All posts tagged: luxury hotel

Staying at The Residence, Zanzibar

After an incredible stay at Chyulu Hills in Kenya for my 30th birthday (you can catch up here about the hotel and here about the safari it you haven’t read them yet), we spent the second half of the holiday on the island of Zanzibar. I’ve always been fascinated by it as a destination, ever since I was a child. The name conjures up so many magical and fantastical images, with photos of calming turquoise waters and vibrant colours of the spice markets helping to reinforce this dream-like place. And hey, it was even referenced in a Tenacious D song (if you know, you know). So I was so excited to finally get to spend some time there. We took our tiny safari link plane from Chyulu Hills back to Nairobi, and from there we caught a slightly bigger plane which took about an hour and a half direct to Zanzibar. One of the many perks of booking with Turquoise Holidays is that we were met off the plane at the tarmac and escorted to …

Staying at Ol Donyo Lodge, Kenya

I really don’t know where to begin with writing about my 30th birthday. It was just one of the best couple of weeks of my life and I’m not sure how our holidays will be able to top it! We booked a trip to Kenya and Zanzibar with Turquoise Holidays (this is our fourth trip with them following the Maldives for our Honeymoon, St Lucia for Tim’s 30th and Jamaica for our anniversary, and they’re always fantastic!). And after plenty of planning, visas, jabs and tablets, we were ready and raring to go! We flew with Qatar airways – our first experience of flying with them and we were very impressed – comfy seats, good entertainment selection and surprisingly good food! We flew from Heathrow to Qatar in the evening, had a quick change and then flew on to Nairobi, arriving in the morning. We were greeted right off the plane, our bags were whisked away and we were shown to our private plane which we would be taking to Chyulu Hills! I don’t think …

Staying at Hotel Del Teatre, Regencós, Spain

Over the summer some of our friends got married in Barcelona. We stayed at the Grand Hotel Central which was fabulous, centrally located just a few streets away from Las Ramblas. Despite being in the centre of the city, the rooms were a very generous size and there was a rooftop bar and swimming pool. We didn’t make use of the latter because it wasn’t actually very hot during our stay (it was September) but we certainly made good use of the former! The gin cocktail in a bag was a particular highlight (or Megan’s ‘tramp bag’ as my friends ‘affectionately’ called it!) After the wedding we planned to spend a couple of nights further up the coast towards the French border. This was quite a big deal because we would be DRIVING! Why was it a big deal? Well, I still don’t have a driving license and Tim only passed a couple of years ago. And most importantly, he’d never driven on the other side of the road before in a hire car! We …

Staying at The Malabar, Cumbria

Over the May Bank Holiday, we treated ourselves to a staycation. We started our trip in the Lake District at The Forest Side in Grasmere (you can read about our stay here) before hopping over to the Dales (on the border with Cumbria), around half an hour away. Here we were staying at The Malabar, a B&B which we’d come across on Mr & Mrs Smith which we fell in love with from the second we saw it online. It was established in 2015 by Graham and Fiona Lappin. Despite having never lived in the area or run their own business before, they took on the project of converting Garths Farm into the wonderful B&B it is today. But it wasn’t all a completely new prospect – Fiona’s family had worked in the hotel business, although she had carved a successful career in publishing. Graham grew up in the southern Indian state of Kerala where his father and grandfather were tea planters, although his career had been in banking in the UK, Hong Kong and India. …

Dining at The Forest Side, The Lake District

I’m becoming acutely aware that every time I try a new tasting menu, I say it’s one of the best I’ve had. But the tasting menu at The Forest Side really was spectacular, and I think a big part of this was down to the freshness and seasonality of the dishes. It boasts a superb kitchen garden within the grounds of the hotel, which I wrote about in my previous post about our stay (you can read here). This extended to all of the food and even drinks at The Forest Side. Upon arrival, while most people were sipping coffees and tucking into Afternoon Tea, we got started on the cocktails! I kicked off proceedings with a Flowering Currant Margarita, with blanco tequila, flowering currant, cointreau and lime. It was stunning! I stupidly didn’t write down what Tim ordered and looking at the menu it’s impossible to work out what it might have been – the menu and selection of foraged ingredients is vast! Those cocktails went down very nicely (and rather quickly!) so we …

The Spa at Goldeneye, Jamaica

It seems like SO long ago since our incredible trip to Jamica at the end of February and rarely a day goes by when I don’t find myself daydreaming about it. You can catch up on my previous posts about where we stayed and the food if you’d like to know more about the resort, Goldeneye. One of its many superb features is the ‘FieldSpa.’ The spa is located right on the lagoon and for us it was directly opposite our cottage – this photo was taken from our terrace. You can easily canoe or paddle board over to the spa, but we thought we’d go for a wander around the grounds leading up to it, which have cute little messages dotted around reminding you to be quiet and maintain the peacefulness of the area. There’s a vast menu of treatments at the FieldSpa with massages, body scrubs and wraps, it was difficult to choose. We were booked in for a couple’s session so we could relax and unwind together at the same time, but …

Staying at The Forest Side in The Lake District

Despite growing up as a child in Yorkshire, I rarely visited The Dales and never made it over the border to the Lake District. I guess perhaps when places are close by you’re less likely to spend your free time there. On our holidays my Dad wanted to spend as little time in a car as possible (he did a lot of driving for his job) and as much time on a beach/by a pool as possible. Tim and I are the complete opposite of that at the moment – we spend most of our week at a desk, so ever since we got a car at the end of last year we’ve been loving being able to explore more. So over the May bank holiday weekend, we set off on our ‘staycation’ adventure in the Lake District and the Dales. It was an early start for us but we made it up to the Lakes by lunch time. We were staying at a hotel in Grasmere but not knowing if there would be much …