NOTED SUMMER 2015 NOTED-MAGAZINE.COM
NOTED SUMMER 2015
CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Top Dog hot dogs; afternoon tea at Sketch; Where I’d Rather Be umbrella; W South Beach hotel pool; The Marylebone Hotel suite; southeast peninsula stretch in St. Kitts; Trump SoHo New York hotel
2 THE NOTICEBOARD
Things you must absolutely do
FEATURE 14 TAKE NOTE
An expert and their craft
FOOD & DRINK
3 FOODIE NOTES
16 BEAUTY NOTES
Dining hotspots to hotfoot it to
This season’s finest beauty finds
5 DINING DELIGHTS
18 BRIGHTEN UP
Food hangouts that are the talk of town
Illuminating face masks
7 HOW TEA-RRIFIC
19 FACE THE SUN
The most stylish afternoon teas
SPF-loaded beauty weapons
20 GET PREPPED
Blow dry aids to whip hair into shape
9 THE WISHLIST
If you only buy one thing, this is it
10 ON THE CUFF
21 TRAVEL NOTES
11 TEN MOST WANTED
23 LONDON: HOT HOTEL HANGOUTS
13 WORK IT OUT
24 THE EXPLORER’S PARADISE: ST. KITTS
14 THE WISHLIST
26 ROOM WITH A VIEW
Big, bold and fiddle-free cuffs
The 10 products you need in your life now
Clever fitness essentials
If you only buy one thing, this is it
This season’s best travel hideouts
Stylish places to spend the night
Something to discover at the weekend A trio of scenic rooms
EDITOR KATE LAM (email@example.com) ART FRANCES LÊ ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. REPRODUCTION IN WHOLE OR IN PART WITHOUT PRIOR PERMISSION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED
THE NOTICEBOARD DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE An ambitious and bonkers but brilliant immersive theatre production that takes you into the heart of Wonderland. Alice’s Adventures Underground lets you follow in Alice’s footsteps as you weave through a maze of fantastical, larger than life sets and interact with familiar characters at every stage. There’s one overarching storyline that you’ll unwittingly participate in, namely “Who stole the Queen’s tarts?” which culminates in a brilliantly wild finale in the Queen’s court. You’ll have so much fun you’ll feel the urge to return again and the joy of the production means that you can, and you’ll experience a new show from a different perspective each time. That’s clever theatre. (Runs until 31st August 2015. Tickets cost from £35. The Vaults, Leake Street, Waterloo, London SE1 7NN. alice-underground.com)
COFFEE LIKE A PRO There is real art to creating an exceptional cup of coffee but it needn’t prove elusive. You can master the knowledge with a hands-on coffee masterclass at the Artisan Coffee School, where in just a couple of hours, you’ll learn all you need to know about how to create the perfect brew at home. You’ll gain an understanding of the bean to brew process and what factors play in a part in affecting the taste, so you know what to look out for and what methods to use to achieve your desired flavour. Those with an artistic flair should enjoy the equally rewarding latte art class where techniques on creating the perfect heart, tulip and rosette can be learnt. (Courses start from £35. Dates can be found at artisancoffeeschool.co.uk)
FINISH WITH FLYING COLOURS What could be more fun than going out for a 5K run to raise money for charity, whilst getting showered with a rainbow of colours to celebrate the occasion? If you don’t mind getting messy, Run or Dye events are a blast. You’re free to choose whatever pace gets you across the finish line and if you need help counting down, there’s a convenient volley of bright and bold powdered dye to get through which marks each kilometre. For maximum technicolour effect, don some white basics and simply follow the colour trail. (Register and find upcoming locations across the UK at runordye.co.uk)
MARCH TO THE ARCH FU MANCHU 15-16 Lendal Terrace, Clapham, London SW4 7UX. fumanchu.co.uk
HEALTH JUNKIE THE GOOD LIFE EATERY 69 Marylebone Lane, London W1U 2PH. goodlifeeatery.com Eating healthily doesn’t have to be punishing. That’s the message that radiates from every plate in this wellness cafe. Even the simple, raw and exposed interiors feel “honest”. Here, they serve up fast, nutritious and colourful food that you actually want to eat. From vitamin-rich breakfast bowls and wholesome superfood salads to filling protein shakes and refreshing cold-pressed juices, the variety should leave you thoroughly refuelled and energised for your day.
READY FOR A GRILLING MELT ROOM 26 Noel Street, Soho, London W1F 8GY. meltroom.com This is no ordinary sandwich shop. The team here have really cranked up the heat on the cheese sandwich to produce a mouth-watering menu of molten cheese melts that should more than satisfy your snack cravings. With the calibre of ingredient combinations on offer, you’ve got a fair meal on your hands, for these posh grilled cheeses ooze indulgence from the first bite, from slow-cooked lamb and mustard to pulled pork and apple chutney melts.
There’s a lot more fun to be had under railway arches than first meets the eye. One particular repurposed arch in Clapham now houses a riotous late night sum and cocktail bar with the fictional Chinese villain Fu Manchu serving as its inspiration. There’s a great selection of well-prepared, piping hot dim sum with steamed har gau (king prawn) and siu mai (prawn and chicken) dumplings a highlight. There are cocktails aplenty too which come infused with tea and Asian spices in keeping with the theme and you can even stay on til the early hours if you can’t bear to prise yourself away so soon.
DINING HOTSPOTS TO HOTFOOT IT TO
FOOD & DRINK
YAUATCHA COMIN’ AT YA YAUATCHA CITY 1 Broadgate Circle, London EC2M 2QS. yauatcha.com From one foodie hub to another, fans of the Soho-based mainstay can now tread into Broadgate Circle in the City for a spot of stellar dim sum. Whether steamed, baked, grilled or fried, expect perfectly executed dishes and a happy dining experience whether you’re seated in the expansive and familiarly stylish dining room, or al fresco on the terrace. If you want a treat to take away, there’s a standalone patisserie downstairs with the most beautiful array of cakes and macarons.
FOOD FEST SUMMER TALES Red Market, 288 Old Street, London EC1V 9DP. nighttales.co.uk Needing somewhere to laze about whilst indulging in restaurant-quality food and drink? You’ll be spoilt for choice at this pop-up which also features a dance floor and open terrace complete with hammocks and swing chairs. The job of ensuring that guests have plenty to feast on falls to the likes of Burger & Lobster who will be serving up a new “Baby Burger” made using three cuts of steak, street food favourites Pizza Pilgrims and newcomer Nanny Bill’s who will be delighting hordes with meatballs in tomato and ragu sauce in a roll. Four bars come pre loaded with cocktails, frozen punch, coconut juice and fine wine. With so much to enjoy under one roof, you’ll never want to leave.
THE SPICE OF LIFE MOTI MAHAL 45 Great Queen Street, Covent Garden, London WC2B 5AA. motimahal-uk.com Whilst this elegant Indian restaurant is primely positioned to cater for the ‘one-stop and they’re off’ pre-theatre dinner crowd, the joy that comes from its heart-warming meals should warrant a repeat return. Expect rich and colourful flavours from spiced scallops to tongue-tingling chicken tikka and fragrant Tandoori tiger prawns. The dishes are perfect for sharing and if you can, grab a seat by the curved glass screen where you can catch an early show of your chefs at work in the kitchen.
DISCERNING DOGS TOP DOG 48 Frith Street, Soho, London W1D 4SF. top-dog.com Here’s an example of quality fast food that even the most “clean living” of foodies could be tempted by. America’s love affair with the trusty hot dog has been reworked by Top Dog, who use British ingredients and 100% grass-fed, free-range meat to create a strong menu of seriously juicy, gourmet hot dogs. There are even meat-on-meat combinations for the most ardent carnivores who can have their dogs topped with extra beef chilli or pulled pork.
FOOD & DRINK
Unit 1034, Westfield Shopping Centre, Shepherd’s Bush, London W12 7GA. balans.co.uk After a mad day’s worth of trawling through shops, it’s only human to want to hide away from the throngs for a while to calm your frazzled nerves. But whilst Balans may retain some of the crowds, it’s certainly a comforting hideaway with plenty of cheerful food and liquid refreshment that should set you right in next to no time. The menu is pretty eclectic so expect a bit of culinary continent-hopping whilst you mull over choices from pork
102 Old Brompton Road, South Kensington, London SW7 3RD. bumpkinuk.com Here’s your chance to make a real occasion of your Sunday. Why toil for hours in the kitchen when that time can be better spent feasting and drinking with family and friends? That’s the rationale behind Bumpkin’s fabulous Fore Rib Roast menu which could change how you spend your Sundays forever. Up in the restaurant’s home-awayfrom-home private dining room, a pretty grand meal awaits, with the crowning
glory being an impressively juicy roast beef joint that has been slow-cooked for 12 hours for maximum tenderness. We defy you not to slobber at the table whilst it’s being carved up. All the trimmings are there too, and pretty generous servings at that, from potatoes roasted in beef fat for extra crunch to soft and creamy cauliflower cheese, so don’t hold back on a second or third round if you can squeeze it in.
DINING DELIGHTS We show you why these foodie hangouts are the talk of town 5 NOTED-MAGAZINE.COM
belly bolognese and haddock and triple-cooked chips, to sesame-crust tuna with jasmine rice and bok choi. The latter is a generous and easily devoured dish with plenty of ginger and soy to lift the flavour but there’s nothing like a good burger to lift the spirits and the restaurant’s self-named offering gets the job done swiftly. The large beef patty with bacon rashers and Swiss cheese housed in a sweet brioche bun is a juicy highlight.
FOOD & DRINK
Taj 51 Buckingham Gate Suites and Residences, St. James’, London SW1E 6AF. taj51buckinghamgate.co.uk
1 Commodity Quay, St Katharine Docks, London E1W 1AZ. tomskitchen.co.uk It’s reassuring to know that there’s a spot that’ll take you to your happy place every time you eat there, because Tom’s Kitchen sure knows how to dish out comfort food. It helps that its floor-to-ceiling windows overlook the dock, bathing the place in natural sunlight with a sit-back-and-relax view to accompany the meal. The spicy crab cake is a perfect opener - mild with a lip-smacking sweet salsa and the smoked beef carpaccio is a wonderfully light start too. This leaves
It may be well hidden away amongst a crop of grand buildings that make up a luxury hotel but it is worth seeking out if you’re in need of an intimate spot right in the centre of town. The grounds makes it feel like you’re a world away from the bustle of London and the restaurant feels like the perfect place for colluding over a light bite. The dishes, although firmly conservative in size, are well brought together and presented. A duo of
king scallops is perfectly seared and accompanied by some pickled vegetables and there’s a delicious creamy lobster bisque to start too. You’ll get on well with familiar hearty favourites like pan-roasted seabass, pork belly and duck breast, whilst dessert dishes bring a bit of fun in the form of an indulgent buttermilk panna cotta and chocolate served three heavenly ways – parfait, ganache and sorbet.
you with more room for the towering and gloriously tasty house burger made with meaty rib eye and rump pieces. Alternatively, the slow-cooked rabbit with squid, chorizo and mashed potato is a mighty fine showing of tender and soul warming food. And make sure you round off with the chocolate and peanut butter fondant with salted caramel ice cream – it’ll keep you sweet for the rest of the night.
10 Wardour Street, Leicester Square, London W1D 6QF. spicemarketlondon.co.uk From the streets of Singapore to the tables of London, W hotel’s Spice Market restaurant is showcasing the best of Singaporean cuisine with its latest street food tasting menu. With a banquet worthy 10-course meal to get through, you’d better make yourself comfortable. The play of texture and flavour variations get better with each dish, from crispy soft shell crab in a tangy chilli sauce that you must mop up with a fluffy, fried
steam bun, to a superb Nyonya laksa with tender scallop, shrimp and halibut chunks – a sweet and creamy, lick-thebowl-clean seafood broth. Dessert comes in two parts – a box of durian fruit ice cream that is actually pretty delicious although those unaccustomed to its distinctive smell might give up at the first whiff, and a pandan macaron with soy caramel ice cream that provides a perfect salty-sweet fix.
FOOD & DRINK
MAKE A SHOW OF IT Paul Hamlyn Hall is one of the most beautiful rooms in London so is an apt place to enjoy this limited edition floral tea. In addition to the good old favourites, a couple of the finger sandwiches have been upgraded to fresh and flavoursome lobster and salt beef fillings. The pastries are pretty decadent too –
there’s a light elderflower and mandarin amandine, and Champagne baba with rose petals and Ruinart rose amongst the treats. And as a token to remember the experience by, all guests leave with a complimentary fragrance of their choice from the L’Occitane La Collection de Grasse collection. (£37.50 pp. Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London WC2E 9DD. roh.org.uk)
HOW TEA-RIFFIC It’s one of Britain’s most delicious traditions and you certainly have your pick of the best in London. To help you indulge in style, we share some of the most stylish afternoon teas to be found in the city.
A FRENCH TWIST
THERE’S AN ART TO IT Just as with David Shrigley’s sketches that adorn the walls, these afternoon tea bites deserved to be admired. It’s a colourful, fun and tasty array, making it perfect for group get-togethers. Failsafe finger sandwiches of smoked salmon and cucumber keep the appetite light so you have room for the generous selection of sweeter items which include a rhubarb and raspberry cheesecake, a pineapple, coriander and coconut sponge and a chocolate-mint Lignon cake. (£39 pp. Sketch, 9 Conduit Street, Mayfair, London W1S 2XG. sketch.london) 7 NOTED-MAGAZINE.COM
This afternoon tea may have been given a French makeover but it’s a pretty indulgent way to spend a couple of hours. Amongst plush surroundings, enjoy a selection of sourdough tartines topped with foie gras and fig or feta cheese and tomato. Scones give way to madeleines but you can still fill them with as much jam and clotted cream as you can handle, whilst the pastries aim to please all-round with a trio of fruit, chocolate and cream treats. And if tea doesn’t hit the spot, you can have a hot chocolate made from Alain Ducasse’s beanto-bar brand Manufacture de Chocolat. (£42 pp. The Bulgari Hotel & Residences, 171 Knightsbridge, London SW7 1DW. bulgarihotels.com)
FOOD & DRINK
GLUTEN-FREE TEA Those who need or prefer to forgo gluten needn’t miss out on all the fun, for Michelin-starred chef William Drabble has created a gourmet tea for those who would otherwise go without. Everything from the sandwiches and scones to the lemon macaron, apple pecan and carrot cake pastries has been thoughtfully made without gluten but without compromising on taste. (£37.50 pp. St James’s Hotel and Club, 7-8 Park Place, London SW1A 1LS. stjameshotelandclub.com)
Here’s an afternoon tea with the most spectacular sweeping views over London. Not only that but on the open-air deck at Level 72, you’ll be surrounded by a lush, floral garden display that enhances the popup picnicking experience. Do remember to pay
attention to the contents of the Fortnum & Mason Sky-High Tea hamper though, which has your tea, finger sandwiches, scones and sweet pastries at the ready. (£85 for two people. The View from The Shard, 32 London Bridge Street, London SE1 9SG. theviewfromtheshard. com)
way through fruity marshmallows, mini meringues, cupcakes If you don’t need to and their signature rush off after you’ve killer brownies which picked up a slice of cake or two, it’s worth includes a dense mix of chocolate, peanut taking the afternoon off to see more of what butter, praline and this gorgeous tea shop coconut flakes. (£24.50 pp. Bea’s of has to offer. Naturally, Bloomsbury, 83 Watling the sweet treats have got to be the highlight Street, St. Paul’s, London EC4M 9BX. and there’s plenty to beasofbloomsbury.com) go round. Work your
TEA SHOP STOP
This place wins hands-down for being worthy of hosting your most treasured of occasions whilst offering superb value for money if you’re coming in for afternoon tea. Expect a simple, elegant and quintessentially British affair, from home-cured ham and mustard finger sandwiches and fruit scones with lashings of clotted cream and jam, to some good old Battenberg cake to accompany a strong pot of tea. (£19.50 pp. Dean Street Townhouse, 6971 Dean Street, Soho, London W1D 3SE. deanstreettownhouse.com)
GOING FOR GOLD Hand-made in Sweden, these 18-carat rose gold earphones is the perfect example of an item that bridges fashion and function. It delivers sweet music to your ears whilst providing the enviable glint that can only otherwise be attained with a beautiful piece of jewellery. Each pair is built with 25 grams’ worth of solid rose gold so you might want to guard them safely! HAPPY PLUGS 18-CARAT ROSE GOLD EARPHONES. £9,500, HAPPYPLUGS.COM
Make like a Grecian goddess and team your summer outfit with this elegant 18-carat gold-plated cuff. Its large caged design is quite apt as this wrist candy is sure to capture plenty of attention from onlookers. Adin & Royale La Cage Cuff. £210, boticca.com
If the criss-cross lines look familiar, that would be because this cuff takes its design inspiration from its logo. Made from silver polished brass, this cuff will be given its chance to shine when worn with a simple little black dress. Jaeger Knot Cuff. £75, jaeger.co.uk
ON THE CUFF
You don’t have to worry about your cuff slipping off with this one - the wraparound bracelet snaps on easily thanks to a hinge clasp. The cut-outs either side of the bracelet means you can show off more of your tan too. Accessoryo Black and Gold Cuff. £11.50, accessoryo.com
Big, bold and fiddle-free, cuffs are the perfect show-off summer accessory, so we’ve lined up a handful of our favourites to help you get you off the mark. This cuff curves at all the right places to not only ensure it slips on easily but also stays put with just a single piece of metal. Perfectly chic for those who prefer to keep it simple but want that reassuring glint of silver on their wrist. Freedom at Topshop Curved Outline Cuff. £12.50, topshop.com
If you’re keeping your outfit simple, you’ve got room for upgrading your accessories. Try this dual-texture cuff for starters which features a tactile mock croc design against solid stainless steel. It’s a clever clash of materials that makes for a perfectly stylish result. Tresor Paris Vega Bangle. £67, tresorparis.co.uk
10 covetable products you need to have in your life right now
WE’VE GOT YOU COVERED Clear out your umbrella collection to make way for this stunner. Yes, we know it’s summer but you know how the weather likes to rain on the parade. But there’s no need to be glum when it does. This brolly features a paradisiacal beach scene right around the inner canopy, so no matter which way you turn, you’ve always got a magnificent view that transports you to more tropical climes instantly. (Where I’d Rather Be umbrella. £29.99, whereidratherbe.co.uk)
PLEASE REMAIN SEATED It doesn’t matter that you’ve never cared much about where you end up perching but we challenge you to prise yourself away from this armchair once you’ve curled up onto it. Be prepared to give daggers at the slightest suggestion that anyone else take the seat. (Kolton armchair. £449, made.com)
CLICK FOR COFFEE
SKETCH ON DEMAND If you’ve ever wanted to be immortalised in a piece of art, this app is a pretty good place to start. Simply snap a full-length shot of yourself and upload your photo. A fashion illustrator will then sketch and colour away, turning your photo into a beautiful, stylised illustration that you can share to your heart’s content. (Chic Sketch. £7.99 per sketch, on iOS / Android.)
This gadget is a coffee-addict’s dream. Tell the app when and how you want it, and the machine will do it all for you all you need to do is drink. The ability to set schedules means there’s no time-wasting, you can literally wake up and smell the coffee. Plus, it won’t go cold if you decide to snooze a little, the machine will keep your coffee warm for up to 20 minutes. We’ll drink to that. (Smarter Coffee machine. £149.99, John Lewis)
GET YOUR BAKE ON
ART ON A PLATE There are some wise words on this plate so you’d better take the advice. It’s also beautifully illustrated so is definitely one to whip out during dinner parties, especially when serving dessert. (Flamingo plate by Geri Alessi. From £15, artrookie.co.uk)
These snug (and stylish) headphones do a superb job of drowning out the noise from the world, allowing you to fully immerse in your playlist, the sound of which comes through studio-rich and super-clear. It makes for an ideal travel companion too – the clever twist-andfold mechanism means you can lay them flat to save space and transport around more easily. (AKG Y50 headphones. £79.99, uk.akg.com)
Never be caught short again when deciding to “bake your own”. This kit contains everything you need (bar a few perishables) to create a dozen seriously delicious, professionalquality chocolate and vanilla cupcakes, icing paste decorations and all. The ingredients are pre-measured and the instructions are fuss-free so it’s pretty much failproof. (The Make Pack cupcake pack. £14.95, themakepack.com)
RED ALERT When competing with all the commotion of the outdoors, you risk your carefully curated party tunes being reduced to nothing but white noise. Not with this super-sleek speaker. Music comes out loud and clear without that strained “tinny” sound some speakers project when pushed to their limit. It can get through 15 hours of play so should keep you going until the early hours - an obligatory requirement for any decent sound system. (Stelle Audio Pillar. £249, Selfridges)
POWER ON-THE-GO Perpetual panic. That’s the state y ou reach when you know your fully-charged phone won’t make it through the day. Power bars are bulky and scouring for a power socket is no fun, which is why this case with a built-in power source has to be one of life’s essentials. It protects your phone against bumps and bumps up the power by an extra 150%. That’s a bumper piece of kit. (Boompods Powercase for iPhone 6. £69.99, boompods.co.uk)
BAGS OF FUN Now here’s an accessory with a bit of character. This leather tote has plenty of room for all your summer essentials, plus it’ll leave a smile on all the faces of those who catch sight of it. (Lulu Guinness New Face Pixie Tote. £350, House of Fraser)
1. Reebok Cardio Addict sports bra provides support when you need it and has built-in sweat and heat wicking (£28, reebok.co.uk)
2. Lacoste Helaine Runner trainers keeps up the style stakes whether you’re in a workout or just out and about (£90, lacoste.com)
J A B R A S P O R T R O X wirel es s ea rb u ds
3. Striders Edge Sculpt leggings offers good flexibility and dries quickly after a tough workout (£46.99, surfdome.com)
After you’ve loaded up the power playlist, make sure you pair it up with specially-designed workout earphones to ensure a session free of distractions. These snug, lock-in earbuds provide super-clear Dolby sound to help you meet every beat and it will survive the most gruelling workout and even rain-soaked conditions. When not in use, built-in magnets hold the earbuds together neatly and conserve battery power upon contact – brilliant. And they look pretty darn good too. (£119.99, jabra.co.uk)
WORK IT OUT Power through your workout with these clever fitness essentials M I S F I T F L A S H a ctivity tra cker
TRUBE app Don’t underestimate the power a taskmaster...ahem, personal trainer can have on helping you train safely and more efficiently. If you’re at a loss of where to find one, this app will help connect you with a qualified and TruBe-vetted personal trainer who matches your desired intensity levels and workout preferences (from high intensity interval training to ballet barre). State when and where you’d like to work out and your trainer will meet you there, props and all. You can even rope in friends to join the fun, or in the vain hope that it will help to ease your workout. (Sessions cost £65 per hour. On iOS, trubeapp.com)
You can’t have a workout without monitoring your exertions. It’ll help to manage your expectations so you have a better idea of what you need to do to reach your goals. Through wind and rain, this fitness tracker measures the calories burnt, your number of steps and distance travelled. It monitors your sleep too so there’s use for it day and night. (£39.99, currys.co.uk)
N U V A water If you need a bit more excitement to keep hydrated, try this melon and jasmine-flavoured water. It’s free of calories, sugars, sweeteners and preservatives. Sweet. (£1.49, Boots)
SOCIAL EATING HOUSE It takes a pretty special team to be able to deliver on the most extravagant to the most exacting of requests but for Ten Lifestyle Concierge, such is their forte. Here, one of team’s restaurant lifestyle managers Melvyna Mumunie shares the secrets that only those “in the know” know to help you get the most out of the London dining scene.
THE FRENCH LOVE AFFAIR It seems like this is the year that French restaurateurs catch onto London’s booming dining scene. There’s Le Chabanais, an outpost of Inaki Aizpitarte’s Parisian brasserie Le Chateaubriand, multi-Michelin-starred Eric Fréchon from Le Bristol in Paris is overseeing the main restaurant at the Lanesborough hotel, then there’s Les 110 de Taillevent which pairs each dish with four wines to cover all budgets, and Cannes favourite Le Bâoli is transferring its glamour from the French Riviera to the Big Smoke.
FOODIE SPOTS TO CHECK OUT 1
Supper clubs are nothing new but Robin Gill from The Dairy’s Bloodshot series of late night dinners caught my attention. Every month one of London’s top chefs takes over the stove. It kicks off at 1am and carries on until sunrise. It’s mainly for London’s hard-working kitchen staff but four members of the public can attend each month.
2 Demand at any of Jason Atherton’s new openings is always high and always justified - Social Eating House snapped up a Michelin star after five months. Few know about the counter table downstairs overlooking the main kitchen – you’ll struggle to find a more intimate chef’s table in the capital. 3 Speakeasy-style drinking dens abound in east London but the 606 Club was doing covert libations
long before any of the trendy spots opened. This jazz joint is easily missed as you stroll around Chelsea Harbour but the small, dimly lit bar is as close as you’ll get to New Orleans in London.
Another hidden spot is Back In 5 Minutes, a candle-lit dining room behind thick curtains at the back of a clothes shop on Brick Lane. It’s a world away from the brash curry houses nearby and makes for a seriously good dating spot.
Few Londoners know that some of the top restaurants offer a BYOB service e.g. on Mondays at Corrigan’s Mayfair, there is no corkage at the bar. Pick up a bottle of Ruinart Blanc de Blanc NonVintage Champagne to enjoy with the Carlingford rock oysters – you can even drop it off earlier in the day to ensure it is perfectly chilled by dinner.
FOOD & DRINK
WHAT TO EAT AND DRINK Anyone dining at Gymkhana should order the wild muntjac biryani with mint and pomegranate raita. Cracking through the flaky pastry unlocks a plume of scented steam and you can dig into the fluffy spiced rice laced with slithers of tender meat. London’s best Old Fashioned is the Smokey Birch Sap mix at Oskar’s Bar underneath Fitzrovia’s Dabbous. Made with Four Roses single barrel bourbon and sap from young birch trees, the signature smokiness comes from a dash of Ardbeg Corryvreckan single malt whisky. We’ve seen an increase in demand for twoMichelin-starred Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. All the dishes are pretty special but the Meat Fruit – a chicken liver parfait encased in an orange jelly disguised as a mandarin – is a highlight. Our San Francisco office recently visited threeMichelin-starred The Restaurant at Meadowood in Napa Valley and reported that the poussin baked in bread would be worth a trip from the UK alone. Our specialists in São Paulo swear that the Amazonian ants served on chunks of pineapple at D.O.M restaurant is far tastier than it sounds. Alex Atala’s restaurant is renowned for using interesting indigenous ingredients.
FIXES THEY CAN PULL OFF Securing tables at Michelin-starred restaurants is one thing but when we were asked to arrange a Michelin-starred takeaway, that took some work. As far as I’m aware, this has never been done in London but we convinced a leading chef and his team to create and deliver a meal for two. El Bulli topped every foodie’s bucket list but when its closure was announced, hundreds of members looked to secure a booking before it was too late. We booked out the entire restaurant on the last night of service and invited members to join Ferran Adrià and his team for a farewell dinner. Most recently, we had to find a restaurant that was out of range of any Wi-Fi signal for a member who is allergic to the electromagnetic radiation. As you can imagine, this isn’t easy but we found a small Japanese eatery behind Oxford Street that is a Wi-Fi dead zone! For membership enquiries, visit tengroup.com.
MOROCCO IN LONDON A haven from the bustle of the city, this opulent hammam spa helps to deeply relax the mind and body and detoxify the skin to leave you thoroughly re-energised. The first steam room will help you acclimatise to the heat whilst the second will see a hands-on cleansing and bathing ritual using marocMaroc products. This is followed by a snooze-inducing treatment and stretching exercise to release all tension from the body. You can then cocoon yourself in the lounge until you’re ready to face the world again. (The Moroccan Hammam. Urban Retreat at Harrods, Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7XL. Rituals costs from £125)
PROTECT & GLOW A perfect summer skin companion, this intensive moisturising cream helps to protect against UV rays whilst adding a light, sunkissed glow to the face, just as though you’ve caught some sun. It contains tiny pigment capsules that reveal themselves slowly as you work it onto the skin. With longer-term use, it helps to improve skin texture too. (Perricone MD Face Finishing Moisturizer Tint SPF 30. £57, perriconemd.co.uk)
ANTIOXIDANT HIT Packed with deeply nourishing botanical and fruit oils including antioxidant-rich blueberry extract, this anti-ageing oil provides the skin with a concoction of essential fatty acids that help to repair the skin barrier from the first use and diminish the depth of fine lines and wrinkles in the long-term. (Yes to Blueberries Face & Neck Oil. £14.99, boots.com)
OIL UP For a gentle way of removing make-up without leaving any dryness, try this emulsifying oil which moisturises as it cleanses. Formulated with chamomile and eucalyptus, it’s ideal for soothing sensitive complexions and rinses off to leave the skin clean, bright and nourished. (Malin+Goetz Facial Cleansing Oil. £28, spacenk.com)
SUMMER SCENT If you like your scents clean and simple, this fruity-floral apple blossom fragrance should hit the spot. It has a delicate floral note with a light hint of crisp apple that should reinvigorate your senses when you need a burst of summery freshness. (The Library of Fragrance. £15, thelibraryoffragrance.com)
SPECIAL DELIVERY This practical subscription box delivers everything you need for your personal monthly cycle so you’re never caught short, as well as a few surprise beauty goodies to give you something to look forward to. Treats could include chocolate, tea and beauty products from the likes of Elizabeth Arden, St. Tropez and OPI. (Pink Parcel. £9.95 including delivery, pinkparcel.co.uk)
SOFTLY DOES IT Ideal for parched summer skin, this creamy cleanser removes all traces of make-up without leaving the skin stripped of all moisture. The rich, conditioning butters ensure that you have a hydrating and gentle cleanse every time. (Balance Me Restore and Replenish Cream Cleanser. £18, balanceme.co.uk)
HAND IT OVER Reward hard-working hands with this lily of the valley-scented moisturising lotion that conjures thoughts of fresh, dewy spring mornings. With vitamin E and pro-vitamin B5, it should keep dry and chapped hands strokeably soft. (Heathcote & Ivory Lily of the Valley Moisturising Hand Lotion. £6, heathcote-ivory.com)
SPOT THE DIFFERENCE One of the downsides of summer is UV rays triggering hyperpigmentation in the skin. Those who want to keep those dark spots at bay should use this potent skin brightening treatment that helps to effectively regulate melanin production. Do always use in conjunction with a high-protection SPF though to help protect the skin from sun-induced inflammation in the first instance. (Dermalogica PowerBright TRx C-12 Pure Bright Serum, £79.80. dermalogica.co.uk)
MAKE A SPLASH Early mornings can be tough but lather up with this shower gel laced with the delicate fragrance of water lily and you’ll ease into it soon enough. The creamy formula contains wheat proteins so your limbs will be suitably moisturised. Plus, you’ll step out of the shower smelling as fresh as a flower. (Korres Water Lily Shower Gel. £8, debenhams.com)
Keep your skin as bright as your spirit this summer with our pick of this season’s most illuminating face masks Kaeso Rebalancing Facial Mask Ideal for tackling congested skin, particularly the T-zone, this creamy clay mask draws out impurities and calms the skin down without drying out it out. Rinse off the residue and you’ll notice instantly how bright and clear the skin looks. Keep up the results by applying it once a week. (£10.99, justmylook.co.uk)
Aloree Skin Rescue Radiant Face Mask Harnessing the anti-ageing properties of chlorophyll, the green pigment found in plants (young barley shoots in this case) that absorbs sunlight, this natural mask helps to detoxify and brighten the skin in just three minutes. Or, leave on for 10 minutes for an extra boost of moisture and radiance – it’ll be worth it. (£24, pravera.co.uk) MIMI Green Goddess Fresh Face Mask
WOW Mask This one-use gel mask is great for getting your skin in order before a big event. Just place it on the face and peel off when dry. You do need about 40 minutes for the best results but it does leave the skin incredibly moisturised and plump. It also shrinks the pores so the skin appears perfectly smooth and radiant if you want to step out make-up free. (£99.99 for five masks, wowmask.co.uk)
With this DIY kit, you know every ingredient that goes into your face mask and best of all, it’s all natural. Combine the pre-prepared clay, spirulina, oat oil and green jasmine pearls for a freshly-made batch each time. A mean green mask that mops up excess oil and nourishes the skin leaving it clean, supple and glowing. (£22, makeitmakeit.com)
Green People Vita Min Mask A highly moisturising mask with fragrant notes of mandarin and bergamot oil that nourishes the skin with a burst of vitamins. It works wonders on softening up any pesky dry patches and leaves the skin with a clear glow. Also, being rich in antioxidants, it helps to lessen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles over time. (£15.95, greenpeople.co.uk)
FACE THE SUN
Multi-tasking beauty is essential for keeping the skin safe with minimal hassle, so we’ve shared our favourite SPF-loaded beauty weapons that will help to guard you through the summer.
1. Nuriss Vitamin Infusion Nourishing Day Cream SPF 30
It’s the moisturiser that does everything you need it to on a hot summer’s day. There’s high UV protection to safeguard the skin against the sun, antioxidants to protect against ageing free radicals and it’s supercharged with lightweight but effective hydrators and vitamins to maintain the moisture levels needed for beautifully soft and plump skin. (£70, nuriss.co.uk)
2. Green People Pressed Mineral Powder SPF 15
Sometimes a bit of light, natural coverage is all you want. A mineral powder like this one does the job perfectly. A gentle buffing is all you need for a barely-there, soft-focus effect that provides a veil of sun protection too. Better still, it doesn’t clog the pores so you can top up throughout the day to keep the skin matte and shielded from UV rays. (£20.95, greenpeople.co.uk)
2 3. Monu Hydrating Moisturiser SPF 15
The lightweight texture of this cream means it’s great for re-application during the day whenever the skin feels a little dry and provides an additional boost of broad spectrum UV protection. Soft focus technology helps to blur any minor imperfections too and will help to keep the skin radiant. (£28.95, monushop.co.uk)
4. Dermalogica Skinperfect Primer SPF 30 This velvety primer provides the perfect base for make-up application and keeps everything in place even when you’re hot and flustered. There’s a sheer, neutral tint which helps to brighten and even out skin tone so you can wear it alone if preferred - the high UV protection means that you’re protected either way. (£38.80, dermalogica.co.uk)
5. Flint + Flint SPF 30 Primer
If you’re preparing the skin for makeup, it makes sense to prep it for sun exposure too. This primer contains mongongo oil which helps to protect the skin against dryness and UV rays naturally. The formulation also provide a quick fix for lines and wrinkles whilst dampening inflammation. (£25, flintplusflint.com)
Milk_shake Incredible Milk If time is of the essence, here’s a multi-tasking all-rounder that might come in rather handy. Alongside heat and colour protection, this conditioning milk helps to detangle the hair and smooth down rough cuticles so you have less to contend with when blow drying. It will also help to add a natural shine to the hair. (£13.49, milkshakehaircare.co.uk)
Nanokeratin System Reinvent Leave In Conditioner Damaged hair can still be styled as long as you are actively treating it. This leave-in conditioner is brilliant for nourishing the hair and enhancing your blow dry so the lengths look and feel healthier once more. You won’t find any leftover residue and your hair won’t feel heavier so those with fine hair can lap up the benefits too. (£25.55, nanokeratinsystem.co.uk)
Electric Hair Preparation Spray Whilst copious amounts of hairspray can help to hold a finished style for longer, preparing the hair in advance with this wonderfully light leave-in conditioning spray means you won’t have to overcompensate in this way. It helps to smooth out the hair to create a pliable base for styling and also provides heat and UV protection. (£15.50, electric-hair.com)
RUSH Command & Control Ultimate Blow Dry Lotion Nicky Clarke Hair Raising Lift, Thicken & Shine Spray A little bit of product can go a long way to help create volume for limp hair so don’t be afraid of it weighing the hair down. This root-lifting spray should give you a lovely boost when blow drying. It will also help to make the lengths more manageable so the finished style looks smooth and glossy. (£16.00, nickyclarke.com)
Great for those with dry hair who lust after sleek results, this lotion gives an extra boost of moisture and helps to calm down frizz so the hair can be styled with ease. It provides protection against heat styling tools and leaves the hair silky soft with a gorgeous fragrant trail after blow drying. (£6, marksandspencer.com)
GET PREPPED Five brilliant blow dry aids for those who need a helping hand in whipping their hair into shape.
DIVE INTO THE MALDIVES If you can’t get enough of the water and would jump at the chance to spend all of your waking hours in it, you will find yourself right at home in this Water Suite at Velassaru. Being surrounded by glistening blue Indian Ocean waters should be enough temptation, but should you not want to jump off the deck, you can satisfy yourself with a paddle in the private infinity pool, or bask in the oversized bathtub, both of which have stunning views into those very waters. It’s a win-win-win situation. (Velassaru in Male in the Maldives. velassaru.com)
LET’S TAKE IT OUTSIDE If only all outdoor pools could provide such bliss and sense of wellbeing all-year round, through sunshine or snow. Down at Naantali Spa, along Finland’s southwest coast, is a traditional spa with a vast, open-air pool that is kept at 30-degrees, boasting stunning views of the natural Finnish woodlandscape. Built in a former monastery town, the spa maintains a sense of serenity and shouldn’t have any problem easing away all your stresses thanks to one Roman bath, five saunas and some 100-odd treatment options. (Naantali Spa in Naantali, Finland. naantalispa.fi)
TIME TO DINE Granted, it’s far to travel for the food alone but when in New York, it’s reassuring to know there’s somewhere you can head to when you’re missing the comfort of British food. The Clocktower, Jason’s Atherton’s first US restaurant, graces The New York EDITION hotel with a menu of hearty dishes and a 300-bottle wine list. Overlooking Madison Square Park, the restaurant is a handsome fusion of oak and mahogany interiors with gold leafframed black and white photographs and flashes of rose, electric blue and lime green seating to define each of the dining rooms. (The Clocktower at The New York EDITION in Manhattan, New York City. theclocktowernyc.com)
THE ARTFUL LODGER It’s hard to tire of sun, sea and sand but when you do fancy a change of scenery, Miami Beach lets you do so in a flash. Even the buzzy, beachfront W South Beach hotel offers more than just spectacular ocean views, dramatic swimming pools and a stylish place to rest your head, there’s a treasure trove of much-coveted American artwork on display inside the building too, including those by Andy Warhol, Julian Schnabel and George Condo. (W South Beach in Miami Beach, Florida. wsouthbeach.com)
SIMPLY SPA-TACULAR HOXTON HOPPING The team who brought Hoxton to Holborn has now brought its east London cool to Amsterdam. Well, why not? Sitting canal-side in what was once home to a former Mayor of Amsterdam is The Hoxton hotel’s first offering outside of London. Featuring a dose of the traditional in its dark woods, original ceiling beams, muted palettes and vintage-style bathrooms, the hotel offers style and comfort for those who enjoy city living without breaking the bank. There’s a restaurant too – Lotti’s, run in partnership Soho House Group, which offers Italian dishes with a sprinkling of Dutch influences. (The Hoxton in Herengracht, Amsterdam. thehoxton.com)
Not content with offering an authentic-as-it-comes hammam complete with multiple steam rooms and a marble table for top-to-toe exfoliation, the spa at Mazagan Beach and Golf Resort has introduced a new range of super-facials using products from luxury spa brand Carita to help guests prolong their sunkissed Moroccan glow. There are a dizzying number of treatment rooms (19!) so excuses are well, inexcusable, and if you’re lucky, you might find yourself in one of the double suites with a private Jacuzzi, facing stunning views out onto the beach and the Atlantic Ocean beyond. (Mazagan Beach and Golf Resort in Casablanca, Morocco.mazaganbeachresort.com)
EXPLORE IN STYLE Want to play explorer but can’t bear to be without your creature comforts? The Nam Ha’s thoughtful Explore in Style experience takes you into the heart of Vietnam’s history and culture during the day, leaving you to enjoy the luxuries of your private villa hotel and its white-sand beachfront location overlooking the South China Sea by night. The tour includes an excursion to the ancient city of Hue where you can marvel at its grand temples and tombs, along with a trip to the bustling town of Hoi An where you can snap up some precious local wares and a three-course dinner at the hotel’s Beach Restaurant. (Three-night Explore in Style package from £464 per night at The Nam Hai in Hoi An, Vietnam. ghmhotels.com)
THE MARYLEBONE HOTEL
When space is at a premium in Central London, it’s most certainly a luxury when you have the choice of whether you even want to make use of it or not. You will find this enviable dilemma with any one of the three London Suites found at this charming and recently redesigned hotel. In particular, its Marylebone Suite, with its own huge private terrace overlooking Marylebone, essentially acts as a second living space. There’s a television, fireplace and retractable roof so you can enjoy the space come rain or shine. Rooms are smart but warm and should you forget, there are regular reminders that you are basking in luxury, from the marble bathroom to the complimentary Champagne (upon arrival) and La Patisserie des Reves pastries (in the fridge). (47 Welbeck Street, Marylebone, London W1G 8DN. doylecollection.com)
TAKE THE TIME TO LOOK AND YOU’LL DISCOVER THAT SOME OF THE COOLEST PLACES TO SPEND A NIGHT ARE RIGHT ON YOUR DOORSTEP
M BY MONTCALM Talk about a dramatic entrance. You can’t help but be mesmerised by this building as you make your approach – it really does play tricks on your eyes. The show continues inside where you can see the effect that the windows have on the way sunlight enters the space, in dramatic streaks across the room, which play to the rest of the hotel’s bold design features. Smart, sleek and very high-tech, as you would expect of being a stone’s throw away from Silicon Roundabout, the rooms are kitted out with tablet- controlled features, so all you need to do is lift your finger and boom, you’ve got a ‘Bath Butler’ or ‘Scent Steward’ at the door. One runs you the perfect bath on your behalf and the other spritzes you with whatever concoction takes your fancy – perfect for when you’re just about to step outside. (151-157 City Road, Old Street, London EC1V 1JH. mbymontcalm.co.uk)
London HOT HOTEL HANGOUTS It’s rare to find somewhere with that home-away-from-home quality that so often proves elusive for hotels. It’s mightily difficult to capture but this particular non-hotel hotel seems to have grasped it from the off, showing how the concept can be masterfully executed. There is real warmth in its modern townhouse design, helped in part by a touch of the curious in the array of arts and antiques on display. But as you would expect, all the luxuries of a hotel are present – there’s 24 hour room service and full-size Neal’s Yard toiletries, whilst privacy is maintained – spa treatments are carried out in your room. Then, when the hunger pangs take hold, you can quietly slip down to The Henderson Bar and dig in to one Sally Clarke’s signature hearty dishes. Grab a cocktail whilst you’re at it. (8 Pembridge Gardens, Notting Hill, London W2 4DU. thelaslett.co.uk)
THE EXPLORER’S PARADISE: ST. KITTS
THE SOUTH-EAST PENINSULA
It may be one of the smaller islands in the West Indies but its diversity for the adventurous traveller means it has the biggest draw. Exotic temperatures with pearl-white sands and sparkling, pure blue waters: these are the overriding expectations of the Caribbean islands and the beauty of it is that they remain steadfastly unsurpassed on all counts. Whilst the relatively undiscovered island of St. Kitts is no exception here, there is certainly something exceptional about its offering to those seeking more adventure away from the beach, for St. Kitts is the epitome of an explorer’s paradise. Its hilly landscape provides endless vantage points from which to admire the island and determine new, offthe-beaten tracks to tackle later. There are rainforests aplenty, historic fortresses and estates to inspect, a plethora of foodie hangouts for an authentic Caribbean culinary journey and magnificently restored plantation houses alongside upscale, contemporary properties that should appeal to the most discerning of travellers. Beyond the beach, St. Kitts has real charm, life and soul in its culture, people and surroundings. Access to this lies a mere 65 miles from Antigua, a stopover on the otherwise direct flight from London to St. Kitts, so rather than getting
off early, like the majority that currently do on the route, the more astute may find that it’s worth staying on board and going those extra few miles for a richer, more immersive Caribbean experience.
PLAY EXPLORER Against a sparkling palette of blue sea and sky, St. Kitts boasts an impressively green landscape that is dense with forests, making it ideal for a lively trek but do go with a guide. O’Neil Mulraine is one of the best for rainforest tours. Not only are you guaranteed to make it out the other side safely (the well-worn trails were created by him), his worldly knowledge of the flora, fauna, streams and grounds that surround you makes for a thoroughly enriching experience. “Focus on the trail”, he’ll remind you as you become distracted by peculiar spike-pronged trees or contemplate doing a Tarzan with the maze of vines. The truth is, the rainforests of St. Kitts are awe-inspiring when you’re in the thick of it so it’s hard not to stray a little. Waterproofs are recommended - on my trek, the heavens opened and soaked us through, giving us the ultimate immersive experience but moments
after the rain pittered out, the natural sounds and smells of the rainforest came alive. I have never known beauty as wild as that moment. For a step back into history, walk the extremely well-preserved grounds of the British-designed but slave-built Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park, also known as the ‘Gibraltar of the West Indies’, which sits atop a hill with an arresting view over the Caribbean Sea. ST.KITT’S RAINFOREST HIKE
THE BELL TOWER AT BRIMSTONE HILL FORTRESS AND NATIONAL PARK
TRAVEL OTTLEY’S PLANTATION INN
THE SCENIC RAILWAY
A visit to the Wingfield Estate offers a fascinating glimpse into plantation history. It was originally used to produce tobacco, the 300-year-old plants of which can still be seen springing up around the grounds today. But it is the ongoing excavations that have unearthed the most exciting finds, namely an old sugarcane mill and rum distillery. Owner Maurice Widdowson even plans to bottle up that history by producing his brand of rum to be sold on site, until then, if you’re lucky, he may even let you join him on a little dig. For a condensed sightseeing tour, the Scenic Railway (stkittsscenicrailway. com) which runs along the north of the island is a must. It is dubbed “The Sugar Train”, so-called as it was originally built to transport sugarcane from the fields to the sugar mill in the city of Basseterre. Complimentary pina coladas and rum top-ups during the ride will help ease you into journey quite nicely too. Whilst St. Kitts is a photo opportunity at every turn, there is one spot that you cannot leave without snapping. The island, curiously shaped like a chicken drumstick, sits between the Atlantic Ocean to the north and the Caribbean Sea to the south and at the point where you enter into the south-east peninsula, the land becomes so long and narrow that you can see both oceans either side of the island as you go – a truly breathtaking sight. Island hopping is also possible, just jump on board the ferry from Basseterre and it’ll take you over to St. Kitts’ sister island Nevis in 45 minutes.
FOODIE HANGOUTS Being surrounded by water means that seafood is fresh and plentiful wherever you dine on the island. Conch, a type of large seasnail, similar in texture to calamari, is a local staple. Fisherman’s Wharf (fishermanswharfstkitts.com), a
smart restaurant with genuine, warm service in the South Frigate Bay area, sits raised out on the water and serves the best crunchy conch fritters we’ve tried on the island. Marshall’s (marshallsdining.com) is close by and also pretty special. Sitting among the treetops atop Fort Tyson, expect magnificent views over the Caribbean Sea as you tuck into familiar, heart-warming grills and celebratory lobster thermidor. There’s even an indoor pool in the centre of the dining area where guests can take a dip, whether to work up the appetite or to work off the indulgence. You can also take a dip at Carambola (carambolabeachclub.com), a swish beach club that opens out onto a stretch of sand and sea and ideal for a romantic rendezvous. Alternatively, head to Christophe Harbour to the trendy Salt Plage (christopheharbour.com) marina bar in the late afternoon for energising cocktails and bar bites as you wind down to uninterrupted views of the sunset in the horizon. But those with the most discerning of palates should head west to Kittitian Hill for the gem that is The Kitchen at Belle Mont Farm (bellemontfarm.com). It is undoubtedly one of the most thoughtful and beautifully executed restaurants on the island. Sitting at the foothills of Mount Liamuiga, the fertile ground has provided it with the best environs for its authentic farm-to-table experience. So fresh are their organically grown crops that you can simply pluck them off and have a taste wherever you spot one of the designated “Pick Me” signs. The food is exquisite and the attention to detail with each ingredient on the plate is clear to see. Do try to drop by on a Sunday too so you can indulge in their superb Champagne brunch.
CATCH SOME RESPITE
You’ll be hard-pressed to find gardens as green and precision-manicured as those at Ottley’s Plantation Inn (ottleys.com). Set on 35 acres against the dramatic backdrop of Mount Liamuiga and views straight into the Atlantic, you can expect a perfectly serene night’s sleep whether you choose to stay in the majestic Great House or in the stone cottages around the grounds. Do find time for a stroll in the forest too where you’re likely to come across a few vervet monkeys, although they can be found roaming all over the island. The newly opened Ocean Terrace Inn (oceanterraceinn.com) is a sound choice for those who can’t be without their modern comforts and who would prefer to stay close to the city, likewise, there is a Marriot Resort on the Atlantic-side of the island for those who prefer the familiarity. Along South Frigate Bay, the Timothy Beach Resort (timothybeach. com) is a livelier affair. Being so close to ‘The Strip’, you can have a riotous old time with an obligatory rum bar crawl before you turn in, waking up to views of the Caribbean Sea in the morning. SALT PLAGE AT CHRISTOPH HARBOUR
THE DETAILS For more information visit St. Kitts Tourism Authority (stkittstourism.kn). Flights from London (Gatwick) to St. Kitts (Robert L. Bradshaw International) via Antigua available via British Airways (ba.com).
ROOM WITH A VIEW
New Zealand It’s a curious thing to be so entirely out in the open and feel so utterly private, yet this self-contained house has the two perfectly balanced. Located about an hour’s drive from Christchurch, the glass-constructed PurePod sits in the middle of a secluded spot with awe-inspiring, 360-degree views spanning rolling green hills, bright blue skies and the outline of Lake Forsyth in the distance. Solar electricity powers the pod so you can be self sufficient but this place is all about going off-the-grid and allowing nature to entertain you, so expect nature walking in the daytime and napping under the stars at night. It’s a perfect spot for when you just want time (and space) to yourself.
There is something infinitely comforting about watching over a city as it whirrs around below you. The Manhattan cityscape is particularly rewarding and one which you can marvel at in all its glory whilst inside the dazzling Trump SoHo hotel. Its floor-to-ceiling windows were made for city gazing and provides an expansive view that includes highlights like the Statue of Liberty, Hudson River, Freedom Tower and Empire State Building.
(PurePods in Little River, New Zealand. purepods.com)
(Trump SoHo in New York, USA. trumpsohohotel.com)
Greece You don’t go to somewhere like Porto Heli to stay in your room all day but the elevated beachfront view over the Aegean Sea from the Nikki Beach resort makes for a pretty favourable compromise. Rooms are incredibly smart, ideal for luxuriating in, and are pristine white, all the better for flooding the room with natural sunlight. Also, a wide, glass-fronted private balcony ensures an uninterrupted view, allowing you to get lost in the stunning palette of crystal blue sea and sky hues beyond. (Nikki Beach in Porto Heli, Greece. nikkibeach.com)