less is more with this look, so laying the festive table is easy. A linen runner or place mats, plain white china, clear glass and simple decorations such as bowls of pine cones or oranges studded with cloves, and perhaps a vase full of evergreens, twigs and boughs. Cosy, welcoming and unpretentious. Finally, add candles, small and tall, anywhere their flickering glow will make you feel happy. Alternatively, tea lights look pretty inside old jam jars, which is safer if you have young children around. Pop a mince pie in the oven and heat some mulled wine on the hob, and here it is – a very merry Christmas. Ingredients for a natural Christmas Hessian Twigs, branches and boughs Linen and cotton ribbon

Brown paper and string Greenery and berries from the garden Moss Dried, sliced apples and oranges Cinnamon sticks and star anise Gingerbread Felt Hyacinths, amaryllis and white poinsettias Candles Pine cones Merry Xmas jumbo Santa sack, £8.99; Tar lantern, £4; tree lantern, £2; 6ft berry and cone tree, £40; wool badger lady and gentlemen, £3.50; all Dunelm, 0845 1656565; Log battery candles with star design, £12 each, The Contemporary Home, 02392 469400; star, £8, Jenny Walsh Design, 0868 773293; Artificial eucalyptus and cone Christmas wreath, £15, The Contemporary Home, as before.

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Single Issue £29 Three Issue £81 A little bit of Italy... LittleSix Belmont Street £126 Issues We have been serving fine italian cuisine since 1977. Extensive à la carte menu for lunch and dinner.


5 minutes walk from His Majesty’s Theatre and Music Hall – special lunch and pre-theatre menus.


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5 minutes walk from His Majesty’s Theatre and Music Hall been serving fine italian cu spread the cost of We have - special lunch and1977. pre-theatre menus. Extensive à la carte menu for lunch We have been serving fine italian cuisine since six issues over 12 baked home-made pizzas with lashings of toppings. Extensive à la carte menu forFreshly lunch and dinner. 5 minutes walk from His Majesty’s T equal payments of Tender pasta dishes full of tasty ingredients and luscious cream – special lunch and pre-theatre men

sauces. Seafood, 5 minutes walk from His Majesty’s Theatre andprime Musicsteaks, Hall chicken dishes, all with that extra touch of genius which is true Italian cooking! – special lunch and pre-theatre menus. Freshly baked home mode home m


Open Monday to Saturday 12 noon to 2.30pm and 5.30pm to 10.15pm Tender pasta dishes full of tasty ingre

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Are you prepared for the unexpected?

Living a healthy lifestyle and being in good health is something that the majority of us aspire to. Nowadays, with health scares often highlighted in the media, we’re encouraged to look after ourselves by maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle. However, one thing that’s certain is that, even despite our best efforts, falling ill can happen to anyone, at anytime, with little or no warning. Being diagnosed with a life threatening illness can turn people’s lives upside down. It can shake a family’s security, impact on the ability to work and quickly affect the stability of finances. This can all be avoided if you’re financially prepared. We believe in taking care of our health, but we should also take care of our finances by protecting what we’ve got and insuring our lives or health. A financial back-up plan will help relieve any financial pressure when faced with the sad reality of a premature death of a loved one or a diagnosis of a life-threatening illness.

Life insurance and critical illness cover are two types of insurance policies that can offer financial protection to a family, should serious illness become an unwelcome part of life. They are similar in that they both generally run for a set number of years, for a set sum assured and for a monthly premium agreed at outset. A life insurance policy will pay out in the event of the death of the person whose life is assured, however, a critical illness policy will pay out in the event of the person who is insured being diagnosed with one of a list of specified illnesses. This may include, for example, a heart attack, major organ transplant, some cancers or multiple sclerosis.   If you would like to find out more about life insurance and critical illness cover, call 01224 900879, or visit for more information.

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A new-found interest for golf has seen a surge in participation and membership among female players at a blossoming northeast country club. Kippie Lodge, set within the bounds of Aberdeen yet surrounded by the picturesque scenery of the Dee valley, has been the perfect sport & leisure retreat since the early 1970s. Once dominated by male businessman in the oil trade – the club is affiliated to Scottish Golf as Aberdeen Petroleum – it is now seeing an upsurge in ladies keen to take up the game and gain handicaps. The picturesque 9-hole golf course in the grounds opened in the early 1990s and provides a challenge for all levels of player, with a family-friendly ethos. Director of Golf Keil Beveridge has been working at the venue with groups of ladies through Scottish Golf’s Get into Golf coaching programme, while Laura Murray, who recently won her first pro event, continues the female theme through her attachment to Kippie Lodge. Such has been the interest from women club members at Kippie, they have now taken a leaf out of the men’s book by setting up their own ladies golf association, with 45 joining in order to have fun, learn the game and perhaps gain handicaps to start playing medals next season. Currently, only six of the ladies are members of other city clubs. Never before has there been so much interest in ladies golf,” says Nicky Caldwell, marketing coordinator at Kippie. “We have Keil here and we do ladies coaching, but a group of ladies have now set up their own golf association within the country club. It’s just gone from strength to strength really.


“It’s never been so busy with the ladies. Groups of men go out, but all of a sudden these ladies have come out wanting to play and wanting to get involved in golf. They’re not feeling pressurised, if they are a beginner or intermediate, they can join this group of ladies and play. It’s a group of ladies who have got together who are learning, enjoying and playing the game. “They are trying to encourage other ladies to come along, saying ‘you don’t need to have a handicap, come along for a bit of fun. If you want to join us brilliant, we can then look at getting you a handicap’. It’s golf at Kippie for ladies. It’s a club within a club.” The lady members meet for golf every Wednesday and Saturday, numbering around 20 regularly, with more expected next season. One of the beginner ladies, Fiona Willox, has even already notched a hole in one, at the 4th hole in pouring rain! Susan, Chappell –Smith, who runs the ladies’ golf association at Kippie, added: “The ladies are already playing a longer course, which allows for handicaps and competitions. The greens staff at Kippie have altered the tee positions to comply with this and new cards have been printed with the revised yardages. “We have 45 paid up members and have been able to register and issue handicaps to 24 ladies since the course was changed to allow for the required yardage. “Over the winter we will devise a competition schedule for 2017, incorporating various ideas we have to retain the interest of the ladies – allowing for a mix of competitions and fun games. “We will be playing fun bounce games on Wednesday mornings as well as Saturday’s during the winter, weather permitting, and have also organised social functions and away days to other courses, just for fun golf.” t : 07813 964 875

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KIPPIE LODGE Dining Membership Now is your chance to join Kippie Lodge as a Dining Member. Whether your looking to enjoy an intimate meal, family gathering or to enjoy a drink on the patio while the kids play Kippie provides the perfect location - right on your doorstep! Family events include, Christmas Parties, Halloween Fireworks event, discos and much much more. nOW IS YOUR

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Pepper and Turkey Stuffed Sweet Potatoes This is a tasty and healthy post-Christmas day family supper and a great way to use up leftover roast turkey. Serves 4 Ready in 1 hour 15 minutes 4 medium-sized sweet potatoes, scrubbed 2tbsp olive oil 1 red onion, peeled and chopped 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed 1 red pepper, deseeded and sliced 1 yellow pepper, deseeded and sliced 225g cooked turkey breast, diced 1 x 230g tub fresh tomato salsa Salt and freshly ground black pepper 100g Cheddar cheese, grated Chopped avocado, lime wedges and freshly chopped parsley, to serve 1 Preheat the oven to 200C, Fan 180C, Gas Mark 6. Prick the potatoes all over with a fork and place on a baking tray. Bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes or until tender. 2 Just before the potatoes are ready, heat half the oil in a frying pan and fry the onion for 6-7 minutes until tender, adding the garlic after 5 minutes. Add the peppers and turkey and fry for a further 2-3 minutes. Stir in 2 tbsp of the tomato salsa and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. 3 Halve the baked sweet potatoes and roughly mash up the flesh with a fork. Season lightly and drizzle over half the remaining oil, then pile the turkey and pepper mixture on top of the halves. Scatter over the cheese and drizzle over the rest of the oil. Return to the oven for 10-12 minutes until the cheese has melted. 4 Serve with chopped avocado and lime wedges and sprinkled with freshly chopped parsley. Spoon the rest of the salsa into a small bowl and serve on the side. TIP For a vegetarian version replace the turkey with halved chestnut mushrooms or diced aubergine or courgette and use vegetarian Cheddar cheese.

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Christmas Shopping Locally...

Selection of luxury hair care products from Sebastian & System Professional. Christmas sets (West with Style) Digitise your photographs, slides and videos to DVD or Flash Memory Stick. or call 07743441690

Anna Wright - 'A Tower of Giraffes' Giclee print by Anna Wright £50 (Junction Arts) Gift bagged bath bombs / foot soaks are priced at £3.50 each or 6 for £20 by Ruth - contact me on 07835309999 Mica Peet Necklaces - Brass & wooden Jewellery by Mica Peet £12 £18 each (Junction Arts)

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Alison Phillips 1 - Small Sterling silver stud earrings by Alison Phillips jewellery £12 £14 each (Junction Arts)

Kittiwake winter houses Small hand painted wooden houses by Kittiwake Design £6 - £7.50 each (Junction)

Dermalogica Gift Sets and individual gift bags made up along with gift vouchers starting from £15. (Kumiko)

Gift bagged bath bombs / foot soaks are priced at £3.50 each or 6 for £20 by Ruth contact me on 07835309999

Candy Coated Arrow Scarfs - 100% lambswool scarfs by Candy Coated £45 each (Junction Arts)

Christmas Shopping Locally...

WREATHS : 16/18” - £29 |19/21” - £35 Cemetery Wreaths with plastic flowers and ribbons approx 6/18” - £25 Posey’s start from £25.00; large posey 20” - £60 Various Table centrepieces in various shapes start from £15 (VonPetal Kingswells)

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Gift Vouchers Available at all the shops advertising here plus... Poldinos The Oven Valet Brillbird Laura Walker Ltd Kumiko Kippie Lodge Scott Gilmour

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Christmas Shopping Locally...

Stag Sculputure £145 (limited edition) / jamie@ 07804 669082 Selection of luxury hair care products from Sebastian & System Professional. Christmas sets (West with Style)

Juliette Armand Skincare is between £16 - £40 per item [Face Renew - Ellon]

Christmas Shopping Locally...

Gift vouchers - perfect to treat that special someone to get there nails done, have a massage or facial or a skin treatment. We would like to offer gazette readers a free goody bag with every gift voucher purchased. Call us 0n 01224 433111

Gift Packs from £18-£30.Gift Vouchers - Any Value to suit your budget - [Beautex 89 Gray Street tel: 07512 762 431]

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The Victoria Falls In November 1855, a Scottish missionary sailing down the Zambezi was the first European to set eyes on the awesome falls, long known to the natives as ‘the smoke that thunders’. “Scenes like this,” he mused, “must have been gazed upon by angels on their flight.” His name was David Livingstone and he called the falls ‘Victoria’ to honour his Queen. Stretching 1.7 km across Zambia and Zimbabwe, reaching a height of 108 metres, twice that of Niagara, and pouring an average of 550 million litres of water a minute, the Victoria Falls defy imagination and, with all statistics combined, they are the largest in the world. Mist and spray are visible for 20 km around. Surprisingly this mighty phenomenon does not occur on mountainous terrain but on flat land. It all started millions of years ago when earthquakes created faults in the old lava sheet and as soft material filled up the cracks, the river forced its way through, carving out over time the eight zigzagging gorges we see today. But nature is not set in stone and the great Zambezi continues its work, protected by UNESCO and national parks on both sides of the border. Most visitors view the falls from the Zambian side, where the Eastern Cataract brings the first heartstopping moment as roaring waters plunge over the edge and the placid upper river continues to flow unaware towards the precipice. But just feet away, the great mass of water tumbles into the ‘boiling pot’, trapped in a massive swirl as it struggles to escape through the tightest of bends. A long flight of slippery steps leads down to the cauldron’s edge, a spine-chilling place where baboons bare their teeth and you might shudder at the sight of a crocodile swept over the edge.

suspended in mid-air, strange poncho-clad creatures crawl like aliens across the face of the fall, soaked to the skin but gazing, exhilarated, at the force of the water and the giant rainbow over the Victoria Bridge which spans the deep river chasm. Opened in 1905, the bridge was built in England, shipped to Mozambique and assembled at the site in 14 months. Trucks and trains cross it at a snail’s pace and it marks the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe claims over two-thirds of the falls with 16 breathtaking viewpoints along signposted trails which meander through pristine rainforest to reveal the entirety of the falls: Devil’s Cataract, Main Falls, Horseshoe, Rainbow (the highest), then looking right across the bridge into Zambia. There are fewer visitors on this side and along with birds and butterflies, you might spot antelopes, bushbucks and other game. A statue of Livingstone looks down on it all, perhaps pleased that here, the water never dries. It’s different in Zambia when around OctoberNovember, the falls can dry up, breaking up the magnificent curtain of water into narrow streams and exposing the rock face, but on the other hand, Zambia claims the best viewing spots to enjoy the full moon. On a clear night, a magical lunar rainbow, or ‘moonbow’, appears over the water, ghostly and pale to the naked eye, but a good camera might capture the colours and one of the most enduring memories of the Victoria Falls. Solange Hando

Up on the top, those who dare bathe in the death-defying Devil’s Pool on Livingstone Island, where the explorer measured the drop with a bullet attached to a piece of string. Meanwhile, along the Knife’s Edge Bridge Please do mention the gazette when responding to advertisers - thank you


Gardening Gifts It is not that long until Christmas now, and although I am the first to admit that I haven’t done a great deal of Christmas shopping, this year I’m making a plea for useful presents and maybe a bit less soap and slippers! If you’ve any gardening friends, whether they’ve been full-on gardening for years or have just been bitten by the gardening bug, it is so easy to get them a present they’ll really enjoy and find useful. A trip to any good local garden centre will reveal plenty of potential gifts in a wide range of prices, sizes and shapes that will suit anybody from the complete novice to the most experienced gardener. Another option is to take a look on the internet and get some gorgeous gardening gifts delivered right to your door. Houseplants can make brilliant presents, so why not choose a couple of really goodlooking ones? At this time of year there are plenty, such as the indoor cyclamens and azaleas or a flamboyant poinsettia or a gorgeous Christmas cactus, which look fantastic whilst in flower - but don’t forget that lots of the foliage houseplants look great, too. Make sure that you keep the plants at their best by placing them in a suitable position before you give them away, as they could otherwise suffer quite quickly. Outdoor plants are also an ideal choice, but before you purchase a gift for someone’s garden make sure that you know that the plant you are choosing will go to a suitable

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home. There is no use buying a lime-hating plant such as a Pieris, rhododendron, Camellia or azalea for somebody if they garden on chalk, unless you know that they have a supply of ericaceous compost and a good sized pot to hand too! Of course, that could also be a present from someone else if you plan carefully. If you’ve time to create a pot of winter flowering bedding plants, perhaps underplanted with a few small bulbs such as crocus or miniature daffodils, this will make a lovely instant garden impact present for anyone, whatever the size of their garden. Despite the huge quantities of Christmas paraphernalia in garden centres at the moment, any half decent centre will still have a good range of winter bedding plants and winter interest plants available. Anyone with an interest in growing vegetables would enjoy one of the many gardening books on the subject, or perhaps a ‘Grow Your Own with Pippa Greenwood’ Gift Voucher Card – this will allow them to select the vegetables they’d like to grow from the range I offer at Then, in the spring, we send them garden-ready plants accompanied by weekly advice and tips emails from me.


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Pretty well every gardener I know loves to encourage birds into the garden, so how about a bird box or feeder or maybe even some bird food? Bird feeding equipment and supplies now take up plenty of space in garden centres, so you’ll be spoilt for choice.

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Gardeners love practical things so a good hoe like my favourite, the SpeedHoe, will always be welcome, or how about some Micromesh-covered or polythene-covered EasyTunnels, perfect for protecting crops throughout the growing season next year? A raised bed kit is a great gift idea, too, allowing people to grow gorgeous vegetables even if their own soil isn’t ideal. Some kits even come with the option to add crop covers made from fine mesh (to keep pests out) or polythene (to protect from the worst of the weather and provide off-season warmth). So rather than rushing out and buying something that ‘will do’ as a gift, take a moment and see what you can find which will really bring a smile to someone’s face! Visit Pippa’s website www.pippagreenwood. com and book Pippa for a gardening talk or peruse the really useful selection of Pippa’s favourite gardening items, including Nemaslug to control slugs, pop-up crop covers, SpeedHoes, SpeedWeeders, raised bed kits, pull-out EasyTunnels, ‘Grow Your Own with Pippa Greenwood’ Gift Voucher cards, signed books and lots more besides.

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WOODLANDGROVE@ MILLTIMBER - START 2017 IN YOUR NEW LUXURY HOME With the option of being settled into your new home by Christmas, WoodlandGrove@ Milltimber offers the ideal combination of prestigious location, quality lifestyle, and easy access to world-class leisure and travel facilities. The luxury development of two-bedroom apartments for buyers aged 55 and over lies in the heart of the affluent suburb of Milltimber. Westhill’s internationally-renowned subsea centre of excellence is only a 15 minute drive away; with Aberdeen’s city centre and the world-class Prime Four business park, within easy reach too. There are excellent sporting and leisure facilities close by, including Peterculter and Deeside Golf Clubs, as well as Kippie Lodge sports and country club, and the David Lloyd Club. There are also spas at the nearby Marcliffe and Mercure Aberdeen Ardoe House hotels. Christine MacDonald, Woodland Grove’s sales advisor, said: “With the festive season approaching, the advantage of Woodland Grove’s central location giving easy access to amenities, cities, and towns across the region will become even more obvious. “If you’re spending the festive season with family elsewhere, or jetting off to get some winter sun, there are excellent road, rail and air links for domestic and international travel.”

compromising on social space for entertaining family and friends over Christmas – or any time of the year. Energy efficiency and reducing emissions have been front of mind throughout the construction process, so these luxury apartments are cheaper to run, and better for the environment compared with the average Scottish home. Christine said: “With an EPC B band rating and estimated yearly heating, light and hot water costs of around £400, homeowners can potentially save hundreds of pounds on energy bills.” Each apartment has its own individual design: offering outstanding comfort and style including superior finishes, light and spacious lounges, and designer kitchens with highquality appliances. Set in stunning, maintained grounds, the apartments - each with a substantial private balcony or terrace - have lift access to all levels. There is allocated residents parking, and ample visitor spaces. All homes have a door entry security video system, and the complex has two owners’ lounges, acting as a community hub, and playing host to a range of activities. Price start from £295,000. For further information on WoodlandGrove@Milltimber contact Christine Macdonald on 01224 863591 or visit

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Enjoy the luxury and lifestyle at your leisure. Set in the popular suburb of Milltimber, Woodland Grove is a luxury development of two bedroom apartments exclusively for buyers aged 55 and over. Generously-proportioned apartments perfectly located for easy access to a wide range of leisure facilities, amenities and business hubs. This luxury development is the ideal choice for commuters, and those enjoying their new-found freedom.

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