I love being from London but most of the family I have in the UK are also from London which means I rarely get the luxury of escaping to the country for the weekend but last month we did just that.
We drove down to Axminster on Friday evening and checked into our lodge at the Hawkchurch Resort & Spa. The drive was actually not too bad from London and the lodge was really nice! Neither Michael or I had ever stayed in a lodge but it was really beautiful and the perfect place to spend the weekend. We had a large kitchen/living room/dinning room area, a nice bedroom with a huge bed, two bathrooms and even a hot tub!
We arrived pretty late on in the day as Michael had work until a little later and we made the rooky mistake of thinking we could get dinner at 9.30PM as you can in London but luckily there was a Tesco not too far and we had a quick make-shift dinner.
The following morning I discovered that the internet is currently not as good as I’d hoped (something that they’re working on) but it was actually the perfect excuse to switch off. We played board-games which Hawkchurch Lodge kindly provides, went on walks by the sea, cooked and chilled in the Hot Tub.
Sunday afternoon we headed out for lunch and I must admit we failed at this a little, we really wanted to visit The Tytherleigh Arms but didn’t realise we needed to pre-book but I will definitely check it out next time we’re in the area.
We then drove back on Monday morning and were back in London after two hours, feeling far more relaxed and having really enjoyed some country air!
I was surprised by how much I feel in love with Hawkchruch Resort & Spa, it was the perfect way to spend a weekend in England and I’m already planning to book and go back. They’re part of Darwin Escapes and there are lodges up and down the country so I may actually check out one of the other locations but I can’t recommend Hawkchurch Resort & Spa enough.
I’m always hunting new places, not too far from London to explore over the weekend.
Would love to hear your recommendations in the comments!
Earlier last month, the lovely girls at Sure invited me down to Bourne & Hollingsworth for breakfast and to discuss everything related to deodorant with Dr Christian Jessen. Since breakfast is probably my favourite meal of the day and Sure is a brand I use daily, off I trotted to Farringdon.
After ordering my tea, I was actually fortunate to be sat opposite Dr Christian Jessen and I was really wowed by his knowledge on what seemed like everything
I’ve been using Sure for many years but have just started using Sure Antibacterial Odour Protection.
I’ll admit I haven’t given my deodorant too much thought; I know that Sure works so I have stuck to it for many years but for anyone in need of a little extra help, the antibacterial properties in this product are amazing, especially since up to 10 million bacteria live in our underarms. Sure Antibacterial Odour Protection is designed to reduce up to 90% of odour causing bacteria.
Dr Christian spoke a lot about deodorant and antiperspirant, and being in the beauty community, we all wanted to know about aluminium. I read so many articles suggesting you shouldn’t use antiperspirants with aluminium so it was great to hear that there hasn’t been anything to prove it is linked to cancer. And did you know that what you eat also affects how you smell?! So eating onions and garlic can scent the sweat coming out of you pores, which is worrying as I love garlic but thankfully have had no such experience.
I’ll admit that deodorant and sweaty underarms isn’t my usual topic of choice over breakfast but his knowledge was really impressive, even over a cup of tea and muesli. I’ve been using the Sure Antibacterial Odour Protection ever since and really loving it! The 75ml compressed can is perfect for travel/my handbag and I’ve even had to share it with my boyfriend.
*This is a sponsored post
I’ve never spoken about Zoella’s range on here as I always felt it was aimed at a slightly younger audience but last week I had the chance to visit the #zoellaapartment which was filled with new launches and the new Zoella Lifestyle range. I was really surprised by the fact that it’s a bit more grown up and I would buy almost everything from the range, so I had to share some of the photos I took and share my thoughts.
I’m actually quite the Zoella fan and although I don’t watch all of her main channel videos, I think few YouTubers daily vlog as well as her and I do think her channel is growing up a little (as her, and her audience get older.) which was really reflected in the new products.
The apartment had lots on display including newness being added to the original Zoella Beauty range, which I really haven’t tried much from. Although I think the range is really pretty I find it to be still a little aimed at teens for me. That said the new Christmas Gingerbread Fizz Trio smell amazing, the scent isn’t too overpowering or even overly artificial and I think I’ll be buying these when they come out! If you’re a fan of the beauty range then you’ll be happy to see that she has added a new gingerbread hand cream, a mini fragrance set and some other great gifting products for Christmas as well as a hand sanitiser, bath soak and body cream to her permanent line. Another notable product launch for Christmas is the Pamper Hamper, at £50 it’s the priciest gift from the range but would blow any Zoella fan away (exclusive to Superdrug).
Then onto the new Home Fragrance, candles and defuser range…
She kept her Zoella scribble on the packaging for these but the rest of the packaging is so beautiful that I think it still looks grown up and I’d love to have these in my house. There are five scents; My Eden, Seaside Stroll, Lazy Days, Daisy Picking, Gingerbread Village and Homemade Treats. I’ve heard (may not be true) that Daisy Picking is Zoe’s Favourite but personally I love Lazy Days as it’s a really beautiful fresh scent. I was really surprised by the scents in the range and Gingerbread Village is the only one I really expected, the scents are very grown up and sophisticated, I’m actually not too sure if younger teens would love this range but I guess they’re not the ones usually buying candles and diffusers. Candles are £10 and diffusers £12, would recommend these wether you are a Zoella fan or not as a great affordable candle option.
The most exciting thing in my option though is the new Zoella Lifestyle range; it’s any bloggers dream with lots of marble and copper, I actually think it’s quite Kate Spade inspired but on a smaller budget. That said somethings are still quite obviously branded which will probably put some people off if they’re not huge fans (or simply not a huge fan of branding).
The lifestyle range retail from £5-14 and includes everything from pencils and storage pots to cushions and socks. Other than the keyring I love everything in the range especially the pencils, notebooks, storage pots and travel mug.
Very impressed by the new Zoella products and keep and eye out as I’m sure I’ll be featuring a few bits on my Instagram.
Before my holiday in Portugal, I spent the night in Windsor in a beautiful hotel which I just have to tell you about.
I’m always on the lookout for cool places to stay just outside of London to get away even for just a day and relax. I’ll share all my favourite places soon but if you haven’t been to Windsor I would highly recommend it.
The whole trip was planned by AccorHotels and I was lucky enough to tour a few of their London ones before hand. The tour started in Euston at the Ibis Euston, when I’m on a budget but still want a nice hotel I always go for an Ibis as I find them to be a great price point and I think I might book another one for a trip I’m considering next month.
However I really fell in love with The Pullman Hotel, I’ve driven past it so many times and had no idea just how beautiful it is inside! Really modern and luxurious as well as located in Kings Cross so in a great location too. We stopped here for some canapes and cocktails and they were really good, it’s a great location for weekend drinks or even work lunch/drinks and the decor is very chic.
For our main dinner we headed to Novotel London Brentford where we had a Moijos in a bag (genius idea!) and a chicken main, again the food was delicious and decor was perfect, maybe not quite as beautiful as The Pullman but not close behind. Location wise it is a little further out near Chiswick but it’s just off the M4 so easy to get to and a great option if you’re looking for a hotel in the area.
Our final stop and where we stayed the night was the Mercury Castle Hotel in Windsor. If you haven’t been to Windsor it’s a really great little town a short drive/train journey from London with things to see and do or also the perfect place to relax. Even if you’re not planning on exploring Windsor and are just looking to relax I’d still highly recommend the Castle hotel, the service was better than in most hotels, decor is perfect for a non-city hotel and I slept amazingly. I had a really lovely evening enjoying a cocktail before just chilling in the super comfy bed.
Breakfast was also amazing, I enjoyed my tea in bed before tucking into my full English breakfast. We even managed to catch the changing of the guards before we left, although it did start to rain heavily!
Can’t wait to visit the Mercury Castle Hotel again and if The Pullman wasn’t so close to my house I’d simply have to book to stay there, such beautiful hotels!
So before I start bombarding you with all my holiday posts I thought we’d quickly catch up on this year’s festivals. I’m not a huge festival go-er and have never camped so prefer London’s day long events, which probably aren’t even real festivals.Although I usually go to Wireless, this year I actually missed it and instead went to British Summer Time and LoveBox.
My first one this year was British Summer Time with SonicChic. SonicChic is a travel-friendly toothbrush brand which I have actually been using all holiday. They were pretty amazing and I even got to stay at the Edition hotel. Now, I’m not very knowledgeable about music but there were some amazing acts. Kendrick Lamar, who I love and have seen perform before, Jamie XX, which I previously hadn’t heard of but was amazing and Florence and the Machine who I now love even more. The vibe at British Summer Time isn’t too festival-y and a little more grown up in my opinion. I’d highly recommend checking out British Summer Time next year if you’re looking for something a little more chilled, with great food options, I had a really fun time! My last festival was Lovebox in East London, as it was East London it was that little bit younger and cooler but really good fun! I went along with BIC who were amazing hosts, had our nails done at Wah! and I even found the Hip Hop Karaoke tent which was amazing!
The people over at Soletrader.co.uk also sent me over some essential festival shoe options which I have been making the most of. Since it’s England Wellies are a key option for festivals and the Barbour ones they sent me are great, I was almost a little sad to see that the weather was too good to wear these but I will be doing so as soon as it starts to rain! I love wellies at festivals, contrasted with summer dresses- very British! In the festival essentials kit, there were also Havaianas, Black Adidas Superstars and sparkly sandals, sadly the sparkly ones were a little small as they would have looked perfect with my dress! In the kit there were also lots of other essentials; tissues, deodorant, dry shampoo and more, which of course I packed and used throughout the day.
For make-up I couldn’t resist a little glitter for the festival from Topshop, obviously!
Join me on Snapchat for lots of holiday snaps: alittleobsessed