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LUXE [d] leicestershire




Our commitment to value means that we match the prices of the high street competitors (this excludes online-only or mail order businesses). Service conditions must be comparable. See our ‘Never Knowingly Undersold’ leaflet in our shops or online for details.


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TALK TO US MANAGING DIRECTOR Kevin Urquhart Kevin@fu-media.co.uk 07713 740 272 GROUP EDITOR IN CHIEF Jonathan Fraser Jon@fu-media.co.uk 0772 580 9654 PRINT & DIGITAL ADVERTISING Lilith Hunt-Sheppard lilith@fu-media.co.uk 07975 970711 ACCOUNTS & ADMINISTRATION Carey Cooper carey@fu-media.co.uk 0116 2533 445 DIGITAL CONTENT EXECUTIVE Francesca Arculeo Francesca@fu-media.co.uk 0116 2533 445 Ford reinvents the car we always wanted, the Puma.

06 AGENDA Our personal picks of our favourite features, stories and products from around Leicestershire.


46 DINING We’re cooking with coffee and find out more about the new Giggling Squid.


We talk to Journalist and TV News Reporter Jane Barbeary about becoming a Celebrant.

Romesh Ranganathan plus what is happening and what’s happened in and around Brum this season.



Spots, stripes, skin types and shopping.

National treasure, sensational star gazer Russell Grant on what the future holds for us all.

We revisit the spirit of the nineties in the all new Ford Puma.

34 LIVING Beautful botanicals, 2020 trends and a kitchen transformation begins.

40 TRAVEL Exploring Fez and our favourite long haul destinations.

[d]LUXE leicestershire

Cover image: Miss Selfridge


NEW BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Evan Gillott evan@fu-media.co.uk 0116 2533 445 NEW BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Hema Davda hema@fu-media.co.uk 0116 2533 445 DIGITAL CONTENT ASSISTANT Scarlett Smith Scarlett@fu-media.co.uk 0116 2533 445

DLUXE LEICESTERSHIRE 31 Rutland St, Leicester LE1 1RE. TEL: 0116 2533 445


www.dluxe-magazine.co.uk info@fu-media.co.uk






Disclaimer: Copyright 69 & dluxe West Midlands No part of this publication may be copied or reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means - electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording or otherwise without the prior permission of the publishers. Whilst every attempt has been made to ensure accuracy in compiling this publication, the Publisher cannot accept responsibility for any inaccuracies, omissions, breach of copyright or otherwise since compilation. The Publisher cannot be held responsible for any material submitted to the publication, not excluding advertisements. The views expressed within this title are not necessarily the views of the Publisher. Acceptance of advertisements does not imply recommendation by the Publisher. © 69 Magazine Ltd 2020

dluxe mag

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Welcome to award-winning healthcare Nuffield Health Leicester Hospital general surgery services At Nuffield Health Leicester Hospital our experienced general surgeons specialise in a range of diagnostic and repair procedures. They are experts in their field and can provide rapid access to treatment. Why choose Nuffield Health Leicester Hospital for your general surgery? Whether you are seeking results from a diagnostic procedure or looking at treatment options to remove a painful hernia, our team of experienced general surgeons at Nuffield Health Leicester Hospital are experts in their field, providing you with rapid access to a personalised treatment plan.

Choosing to go private provides you with a number of benefits. At Nuffield Health Leicester Hospital you can: • Skip the waiting lists to be seen quickly • Be seen by the same consultant from your initial consultation, through to your aftercare • Receive a packaged price inclusive of all aftercare needed • Receive a detailed and accurate diagnosis from any diagnostic procedure as soon as possible.

Awards 2017, 2018, 2019

WINNER Private hospital group of the year

Services include but not limited to: • Hysterectomy

• Haemorrhoid removal

• Colonoscopy

• Gallbladder removal

• Endoscopy

• Flexible sigmoidoscopy.

• Gastroscopy For more information or to book, call 0116 298 6938 visit nuffieldhealth.com/hospitals/leicester Nuffield Health Leicester Hospital Scraptoft Lane, Leicester LE5 1HY


<<< in this issue


What strange days. Don’t worry, I’m not about to start banging on about viruses, government bullying, Brexit or the, quite frankly, biblically bizarre weather we’ve been having; you sit down and read a magazine to relax and unwind after all. So, I’ll count to three and we’ll all collectively take a deep breath. One, Two, Three. And deep breath in… So in this, our jam-packed Spring issue, we’re taking time out with comedians Romesh Ranganathan and Andrew Maxwell as they both tackle UK tours and keep the nation laughing. We also chat to natural history presenter Liz Bonin ahead of her hosting Planet Earth II Live which features breath-taking, specially-selected footage from the hit TV series shown in 4K ultra high-definition on a gigantic LED screen, as the City Of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Matthew Freeman, play the remarkable music of Oscar winner Hans Zimmer. You can even win a pair of tickets to see it.

Spring brings with it catwalk trends and we’ve selected a few of our favourites including spots for her and stripes for him and our resident style experts are on hand to dole out advice on how to avoid being too try hard – there’s nothing worse is there? Oh sorry and exhale…. You ok? Sorry, my bad. Anyway to make up for it, we’ve pulled together the very best of what’s coming up across the region for you to enjoy and as usual the Dluxe photographers have been out and about getting snap happy at every event that’s been worth going to – have you been caught on camera? Best get flicking! Rounding off this issue the lovely Russell Grant has been looking at what lies ahead, and I tell you what, there’s not one mention of a pandemic. Oops, sorry there I go again. I really need to not write this after watching the lunchtimes news. Stay safe, stay positive, stay happy. See you in summer

At home we’ve gone bats for botanical, taken out our trowels and tiptoed through the sodden remains of the garden ( oops sorry, no weather remarks) and we’ve popped a Puma in the garage to play with – not the animal but the sporty new SUV from Ford that’s a reimagining of the original nineties pocket rocket for today’s world. Think hybrids and a high ride height.


<<< we can’t wait for

Jonathan Fraser Group Editor In Chief


SIX DISNEY’S MULAN The latest Disney film to be transformed into a live action adaptation is Mulan, but this time the musical numbers are nowhere to be found as the tale of Hua Mulan takes centre stage. When the Emperor of China issues a decree that one man per family must serve in the Imperial Chinese Army defending the country from Huns, Mulan steps in to take the place of her ailing father. Disguised as a man by the name of Hua Jun, she must harness her innermost strength and embrace her true potential. 6 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

From tudor queens to pop princesses, the six wives of Henry VIII finally take to the mic to tell their tales, remixing five hundred years of historical heartbreak into a 75-minute celebration of 21st century girl power. These Queens may have green sleeves but their lipstick is rebellious red. We can’t wait to catch this new hit musical9th – 14th June @ Curve, Leicester

OZARK Season 3 of the ultradark Netflix thriller starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney taking their Missouri based money laundering operation up a level with the opening of a floating casino. Named after the isolated, rural wasterside region in which it is set, this series sees the whole family get in deeper than the river upon which they float. There’s no going back now, not for any of them. It really is sink or swim.


Emily Blunt is back for the sequel of the 2018 American science fiction horror film. Following the deadly events at home, the Abbott family must now face the terrors of the outside world as they continue to fight for survival in silence. Forced to venture into the unknown, they quickly realize that the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats that lurk behind the sand path.




more fabulous,




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ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS Loughborough Grammar School pupils and staff have launched the start of a year of celebrations marking the school’s 525th anniversary. Local residents are encouraged to attend a series of events which are planned over the course of 2020, including a Heritage Open Weekend, History Display in Loughborough Town Library, and a prestigious Lecture Series featuring eminent alumni and Loughborough University’s most famous student, legendary Olympian Lord Sebastian Coe.

LET’S DANCE INTERNATIONAL FRONTIERs Leicester’s annual dance festival celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2020 with a thrilling programme of dance and performance from across the globe running from April 29th-May 16th. Run by Artistic Director Pawlet Brookes, this year the organisation celebrates 10 years of curating and producing LET’S DANCE INTERNATIONAL FRONTIERS. “The legacy of the festival means we

have also scored a number of firsts: ballet company PHILADANCO made their UK debut in 2017 at LDIF; the Deaf Dance pioneer Antoine Hunter made his debut at LDIF and many award-winning artists who will be with us this year including Kyle Abraham, Reggie Wilson, Alice Sheppard, Thomas Prestø, showcase world class, culturally diverse dance.”

including Curve, All Saint’s Church, Leicester Guildhall, Leicester Gallery at De Montfort University and New Walk Museum. There will also be a series of talks and workshops, led by some wonderful performers and speakers including Léna Blou, the French Caribbean/ Guadeloupean dancer, choreographer, and educator.

Work will be presented across the city at venues

Find out more at www.ldif.co.uk

WELLER @ DMH The incredible Paul Weller is getting back on this road this Autumn having announced a huge run of live dates, including two nights at Leicester De Montfort Hall on the 5th + 6th November. The Autumn tour follows an already sold out May tour, plus the announcement 8 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

of Paul’s eagerly awaited new album “On Sunset” which will be released on June 12th. “ For tickets head to the official Paul Weller store at PaulWeller.lnk.to

Founded in 1495 by Thomas Burton, a local wool merchant who left endowments for the teaching of boys in his will, the Grammar School lists Rev. George Davys, a tutor to Queen Victoria, Johnnie Johnson, RAF flying ace, and Sir Thomas Abney, the first Governor of the Bank of England amongst its alumni. Dates for the diary: 4 February – Professor Rachel Thomson, ‘The Future of the Motor Car’. 27 February – James Flynn, QC, After the Break: United Kingdom law, EU law and Brexit. 24 March – Giles Kristian, How to be a writer: the long and winding road to creativity. 5 May – Professor John Dickie, “Why do the Italians eat so well?” – A History of Italian Cooking. 22 September – Professor Andrew Thompson, Nelson Mandela on Robben Island – Do political prisoners have human rights? If so, who should protect them now? 4 November – Rt Rev Mark Tanner, What is a Healthy Community in the 21st Century? 14 December - Lord Sebastian Coe, The 2012 Olympics and its Legacy. To find out more about the events planned for Loughborough Grammar School’s 525th anniversary and to book tickets for the Lecture Series, please visit www.lsf.org/525

Alex’s Wish Raise Magic £1,000,000!

Locally based charity, Alex’s Wish, have raised their initial fundraising target of raising £1,000,000. Emma Hallam, founder of Alex’s Wish and Mum to Alex, after whom the charity is named, said, “Six years ago when I set up Alex’s Wish I set ourselves the ambitious target to raise £1,000,000 to help fund vital research and clinical trials to help bring about effective treatments and, ultimately, a cure for the devastating, life limiting muscle wasting condition - Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. “Six years later I was able to announce at our recent ball, that we had done it! It’s with thanks to our fabulous supporters and the local business community who has helped us achieve our initial target – and we would like to thank every single of them for their support so far. “The money raised has been invested in several research projects, clinical trials and supporting trial centres in the UK to run clinical trials, helping us move ever closer to effective treatments for Duchenne. Our latest commitments include promising gene therapy and stem cell therapy. A huge amount of progress has been made, but we still have a long way to go. We are committed to continuing to drive this momentum forward to help THIS generation of children living with Duchenne. We are now working towards securing our next £1,000,000 and will not stop until a cure is found.” The new fundraising challenge has received its first contribution from donations made at their annual ball. Zoe Edwards, Fundraising Manager said, “We raised an amazing £20,000 at this year’s event. Donations were made via our raffle and ‘Win a Holiday’ prize draw as well as f rom a silent auction and exciting live auction! Prizes for the live auction included afternoon tea at the Ritz which was kindly donated by New St Chambers, a Fab Clinics beauty treatment which was donated by Fab Clinics, as well as a Belmond British Pullman experience for two and a Europa Park Germany getaway which were both donated by our headline sponsor – Next. I would also like to thank our drinks sponsor - Morgan Sindall - as well as 2XL Commercial Finance for their support of our event. We are now looking into where best to invest these funds.” To find out more about Alex’s Wish and Duchenne or to get involved in any of their planned 2020events and fundraising activities, please visit: www.alexswish.co.uk

GO OFFROAD TO BEDFORDSHIRE Oh how we would have loved one of these! Embark upon a night-time drive adventure with the new Cabin Bed with off roader Tent and Tunnel from online family furniture brand Nöa & Nani. Available now, the super-fun, elevated sleep station will be sure to encourage the most explorative play, whilst also providing a cosy place for sleep. The off roader canopy provides the most imaginative hideaway den, perfect for stowing those precious pieces of safari equipment such as binoculars, cameras and torches, or for simply hiding toys and furniture out of sight, ensuring that the surrounding room space is maximised. The super-fun fabric tent features a bright green 4x4 vehicle, complete with front, side and rear views. Accessible via a sturdy ladder, the luggage rack atop provides the ideal place to sleep peacefully under the nighttime stars, or a spot to sit and ponder whilst looking out onto the Serengeti savannah. Beautifully crafted from solid pine and finished in a contemporary shade of white, matching accessories including shelves and coat hooks can be added to accommodate all those little bits and bobs. All fabric add-ons from Nöa & Nani fully comply with UK fire regulations, ensuring they are safe for use. Designed to grow with the child, the tented canopy can be easily removed, leaving a stylish, classic sleeper, which can accommodate a slide and a desk or chest of drawers below. Cabin Bed with Off Roader Tent and Tunnel costs £169.00 or with added slide for £199 from www.noaandnani.co.uk dluxe-magazine.co.uk 9


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CYCLE TO WORK WITH RUTLAND CYCLING LEICESTER 4. Boost productivity – commuting to work by bike reduces stress and increases productivity among employees. 5. Reduce your company’s annual carbon footprint. CYCLE TO WORK BENEFITS FOR STAFF INCLUDE: 1. Save money – compared with driving a car, commuting by bike could save employees on average £1500 per annum. 2. Save on a bike – when bike and accessories purchased through a cycle to work scheme, you can spread the cost and save up to 42%. 3. Be healthier – cycling improves aerobic and cardio-vascular fitness, boosting energy levels and improves co-ordination. 4. Regular cycling isn’t just good for your physical health – it also benefits your mental health. More staff riding bikes means a healthier, happier and more productive workforce and with the fantastic network of cycle routes in and around Leicester, plus the approaching warmer weather and lighter evenings, it’s the perfect time to encourage staff to get on their bikes and start their two wheel commute. Rutland Cycling Leicester staff firmly believe that riding a bike is all about experience, once you’ve tried it, you won’t look back.

DID YOU KNOW? CYCLE TO WORK BENEFITS FOR BUSINESSES INCLUDE: 1. Employers save too! Up to 13.8% tax saving through National Insurance Contributions by engaging in a cycle to work scheme for your staff. 2. Fewer sick days – cycle commuting employees take an average 2.1 less sick days per year, saving an estimated £516 per employee. 3. Increase staff retention – staff turnover can cost 21% of an employee’s annual salary. Happier staff are less likely to look for another job.

5. Cycle to work is not just for commuters – for leisure riders too, so a great way to purchase a bike and all the accessories to enjoy your leisure cycling. 6. Cycling to work is one of the easiest ways to achieve your 150 minutes of exercise per week. During March and April Rutland Cycling will be holding a cycle to work roadshow in store – come along for an informal chat with the team who can answer all your questions, however big or small, provide advice on the right bike for your commute, clothing and accessories – we’re here to help! Rutland Cycling accepts the following Cycle to Work Schemes: Cyclescheme, Cycle2Work from Halfords, Bike2Work Scheme, Caboodle, Cycleplus, Vivup, Green Commute Initiative, Enjoy Benefits and Cycle Solutions. Rutland Cycling Leicester, Everards Meadows, John Cooper Way, (Off Soar Valley Way), Leicester LE19 2AN. Open 7 days a week! Tel: 0116 344 0200

A Royal 2020 Season at Belvoir Castle Still mourning the end of season 3 of Netflix’s The Crown? If so why not swap your binge watching for the real thing and take a trip to Belvoir Castle, one of the key locations for the hit TV series. The Regency Castle, which stands in for Windsor Castle, has greatly increased its opening days and new for 2020, fans of The Crown can enjoy a Royal Afternoon Tea inspired by the worldwide blockbuster served in the State Dining Room. Available to enjoy for Mother’s Day and during Afternoon Tea Week, this unique experience also includes access to The Crown guided tour. Visitors can experience a behind the scenes look at some of the filming locations around Belvoir used in the popular Netflix series, including private rooms previously unseen by the public such as the Wellington and Tapestry bedrooms. Fans of the great outdoors aren’t left out either with Capability Brown Garden Tours: from April 10 - August 31. Visitors can discover the iconic designer’s spectacular ‘lost landscape’ design for Belvoir Castle onboard the new eco-friendly bus. The English landscape architect’s original plans lay largely forgotten for almost 200 years, thought to have been lost in the 1816 fire, until being rediscovered in 2014. A subsequent two-year restoration 10 dluxe-magazine

by the 11th Duchess has brought his designs to life. www. belvoircastle.com/product/capability-brown-garden-bus-tour. Where do we sign, your Highness? To find out more visit www.belvoircastle.com

TENNESSEE WILLIAMS CLASSIC REIMAGINED AT CURVE “A lot of the time with the classics, there are assumptions as to how to do these texts, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is steeped in an American nostalgia. There’s a sense of reverence to the period setting that means we don’t really engage with the emotional truth of it. “I found that actually these aren’t historical and whimsical characters from 1950’s America, these are flesh and blood 2020 human beings for Britain now. Partly that’s to do with the extraordinary truth and beauty in which Tennessee Williams has tried to share some of those big questions of what it is to live. I feel like I wrestle with that a lot, how do I find my place in the world? Particularly as we’re living through such a complex time and locally, nationally or globally I am seeing people suffer for the decisions of others. What I am asking of myself and the world, and also what Williams is asking in this play, is how do we give space to, or protect people who lack the egotism to protect themselves? This makes it sounds like a really heady play but actually it’s a play full of heart, it is just humanity on stage. This autumn brings Tennessee Williams’s Cat On A Hot Tin Roof to the stage at Curve in from 11 – 26 Sep. Directed by Anthony Almeida, winner of the Royal Theatrical Support Trust (RTST) and Sir Peter Hall Director Award 2019, this bold new revival of Williams’s lyrical Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece is set to be a blazing portrayal of what it takes to survive in a society where we’re all desperate to feel free.

“It’s a cruelly funny play as well. In a way it’s a precursor to Fleabag, partly because it’s so profound in talking about female sexuality and done with sharp wit and irreverence, but such emotional truth as well – honest on how people are all harbouring a much deeper emotional wound, the wit being their survival bandage. That felt really exciting for me, thinking how this play can be created along those lines and also in the vein of King Lear as this big family showdown succession drama for the experience of a night out, it feels really alive and electric.”

Here, director Anthony Almeida talks about what the play means to him, his ideas for presenting the show in 2020 Britain and how he believes Cat On A Hot Tin Roof paved the way for shows like Fleabag.

Cat On A Hot Tin Roof is a Made at Curve, Rose Theatre Kingston, English Touring Theatre (ETT) and Alexandra Palace co-production supported by grant funding from the RTST.

“It’s an iconic text which you either read in schools, or you know of it, or you may have seen the film. I already had a version in my head, however, when reading it I was shocked to discover that the play I thought it was isn’t the play Tennessee Williams actually wrote. It consists of so many stirring, complex facets and I’m keen to explore these, especially the more nuanced ones.

Tickets for Cat On A Hot Tin Roof at Curve are available to book now. For further information, visit www.curveonline.co.uk

at Leicester

Cycle to Work Roadshow In-store From March – April 2020

at Everards Meadows, Leicester LE19 2AN Bikes

14 stores open every day at:








Cycle to Work

www.rutlandcycling.com | 0330 555 0080

Leicester | Nottingham | Rutland Water | Peterborough | Cambridge | Grafham Water | Pitsford Water | Milton Keynes


<<< special feature


Why do you need to make a will?

advisable to appoint a professional executor. • Gifts to charity - you may wish to leave a sum of money to a chosen charity. • Funeral wishes - you can leave detailed instructions or simple wishes about burial or cremation. • Pets – you might want to make provision for your pets. • Personal items - you might want to make specific wishes for gifts of jewellery, cars or other items. Who can speak for me during my lifetime? A will only speaks for you from death. An attorney, appointed under a lasting power of attorney (LPA), can act on your behalf during your lifetime. They can act on your behalf, even if you lack mental capacity, and must act in your best interests. The power granted by an LPA ceases on death. There are two types of LPAs – one for financial decisions and one for health and care decisions.

Making a will is arguably one of the most important things you can do for your family without one, your assets will be distributed on your death as designated by the law (intestacy). It’s unlikely that this will reflect your wishes and can cause unnecessary distress and inheritance tax being payable unnecessarily. Intestacy, for example, does not confer any rights for cohabitees, step-children, friends or charities writes Suzanne Leggott of Shakespeare Martineau. If I want to leave everything to one person, is a simple will enough? Our advice to our clients is that a simple will is always better than no will, however, there are factors to consider before making even a simple will. For example, it’s important to consider the financial circumstances of the beneficiaries, as you could create an inheritance tax ‘headache’ for them if they have their own significant wealth, or the inheritance could adversely impact their entitlement to means-tested benefits. Consideration needs to be given as to whether they can manage the money themselves, if they are minors, or are not good with money or are mentally or physically incapable. Beneficiaries’ circumstances can also change between the date you write 12 dluxe-magazine

your will and the date of your death. Would you want all the money to pass to your surviving spouse/civil partner and ultimately not be available to your children if your spouse remarries after your death, or needs long-term care? What age would you want any children to inherit? What happens if a beneficiary becomes bankrupt? What if they die or divorce? Should I include a trust in my will? If any of the above scenarios resonate with you, including a trust might be the answer. Trusts created in your will only come into existence on your death and can offer protection for your family. They can also provide inheritance tax saving opportunities. It’s important to get specialist advice about the type of trust that’s right for you and your circumstances. Other things to consider in your will • Tax mitigation – your will can be used as a tax planning tool if properly drafted. • Guardians - if you have minor children, it’s important to appoint guardians. • Executors – it’s important to select people you can trust, as they will be responsible for carrying out the terms of your will. You don’t have to use family members and an executor can also be a beneficiary. It’s advisable to have at least two executors and it’s important that they’re able to work together. If your will is complex it may be

Your attorneys, under an LPA for financial decisions, can step in when needed to ensure your assets are protected and your bills paid. Your attorneys, under a LPA for health and care decisions, can only act if you lack capacity to make the relevant decision and you can authorise them to make decisions about life-sustaining treatment. You should consider preparing LPAs at the same time as preparing your will – unfortunately, these are often considered at a later stage in life when it might be too late. If an LPA is not in place, an application will need to be made to the court of protection for a deputy to be appointed if you lose mental capacity and financial decisions need to be made. This process is more complicated, and costly, and the ongoing responsibilities of a deputy are more onerous. Estate and inheritance tax planning may be an uncomfortable thought, but it’s vital to ensure that your wishes are met on your death. Having a will and an LPA in place can make an already difficult time much easier for your family and friends. If you would like to discuss any aspect of your estate planning, including wills, trusts and LPAs, please contact Suzanne Leggott, partner in our private client team, on 0116 257 6130 or suzanne. leggott@shma.co.uk.


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If ever I lose or put on weight it always shows in my face first; hence the number of selfies taken at the start of my holidays is always greater than those taken at the end! One thing that doesn’t fluctuate though is a sagging neck and it really, really annoys me. Known by some people as Turkey Neck, the sagging of the skin under the chin to the neck is a common sign of ageing and often has more to do with weakening neck muscles and loss of skin elasticity than the after effects of yo-yo dieting. Diet as much as you like, in fact, it will make no real difference to your turkey neck. Gobble Gobble. There are things you can do though to tighten the skin and reclaim your jawline; and not all of them involve going under the surgeon’s knife. Loughborough’s award-winning Fab Clinics offer a range of sciencebased technologies designed to keep you looking younger for longer without the use of injectables or surgery but by focusing on making your body produce more Collagen, the protein that holds the body together and forms a scaffold to provide strength and structure. By stimulating the production of collagen in targeted areas, skin can be tightened naturally- even that Turkey Neck! Sitting down with Fab Clinics owner, Elena Chapman, we went through the best treatment options to get rid of my skin sag once and for all and she immediately recommended the HIFU treatment or High Intensity Focused Ultrasound to give it its full name. HIFU is actually used within surgery, offering targeted treatment for prostate cancer and lung cancer, but the technology has been found to be very useful as a cosmetic treatment. HIFU deals with medium skin laxity, particularly jaw sculpting and neck tightening as well as fat destruction just under the chin but it can be used to tighten skin anywhere on the face or body. It does this by depositing precise amounts of energy to specified skin depths, 4.5mm, 3mm and 1.5mm, that create thermo coagulation points; effectively causing micro amounts of damage and forcing the creation of fresh collagen and tightening the skin. What’s interesting is that, before HIFU, accessing the SMAS layer at 4.5mm was only possible through surgery which is what gives this treatment such good results. “Do it now, do it now” I laughed before being warned by Elena that unlike any radiofrequency-based treatments i may have experienced before, HIFU is not the sort of relaxing treatment where you drift off to sleep. It’s not exactly painful, she explains but it’s not pleasurable. 14 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

A firm believer in no pain no gain I completed my pre treatment healthcheck forms and Elena and clinician Lucy took before pics from every angle before i laid back and the treatment began. After all, if it’s going as deep as plastic surgery then you’ve got to expect to feel something right? Lucy started by marking specific lines on my neck that she would target with the HIFU wand. These were in key areas that would lift and scaffold the neck providing a structure. Once done she turned on the machine and directed the HIFU in short burst along the line repeating the process at 4.5, 3 and 1.5mm depths. The sensation is one that is difficult to describe and, as Elena stated, not painful but also not relaxing. At times completely painless and at others like a small, hot insect sting, it seemed to be more sensitive towards my jawbone – primarily due to their being less fat there to absorb the impact. At no time did I feel uncomfortable but it’s also not the sort of treatment you could have whilst joking with friends or whilst having a head massage or foot rub. I think it is more the anticipation of a little sting which is more intrusive than the treatment itself! The process is short; around 40 minutes and I was left with a slight redness and a couple of small bumps where the skin had been at its most sensitive. Lucy provided me with an aftercare pack containing moisturiser and SPF and I was advised to drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol and caffeine for the rest of the day. Some people can experience some bruising post treatment so it’s good to be prepared and get some arnica cream to help. The results? Well we’ll have to wait and see. It can take 2-3 months for the treatment to show completely as, after all, the collagen needs to grow but the results of others have been encouraging; Elena has even given the treatment to her own husband and brother who have experienced great results so watch this space. The cost of HIFU treatments range from £210 to £799 depending on specific needs and consultation. Maximum 2 treatments per year. To find out more or to find out if HIFU is the right treatment for you, visit www.fabclinics.com or call them on 01509 400 444


A Musical EATR














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Giggling Squid is all about the spirit of Thai mealtimes with plentiful dishes, bold flavours and exotic ingredients – enjoy lunchtime Tapas Sets from £9.95 and a wide selection of curries, stir fries and Thai salads. VEGAN AND KIDS’ MENUS AVAILABLE plus outdoor seating when the British weather allows. Open every day: Mon – Thurs 12noon – 22.00 Fri – Sat 12noon – 22.30 Sunday 12noon – 21.30 @gigglingsquid

www.gigglingsquid.com leicester@gigglingsquid.com 0116 251 9999 Unit 3-5 St Martin’s Square, LE1 5DF

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<<< property focus



This stunning, four-bedroom executive, detached, family home has recently come onto the market for £415,000 with Berkley Estates.

not only of an en-suite but also its own personal walk-in dressing room, making the bedroom more spacious and decluttered of heavy furniture.

primary schools as well as a major new secondary school aiming to provide outstanding education for local school children.

Situated in the highly desirable Davidson Homes development within New Lubbesthorpe, and with easy links to the M1, facilitating travel both North & South, this impeccable home is perfect for any family ready to relocate to a semi-rural setting with vibrant urban amenities.

Outside this charming property is a large driveway and a garage at the front, and a spacious garden at the rear, which is perfect for children, and high fences which adds an element of privacy.

If you are looking for things to do here, there are a wealth of nearby attractions. It is 20 minutes from Leicester City Centre, and only 10 minutes from Fosse Park Shopping centre (one of Britain’s largest out-of-town shopping parks), offering a wide variety of shops which are continuously evolving so you can be sure to have all your retail needs covered.

Constructed little over a year ago, ‘The Tenby’ is a stunning family home offering spacious contemporary accommodation. Walking into the property, it is clear to see that no stone has been left unturned when choosing the specification and additional upgrades for the interior- in fact £20,000 worth of upgrades to be precise! The standout of these upgrades has to be in the kitchen, which boasts beautiful granite worktops and a built-in wine fridge- perfect for those evenings of entertaining guests. Downstairs, there is a lovely entrance hall with W.C, an open-plan spacious kitchen and dining room with patio doors leading out onto the garden, with the kitchen also benefitting from a utility room. One of our favourite spots is the walk-in bay window, situated in the spacious lounge- a perfect spot for curling up with a book on an evening. Heading upstairs, you will find a large fourpiece family bathroom, and four double bedrooms. The highlight of the first floor is the stunning master bedroom comprising 16 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

However, the property itself is not the only thing to get excited about. The pioneering community of New Lubbesthorpe also has a lot to offer for families that choose to relocate here, with the community been branded as ‘one of the most exciting new places to live in Leicestershire’. The New Lubbesthorpe development aims to provide local amenities, with a supermarket, shops, a health centre and other services. In addition, a planned business village at Enderby Park aims to create thousands of new jobs for the local area. The first new primary school opened in September 2019, which welcomed 420 pupils, and there are plans for further

For families looking for a more peaceful weekend, New Lubbesthorpe is situated just 5 minutes from countryside walks, perfect for wearing the kids and the dogs out on a sunny Sunday morning. As well as this, the development offers 325 acres of new woodland, green and open spaces, and will provide children’s play areas managed by the Land Trust Charity for an ensured safe, green and attractive environment. Property experts are often quick to say “Location, location, location” and this stunning home has really hit the jackpot being situated in this sought-after community. Not only is it an ideal location for families, but it is also the perfect family home, with lavish interiors and plenty of space. Tempted? This property is currently on the market for £415,000 via Berkley Estate & Letting Agents. Tel 0116 2796161 or visit berkleystates.co.uk

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<<< special feature



This issue we talk to Jennifer McNeil, Partner at Dodds Solictors about life, her career, her aspirations and what it takes to make it in field of family law. when I can, or a good film! If someone is seeking legal advice on (family) matters, what should they look out for when choosing someone to represent them? As mentioned above family matters can be incredibly stressful and tempered with all sorts of emotions and so best to find someone who is trained to give objective advice, rather than diving in and possibly making matters worse. Resolution trained lawyers are best as they have to pass numerous exams to demonstrate that they are specialists in not antagonising an already difficult situation.

Tell us a little bit about yourself Originally growing up in Derbyshire, I moved to Leicester to study Law & Psychology at De Montfort Uni. I am married with a daughter and a very boisterous cat! I first started at Dodds in 2006 and went off for a few years at another firm for a different perspective. Happily, I returned to my Dodds family in 2017 and haven’t looked back. Have you always wanted to work in law? Yes, aside from a few failed attempts at waitressing and pouring pints whilst at uni! How did you decide to specialise in Family law? A friend of mine, who was training to be a barrister, suggested I do some work experience at Dodds and it just so happened that one of their biggest departments was family law which is where I started out. I realised quite early on that this was my preference. What are the key challenges in your job? The Court service is drowning in cases to process, with all parties wanting their time in court and to be heard fairly. This can create delays which is frustrating for clients. What are the most rewarding aspects of your job? Seeing someone who first came to me in one of the most difficult 18 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

moments of their life, navigate through it, and out the other side intact and often with a smile at the end. What is an unusual aspect of the job/something people wouldn’t expect or be surprised that you do? Solicitors do a great deal of their own advocacy i.e. attending court but many think that work is reserved for barristers. How would your colleagues describe you? You’d have to ask them but I’d probably say ‘tenacious’. That’s probably a polite way of putting it!! Describe a typical working day? There is often a lot of emails to work through on coming in first thing and that requires copious amounts of coffee. Usually then onto court or client meetings and some more emails and case preparation in the afternoon depending on what’s on the following day. Alternatively, an urgent injunction application of some kind will come in and then everything goes out the window! Outside of work, what do you like to do? I just love spending time with family and friends, doing anything at all but it often revolves around babies and food!

Where are your favourite places in Leicester? I absolutely love the old parts of the city centre. Since the regeneration project began a few years ago, that part of the city just looks better and better. What is it about the city of Leicester that excites or surprises you most? The constant changing landscape is exciting. It shows growth and development which can only be good news for local businesses. You specialise in Family Law within Dodds Solicitors; this must be quite stressful sometimes for you? It can be. All families have issues and when those issues have to be litigated or resolved by lawyers, it is a stressful time for all involved but part of my role is to provide objective advice which should hopefully bring the stress levels down. With mental health being on the lips of everyone at the moment, how do you unwind? I have a great circle of family and friends and we all take care of each other but I do think it is important to take time out for yourself and to ensure that you protect your health both mental and physical. Your wellbeing is so precious, you have to take time out. I unwind with an occasional spa day with the girls

Do you think it’s easier for women to succeed in the legal profession or is there a glass ceiling? I don’t believe in a glass ceiling. I believe that you can achieve anything you fully commit to but I do accept that woman taking time out to raise families can be a challenge to their careers. That said, most of my female friends are lawyers, and many like myself are Directors or Partners despite us all having taken time out for children. I believe that woman still face challenges in the workplace as do many others but I believe that our society is less tolerant of this and people are being awarded senior roles based on merit. Tell us something about yourself that not many people know… Alongside some old friends, I won our Year 8 talent show playing Baby Spice in our Spice Girls band. What is your ambition? I’ve achieved my goal of becoming a lawyer, a partner and then, a mother. I think for me right now, I am just happy to live in the moment. Who knows where life will take me next?! Dodds Solicitors is atFriar Lane, Leicester, LE1 5RA. Tel 0116 262 8596 www.dodds-solicitors.co.uk Dodds Solicitors LLP is a Limited Liability Partnership and is registered in England and Wales Partnership (No OC364487) Registered Office is 32 Friar Lane Leicester LE1 5RA The Members of Dodds Solicitors LLP are Solicitors and a list of members’ are available for inspection at the registered office Authorised and Regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority SRA No 563422 VAT Registration number 729-9282-86

£50M DEVELOPMENT shows future’S bright for city The independent restaurant and bar NineB, located in the same building as the hotels, will provide hotel and apartment guests, as well as members of the public, a stylish new hub within the development in which to eat, drink and socialise, offering modern British food with an international twist. James Conaghan, general manager of the hotels, said: “These are exciting times for the city of Leicester. Its reputation as a national tourist destination is growing, which is creating a clear demand for more hotel rooms and eateries to cater for the influx of visitors, tourists and businesses. We’re all thrilled with this development, and we hope the city and its residents will feel a sense of pride too.”

The £50 million regeneration of the wider Great Central Square has continued with the opening of the new Novotel hotel and Adagio apartments along with independent restaurant NineB. Offering 252 rooms that cater for over 500 guests, as well as bespoke meeting spaces and boardrooms, the new hotel significantly strengthens the

development’s corporate offering, Great Central Square also includes No.1 Great Central Square, comprising 33,000 square feet of Grade A office space. The building, which has five floors of rooms available to rent; will provide flexible spaces for creative, independent businesses, entrepreneurial SMEs and established brands.

City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “The investment from Novotel and Adagio is a ringing endorsement of Leicester as a place that is continuing to grow as a visitor destination, with record numbers of people choosing to spend time in our city. We have built on the momentum generated by the King Richard III story and Leicester City’s amazing Premier League win and as a result, visitor numbers are growing year on year. According to recent tourism figures, over 11 million people visited Leicester last year and, after six years of continued growth, tourism was worth more than £650 million to the local economy”.

With you every step of the way • Family Matters • Mediation Service • Dispute Resolution • Conveyancing • Commercial Law

• Litigation • Wills & Probate • Tax & Trusts • Criminal Law

Call now to discuss your matter with one of our legal experts

0116 262 8596

Jennifer McNeil Family Matters

DODDS SOLICITORS LLP 32 Friar Lane, Leicester LE1 5RA www.dodds-solicitors.co.uk sarah.spence@dodds-solicitors.co.uk


Visit our beautiful showrooms and speak with our skilled design and project management team who are on hand to complete your vision.

Oadby House 91 The Parade Oadby, Leicester LE2 5BB T. 0116 233 7775 www.sherwinhall.com


<<< spotlight




Quorn’s Jane Barbeary is a television journalist, news reporter and newly qualified wedding and naming celebrant. Here she explains what celebrants do, and the growing trend for more personalised ceremonies. You’ve named the date, booked the venue, and decided what to call your twitter hashtag for the big day, - but the important bit, the actual promises you make to the love of your life, are pretty much the same words used by every other couple getting hitched. There’s not a lot of wriggle room for registrars to really personalise a ceremony to reflect you, as a couple. The laws on marriage date back to 1836, and the language used in ceremonies reflects that time. Many people find the traditional wording of a church service reassuring and 22 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

comforting, and that’s truly lovely. But if you want a ceremony that reflects your relationship, and you as individuals, then there is an alternative – The Celebrant.

Celebrants write and deliver ceremonies that are all about you and tailored to your wishes. Think of it as a hand made suit or couture gown, but without the hefty price tag! Once you’ve done the legal bit at a register office, (midweek is generally the cheapest option. www.leicestershire.gov.uk) you are then able to have your unique ceremony at the venue of your choice. It can be anywhere, - your favourite restaurant, a beauty spot, stately home, or back garden – the choice is yours. It can be the same day as your legal ceremony or at a later date. Your ceremony should be uplifting and

heart-warming. It should make your family and friends smile, and maybe occasionally sniff. It’s a huge milestone in your life and should leave you with many happy memories. SO HOW DOES IT WORK? You can find a celebrant in your area by visiting the Association of Independent Celebrants and The Celebrant Directory websites. Independantcelebrants.com Alternatively contact Civil Ceremonies who have a list of celebrants they’ve trained and work with. They’re an Ofsted Outstanding Provider offering the only nationally recognised Diploma in Celebrancy: Naming and Couples. www. civilceremonies.co.uk Tel 01480 276080

After that you can meet up for an initial no obligation chat, and assuming you get on, and want to work together, take it from

played. Children and pets aren’t off limits either, the latest trend is for alpacas as ring bearers! (www. pukkapacas. com )

there. A celebrant wont grill you for your entire life story! They will just gently find out about you, and how you’d like your ceremony to be. It can be as simple or as extravagant as you’d like, and if you’re stuck for inspiration, celebrants have lots of it. You can have family and friends giving readings, poetry or short speeches. You can include religious or spiritual content and have live music or your favourite song

A Celebrant will write the entire ceremony, including vows or promises if you want them. Some couples prefer to write their own vows, but would like the celebrant to read them aloud. It’s entirely up to you, there are no hard and fast rules. Once the ceremony is written the client is asked to approve it, and if there are any changes to be made, these are done. They can also write and deliver civil partnership ceremonies, wedding vow renewals and baby naming ceremonies. Some celebrants also train to conduct funerals.

As a journalist I know the power of words and the impact of a story well told. With a celebrant ceremony there is so much more you can include to make it stand out. Rings or other tokens can be exchanged, and symbolic rituals like hand fasting, jumping the broom’ and lighting unity candles, can be woven in. The key word is CHOICE – it’s Your Day, Your Way. The celebrant is the person who makes that happen, but the content is uniquely yours. Not all celebrants work the same way, we all come from varied backgrounds, but if you find someone you trust with your Big Day then it can be a truly special occasion. LET’S DO IT…….LET’S CELEBRATE! Jane Barbeary is a Member of the Associations of Independent Celebrants. You can contact her on 07821 187193 or email her at Jane.barbeary@outlook.com Find out more at www.nuptials-andnaming-ceremonie.co.uk

dluxe-magazine.co.uk 23


<<< her style

] 1



polka what? This season everyone's seeing spots

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WHERE TO GET IT... 1. Outfit by Matalan, 2. Imogen Dress, £199, Hobbs, 3. Tonya Pink Polka Dot Top, £85, Kitri, 4. Spot Ditsy Mix & Match Midi Dress, £75, Oliver Bonas, 5. Sheer Polka-Dot Blouse, £695, Dolce & Gabbana, 6. Vera Red Polka Dot Halterneck Dress, £165, Kitri, 7. Eloise printed silk-crepe wrap maxi dress, £495, Diane Von Furstenburg, 8 White polka-dot denim mini skirt, £300, Marc Jacobs, 9. Spotty Hairband, £25, Dune London 10. Sweet Thing Slingback Shoes, £43, Joe Browns, 11. Flared Polka Dot Dress, £55, Yumi, 12. Cherry polka-dot silk blouse, £390, Lee Mathews, Polka-dot knotted chiffon headband, £60, Lele Sadough 13. Astrid polka-dot satin midi dress, £800, Racil dluxe-magazine.co.uk 25



<<< her style



Whilst the start of the year can feel like a horribly gloomy place, it can also be the perfect excuse to look ahead as to what the year has in store. And while the world goes crazy over Boris and Brexit, and Harry and Meghan moving stateside, I just pour another gin and eagerly anticipate what delights the new season will bring and fill up my clients' summer wardrobes. In this new decade, throwaway trends are becoming increasingly unfashionable, and we are all looking for clothes that will have a lasting impact notably with the inevitable capsule wardrobe. The spring summer 2020 runways were notably more commercial than usual, with a focus on classic legacy buys rather than the previous impractical, whimsical and artistic creations, we once saw. Instead collections seemed to be more realistic and wearable. Something right up my street and a much-welcomed stance for those into sustainable fashion.

Whilst the waistcoat and Bermuda shorts are items we’ll be seeing a lot of on the high street (not my bag!) these are my personal favourite, effortless and low maintenance trends to invest in for Spring Summer 2020: THE NEW TRENCH By no means a surprise, trench coats look set to be hugely popular this spring. This wardrobe classic was spliced, diced and cleverly restyled. Fashion’s love affair with trench coats are totally justified with its practical, dependable, goeswith-everything outerwear option. This season it comes in fresh colourways and finishes. Still a classic style, some showing more feminine finishes, from pleats to prints - that'll soften the often androgynous staple. SUMMER LEATHER Don’t be shy when it comes to coloured leather, petrol blues, rust browns and lipstick reds were fair game on many of the catwalks. The leather shirt being the most staple and accessible item to add into your summer wardrobe. Think modern staples with simple lines.

TROPICAL NIGHTS We have Jennifer Lopez to thank for this one, thanks to her plunging Versace dress which broke the internet back in 2000. But that wasn't the only jungleleaf print to make an impact for spring. Fendi and Dolce and Gabbana wowed us with some luxuriant green leaves whilst Marni's abstract blooms, tropical prints have been flowering during SS20, with palm trees and vivid colours invading dresses, jackets and footwear that will get us reconnecting with nature. IT’LL BE ALL WHITE ON THE NIGHT Well during the day as well actually. Wear head to toe for that fresh start feeling, my personal purchase will be a white summer dress, style I’m not sure of yet but perhaps something floaty for Santorini (not yet booked, I’m just putting it out there to the universe!) DOTTY FOR YOU Polka Dots were another print the catwalks were awash with. If you think you’re seeing spots whilst out shopping, you are. No longer twee, think more of a cool and elevated look from dresses to blouses, heels and headbands.

LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE If ever there was a good time to do Neon it would be now. The highlighter pen shades neon green, pink, yellow, orange and turquoise were on offer from many of the designers. MAKE A STATEMENT With your collar or neckline! Wide, pointed statement collars appeared on coats, shirts and blazers, with many using zesty or contrasting colours to really exaggerate the lapel. If Victoria Beckham and JW Anderson are backing this, something tells us it'll catch on. Then with necklines is was all about the square, showing off as much décolletage and shoulder as you can, thanks to the '90s minimalist resurgence. Think scoop, square and slashed necklines. So that’s my round up of the most accessible and investment worthy trends of Spring Summer 2020. I may tap into a couple of them to add into my existing capsule wardrobe to update it slightly. If the thought of it all is a little overwhelming or you feel you just need a bit of guidance over your spring summer wardrobe you know where I am. Your Fairy Clothes Mother xx

CREDITS. Saskia-Trench £199 Hobbs London, Gestuz Leather Belted Dress £500 Selfridges, White Crochet Dress Head Over Heels., Green Tropical Dress £40 Roman, Polka-Dot Satin Mini Dress £670 Racin Harvey Nichols., Oliver Bonas Hong Kong Orange Cat Eye Sunglasses £49.50.

Working as a Buyer and Image Consultant for high street fashion chains as well as high end designers, including Amanda Wakeley, Cleo now runs her own personal styling and shopping service, helping real men and women to take control of their wardrobe. E: cleolacey@demi-couture.co.uk W: www.demi-couture.co.uk Facebook: Demi Couture Twitter: @cleolacey Instagram: DemiCoutureStylist 26 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

JAEGER RRP £250.00 OUTLET £125.00


M&S RRP £27.50 OUTLET £19.50

get the look Capture the essence of this trend with statement stripes and polka dot perfection.

LEVI’S RRP £65.00 OUTLET £45.00


brands you’ll love

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Discover everything from stand out jackets to monochrome trousers with our new arrivals from sought-after brands including Joules, Kurt Geiger, Radley London and more.

Loving this season’s geometric look? Ace the trend with these must-have pieces for up to 60% less at McArthurGlen Designer Outlet East Midlands GAP RRP £29.99 OUTLET £17.99

FOSSIL RRP £159.00 OUTLET £103.00



<<< his style






SHOW YOUR STRIPES 28 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

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WHERE TO GET IT... 1. Outfit by Burton, 2. Scotty striped cotton top, £45, Carhartt, 3. Navy striped woven shirt, £110, Samsoe & Samsoe, 4. Tommy Jeans Stripe Organic Cotton T £40, 5. Paul Smith Mother of Pearl Stripe Button Cufflinks, Mono £110 John Lewis, 6. Blue striped cotton shirt, £105, Polo Ralph Lauren., 7. True Stripe Panel Trainers, Black £55 Dune, 8. Dawlish Stripe Polo in Navy, £32.50, FatFace., 9. Braces, £19.99, Zara, 10. Appliquéd Striped Stretch Cotton-Blend Socks, £90, Gucci, 11. Paul Smith Artist Stripe Card Holder, £65 John Lewis, 12. Kennick Short Sleeve BiStripe Linen Shirt, Blue £110 Reiss, 13. Kin Jumbo Stripe Knit Jumper, £55 John Lewis, 14. Burberry stripe espadrilles £340 Harvey Nichols


dluxe-magazine.co.uk 29


<<< his style



Opting for functionality doesn’t mean you have to forego fashion – the new breed of innovative fabrics mean your wardrobe can be super stylish and practical. LISA PIDDINGTON selects the new season pieces that tick all the boxes, from high-tech mesh and nylon to directional denim and panelled detailing.

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1. Moncler Argentiere panelled shell jacket, £855 2. Balenciaga Speed stretch-knit sneakers, £540 3. Saint Laurent Paris logo nylon holdall, £740 4. Off-White Odsy-1000 mesh sneakers, £545 5. Balmain shell and denim jacket, £1675 6. Gucci panelled logo shell jacket, £1510 7. Off-White neoprene bomber jacket, £975 8. Canada Goose Camouflage Arctic-Tech shell gilet, £425 9. Palm Angels panelled twill cargo trousers, £425 10. Eastpak X Alpha Industries army green shell backpack, £70 30 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

LINEN LOOK “Linen is my friend right now. It’s a wardrobe classic so not trendy - trendy and being light and breathable, it’s an excellent choice for warmer climes. Team it with another neutral and you’ve got your trend-based look without being try hard – it’s adaptable, too, so the go to choice that will take you from daywear to a casual dinner with effortless style.” SET THE TONE Creating a fashionable statement doesn’t always require a bold dose of colour. Don’t believe me? Just look to Florence for proof. The gents in town for Pitti Uomo created some seriously striking outfits by keeping things neutral. Decked out from head to toe in creams, beiges and caramels, these gents appeared anything from boring. Imagine a paint chart: choose tones that sit together without being the same to create some muchneeded contrast – like I did with these linen trousers from Zara and same tone T-shirt from Guess.


GO ROUND Clear out your sunnies and start again. While the round sunglasses trend may have started with the ladies, it’s now the gents’ turn to rock the look. Sharp, stylish and seriously round, these sunglasses are more about making a style statement than shielding your eyes from the sun. They’re a great way to make your look fashion forward. I found these vintage Giorgio Armani 90’s glasses online and they make a unique style statement. When sunglasses shopping always take a friend for that all important second opinion!

Ah, spring how we have missed you! We may have escaped a harsh winter but it’s been too darn wet so we can’t wait to hang up our ontrend hiking boots and slip into some sandals… maybe after Easter…

So, now’s the time to get our wardrobe’s warm weather ready. One of this season’s key trends is for neutral and pastel shades so first things first, see what’s already in your wardrobe and work round it! Before you shop always have a game plan – remember what you’ve already got and what you’ve not – it’s important so you don’t duplicate. New season shopping is all about integrating not replacing! Remember shopping for the season is not necessarily the same as trend shopping so feel free to mix things up a little whilst nodding at what the snap happy fashionista’s online are up to. Rather than follow a trend, try following a vibe and add a certain sensibility to your look without hopping on anyone's bandwagon. This could be eighties gloss, vintage style or sports luxe chic for example. Choose your vibe and then integrate the trends that work within it. This is exactly what style blogger and correspondent Ekin Dagli has done having found inspiration on a quick Spring trip to Athens where the sun is always high in the sky – the perfect place to perfect your new Spring look. Follow him online at @ekindaglii www.ekindagli.com

S’ LONG SNEAKERS No matter whether your trews are short or long, ditch the deck shoes and sling out your sneakers in favour of a classic sandal.. and if you’re still in sliders then just stop reading now! Menswear designers having been pushing the concept of resort lines for the last few years which means there’s much more choice out there. No longer should sandals be confined to the beach, instead, men can decide to wear them out and about. For my tonal beige linen look I opted for a brown cross strap sandals in brown to keep things neutral whilst adding a little contrast and complete my look.

Clockwise: Saint Laurent Camel twill jacket £1180 Harvey Nichols. Merino Zip Neck Polo £85 Reiss, Suedette Baseball Cap £50 Reiss, Jersey Shorts River Island, Georgio Armani Sunglasses, £220 Selfridges, Fiz Sandal £55 Dune London dluxe-magazine.co.uk 31



It’s well and truly a sign of how both fashions and buying habits change that when Ford decided to reimagine its iconic Puma coupe from the mid 90s that it updated the concept from coupe to crossover. The original Puma proved itself a marvel on the road with slick handling, excellent roadholding and peppy performance from its 1.7 petrol engine. It’s the one car I regret not buying; walking away from the dealerships to put down a deposit instead on a sexy little Alfa 145 Cloverleaf that, of course, spent more time in the service bay than it did on the road and lost all of its considerable value literally overnight. Heart literally stomped over head. 12 years later, wiser and with less hair on head and more in my ears, this new incarnation of the Puma might not slip so quickly through my fingers. The seductive exterior styling 32 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

looks back to the original couple, especially in those headlights but also represents the next chapter in Ford’s design philosophy so expect some pretty new cars to come. A low, sloping roofline gives a dramatic, instantly recognisable silhouette, and bucks the trend for wedge-style crossover side profiles. This “anti-wedge” design features a flatter belt-line to deliver balanced proportions and succeeds in stopping the Puma from appearing slabby.

and features an adjustable boot floor and Megabox storage space. The storage solution offers a capacity of 80 litres in a space which can house unstable items up to around 115 cm tall – such as houseplants – in an upright position. Alternatively, with the lid down, the space can be used to conceal dirty sports equipment or muddy Wellington boots. The synthetic lining and drain plug in the bottom of the Ford Megabox makes it easy to clean with water- clever.

Pronounced wheel arches amplify the sporty character as do the front air curtain inlets that guide airflow across the front wheels to reduce turbulence for improved aerodynamics and a large rear wing, wide tail lights and central Puma branding give what could be a heavy back end a squat and powerful presence.

Loading the Puma is made even easier thanks to a hands-free tailgate technology opening that you’d normally find on high end Mercedes models. The system allows access to the boot space even with arms full of groceries, kids or sports equipment, using a simple kicking motion under the rear bumper.

That back end hides best-in-class load space and luggage capacity of 456 litres

The rest of the cabin feels roomy and upmarket with lumbar massaging front

BABY? 1.0 litre EcoBoost petrol engine to deliver up to 155 PS. Offered in 125 PS and 155 PS variants, the intelligent, self-regulating mild-hybrid system continuously monitors how the vehicle is being used to determine when and how intensively to charge the battery for optimal benefit. The electric torque assistance helps deliver punchier, more responsive performance, with up to 50 per cent more torque available at lower engine speeds, for a more flexible and connected driving experience. For those not wanting to opt for hybrid, a range of petrol and diesel engines are available alongside an impressive list of safety tech. Puma utilises 12 ultrasonic sensors, three radars and two cameras positioned around the car to enhance protection, driving and parking, and are designed to make the driving experience more comfortable, less demanding and safer. seats a first in the segment and a full-length openable panorama roof comprising two almost-full width panes of toughened, tinted glass creates an even more spacious and airy feel for occupants in the front and rear. Opt for the ST-Line or ST-Line X and enjoy a fully configurable digital instrument cluster using “true colour” display technology so it’s bright without being tiring on the eyes and easy to read. There’s a wireless charging pad built in for effortlessly recharging smartphones on the move and devices can remain linked via Bluetooth to the communications and entertainment system whilst wireless charging, allowing Puma drivers to control audio, navigation and connected smartphones using simple voice commands. Available in Titanium, ST-Line and STLine X trims, the higher spec models add 18-inch standard or 19-inch optional matt

black machined alloy wheels and a sports suspension with specially tuned springs and shock absorbers. At the front, the ST-Line grille features matt black elements and a high-gloss surround, high-gloss foglamp surrounds, and an optional larger, functional roof-spoiler along with bold signature STLine lower wing elements direct air to the air-curtain inlets. Inside, the Puma ST Line features a flat-bottomed steering wheel and old school red stitching – also available on the optional partial leather seats. Colours are somewhat sedate with the standard, blues, black, red white and grey on offer. Like the original before it, this Puma is also based on the platform of its Fiesta sibling and features Ford’s EcoBoost Hybrid 48volt technology to enhance fuel efficiency, performance and the Puma’s fun-to-drive character. The mild-hybrid powertrain seamlessly integrates electric torque assistance with a low-friction, three-cylinder

Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Speed Sign Recognition and Lane Centring helps the vehicle maintain a comfortable driving distance from vehicles ahead and new Local Hazard Information functionality – enabled by the FordPass Connect on-board modem – can inform drivers of a hazardous situation on the road ahead, even if the incident is not visible due to a bend in the road or other vehicles. So bigger, better equipped, more practical, more efficient and with more safety equipment fitted as standard but still as good to drive; it looks like the Puma has come a long way from its 90s roots. Like all of us, it’s grown up. Perhaps it’s time to revisit that Ford dealership. Puma is available now starting at £20,545. Find out more at www.ford.co.uk

dluxe-magazine.co.uk 33


<<< interiors


BEAUTIFUL BOTANICAL Flamboyant ferns, jungle prints, ethnic accessories and plants, plants galore! We love this interior trend for bringing all things exotic and outdoors indoors especially when itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s mixed with glittering golds and buffed bronzes.

34 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

Iro Hand Painted Armoire, £895, Oliver Bonas

John Lewis John Lewis & Partners Sultans Garden Plate £16

Sainsbury’s Home Loft Wooden Cylindrical Faux, £10, Sainsbury’s Home

Metal Hanging Lamp with Plant Pot Gold and Black, £95, Cult Furniture

Haas mojave palm candlestick large, £510, L’Objet

Penelope Accent Chair Velvet Upholstered Green Leaf Walnut Legs, £139, Cult Furniture

Baltimore Low Stool Velvet Upholstered Botanical Print, £79, Cult Furniture

Eichholtz Ginkgo Side Table, £1090, Sweetpea & Willow

Prestia decanter, £39.75, Lene Bjerre

Green Velvet Footstool, £117.95, Melody Maison

Natural woven seagrass basket, £25, Bloomingvile

Very.co.uk Botanical Flatweave Rug from £34.99

Large Triangular Top Artisan Terrarium Lantern, £39.99, Lights4fun

Large Black Slatted Lantern with TruGlow Candle, £36.99, Lights4fun

Amara Elizabeth Scarlett Palmier Cushion Cover £30

M&CO Grey geometric plant with gold stand £10

Very.co.uk Palm Leaves Cushion £24.99

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<<< interiors




Here at dluxe we like to put our money where our mouth is. So much of what you read in our magazine are things that we have genuinely tested and invested in ourselves – we’d not recommend it otherwise. So, when dluxe Magazine owners, Kevin and Jonathan Fraser Urquhart, upped sticks and took on a Grade II period property project in which to make their new forever home, it was only natural that they should turn to their own magazine for inspiration - especially when it came to the biggest renovation challenge in their home – the hideous kitchen!


When we first walked in, we both knew this was the house we’d been searching for. It was love at first sight: a period property that was light, bright, brimming with features and that was just waiting to be upgraded - all apart from the dark, dingy kitchen, that is. There’s a problem room in every house and this was definitely ours. Dark red terrazzo tiles from the fifties and a dark brown Hygena kitchen from the eighties proved a period problem. It got worse with dark brown tiles with a painted picnic theme coupled with low, black painted beams and it could definitely be described as an interior disaster zone. The house deserved better. What it did have going for it, though, was size. L-shaped in format, it was quirky: at one end it boasted a dining space with giant picture window; there was a double height void with rooflight in the middle but at the 36 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

far corner of the L it was dark with no natural light, made worse by the fact that the ceiling height was lower at this end and the period beams were painted black which made a low ceiling feel even lower. There were so many design issues to resolve that it was overwhelming. How to make the space work became the prime topic of conversation at the housewarming and for our Pinterest and Instagram searches – speaking of which, follow us on our_old_ new_home. We had to get this space right or we’d be letting down the house and the hard renovation work we’d been lavishing on the rest of it, so it was definitely time to call in the experts – the team at Sherwin Hall. We’d already seen how beautiful Sherwin Hall’s handcrafted kitchens were when we’d visited their new showrooms at Oadby House - on the corner of Oadby’s Parade –

but, we’d never looked at them as a buyer before. So, we jumped in the car to have a look properly and of course fell in love immediately with the dark blue and marble shaker kitchen on display - perhaps not the most sensible choice when your kitchen is like a coalpit! Thankfully, showroom manager, Daniella, was there to translate our unique brief into a kitchen design that would suit the grandness of the 16th century house. Over a cup of coffee, she explained how we could choose literally any colour we wanted, given everything is made to order. Sherwin Hall use Little Greene paints - a brand we’re big fans of and use throughout the home thanks to their exemplary finish – so, there was no reason why we couldn’t inject a bit of colour and personality into our kitchen – plus we knew that this would help give it the wow-factor you don’t get off the shelf.


Going through the showroom, we loved the wood grained, shaker-style doors and engineered handles. The range of clever storage solutions presented also appealed - especially the stunning walk in larder unit, wide drawers and, being the practical one of the two, the giant pull out recycling station, which was hidden neatly away and got me too excited. The next step was to book a design consultation to see how we could make all this work in our home…

to the comfortable showroom to sit down and go through the ideas.


We’d all decided that the best things to do with the dark beams was to paint them out – this is a design tip used to make spaces look taller - but Amy had also opted for a white quartz worktop and Belfast sink to reflect light upwards and expand the space. The sink was also centred to the view from the kitchen table and useful peninsula in order to balance the space. She’d also incorporated our beloved blue into the scheme, painting the units in a softer but more appropriate shade than the showroom model we’d fallen for in order to keep things light and bright – another design tip. Aged bronze engineered handles injected vintage flair. The low ceilings meant wall units would be too heavy, so a dresser style larder unit was incorporated instead and a floating light oak shelf would wrap its way around the kitchen and provide the perfect place for us to add our own eclectic style and knick-knacks. In the dining space the same units would be used to create an oak topped window seat hiding stacks of storage.

Sherwin Hall offer a design service that presents you with a full set of to-scale plans as well as a huge amount of inspiration for you to shop around with. But, should you fall in love with the plans like we did and prefer to create your kitchen with them, the price of your design is taken straight off the cost of your kitchen so win, win. The first thing kitchen designer Amy did on her initial visit to the house was find out more about us and our lives, afterall, the FLOATING SHELF
















kitchen is where most of us spend most of our time. She asked about our personal style; how we entertained; whether we were proper foodies etc, so she could build a picture of what we’d want from the perfect kitchen both in terms of look and practicality. Sherwin Hall Kitchens

Computer impression for customer guidelines only.

Range: NDS Prentice Furniture Non Priced

View: Plan

96 Jarrom Street

Client: Mr Kevin Urquhart

Door Style: Alicia

Scale: 1:25



Handle: Customise

Date: 28/11/19


Design: d3

Page: 1

Armed with that, it was time to look at the space and the problems (or opportunities) it presented. It was decided that the existing L shaped layout was the most functional, but the positioning of ovens and sinks etc was far from ideal. It was also determined very quickly that wall units were a no-no because of the limited ceiling height. Amy noted the eclectic array of ornaments around the house foraged from our trips to French antique markets and wanted to make sure that there was space for these within the design. All measured up, she would next get in touch with the first-draft designs. We were excited but nervous.


Amy guided us through her considered designs on screen. Her focus has been to make the kitchen feel timeless and sophisticated – going too trendy can render it unfashionable very quickly - whilst still making it easy for us to update the look and feel of it through decoration and accessorising.

We didn’t have to wait long as the designs were ready within a few short days. Amy had returned to the studio and immediately worked on them, as she was so excited to come up with a solution for us. We made an appointment for the next day and returned

Flooring wise, we had to choose wisely and fell in love with the white painted oak-style floor we’d seen from the new signature range by Quickstep, which would work well throughout with its heavy texture adding vintage charm and waterproof properties providing much needed practicality – plus being white it would also help bounce light. Everything was coming together. After approving the plans, the next step was to call in the trades, all project managed by the Sherwin Hall team, and to get started on creating our dream kitchen… Look out for the next issue fo Dluxe when we get practical with the project managers! Quickstep White Painted Oak Flooring costs £29.99 per sq/m. Find out more at www.quick-step.co.uk To find out more about Sherwin Hall visit their showroom at Oadby House, The Parade, Oadby or go online at www. sherwinhall.com or call 0116 233 7775

HOT OR NOT? A watched pot never boils. So, stop doing it and install instantaneous hot water into your new kitchen in the form of a boiling water tap from Quooker. You never need to wait for water to boil, just fill your saucepan with boiling water straight from the tap, add your vegetables and simply place the saucepan on the cooker. Making a cup of tea takes only seconds. And what about all those bottles of mineral water that you have to lug around? That becomes a thing of the past when you connect a Quooker CUBE to your Quooker. Because besides cold, hot and boiling water, you can then also dispense cool sparkling and filtered water from your tap. Easy, fast and better for the environment- no more plastic bottles! It started in 1970 with a simple yet revolutionary idea by Henri Peteri, the inventor of the boiling water tap. And his invention is now an indispensable feature of the modern kitchen. A Quooker tap is easy and safe to use and saves you time, water, space on your worktop and energy, as, thanks to the revolutionary technology in the tank, the system is very economical; it can cost just 3p a day to run in standby mode. The system consists of a small tank in the kitchen cupboard that is linked to the boiling water tap on the worktop. The tank acts like a vacuum flask connected to the water mains. The air in the insulated wall is so thin that the heat is unable to escape. It therefore takes very little energy (just 10 watts) to keep the water in the tank at 110°C. The water only starts to boil when the tap is turned on and the temperature of the outflowing water drops to 100°C. While the water is flowing out of the tap, fresh water immediately flows into the tank. Choose between a boiling water only tank and or the Combi model for instant boiling and hot water from a cold feed only. And if you want to add cool filtered and sparkling water the Quooker CUBE is for you. The CUBE features an extra tank, installed beside the boiling water tank in your kitchen cabinet, that contains a Hollow Fibre filter that purifies the water. A CO₂ cylinder attached to the tank gives you 60 litres of chilled sparkling water. Infinitely practical, saves time, reduces plastic waste and gets rid of worktop clutter; what’s not to love? Quooker boiling water taps start from £1150. Speak to the team at Sherwin Hall to find out more. 0116 233 7775

dluxe-magazine.co.uk 37


<<< interiors



John Lewis

Cult Furniture

Chapter Seven

This year, give your home a spring makeover with a little help from Joe & Andy Smith, who head up Leicestershire’s luxury interior design studio, Chapter Seven Design. They have drawn inspiration from some of the biggest trends of 2020 to share their top tips to get the best out of the different spaces in your home. Electric Glamour Make a statement with geometric wallpaper which Joe says is, “Always a popular design choice within your home, as it makes a room stand out and gives it personality”. When choosing geometric wallpaper and contrasting paint colours, Joe recommends matching up with furniture in rich hues and textures, such as velvet, which will complement the wallpaper. She adds, “This styling would look particularly striking in a living or dining room.”

is to introduce it via accessories such as pillows and throws in natural textures and patterns, to help create a feeling of calmness and wellbeing throughout the room.” Make a feature of a particular shelf or corner of the room by adding some greenery with a variety of plants. The nature-inspired, relaxing elements of this trend mean it lends itself nicely to being the theme of a bedroom.

Cult Furniture

Cult Furniture

Biophilia Bring the outside, in with the Biophilia trend, which is all about consciously incorporating nature into your interiors. Andy advises: “A great way to embrace this trend

38 dluxe-magazine.co.uk



fabrics and materials wherever possible. Source locally and try to purchase products that are Fair Trade. Do your research, shop around and experiment with upcycling. You’ll be surprised at what you can do and it’s friendly on the pocket too!” Crittall Doors A trend that started in 2019 and is set to continue into 2020 is Crittall Doors. It’s a particular favourite of the Chapter Seven Design team, as it is an interior feature that can be used both internally and externally. Joe adds, “The main attraction to Crittall Doors is that they let plenty of light into a room, whilst making a strong statement leaning towards an industrial vibe. They are also very versatile, as they can be used as shower doors too.” Herringbone Floors Whilst not necessarily being a specific 2020 trend, Joe & Andy say that, “Herringbone floors will continue to be a big hit throughout 2020. Whether it’s beautiful wooden floors in a hallway or living room, or herringbone tiles in a kitchen or bathroom; it’s the perfect way to make a striking statement in your home.”


Sustainability 2020 is the year of being more self-aware, specifically with the products we buy and use in our homes. A key question to ask yourself when aiming to shop and style your home ethically is, what is it made from? Joe & Andy say, “Stick with recycled or natural

Chapter Seven Design go that extra mile in achieving the best for every client and creating a luxury space where people can live and work. To find out more about how the team can help with your interior design goals, contact Joe & Andy via hello@chaptersevendesign.co.uk. Facebook: chaptersevendesign Instagram: @chaptersevendesign Pinterest: chaptersevendesign

The home of the


New Roman Blinds Collection Our exciting new collection of Roman Blinds opens up a whole world of style choices. All backed by a service weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re pleased to say is second to none; with the highest quality products expertly made to measure and fitted beautifully. So whatever the design, window or room we will do your house proud.


LuxaflexÂŽ Showrooms: Solihull Blinds, Solihull: 0121 733 1001


<<< travel


Our 3 Favourite

Long-Haul City Breaks There’s something particularly exciting about a city break. Head to the airport, hop on a flight and within a few hours you could be tucking into tapas on a cobbled street of Barcelona or taking a gondola ride down Venice’s Grand Canal. But what’s even more exciting is travelling a little further afield. If you love a city break but want to venture beyond Europe, why not consider a long-haul city break for your next trip? There are loads of amazing cities all over the world that make for a great 3-5-day trip. From Brazil to Southeast Asia, read on to discover our three favourite long-haul city breaks, all easily reachable from Birmingham Airport.



Simply one of the best cities in the world, New York is the ideal destination for a long-haul city break. Of course, there’s a plethora of tourist hotspots, from Times Square and Central Park to the Empire State Building and Statue of Liberty, but there’s a lot more to the city. Fantastic shopping, unbeatable nightlife and interesting history and architecture will keep you entertained for days in the Big Apple.

• Admire the sunset at Top of the Rock – From the observatory on top of the Rockefeller Center, you’ll get a cracking view of the Empire State Building, Manhattan and as far as the Brooklyn Bridge and Statue of Liberty. The observatory is on multiple levels, indoor and out: head to the very top, outside, for a front-row spot without any glass or barriers.

Whether you’re visiting to see the iconic attractions, to shop till you drop or to feast on America’s huge portion sizes, you’ll be spoilt for choice. HOW TO GET THERE: Kick off your New York trip from Birmingham Airport with Air France, Aer Lingus, Eurowings, KLM, Lufthansa and Swiss, and enjoy a stop-off in Europe to break up your journey. WHEN TO GO: Christmas in New York is a magical time but if its warmer weather and slightly fewer crowds you’re after, we recommend visiting between April and June or September to November. 40dluxe-magazine.co.uk

• Stroll around Central Park – One of the world’s most renowned green spaces, Central Park comprises 843 acres of rolling meadows, manicured Europeanstyle gardens, a lake and reservoir. Not to mention an outdoor theatre, a memorial to John Lennon, a tempting waterside eatery and a famous Alice in Wonderland statue! If you’re visiting during the summer, pack a picnic and head to Sheep Meadow before visiting Central Park Zoo. • Be mesmerised by Times Square – One of the most iconic locations in the world, Times Square is a constant hub of activity. From some of the best shops and restaurants to the brilliant lights and

sounds, Times Square can’t be missed. Take a Times Square Tour, snap some pics with the lit-up advertising boards and buy some souvenirs from the array of shops.


RIO DE JANEIRO Falling in love with Rio De Janeiro is easy. It’s a vibrant, diverse city, which offers its visitors the hustle and bustle of city life with the surrounding beauty of lush mountains, verdant rainforests and inviting, white sandy beaches. Rio’s residents, known as cariocas, have perfected the art of living well, so it’s no wonder people who live there never leave and people who visit never want to. From stunning coastlines to edgy underground nightlife hangouts, from magnificent monuments to favela societies, the city offers travellers a dynamic, adventurous visit. HOW TO GET THERE: Start your journey at Birmingham Airport with Air France, KLM, Lufthansa and Swiss, and enjoy a stop-off to break up your journey. BEST TIME TO GO: Rio is a year-round destination and you’re guaranteed to have an amazing time whatever month you decide to travel. The warmest months are November to March – perfect for enjoying New Year and Carnival celebrations. 3 UNMISSABLE THINGS TO DO IN RIO DE JANEIRO: • Hit the beach – No trip to Rio is complete without a visit to one of the world’s most famous stretches of sand: Copacabana. Watch the locals play football, catch some rays and kick back with a caipirinha or two. Head to Arpoador Rock, tucked at the end of Ipanema Beach, for a stunning sunset. • Visit the Christ the Redeemer – Probably the most popular tourist attraction in Rio, the Christ the Redeemer

monument is an image recognised all over the world. Take a train, van or hike to the summit of the 700 -metre tall Corcovado Mountain to reach the monument and enjoy exquisite views over the whole city. • Ride the tram in Santa Teresa - Head to Rio’s oldest boho neighbourhood for a different taste of Brazil. Start by snapping a picture on the Escadaria Steps – made famous by Snoop Dog’s “Beautiful” video – then take a wander past the crumbling houses and walls coated in vibrant murals. Browse the shops, eateries and drinking spots before hopping on a tram back downtown.


Arguably the best city break in the whole of Asia, Singapore is worth its considerable flight time. Clean, safe and boasting one of the best transport systems in the world, Singapore has fewer hassles than you might encounter in other Southeast Asian cities. For a tiny island city-state, Singapore packs a mighty punch. Whether you’re an adventure-seeker, urban explorer or proud foodie, this sprawling metropolis has a bit of everything. HOW TO GET THERE: Ready to book your holiday? We offer a range of airlines from Birmingham Airport including Air France, Emirates, KLM, Lufthansa, Qatar Airways, Turkish Airlines and Swiss. BEST TIME TO GO: Singapore – for the most part – is a year-round destination. The months of February to April fall within Singapore’s dry season and experience less rainfall than other times of the year. 3 UNMISSABLE THINGS TO DO IN SINGAPORE: • Eat like a local – The best way to appreciate a country’s culture is by eating the local cuisine. Punchy chilli crab, fragrant chicken rice, nutty satay, sweet and sour rojak, spicy barbecue sambal stingray: Singapore’s hawker food is legendary. • Explore the Gardens - One of the most iconic attractions in the city, the Gardens by the Bay are a Singapore must-see. Encased in two giant greenhouses, here you’ll find some of the most unusual and exotic plants imaginable. Visit at night for hourly twinkly light shows set to music. • Enjoy a gorgeous sunset at Marina Bay – Singapore is famous for its stunning skyline. The Marina Bay Sands Boardwalk gives you an unrestricted view of what can only be described as the best view in the city. Visit at around 6pm so you can do some people watching before seeing the sun go down.

Hopefully we’ve inspired you with our three favourite long-haul city breaks. Discover where else we fly and book your next trip from Birmingham Airport.

dluxe-magazine.co.uk 41



<<< travel

From 3rd June 2020, Aegean Airlines will be flying direct from Birmingham Airport to the Greek capital of Athens – a brand new route for the airport this year.


Aegean Airlines is a member of the Star Alliance group, joining seven star Alliance airlines already operating from Birmingham Airport including; Austrian Airlines, Air India, Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa, SAS, SWISS and Turkish Airlines. During the summer season, Aegean Airlines will operate a twiceweekly service to Athens from Birmingham Airport on both Wednesdays and Saturdays.

BIRMINGHAM AIRPORT ANNOUNCES NEW CHARITY PARTNERSHIP Birmingham Airport, the Midland’s largest airport, is delighted to announce its new three-year corporate charity partnership with charity, Solihull Mind. Solihull Mind provides a wide range of services to those with mental health problems. The charity works across the borough of Solihull and support reaches many areas in close proximity to the airport, including; Balsall Common, Castle Bromwich, Chelmsley Wood, Dorridge, Kinghurst, Knowle, Meriden and Smithswood. Mindful of the large number of people living in communities close to the airport, Birmingham Airport has a long track record of successfully implementing measures to mitigate any negative effects of its operations. An integral part of the airport’s new sustainability strategy is a reaffirmation of its commitment to play an active role in the life of those communities impacted by the airport operations. The decision to support Solihull Mind came directly from Birmingham Airport employees, who were given the opportunity to nominate local charities. All 800 employees had the chance to vote for the new charity partner.


The start of construction on Birmingham Airport’s £30m departure lounge extension has commenced. This is the Airport’s biggest terminal investment in ten years. The project will provide a modern two-storey extension with outdoor terrace area, growing the space by 45 per cent to create more natural light, circulation space, seating and toilets, plus five new catering units and three additional retail outlets. Within the new space an additional 30,000 sq feet of retail, food and beverage area will be created. Five new food and beverage units will 42 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

open allowing Birmingham Airport’s catering offer to expand with the introduction of Asian cuisine, an additional premium bar, additional grab and go food outlets and casual dining brands. The retail units will include additional island unit opportunities centred around gifting and a further speciality/accessory offer whilst also allowing for an improved confectionary, tobacco, news and book store offer. Birmingham Airport recently committed to becoming a net zero carbon airport by the year 2033, some years ahead of the UK’s 2050 target. It is developing a carbon roadmap to outline how this can be achieved over the next 15 years.

The new service improves the choice of connections for passengers travelling to surrounding Greek Islands via Athens, including the likes of Corfu, Mykonos and Rhodes. Connections can also be made to destinations located in the Mediterranean, including Larnaca, a port city located on the south coast of Cyprus and Cairo, Egypt’s bustling capital. Athens, the largest of cities in Greece is packed with layers of ancient Greek history. From views of the Acropolis from almost every part of the city, amongst many other landmarks – centuries if not millennia old, the city boats an abundance of things to see and do. Combined with a contemporary feel with its street art, art shows, architecture and beaches, Athens has something to offer a range of holidaymakers and sightseers. The climate in the summer is hot and dry, reaching highs of over 30 degrees.

JET2.COM AND JET2CITYBREAKS UNWRAPS BIGGEST EVER CHRISTMAS MARKETS PROGRAMME Jet2.com and Jet2CityBreaks has put its eagerlyanticipated programme of Christmas market flights and trips on sale for 2020 from Birmingham Airport, and the festive selection is bigger and more spectacular than ever - with more destinations, more flights and more choice. With European Christmas markets continuing to enjoy enormous popularity, the company has introduced a mini-series of flights and city breaks, as well as a selection of two-night trips, to a festive assortment of winter wonderlands from November until just before Christmas. This includes five brand-new Christmas market destinations in Berlin (mini-series), Copenhagen (mini-series), Cologne (dedicated two-night trip), Nuremberg (dedicated two-night trip) and Strasbourg (dedicated two-night trip), as well as mini-series of flights and breaks to Vienna. This mini-series and programme of two-night trips means that Jet2. com and Jet2CityBreaks will operate 23 dedicated services to these Christmas market destinations between November and Christmas (full programme detailed below). In addition, Jet2.com and Jet2CityBreaks will operate scheduled flights and city breaks to several popular Christmas market destinations from Birmingham Airport during the winter and in the build up to Christmas. With multiple weekly flights on sale to destinations such as Budapest, Barcelona, Prague and Krakow, customers have complete choice and flexibility over how long they spend visiting the most charming Christmas markets in Europe – whether it’s for a weekend, a long weekend or longer.


MELBOURNE SINGAPORE ORLANDO MUMBAI RIO NE W YO R K SHANGHAI J OHA N N E S B U R G AU C K L AN D MANILA From your long-haul airport with one short stop. With excellent transport links and short connections, you can easily afford to fly long-haul from your local airport.


<<< travel


STEP BACK IN TIME: FE A stalwart on the hippy trail back in the swinging Sixties and known as the ‘Paris of the Sahara’ Morocco lies in the northwest of Africa and directly in line with the straits of Gibraltar. It’s a country reaching for the future but steeped in the past. It’s a fascinating juxtaposition that will leave you wanting more, as Kevin Urquhart discovered recently when he visited the ancient city of Fes.

Fes is Morocco’s oldest city. Just two and a half hours flight into Fes Saiss airport with Air Arabia, you could have been transported back two and half thousand years into a biblical setting with tiny, oppressive cobbled streets in a bewildering maze; spluttering street lighting and thousands of anonymous doorways. So atmospheric is it – and, it turns out, culturally significant – that the entire city of Fes has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and much-needed investment is being ploughed into the walled-city to preserve and protect. And as you begin to explore the city, you begin to understand that this investment is destined to give this city its future, by retaining its past. Not for the faint hearted nor the lily-livered jetset wanting a sanitised cocktails and chill holiday, visiting and staying in Fes is an assault on the senses and, to get the very most out of your experience here, we’d urge you to employ the services of a local tour guide. Without them, you simply won’t get the very best out of your time here and will, without question, get lost. So labyrinthine-like is Fes that even Google gave up on trying to geo-map it. It’s very clear, very quickly why this city is of such significance: 44 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

it’s Morocco’s oldest walled town or medina - 1200 years old to be precise. 600,000 people live here and it’s the site of one of the oldest universities in the world – 859AD, founded by Fatima. There are no cars – everything is transported by donkey and cart; no machinery – everything is hand or sometimes, foot crafted and the preferred method of healthcare is traditional herbal remedies and potions sold on stalls within the souk. Our guide tells us that the Medina operates as a co-operative society where money is earned and recycled within its protective walls. Despite popular belief, it’s a matriarchal society where Mama runs the house and the kids, and where the men are sent out to work and provide for the family. It’s a long-held tradition in Fes that the larger the family, the more chance you have of survival, but the lack of support system is painfully evident at times primarily by the large numbers of beggars visible throughout the city. A relatively poor city compared to Marrakech or Rabat (the capital), Fes is home to 272 mosques, numerous palaces and is considered to be ‘living history’. And this is why you must forgive it the occasional stench of urine, the donkey poo on the floor, the unpredictable street lighting and gaping crevices in the

redeveloped as one complex and behind an anonymous wooden door. Each of the former buildings offers a different architectural style and finish, built around an internal courtyard with tinkling fountains, courtyard swimming pool, spa and tropical gardens. This anonymity is a typical feature of Fes and masks, they say, great wealth behind (some of) the closed doors. But in truth, there may be an elite aspect to the city, but for the majority, they are living and working below the breadline. in UK).


pavement. It is an industrious city and one with a good heart. If you are shy, retiring and easy to convince, this isn’t the city for you or at least not as a solo traveller. The persuasion skills of the traders are relentless, but not without humour. Be prepared to barter. That said, we had been told that goods could be bought for 75% less than the opening gambit, but we struggled at 50% as the traders are fiercely proud that everything they sell has been hand-crafted here in Fes. That said, you can bag some bargains as the 13th century Widows Cooperative. Here, over 1365 women – divorcees or bereaved – weave the most magnificent and colourful rugs and Berber carpets, some of which can take years to create. So highly regarded are they that buyers from stores such as Harrods will buy here – at a fraction of the price they then sell them on for (for example, a hand-woven rug may cost the equivalent of £1500 in Fes, but can be retailed at more than £12,500

This Widows Cooperative has UNESCO protection specifically and is a mustsee. Handily, DHL can ship your purchase home for as little as £60. Another must-see is the Tannery. Be sure to accept the sprig of Mint you are offered as you enter, as the smell is heady – and even more so in the summer when temperatures in the Medina can reach more than 40-degrees. This blistering heat is also why the houses in the Medina are so tightly packed – to create natural air-conditioning even in the height of the midday summer sun.

Summing up Fes, it’s a mind-blowing assault on the senses. It is, quite literally, like stepping back into time. It’s maze of fragrant streets with kittens playing in the dirt; the beasts of burden ferrying rugs in and out of the walled Medina and goodnatured haggling. It’s a city so unique that everyone should visit it at least once. We’d recommend it as part of a Moroccan tour encompassing Marrakech and the Atlas Mountains. Read about our trip to Marrakech next edition...

GETTING THERE: We flew with Air

Arabia. Air Arabia operates direct flights to and from London Gatwick to Fes and Marrakech twice weekly, with prices starting from £51 one way. www.airarabia.com/en

Here, you are given a birds’ eye view of how animal skins are prepared and dyed for eventual use in clothing and textiles. You’ll see more than 270 men employed in back-breaking work, transforming the fresh-from-the-slaughterhouse skins into soft, supple and highly coloured leathers ready to be transformed. This truly is a breath-taking experience and one unlike anything you will have seen outside of Fes. As you’d expect, you can buy these leather goods: wallets, purses, bags and clothing here, too.

STAYING THERE: We stayed at Riad Fes in Fes. Room rates start from £150 off peak.www.riadfes.com

Although aspects of Fes can be a little basic it does have its luxury side too. We stayed at Riad Fes, a luxurious retreat in the heart of the Medina. Riad Fes comprises five buildings dating from 1890 but

WHILE IN FES: Check out the stunning five-star Hotel Sahrai with its panoramic views of Fes town and home to the Givenchy spa. Try the Hammam for an exceptional, traditional massage. www.hotelsahrai.com

Air Arabia (PJSC), listed on the Dubai Financial Market, is the Middle East and North Africa’s first and largest low-cost carrier (LCC). Air Arabia commenced operations in October 2003 and operates a fleet of 55 new Airbus A320 and A321 Neo LR aircraft, serving over 170 routes across the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Asia.


<<< dining





Serves: 16, Preparation time: 15 minutes, Cooking time: 25 minutes

Serves: 12, Preparation time: 20 minutes plus 4 hours chilling, Cooking time: 10 minutes

What You Need

What You Need

330ml Arctic Iced Coffee Caramel Latte 150g salted butter 55g soft dark brown sugar 1tbsp golden syrup 250g porridge oats 300g dried dates and apricots, chopped 100g mixed seeds

200g digestive biscuits 70g butter, melted 150g soft brown sugar 150g salted butter 397g can condensed milk 2 bananas, just ripe 150ml Arctic Iced Coffee Latte 400ml Double cream 1 flake chocolate bar

What You Do Pre heat the oven to 180C/160C fan. Line a baking dish, approx. 25cm x 20cm with greaseproof paper. In a saucepan bring the Arctic Iced Coffee to the boil and reduce by half the volume. Turn down the heat and add the butter, sugar and syrup to the pan. Stir until the butter and sugar are melted and all is combined. In a bowl, mix the oats, fruit and seeds then stir in the coffee mixture. Tip into the prepared baking dish and cook for 25 minutes until firm and golden. Leave to cool in the dish then refrigerate. Cut into 16 bars. As an extra treat dip one side of the bar into melted chocolate. 46 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

What to do: Put the digestives in the food processor and whizz to crumbs. Pour in the melted butter and blend until combined Tip the crumbs into a 24cm loose bottomed tart tin or spring form tin and press down with the back of a spoon to make a firm, even base. Refrigerate while you make the filling. In a saucepan melt together the butter and sugar, stirring so that they combine as they melt. Make sure the sugar is completely dissolved. Add the condensed milk and bring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook whilst stirring for a few minutes until the colour darkens slightly then remove from the heat.

Pour the caramel over the cooled biscuit base and return to the fridge. Leave to chill completely for at least 4 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, take the pie out of its tin and slide onto a serving plate. Whip the cream to firm peaks then slowly add the Arctic Iced Coffee as you continue to whisk, bringing it back to peaks after each addition. Slice the bananas and layer them over the caramel. Spoon the coffee cream over the top and sprinkle with chocolate flake.


Thai restaurant Giggling Squid have launched in Leicester, bringing its bold and exotic flavours to the city. The Thai restaurant chain promises to be an exciting addition to the vibrant St Martin’s Square area. We caught up with co-founder Pranee Laurillard to hear more about the restaurant that’s causing a stir in the city.

What attracted you to Leicester? With its great food scene and vibrant culture Leicester is exactly the type of place we want in our Giggling Squid family. It took a while to find the right site but we’re so thrilled to be in St Martin’s Square, with fantastic neighbours in what feels like a really special area. Our opening has far exceeded expectations and I’ve been

How did Giggling Squid come about? I actually worked in advertising back in Thailand but when I first came to the UK to study, I worked as a waitress in Brighton. I loved the fast pace, energy and getting to know guests by name. I had a hunger for running my own restaurant and saw there was a gap in TO NDS the market for a Thai restaurant that POU ID. D U E had that buzz of Thai mealtimes. I was thrilled G SQ NDR N I U L H keen to introduce the concept of Thai to see the GIGG XEONE U T L A ND W.D tapas which was against the norm back positive SPE K TO WW VISIT INE.CO.U then and broke away from the more response to Z W A HO traditional Thai offerings. Tapas is perfect our arrival. MAG OUT FIND for capturing that essential Thai mealtime experience with lots of dishes to be shared Can you tell us and enjoyed with friends or family in a what inspired you relaxed setting. It was also important for when creating the dishes on the menu? me to focus on beautiful décor – to create a My mum and the travels we made together place where customers could delight in the in Thailand when I was growing up. Some surroundings as well as the food. dishes are inspired by coastal towns and others from the vibrant night markets. We What’s your best career achievement so are always evolving and excited by new far? ingredients; I’m always learning and go Building Giggling Squid into what it’s back to Thailand every year to continue to become. We now have a few more be inspired. restaurants under our belt – Leicester is number 35 - but the important stuff hasn’t If you could travel to cook in any country changed since we started back at our for a year, where would it be? Brighton restaurant in 2002. We’re still as I would choose somewhere less familiar hungry as ever to give our guests a truly than Asia. I would love to travel and learn to memorable experience, leaving satisfied, cook in either Italy or France. They have all happy and wanting to return. the right qualities: a passion for good food,


great weather to bring exceptional flavours out of ingredients and an abundance of varieties of regional food.

What’s your favourite cookery book? I admit I’m someone who likes buying and collecting cookery books but shamefully rarely puts them to use! I love seafood so the one that jumps out of the crowd is Rick Stein’s seafood. If you had to cook one dish, what would it be & why? Sticky five spice pork belly. It is a reminder of my childhood home and my kids also love it. So, it is a win-win dish, no one ever moans. What’s your best food memory? It has to be one of the many trips in Thailand. One time, before getting a ferry to Koh Chang, we had the most unforgettable lunch. I had steamed fresh crabs where the meat was so naturally sweet from the freshness. We ended with sticky rice which was perfectly cooked in coconut milk with perfectly ripe mango soft, creamy and sweet. I really wish I could have it right now! Apart from Giggling Squid – what’s your favourite restaurant? In the UK, it’s a tiny fish restaurant in Cornwall called ‘Prawns on the Lawn’. It is very laid back and casual, the food is fresh from the Cornish sea and creatively cooked. The menu features small plates so you can order a bunch of dishes and mix and match and share. Exactly how I love to eat. What’s next for Giggling Squid? We’ve got some other exciting openings happening this year, but my goal has always been to make brilliant restaurants that make guests happy. Do that, and the rest will follow! Giggling Quid is at 5 St Martin's Square, Leicester LE1 5DF. Tel. 0116 251 9999 www.gigglingsquid.com dluxe-magazine.co.uk 47


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We do seem to be living in hyperreactive times now and people feel more ready to be offended than before. As an audience member myself, I don’t have that need to agree with everything the comic is saying.


48 dluxe-magazine.co.uk


On his last nationwide tour, the monstrously successful Irrational, Romesh Ranganathan was pondering whether he has an irrational viewpoint on the world or whether that can be attributed to absolutely everyone else. This time around, he’s putting together The Cynic’s Mixtape in which he offers perspectives on the world that are partly incredulous and wholly hilarious writes Brian Donaldson. “I enjoy puncturing the common point of view,” admits Romesh. “Sometimes I agree with it but often the common acceptance of certain things is based on facts that I find irritating, so I undermine that and deliberately say things, not to simply be provocative but because I like the reaction to them.” As well as taking his views on tour, Romesh’s recent TV credits include a second series of his Sky One sitcom, The Reluctant Landlord, presenting duties on The Ranganation, Judge Romesh, and The Misadventures Of Romesh Ranganathan. Away from the small screen, you can read his memoir, Straight Outta Crawley, or hear his award-winning podcast, Hip Hop Saved My Life, in which his most recent batch of guests have included rapper Kano, singer-songwriter Michael Kiwanuka and documentary-maker Louis Theroux. And now, the man who was also recently voted by The Guardian as the 17th best comedian of the 21st century, is out and about across the UK with his barnstorming new live show which he explains is divided into two distinct parts. “The first is looking at different issues such as the environment, a bit about the Liam Neeson thing, and how people respond on social media to the deaths of celebrities which is something I find quite weird. I remember sitting with a friend when Whitney Houston died and he was agonising about what he was going to post online. I said, ‘you don’t have to worry about that, it’s not your business; the world is not waiting to hear what you’re going to say.’ People end up making these events about themselves.” In part two of The Cynic’s Mixtape, Romesh zeroes in on more personal material, focussing on the relationship he has with his wife and their three children, and fretting about his own existence. Which sounds heavier than it actually is. “I got a medical when I turned 40 as I started to worry about my own mortality not for myself but in terms of my kids. Before, when I was going to the gym or staying on top of fitness, I’d do it for some sort of vanity reason; I’ve long since abandoned that and have accepted that I’m never going to look good. So the second half is about my reaction to that medical. My wife and I are very happily married but we’ve got to that point where we’re set in our ways a bit. That’s the nub of it.” Romesh acknowledges that we live in interesting but testing times, with the terrain of stand-up comedy one where every utterance a comedian makes comes under extra scrutiny. “I don’t feel the need to agree with the person I’m watching to enjoy what they’re doing. In his last Netflix special, Dave Chappelle said a lot of stuff that I don’t agree with but it doesn’t stop me laughing about it. Similarly, I’m a massive fan of Bill Burr and in his most recent show he’s pretty full on about feminism and how male feminism isn’t a thing. I follow the logic of what he’s saying and I do find it funny while not necessarily agreeing with him. We do seem to be living in hyper-reactive times now and people feel more ready to be offended than before. As an audience member myself, I don’t have that need to agree with everything the comic is saying.” Romesh works from the standpoint that there will always be someone who doesn’t agree with what he’s trying to say in his comedy, but as long as he has worked hard on the material, can justify it from every angle and gets the big laughs, he knows he’s on the right road. “When I start performing material for the first time, that’s when I might offend people or push it too far, because I perhaps haven’t expressed what is definitely a good idea elegantly enough. So you play with it, and when the laugh for something is big enough you know that you’ve found an acceptable line through that way of thinking. But I never write something and think I can’t do that because I don’t want to get into trouble for it; I tend to just write what I think. I am guided by the laughs.” As he takes his Cynic’s Mixtape around the country, those resounding laughs are following him wherever he goes. At time of going to print, all dates have now sold out. visit www.romeshranganathan.co.uk for details of upcoming shows. dluxe-magazine.co.uk 49


<<< the diary

] inhabit this divided wasteland that some of us call the United Kingdom.

brand new show - Ian Waite and Vincent Simone….ACT TWO, after the roaring success of their five star rated 2019 tour!

What’s Love Got To Do With It 11th April at Loughborough Town Hall

Tina Turner fans should get ready to party as the smash hit touring show What’s Love Got To Do With It? is heading out on the second year of its massive UK tour.

Ruthie Henshall: In My Life 12th – 14th April at Curve

Ben Hart: Wonder

29th March at Curve

Expect his most mindblowing and exciting magic in a show that shines a light on magic, life, the universe and the darkest corners of your imaginations. With the simplest of props, using the objects and minds of the audience, Ben Hart conjures an altogether new kind of magic.

Sam Fender

30th March at De Montfort Hall

Sam Fender celebrates his debut album hitting number one with news of a new headline tour in Spring 2020.

Northern Ballet: Cinderella 31st March – 4th April at Curve

5th April at De Montfort Hall

It has been a while, but the multi-award-winning Welsh comedian is back, with a brand new live show. In a seven-year break from standup, a lot has happened to Rhod. Almost all of it s**t. And just when he thought he’d hit rock bottom, he met a bloke... called John.

The Habit of Bit

6th – 11th April at Curve

Exploring friendship, rivalry and heartache this play is about a fictional meeting between two of the 20th century’s most remarkable artists, poet W. H, Auden and composer Benjamin Britten. Starring Matthew Kelly and David Yelland, this multilayered masterpiece examines the joy, pain and emotional cost of creativity.

Escape into an enchanting winter wonderland with Northern Ballet’s beautiful reimagining of Cinderella.

Magic of Motown

2nd April at De Montfort Hall

Music fans are invited to the biggest party of the year as the unstoppable Magic of Motown show steams into town!

Rhod Gilbert 50 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

Russell Watson

8th April at De Montfort Hall

Singing sensation Russell Watson performs an intimate concert of career highlights. Russell will be joined on stage by his live band and choir to celebrate 20 years since his debut album The Voice was released.

Russell Howard

10th & 11th at De Montfort Hall

Following the critically acclaimed sold out arena leg of his tour, Respite, Russell Howard returns with his biggest globe-spanning standup tour to date. Riding high on the success of his Sky One show, The Russell Howard Hour, and his global smash Netflix special, Recalibrate, Russell is back on stage where he belongs, making sense of a world that’s spinning out of control.

Mark Thomas: 50 Things About Us

The Simon and Garfunkel Story

15th April at Loughborough Town Hall Direct from a week-long run in London’s West End at the Vaudeville Theatre, a SOLD OUT worldwide tour and standing ovations at every performance, The Simon & Garfunkel Story is back!

Oi Frog and Friends!

8th April at The Y Theatre

In his new show 50 Things About Us Mark Thomas combines his trademark mix of storytelling, standup, mischief and really, really well researched material to examine how we have come to

Ruthie Henshall is back in the UK with a new intimate show, In My Life. In My Life premiered at the Sydney Opera House in June and went on to tour Australia playing to packed houses and a slew of five-star, rave reviews.

Ian Waite and Vincent Simone 10th April at Loughborough Town Hall

The Ballroom Boys double act Ian Waite and Vincent Simone are set to return in 2020 with a

15th – 19th April at Curve

Join FROG, CAT and DOG in this new action-packed stage adaptation of Kes Gray and Jim Field’s bestselling books. Expect songs, puppets, laughs and more rhymes than you can shake a chime at.

beverages not included) in his new stand-up tour.

Leicester Vegan Festival 18th April at Athena

80+ fantastic stalls, world food caterers, exciting cookery demos, inspirational talks, interactive workshops, yoga


23rd April at De Montfort Hall Having built a deserved reputation as one of Britain’s best live bands, these theatre shows are a rare opportunity to see Elbow in more intimate

can shake a chime at.

Chris Ramsey

16th April at Loughborough Town Hall

Critically acclaimed comedian Chris Ramsey is hitting the road for his biggest ever

and more!

Sister Act

to enjoy !

21st April – 2nd May at Curve

Now set in 2020, this sparkling tribute to the universal power of friendship, sisterhood and music tells the hilarious story of the disco diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a murder. Under protective custody she is hidden in the one place she won’t be found – a convent!

Iain Stirling

22nd April at Loughborough Town Hall stand-up tour in 2020.

Jack Dee: Off The Telly

17th April at De Montfort Hall Join Jack Dee for an evening of entertainment (food and

Iain Stirling (Love Island and Taskmaster) is taking his ‘extremely funny’ (Telegraph) comedy back on the road for his biggest ever nationwide tour, following his 2018 sellout smash U OK HUN? x.


Maggie May

David Baddiel

24th April at De Montfort Hall

28th April – 2nd May at Curve

Following his five-star Oliviernominated hit My Family: Not The Sitcom and the return to number one of his seminal football anthem, Three Lions, David Baddiel comes back to the stage with a brand new one-man show, Trolls: Not The Dolls.

An extraordinary play about an ordinary Leeds family, balancing the challenges of daily life whilst living with dementia. A heartfelt story of hope by award winning playwright Frances Poet, Maggie May is an inspiring new play with love, laughter and music.

Leicester Wine & Spirit Festival

Dial M For Murder

25th April at Mercure Leicester The Grand Hotel

From the people who brought you Leicester Dram Fest, the first Wine & Spirit festival will have something for everyone


4th – 9th May at Curve

Tony Wendice is a jaded ex-professional tennis player who has given it all up for his wife Margot. But Tony’s mind soon turns to revenge as he discovers his wife has been

26 – 30 MAY






DLuxe Advert_01.indd 2



09/03/2020 10:59


<<< the diary

] unfaithful. Aiming to commit ‘the perfect crime’ Tony becomes tangled in the web of his own making.

the 21st century and will completely immerse you in the extraordinary and elemental power of its music and dance. Now, 25 years on, both new and devoted fans of all ages will once again fall in love with the magic of Riverdance – the original, the best.

photo by David Angel

In Conversation with The Sopranos

What’s On at Loughborough Town Hall

23rd May at De Montfort Hall

The Spring season is truly upon us as Loughborough Town Hall hosts another packed programme of shows and performances from the world of entertainment and theatre. The season is packed with some of the hottest comedy talent around, kicking off with multi-award winning comedian Russell Kane for what will be a phenomenal third visit as part of his current national tour. Packing more energy than a Duracell factory, Russell’s RS Turbo laugh engine will motor through love, family and life - once again proving that the fast and the curious amongst us, see more stuff, and get more done.

Joel Dommett

6th May at Loughborough Town Hall

Join Joel as he brings you bang up to date on his life since his last live show!

Further into the season, they are joined by Rich Hall, whose comedy/music locomotive keeps on rollin’. Ever-evolving, ever-changing, Rich’s combination of keen acerbic stand-up combined with spit and sawdust alt-country lyricism is a win-win when the show rolls into Loughborough in June. Live music takes its place within the programme too, as Town Hall launches the ultimate 80s throwback experience! Expect big hair and even bigger tunes as they present an evening full of classic 80s feel-good, sing-a-long anthems, including live performances from 80s Mixtape, featuring the powerhouse vocals of Laura Broad (Britain’s Got Talent Semi Finalist) and three of the UK’s finest musicians! The Big 80s Night Out will have you dancing all night long! Further into the season, audiences are sure to be thoroughly entertained by Folk sensation Kate Rusby, as she presents a wide range of much-loved classics from her back catalogue stretching over her two decades of music making together with a selection of fresh new songs from her new album. There’s plenty for our younger patrons to enjoy too throughout the season too, as Peppa Pig’s Best Day Ever gets everybody ready for a road-trip full of fun adventures, from castles to caves, dragons to dinosaurs and ice-creams to muddy puddles! Prepare for the brand new Peppa Pig live show packed full of songs, games and laughter!

Room on the Broom

26th – 31st May at Curve

Jump on board the broom with the witch and her cat in Tall Stories’ fun-filled adaptation of Room on the Broom, the best-selling picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

Clive Anderson: Me, Macbeth and I

8th May at De Montfort Hall

The host of Whose Line is it Anyway, Loose Ends and Talks Back takes to the road with this much-anticipated first ever solo tour, in a one-man show guaranteed to be funnier than Shakespeare’s greatest tragedy.

Lost in Music: One Night at The Disco

And for fans of Strictly Come Dancing, Town Hall welcomes previous professional dancers from the hit BBC show Ian Waite and Vincent Simone in their brand new tour The Ballroom Boys – Act 2. With beautiful costumes, gorgeous lighting and world class routines including the Viennese Waltz, the Foxtrot, the Rhumba and of course…there has to be another incredible Argentine Tango routine by the master!


Tickets for these shows and many others throughout the season can be purchased through the Box Office on 01509 231914 or online by visiting www.loughboroughtownhall.co.uk

The 25th Anniversary show catapults Riverdance into

52 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

For the first time in the United Kingdom, Steven Schirripa (Bobby ‘Bacala’), Michael Imperioli (Christopher Moltisanti), and Vincent Pastore (‘Big Pussy’ Bonpensiero) will take us behind the scenes of the legendary show - the laughs, the dramas– not to mention the countless theories about the show’s controversial finale.

5th June at De Montfort Hall

19th – 21st May at De Montfort Hall

This show boasts a sensational live band, incredibly talented cast and stunning vocals and is sure to have you dancing in the aisles! So, come dressed to impress as we celebrate the golden age of Disco!


Sometimes, a story feels like it belongs to one person, who lets us in on it. But sometimes, a story is a shared thing – passed on, transformed, evolving. Always growing, and finding new shoots, new roots. So it’s proved with A Monster Calls which comes to Curve, Leicester from 26 – 30 May. Patrick Ness’s young adult book was published in 2011, with illustrations by Jim Kay; Ness won the prestigious Carnegie medal, and Kay won the Greenaway award. It was made into a movie starring Liam Neeson in 2017, and then adapted for the stage by Sally Cookson at the Old Vic in London in 2018. Now, that production is being revived for a country-wide tour, with an all-new cast. A Monster Calls is about Conor, a 13-year-old boy who knows his mother is seriously ill – and whose fear grows when no-one will really talk to him about it. Then late one night, a monster pays him a visit: the enormous, ancient yew tree in his garden comes ferociously to life, and begins to tell Conor a series of harsh fables, that ultimately help him face the truth of his situation.

As a meditation on our fear of loss, our inability to discuss death, and on the power of storytelling to help us make sense of the world, Ness’s book struck an almighty chord. But A Monster Calls really starts before even Ness: he inherited Conor from fellow YA author, Siobhan Dowd, who had outlined the plot to her agent – but died of breast cancer before she was able to write it. “Siobhan wrote all her books knowing that her breast cancer was terminal; this was going to be her next book, but she passed away sooner than expected,” recalls Ness. “My editor, Denise Johnstone-Burt, didn’t want the idea to disappear.” Still, when she approached Ness, his initial reaction was to say no. He didn’t want to write a memorial, an earnest tribute. But then a central image of the book – the moment when Conor comes out of a dream to discover he’s smashed up his grandmother’s living room – came to Ness, fully-formed. That image “felt really right”, he recalls: “it had everything this story needs at its heart: the anger, the frustration, the transgression. I said ok: I’ll do this if I can do exactly what [Dowd] would have done, which is let the story grow

wild, and see where it goes. And they said yes!” For Ness, it was as if Dowd had passed a baton to him so it’s unsurprising that Ness was so willing to pass the baton again, to Cookson. He was a fan of her theatre work, which often takes a resourceful, highly imaginative devised approach to adapting literary works, having seen her productions of Peter Pan and Jane Eyre. Cookson had quite the personal journey with the book herself. A friend recommended it, and she’d devoured it over a weekend. “I instantly knew that I wanted to turn it into a piece theatre,” she says. “It packs such an emotional punch. It’s a story that celebrates stories, but it also gets under the skin of what we do as a society when it comes to talking about important stuff – which is close up. And it’s also such a beautiful, fantastical, magical story as well, it’s got all the elements I love.” So she was heartbroken to discover that the theatre rights were not available and continued to carry her copy of Ness’s book around with her. About a year and a half later, Matthew Warchus – artistic

director of the Old Vic – invited her in to discuss making a show. He showed her a list of potential books to adapt – and top was A Monster Calls. Not that it is an entirely obvious choice for the stage – one of the main characters is a monstrous walking yew tree, after all. But that’s just the sort of challenge that appeals to Cookson. “I like a book that’s got a hundred challenges,” she admits. The material has proved powerfully intense on stage; the show is a tear-jerker, but it’s never sentimental, rather unleashing the same sort of elemental emotions as the book. “I think it was cathartic for the audience, watching this story all together,” says Cookson. “We realised that the audience didn’t want to leave the auditorium straight after, and so we kept the house open.” says Cookson. “And we’ll do that on tour as well, so people can just collect their thoughts or discuss it with the people they’ve come with, or with people they don’t know. That happened every night of the run – and it was a very special thing.” Book tickets at www.curveonline.co.uk dluxe-magazine.co.uk 53


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Delivering an extraordinarily vivid window on the natural world, the BBCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Planet Earth II series held audiences captivated with itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s about to arrive in Birmingham giving audience members the chance to Experience sensational footage from the BAFTA and ultra high-definition on a gigantic LED screen, as the City Of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Matthew Freeman, Hans Zimmer, Jacob Shea & Jasha Klebe. Neil Barston talked to host Liz Bonin to find out more. 54 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

The scale of its creative ambitions made major headlines, using innovative camerawork to capture everything from tracking lions hunting in Namibia, primates navigating the jungles of Madagascar, through to the dramatic trials of a baby marine iguana racing for its life. Set a decade on from the initial series, the award-winning programme casts a memorable spotlight on just how fragile our remarkable global ecosystems are. Its core narrative of valuing and sensing the urgency for protecting our environment served as a key companion to the equally compelling Blue Planet II, which laid bare the plight of our world’s oceans. Such was the impact on consumers’ level of awareness, it led directly to major shifts in global corporate and government environmental policies. Following in the show’s footsteps, Planet Earth II is set for a similarly grand live UK arena tour featuring a 4K LED screen supported with music by Hans Zimmer performed by the City of Prague Philharmonic orchestra. As the event’s host Liz Bonnin, who has presented primetime BBC series including Horizon, as well as the Blue Planet Live, explains, it’s a hugely emotive venture. “It hasn’t really quite sunk in that I’ll be involved with this, so to be stepping out as part of the tour for this and getting to see it all on a gigantic screen with a full orchestra playing as well - I think I’ll be quite emotional,” she remarks of the project. “I believe it’s going to have quite an impact, and it will be a great medium for both entertaining and educating people about the issues that it addresses.


its visually breath-taking insights and now EMMY® award winning BBC series in 4K play the remarkable music by Oscar winner

“People are much more aware of what is happening to our planet now – which we’ve seen through young people fighting for their future,” adds the presenter. She has not been afraid to tackle difficult issues, such as with her recent Drowning In Plastic screen series. As Liz reveals, there has been an incredible amount of work placed into bringing audiences closer to the natural world than has ever before with Planet Earth II. Its finely realised storytelling has been particularly highly praised, leading to the programme winning several BAFTA awards, as well as gaining Emmy honours. “It was just a game-changing series with some iconic moments that stay with you,

W pai have e to grs of ttwo ive icke For aw ts win you ay. visi r ch ma t w an gaz ww ce t like when ine .dlu o .co you see Goo .uk xecreatures like dL uck the marine ! iguana which was incredible, so getting to see them on the on the big screen is going to be an amazing experience,” adds Liz of the upcoming tour, which showcases the key highlights from the series.

The 43-year old presenter, who has a master’s degree in animal biology, admits she has enjoyed a very fortunate career with opportunities to travel the world and test her skills and knowledge to their fullest extent. As far as Planet Earth II is concerned, she says one of its magic ingredients is the narration by Sir David Attenborough, whom she praises for continuing to lead the way for nature documentaries into his 90s. “I’ve met Sir David on a few occasions now, and I will never forget the first time I saw him about 12 years ago when he was talking at an event – I was a bit star struck, but it was great to go on to discuss some of those programmes like Blue Planet with him. “He was my hero when I was growing up. He went from production work into inventing natural history programming with the BBC. There really is nobody else like him and I doubt there ever will be again. He’s not just a national treasure, but one for the whole world.” As for her own early experiences, she says that she was fortunate to grow up with her sister in rural French surroundings near Nice, which proved influential in forging her love of the natural world. Having the chance to communicate her clear passion for nature through her work is something that she finds especially rewarding. However, Liz is under no illusion of the major challenges facing our environment, which she believes series such as Planet Earth, and Sir David’s latest BBC series, Seven Worlds, One Planet can have a dramatic influence on how we treat our environment. Liz adds: “We are facing an existential crisis in terms of the effects that human behaviour is having on the planet. We have reached a tipping point in terms our impact, and one of the things that I am most astounded in relation to this is by the fact that petrochemical companies are just seemingly carrying on as if it is business as usual. “I believe we can make a difference, but we need to be aware of the facts of what is happening to our planet, and how we can change. I think series like Planet Earth can both move and inspire people.” Planet Earth II Live will be at Resort World Arena, Birmingham on the 3rd April. For tickets and to find out more visit www.planetearth2live.uk dluxe-magazine.co.uk 55


<<< hi! society


After a bumper season of events and openings in

Kwoklyn Wan Book Launch at Oadby House

Sid Sottung Barber Shop Launch

Sid Sottung Barber Shop Launch

Giggling Squid Launch The Birmingham Awards

Novotel Adagio Launch

Kwoklyn Wan Book Launch at Oadby House

Sid Sottung Barber Shop Launch

Moet & Chandon Summer Party Giggling Squid Launch

Novotel Adagio Launch

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Giggling Squid Launch

Leicestershire, have you been caught on camera?

Novotel Adagio Launch

Sid Sottung Barber Shop Launch

Giggling Squid Launch

Sid Sottung Barber Shop Launch

Giggling Squid Launch

Novotel Adagio Launch

Kwoklyn Wan Book Launch at Oadby House

Sid Sottung Barber Shop Launch

Kwoklyn Wan Book Launch at Oadby House Photography by Matt Glover, Sarah Carter Photography and venues own.

Giggling Squid Launch

Novotel Adagio Launch

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Written in the Stars with CELEBRITY Astrologer Russell Grant To find out more or to arrange a personal reading, visit www.russellgrant.com ARIES (March21st-April20th) Flattery will get you nowhere as March gets off the starting blocks. When talking with an employer or other professionals, it’s best to be honest, even if it means challenging their ideas. You’ll get a chance to study a fascinating subject as March makes way for April. Sign up quickly and make sure of your place as spaces will soon be filled. You should be feeling very pleased with yourself if you are given a greater measure of responsibility at work near the 5th April, as well as an increase in pay. The Full Moon on the 8th May marks a passionate turning point in a romance. If you’re single, you’ll be drawn like a magnet to a mysterious, but attractive newcomer and you’ll certainly enjoy the thrill of the chase. TAURUS (April21st-May21st) Don’t make an enemy out of a respected expert on the 3rd March; it’s important to stay in this professional’s good books. It may be necessary to issue an apology when you realise you made an embarrassing mistake. The start of April presents you with a potential packed opportunity to ask for a pay rise or renegotiate a contract. Use your powers of persuasion to strike a better deal. Your innovative and inventive ideas will set you apart from the crowd as May gets up and running making this a great time to launch a sales pitch or business presentation or even ask for a date. On the 7th, the Full Moon marks an exciting turning point in a close relationship. A friendship could turn to romance or you could get engaged or married. GEMINI (May22nd-June21st) It will be necessary to cancel a trip or make alternative travel arrangements on the 4th March; try to be flexible. The 8th is ideal for showcasing your creative work. Your grace, charm and wit attract admirers wherever you go on the 3rd April: this is a wonderful time to enjoy get togethers, celebrations and gatherings of all kinds. If you’re single, you’ll have your choice of suitors. There are people around you who would be more than happy to steal your thunder at the start of May so keep a creative project under wrap. Be realistic about your career goals on the 4th. If you need additional training to pave the way to future success, sign up for a course. The Full Moon on the 7th could find you recovering from a stubborn health issue. CANCER (June22nd-July23rd) Don’t let a morose friend or romantic partner steal your sunshine on the 3rd March. By maintaining a positive attitude, you’ll attract some lucky opportunities. A romantic encounter on the 4th April will make you feel like you’re walking on air. If you’re single, you’ll meet someone special in a cultivated, cultured setting. The Full Moon on the 7th May could bring news of an engagement, marriage or pregnancy. You’ll enjoy celebrating this happy event with your nearest and dearest. The 9th is perfect for a romantic interlude; you’ll have a wonderful time sharing your days and dreams with those you love most in the world. Are you single? A friendship could turn into a passion packed partnership with next to no encouragement.

LEO (July24th-August23rd) You’ll have to rethink the terms of a partnership on the 4th March; be as flexible as possible. This relationship is worth preserving. A n intriguing opportunity will come your way on the 5th; you’re the perfect person for this energising new role. A health regimen that’s begun on the 5th April will have a transforming effect on your lifestyle and you will be delighted by the results. Don’t let a loved one talk you out of accepting an exceptional new opportunity. Offering something fresh and new will see your star rising as May gives you the impetus to make a positive impression on the world around you. Don’t yield to pressure to take the conventional path when a more adventurous approach will be better for you. VIRGO (August24th-September23rd) An old health issue could flare up at the start of March; don’t put medical matters on a back burner. Getting a professional opinion will be helpful. Your charm and intelligence will be obvious to everyone on the 3rd April; you’ll be a big hit at any gathering or get together. A career success could be yours on the 4th, when you’re offered a dream job thanks to your exceptional skills. Your specialised knowledge paves the way for a very welcome opportunity as May gets underway. You’ll enjoy working with students who are eager to learn from you. Professional or outside obligations may impact on your personal life around the 4th; it may be necessary to cancel a dinner engagement for the sake of making progress with a particular project.

CAPRICORN (Dec 22nd-January20th) Don’t be too hard on a relative at the start of March; just because you don’t agree with their choices doesn’t mean you should criticise them. A careful use of resources at the start of April could help you land a plum position. People trust you to produce magnificent results on a shoestring budget. The Full Moon on the 7th May marks the successful conclusion of a group effort. Not only will you be happy with the fruits of your labour, but you’ll also stay friends with the people you’ve met. Your charisma will be at an all-time high on the 9th making this a promising patch to plan a romantic break away together. If you’re single, you’ll meet someone special at a place that’s famous for its natural beauty.

LIBRA (September24th-October23rd) Don’t let friends or family intimidate your romantic partner on the 3rd March; it’s important to side with your lover. It will be necessary to rethink a creative project on the 4th; try not to grumble too much. Why not take yourself off on a pleasure trip at the start of April? It would be a wonderful time to visit a country whose history and culture has always fascinated you. If you’re single, you could meet someone special while you’re on your travels. Don’t pretend to know more than you on the 4th May or you could find yourself in an embarrassing situation at the start of May. The Full Moon on the 7th could bring a bonus or pay out of some kind; use this money to buy something special for yourself or your loved ones.

AQUARIUS (January21st-February19th) It will be difficult to get your message across on the 4th March; wait until the middle of the month to make an important request or presentation. Your love life will sizzle ad scintillate as March makes way for April; if you’re single, you’ll have your choice of would be wooers. If you’re in a relationship, splash out on a lavish gift for your lover. Hosting a party filled with unusual guests will be lots of fun on the 1st May. You’ll enjoy lively conversations that you’ll be remembering for days afterwards. Be realistic about your financial situation on the 4th; this will not be a good time to buy any big-ticket purchases, especially if you won’t be able to take them back for a refund. On the 7th, the Full Moon marks a career achievement.

SCORPIO (October24th-November22nd) You’ll be prompted to change the way you deal with a stubborn relative as March gets underway; old ways and means simply aren’t working any longer. Love is in the air on the 5th; this is a great time to find a partner or enjoy a rendezvous with your amour. If you need it a kindhearted, generous relative will give you the money for a down payment on a home and you could find a distinctive property on the 3rd April. Alternatively, you may get excellent terms on a bank loan. The 11th May prompts you to reconsider some beliefs that were imposed on you as a child. Feel free to adopt a philosophy that is a true reflection of your values, even at the risk of upsetting your family. .

PISCES (February20th-March20th) Avoid spending money on status symbols at the start of March; they really won’t bring much pleasure. Your personal power will be at an all-time high on the 8th so take this opportunity to ask for favours. Your home life will be rich and rewarding at the start of April. This would be a good time to do some redecorating and refurbishing. Signing a contract on the 15th May could pave the way to long-term financial security. If you want to sell or buy property, the days surrounding the 22nd are ideal for swinging into action or signing on the dotted line. You could find a beautifully secluded property in just the sort of neighbourhood you’re looking for. Best of all, you will be able to negotiate a good price for this home as the month of May draws to a close.

To find out more or to arrange a personal reading, visit www.russellgrant.com 58 dluxe-magazine.co.uk

SAGITTARIUS (November23rdDecember21st) Avoid social media like the plague at the start of March; it’s easy to make sarcastic jokes that you will come to regret in times to come. Spending time with family will be deeply satisfying on the 8th March. Could falling in love be a distinct possibility in early April as you cross paths with a witty charmer? If you’re already in a relationship, arrange a romantic evening for two somewhere where you can talk freely. The Full Moon on the 7th May puts an end to a period of obscurity. You’ll welcome turning your back on the days when you might have gone through life unnoticed and walking into the limelight. A new job or different role on the 10th looks likely to increase your income; it will be nice having the money to travel and study or simply enjoy yourself.

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Dluxe Leicestershire Spring 2020 Issue 40