So...It was my birthday last month and I'd spent ages thinking about the gift that I wanted to hint at Mr HSW to treat me to! We’ve been together since we were both 18, so there’s pretty much nothing we haven’t bought each other at some point or other (black Mulberry Bayswater, excepted – hint hint, Mr HSW). I kid you not, I thought of everything; from personal training sessions to a lamp for the living room! In the end, I decided on something we could both enjoy (aren’t they the best kind of presents??) – A night away in "The Big Smoke" that is London town, to eat, drink, be merry and most importantly have a full 8+ hours sleep with no cries for Mama or Dada (selfish, us?)!
A booking was quickly made for the Hoxton Hotel in Shoreditch for the very reasonable sum of £99 a night. We’d stayed there before and adored both the location and the décor, so it was an easy decision to choose to stay there again. The overall vibe of the hotel is incredibly laid back and relaxed! The rooms aren’t palatial in size but what they lack in space they make up for in beautiful design – throw in a super-comfy bed, a included Pret brekkie, a see-it-to-believe it raincloud shower, completely pitch dark blackout curtains and it’s pretty darn perfect. The bar area downstairs is really chilled with lots of lovely seating (grab yourself a spot by the fireplace with a cheeky Pornstar Martini or two – it’s heaven!).
I’m not going to lie to you – after celebrating my birthday with fabulous friends until 5.30am the night before, we weren’t exactly in the best of shapes! Once we’d checked in, seeking out a pew in the fresh air was a must...oh, there might have been a glass of wine and a beer (hair of the dog, you know!). One of the outstanding concierges at the Hoxton told us about Boxpark. Boxpark is a pop-up mall with shops, music and foody places selling their wares out of renovated shipping containers. It was fab to sit in the sun watching the world (and all the trendy types) go by.
It might be an odd thing to do on a night away, but I really wanted to go to the cinema! But it was my birthday and I was being treated, so the local Odeon wasn’t going to cut the mustard. Enter the Aubin Cinema, handily placed on Redchurch Street just a stone throw from Boxpark in the basement of the Aubin & Wills store. A frantic Google search for fancy-schmancy cinemas helped me find this amazing little 45 seat cinema complete with sofas, armchairs and very importantly a bar (and even more importantly, one serving cocktails!). Future visits to an Odeon won’t quite beat a cinema visit that involves sipping cocktails while sat in an armchair in complete and utter comfort – It’s the only way for this girl from now on!
And finally to dinner...I’d read some amazing things about Pizza East which is just around the corner from the cinema. Based in a former tea warehouse, Pizza East has a real industrial feel and a really buzzing atmosphere. The pizzas were delish, and sipping Prosecco while chowing down on a veal meatball pizza was a great way to spend the evening and my 2014 birthday treat.
Minus the hangover, I absolutely adored our night away. I love being a mum, but it’s great to be a “proper grown up” every once in a while.
The next time I get the chance to have another 8+ hours sleep away from home, you’ll definitely find me hanging out with the cool kids in Shoreditch, East London!
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Based in High Wycombe and covering Buckinghamshire and the surrounding counties, I'm a wedding planner and coordinator here to plan beautiful and creative weddings for fabulous brides and grooms.
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