Burlington’s Restaurant at The Beech Hill Hotel & Spa in the Lake District

Burlington’s Restaurant at The Beech Hill Hotel & Spa in the Lake District: October 2018

Burlington’s Restaurant, named after the local slate, located within The Beech Hill hotel & Spa, is open to both residents and non-residents.

Why not begin proceedings with pre-dinner drinks on their outdoor patio which has some impressive views across the lakes to the western fells.

Dinner at Burlington’s begins with some fabulous freshly made canapes. Impressively, Burlington’s have held AA rosettes for the last 20 years.  Current head chef Lukasz specialises in both French and English cuisine and where possible using local produce

Warm welcomes are plentiful from the Burlington’s team and for me the team make’s the dinner service extra special.

Sensational starters included the Crispy Goats Cheese & fresh sage risotto cake with smoked celery cream and the gorgeous goats cheese delight.

Mouth-watering Mains included the Portobello mushroom & Jerusalem Artichoke pithivier with rocket pesto and cauliflower cheese puree.  Also, the roast duck confit with baked sweet potato mash, roast chicory, fondant potato and sweet and sour orange glaze.

Delicious desserts included the hot chocolate fondant and the sensational scrummy sweet shots which included a mini creme brulee, lemon & Raspberry posset and Tobago dark chocolate mousse.

Finish off dinner, in the hotel lounge, with a coffee or tea at the cosy fabulous fire hub.

Burlington’s begins bright and early offering a range of reviving and refreshing breakfast options and of course you guessed with a cracking view which is all part of the offering.

Buffet breakfasts can be known for being hectic, but Burlington’s have got the balance right, with a mix of table and buffet service, so breakfast is nothing but a civilised leisurely affair.

Tea, coffee and toast are all promptly delivered to the table along with plenty of smiles and light conversation from The Burlington’s restaurant team, who were just as perky in the morning as they are in the evening.

Help yourself to fresh fruit including ready slice pineapple, melon, segmented grapefruit and fruit salad.  Along with fresh orange and grapefruit juices.

The offerings are plentiful including pastries, yogurt, preserves, cereals and the lovely porridge made to order.

Perhaps your palate fancies something hot, so opt for the self-service full traditional English Breakfast Buffet option and if you are a veggie feel free to request the veggie sausages which are freshly made to order.

Burlington’s brilliant staff and fab food makes for an excellent evening out or a delicious start to the day with their bountiful breakfast.

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx




Fun without the rum at Turtle Bay Blackburn – Review

Fun without the rum at Turtle Bay Blackburn – Review: October 2018

Bring on the good vibes, without the booze, at Blackburn’s Turtle Bay located in the Cathedral quarter development.

Follow the bold bright lights and make Turtle Bay your “One Love”. Plenty of warm welcomes from the GM Heather, Abs, Ben, Shania and all the team, who did a fab job looking after us all evening.

The bar offers a chilled casual Caribbean style service, why not wrap your lips around a can of super refreshing ting, the national Caribbean soft drink or opt for a non-alcoholic cocktail and staff will shake things up.  The lush Virgin Kolada a fab frozen blend of coconut milk, coconut syrup and pineapple juice.  The Virgin Passion Punch was packed with fresh passion fruit, lemon & orange juices.

Enjoy a Strawberry & Vanilla Nojito mixed up with Strawberry & mint, vanilla, lime & apple juices.  Then chill out with a Virgin Raspberry Reggae man, with lashings of raspberry, pomegranate, lime & lemonade, I can guarantee you this will be a good ‘ting’

Reggae up to the restaurant, satisfy those hunger pangs and get hot, hot, hot.  A colourful place with some chilled Caribbean musical beats.

Starters began with some lovely Caribbean hummus and then the mighty vibrant vital veggie platter, a feast of sensational Sweet corn fritters, tasty crispy okra, jerk pit grilled mushroom & peppers with spicy jerk, halloumi and mango flatbread, plantain with a super green salad thrown in for good measure.

Mouth tingling mains included the whole 24 hour spice marinated pork ribs, with spicy jerk, sweet potato fries and Caribbean slaw.  Also, the amazing Aubergine curry in a light fragrant curry sauce, with steamed rice and roti flatbread.  Spice things up with a whole range of sides such as spiced fries and jerk halloumi.

Dang the desserts were gorgeous and both vegan too, the super scrummy salted caramel brownie, a baked pie served warm with light chocolate ice-cream and a small exception to the alcohol rule, the rum and raisin bread pudding, slow baked with rum, cinnamon, raisins and vanilla ice-cream.  All washed down with a perfect peanut butter and banana smoothie.

Don’t be a jerk, book into Turtle Bay Blackburn and feel the love.

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



A Luxury Spa Break with The Beech Hill Hotel & Spa – Review

A Luxury Spa Break Review with The Beech Hill Hotel & Spa – Review: October 2018

The Beautiful Beech Hill Hotel & Spa is boastfully situated in an enviable postcode on the shores of the lovely Lake District.

Straight away there is a wonderful warm and homely feel about the place, with full on fire and fabulous fresh floral bouquets in abundance.

A breath-taking moment, as we entered our room which revealed a beautiful bay window with a wow view across the picturesque lake.

The sensational Select Plus room with a super large wardrobe and long mirror was spacious, cosy and décor consisted of subtle neutral and earthy tones.

The plush comfortable King Bed, plumped up with pillows, cushions and a nice extra included chocolate on our pillows.

The charming wood writing desk doubled up as a vanity area with the solid framed mirror.  Pre-provided was literature of what to do in and around the area and a well-appointed tea tray with tea, hot chocolate and biscuits, so you can have tea while you plan your activities schedule.

The tiled bathroom, fresh, functional, with heated towel rail and spa toiletries are provided so saves on packing all those extra products.

Head down to the Lake view spa and take a dip in their impressive 40ft indoor pool and then try out the Himalayan Sauna and aromatic steam room or if you just want to sit back and relax, grab a book and chill on one of their many adjustable loungers.

Fancy that fresh feeling, pop out to the outside vitality spa pool in the scented garden, but you might not be the only residents who plan to use this facility. A rather royal and regal looking Robin Red Breast decided to join in our bubbly fun which made us giggle for sure.

Stretch your legs and take a gentle walk, to go and explore, the Beech Hills gorgeous grounds.

To me, there was almost that castaway Robinson Crusoe vibe about the place, but with all the mod cons and your every need catered for by the Beech Hill Team.

Make your way to The Beech Hill’s Private Jetty to see some spectacular scenery across the Lake.

Take a moment to savour this special silence, stunning scenic and dramatic views across the Lake to the wonderful Western Fells.

Now, have some you time and indulge in some treatments at the Lake side Spa.  Emma a lovely lady who provided a warm welcome providing an instant feeling of relaxation, calm and tranquillity.

Phillipa, who provided my treatments including an Elemis facial and OPI File and polish, was a friendly genuine young lady who provided me with some “me time” and escape from the hustle and bustle of real life which was much welcomed – thank you.

Constantly changing scenes, as day turns into early evening, the blue skies change into a stunning evening backdrop – just breath-taking.

Take time out to have an evening dip in the vitality pool, as you prepare to head to the in-house Burlington’s restaurant for some much-needed fuel.

 Dinner at Burlington’s, who have impressively held AA rosettes for the last 20 years, begins with some fabulous freshly made canapes.

Sensational starters included the crispy goat’s cheese & fresh sage risotto cake with smoked celery cream and the gorgeous goats cheese delight, a real fav dish.

Mouth-watering mains included the Portobello mushroom & Jerusalem artichoke pithivier with rocket pesto and cauliflower cheese puree.  Also, the roast duck confit with baked sweet potato mash, roast chicory, fondant potato glazed with sweet and sour orange.

Delicious desserts such as the hot chocolate fondant and the sensational scrummy sweet shots, that are a must try, which included a mini creme brulee, lemon & Raspberry posset and Tobago dark chocolate mousse.

After dinner head back to the room, watch the views change, as you indulge in some of the tea tray offerings, prior to winding down for the evening.

Burlington’s begins bright and early offering a range of reviving and refreshing breakfast options and of course you guessed with a cracking view which is all part of the offering.

Buffet breakfasts can be known for being hectic, but Burlington’s have got the balance right, with a mix of table and buffet service, so breakfast is nothing but a civilised leisurely affair.

Tea, coffee and toast are all promptly delivered to the table along with plenty of smiles and light conversation from The Burlington’s restaurant team, who were just as perky in the morning as they are in the evening.

Help yourself to fresh fruit including ready slice pineapple, melon, segmented grapefruit and fruit salad.  Along with fresh orange and grapefruit juices.

The offerings are plentiful including pastries, yogurt, preserves, cereals and the lovely porridge made to order or if your palate fancies something hot, opt for the self-service full traditional English Buffet option and if you are a veggie feel free to request the veggie sausages which are freshly made to order.

A few nights at the beautiful Beech Hill Hotel and Spa was the ideal retreat and escape from life’s hectic ways.  A faultless stay, with the only problem being, we did not want to leave!

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



Pho Manchester review

Pho Manchester Review: October 2018

Pho originally opened in 2005, by husband and wife team, Stephen and Julitte Wall, after their inspirational Vietnam travels specifically in Ho Chi Minh City.  Fast forward 13 years and Pho is still family run and serving healthy Vietnamese street food.

Pho Manchester located in the heart of the iconic Corn Exchange provided a relaxed and authentic Vietnamese experience, with vibrant city street lights and all-round positive vibes.

Offering fresh fabulous and fantastic food, Pho really warmed up my heart and soul. While you decide why not enjoy some munchable Bánh phồng tôm prawn crackers with sweet chilli sauce.

Sensational starters included Veggie Gỏi cuốn – fresh rice paper summer rolls with herbs, vermicelli & pickle and the Veggie Chả -giòcrispy spring rolls served with lettuce & herbs to wrap & dip, both served with a choice of nước chấm or peanut sauce.

Jazz up for Juicing and opt for some of the Pho juice offerings such as the refreshing Kale, apple, pineapple & lime or the green detox with Spinach, cucumber, pear & lemon, a yummy coconut, pineapple & apple, or keep things simple with the apple and orange mix.

Mouthwatering mains such as the Phở Xào – wok fried noodles Wok-fried flat rice noodles with lemongrass, chilli and Asian greens, served with peanuts & nước chấm was stunning.

Also, my personal fav Cà-ri rich – a delicious fragrant Vietnamese curry with veggies & mushrooms, topped with nuts & served with broken rice served with a choice of proteins such as chicken, beef brisket, prawn and my choice tofu.  Wash all this loveliness down with the Green flowering Tea with the yulan tea balls.

Delightful desserts included the CHUỐI CHIÊN – A beautiful banana fritter, as is or with ice cream (coconut or honey & ginger) and the BÁNH SÔ-CÔ-LA TRUFFLE – A divine chocolate truffle slab served with gorgeous green tea ice cream.

Pho a friendly hub, with super staff and fabulous Vietnamese food what’s not to love.

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx





48 hours in Liverpool with Novotel Liverpool Centre

48 hours in Liverpool with Novotel Liverpool Centre: October 2018

Destination Liverpool, a fabulous friendly city of culture offering visitors so many exciting activities to see and do.

Novotel Liverpool Centre, is perfectly situated for exploring all that Liverpool has to offer, check into your cosy city centre Novotel hotel – a 4 star home away from home.

Novotel’s nice executive rooms are the perfect homely hub, spacious with all the mod cons you need during your stay.

Unpack, relax and prepare to head off for your lovely Liverpool adventures.

Liverpool Cathedral

Morning began in a peaceful place of solace and worship, Liverpool’s majestic, ore inspiring Cathedral whereby ground floor entry is free, but donations are welcomed.

Designed by the amazing architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott who interestingly was also commissioned to design a telephone kiosk to commemorate the Jubilee of King George V – hence the red iconic telephone box was born.

However, for a small fee, you can tower to new heights, see the beautiful bells and gain entry to the Cathedral roof top where you have a great vantage point, that offers the most beautiful breath-taking 360-degree views of the whole city.

Williamson Tunnels Heritage Centre

Prepare to go down deep and pop on a hard hat to explore the nearby Williamson Tunnels created by the eccentric Joseph Williamson in the early 19th century.

For a nominal fee, the heritage centre provides an interesting underground guided tour of the tunnels, run by the Joseph Williamson Society a registered charity which receives no public funding.

Liverpool Watersports Centre

Make a splash at the non for profit, Liverpool Watersports centre, that aims to provide a range of exciting and affordable activities for all. Located on Queens dock, right in the heart of Liverpool city centre, this makes for a perfect place to play.

Charles, Clive and the team, provided a full safety briefing, kitted us up in our wetsuits, provided tuition and then let us loose, on sit on top Kayaks, up to Liverpool’s Albert Dock and back.

Want to go even more awesome, give their inflatable amazing Aqua Park a whirl, ideal for groups and individuals, who want to makes waves and have fun out on the water. Race your way over obstacles, then slide, bounce and jump your way to victory.

Novotel Liverpool Centre On-Site Leisure Facilities  

After getting wet and wild on the water, now it’s time for a calm relaxing session back at the Liverpool Novotel centre hotel.

Take a dip, swim, enjoy the water jets, steam room or simply chill on the recliner poolside.

Still feeling energetic, well hit the hotel gym and run, cycle and row all in one convenient place.

Head back to your exec room and take a shower or bath in the well-appointed bathroom which has all you need to pamper yourself and prepare for an evening out on the town including fab Fairtrade shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, body lotion, toothpaste, brushes and much more.

Ropewalks Bar & Kitchen – Afternoon Tea 

Rock up to Ropewalks, Novotel’s restaurant and bar, a perfect place to relax, with lovely décor including a piano depicting the Liverpool city landscape with their iconic attractions.  Also, wonderful window seating, ideal for people watching and with charger ports to juice up those tech gadgets.

Indulge in the delicious Ropewalks Afternoon Tea, that includes a range of fancy finger sandwiches, super scones with jam and cream, along with some yummy sweet pastries.  All washed down with complimentary tea or coffee.

Now, it was time to head into Liverpool for a few fabulous activities.

Breakout Liverpool

Live Escape room experience Breakout, located in Liverpool city centre, Arrr me hearties…we got our swagger on, grabbed our crew and prepared to play Shipwrecked with arrr lovely games master Joey.

Ahoy matey, it was all hands on deck, as there was munity aboard the famous Soldado Pirate Shipwreck, as we plan to steel Captains Chiver’s most prized treasures, but had to act quick as there would be no Parley, instead his ghostly ghoul, would find and drags us down into a watery grave at the bottom of the Mersey.  Us swashbucklers bagged the booty and made our escape with the riches, but the question is can you?

Roxy Ballroom Liverpool – VIP Style

Andy and Eleanor, the super chilled and cool Roxy staff, gave us a big high five and welcomed us into the Roxy Ball Room world of fun. Roxy Rocks, so bring on your best game face and prepare for some ballsy play, as things get serious in the VIP – The ultimate private game playing experience.

A private space for you and your squad to play pool on the impressive full-size Sam K tables, ping pong on full size competition tables and bring on beautiful beer pong.

Prepare for victory early and take things up a notch and order some Champions platters, for the team, a giant size super feast which includes classic pizza slices, Buffalo chicken wings, mac & cheese bites, onion rings, garlic ciabatta and fully loaded fries.  Wash this down with a range of mocktails, cocktails and beers.

Wind down back in your Novotel hotel room and refresh with the complimentary in room coffee making facilities, tea tray with biscuits, bottled water, and perhaps watch a movie.

Ropewalks Bar & Kitchen – Breakfast

Day two and time to refuel, with breakfast Novotel Liverpool style.  Either opt for the buffet in Ropewalks or have breakfast in the comfort of your exec room.

Big beautiful British breakfast included sausage, bacon, egg, mushrooms, tomato, beans with toast and a veggie option with vegetarian sausages all served with tea, coffee and orange juice.

Head Down to the UNESCO World heritage site: The Royal Albert Dock, to see the iconic Royal Liver building, titanic memorial and have your snap taken with the Beatles fab 4 statue.

The Beatles Story

Let Beatles Mania commence, beginning with jumping on a self-guided tour at the award-winning The Beatles Story, that will take you on a journey, as you discover the fab four and their lives, culture and of course their marvellous music!

Abbey Road Studios, the yellow submarine and new for 2018 is the India exhibition which celebrates 50 years since the Beatles travelled to Rishikesh in India.

Magical Mystery Tour

Jump aboard your very own “yellow submarine” for the Ultimate Beatles Fan experience – The Magical Mystery Tour. “She’s got a ticket to ride”…well I definitely did and could not wait. The Tour has four key photo opportunities and stops at Penny Lane, George Harrison’s birthplace; 12 Arnold grove, Strawberry Fields and Paul McCartney’s childhood home.

Along with many highlights including the childhood home of Ringo Starr, St Peters Church where John and Paul first met, John Lennon’s childhood home and Former schools and colleges of John, Paul, George and Ringo including the Art College and the Liverpool Institute (now LIPA)

The Cavern Club Front stage

“Help me if you can, I’m feeling down…” a sure thing to perk up anyone’s mood is Location Matthew Street, the beating hub of Liverpool’s music scene, with the Cavern Club being at the very heart of it.

Cavern Club Front stage has a variety of truly talented live musical performances with musical “words of wisdom” so “Let it be, Let it be, let it be” Also, there is masses of Liverpool Legends memorabilia to keep any Beatles fans and lovers of Liverpool entertained.

Ropewalks Bar & Kitchen – Dinner

Feeling famished and fancy a freshen up, well it’s just a hop, skip and jump away back to the comfort of your Novotel hotel.  Pop into the Ropewalks bar, who offer a variety of drinkies, including their lovely Love Lane beer and a range of mouth-watering mocktails.

Go mega with mains and try their lovely superfood salad, pear & feta salad with balsamic dressing or meat things up with the 12 oz sirloin steak, served with fries, salad and a generous jug of peppercorn sauce.

Delicious desserts came in the form of chocolate heaven and a delightful cheeseboard with grapes, biscuits and chutney.

We then headed back into the city and was ready to bring on the Beatles good time vibes.

The Cavern Live Lounge  – The Cavern Beatles

Prepare to scream out; John, Paul, George and Ringo, as you head into the Live Lounge, for a live stage set from the legendary – The Cavern Beatles.

Warm up act and then the tribute fab four, aka The Cavern Beatles, made for an amazing musical evening to enjoy the Beatles classics.

LL1The next morning, we fancied a lighter breakfast, so went all continental at the Novotel.

This included a range if fab fresh fruit, mouth-watering porridge with preserves, pastries and orange juice.

St Johns Beacon

Reach new heights at St Johns Beacon and enjoy full panoramic views of the Liverpool skyline, the Liverpool Waterfront, the Wirral and North Wales.

Also, home to Radio City and if you are lucky you will see a live radio show, as studios are fully visible – exciting stuff.

Love Life, Love Liverpool!

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx

Top Manchester Activities

Top Manchester Activities: October 2018 

Marvellous Manchester, a UK city which offers visitors, so much to see and do, but here are my top options, in no particular order, for those who want to have fun while in the city.

1.TeamSport Go Karting 

Located slap bang in Manchester City Centre, Grab the Girl & Guy squad and head down to TeamSport Go Karting Manchester for the race of a lifetime.

Hit the track, feel the speed, use your skill and aim for the chequered flag and prepare to clinch victory from your opponent by driving smart.  Let Meg, Clo, Hillary and the rest of the team look after your safety while providing a fun on track experience.  What will your best lap time be?

2. Lucardo University of Magic: The Entrance Exam

Fancy your hand at being a witch or wizard, well first you must graduate from the University of Magic.  Get your wand at the ready and prepare to cast your way to success.

Lucardo offer a truly unique, immersive and exciting spellbinding experience in Manchester City Centre.  Find your way into a secret room, cast a spell and make a potion.  With Professor Emma’s help we graduated, the question is – can you?

3. Popup Painting 

Prepare to Paint Popup style, with Popup Painting, originally a London launch with the aim of promoting creativity out of the classroom.  Now held at venues throughout the UK, Manchester being one of them, try your hand at paint brushing your way to creating your very own marvellous masterpiece.  Our afternoon was based on the interpretation of Hokusai’s Great Wave Painting.

We sploshed and splashed our way around the easel like seasoned pros with our friendly skilled artist’s step by step guide.  Fancy going off-piste, not a problem, as your artist promotes and supports your inner creative desires.  The event offered a relaxed atmosphere, with laughs and giggles galore and thanks to his lovely assistant paint was in plentiful supply along with all art supplies such as brushes and apron too – all included within the price.  Why not dip into the pot and get your spills…thrills with Popup Painting, you never know you may be the next artistic genius #popuppainting

4.Vertical Chill Indoor Ice Climbing  

Location Deansgate, is the place to be, for the ultimate unique activity. Feel the freeze and get into the cold zone.  Challenge yourself to climb new heights and hear the crunch of the ice, as you battle your way to the top of this vast glacial thrill.

Our expert guide Matt was informative, knowledgeable and gave us the confidence to reach the top.  With quality kit and a top motivational mentor can you also reach the top?

5.Escape Reality Manchester: Bank Job

Grab your elite squad of highly skilled bank robbers, as you are amongst the chosen few who have been challenged to infiltrate the security systems at the world’s most protected bank vaults.

Part of our team attempted the skilled system override on the previous night but failed.  They did manage to disable the security cameras and took the opportunity to leave us clues, so our team were now fully prepped to break into the vault and steal that dazzling diamond.

Escape with the diamond within 60 minutes or face life in prison! An exhilarating, exciting and entertaining experience, will your teams diamond bank balance go boom or bust!

6.East Lancashire Railway Dining with Distinction Lancastrian Lunch

At the East Lancashire Railway, in Bury greater Manchester, you can Dine with Distinction and sophistication, by opting for one of their on-board dining services such as the Red Rose Dinner or as we did the lovely Lancastrian Lunch.

Roll out the red carpet, step on board their traditional Orient Express Pullman style carriages, enjoy delicious dining, picturesque and lovely Lancashire countryside, the beautiful Irwell Valley, providing you with the ultimate first-class elegant experience and an exquisite journey back to the Golden Age of Steam.

7.Roxy Ball Room Manchester

Rock up to Roxy Ball Room Manchester, located on Deansgate, and prepare for a fab fun filled game playing experience.  Check in with the team, Molly, Ashley and Laura, a bunch of laid back friendly guys and gals, who will make sure you have a shed load of fun.

Make sure your ball control is on top form, don’t balls things up and pot, ping pong and putt your way to victory during games of pool, ping pong and crazy golf.

8.Breakout Manchester: Enchanted

Whirling and whizzing through the library Wizarding section, a mesmerising dusty book caught our eye, as we began to turn the pages, large yawns followed, and we found ourselves deep asleep and waking up in an enchanted forest.  Wandering and walking, throughout deep forest for hours, encountering creepy creatures, scary shadows, we spotted an exciting entrance to a delightful dazzling house made of gingerbread and sweets.

What we were yet to realise is, that the witch had put us under a spell, a terrifying trap awaited and if we didn’t escape the witch would be returning to eat us.  Have your wits about you and keep chanting “run, run as fast as you can you can’t catch us we have a Gingerbread Breakout Plan!”

A spellbinding fascinating fairy tale, a charming and captivating game with a little bit of spookiness sprinkled in for good measure.  We escaped Enchanted, Breakout Manchester’s Magical escape room experience, question is can you?

9.Base Bar Mcr

Bring on your A game and prepare to bat the ball out the park, in the brilliant Base Bar Batting Cages.  Get kitted up and then the team will prep you for a super awesome session.  A plus is the balls are non-stinger, so in the unlikely event you get hit, it will be a soft blow.

So don’t be cagey, be full of confidence and you will be batting like a pro in no time.  Along with their range of amazing American snacks and drinks and some seriously awesome music beats, this is a super fun activity and well worth a whirl.

10.City Cruises Manchester Afternoon Tea

For over 30 years, Manchester City Centre Cruises, have been operating passenger boat cruises in their two luxury barge boats.  The Castlefield cruise location, was ready and waiting, for our turn to set sail with Captain Alan and his loyal sea skippers.

Enjoy the amazing Afternoon Tea on board, as you sail through the Bridgewater canal system, on to Manchester’s marvellous Media city. A yummy activity for family, friends and loved ones to enjoy.

11.Crystal Maze Live Experience Manchester

Whether you go in solo or already have your squad worked out, The Crystal Maze Live Experience Manchester city centre, based on the 90s Iconic series, with the original legendary Maze Master Richard O’Brien and his ever loving marvellous mumsie, is where eight individuals become one team to conquer the crystal dome.

Bomber jackets, booth team time, then prepare for a journey through four zones, Medieval, Industrial, Aztec and Futuristic.  The four game types include Mental, Mystery, physical and Skill, so play to your team strengths, so you can scoop as many crystals as you can to exchange for time in the Crystal Dome. And yes for the mega fans, you do get a go on the amazing Aztec super slide!

12. Junk Yard Golf

Rumours are flying around, that Crazy golf just got epic, and I can confirm it’s all true! Get your game face ready, as things are in full swing down at the super cool Junk Yard Golf site slap bang on first street Manchester.

Welcomed on course Gary, golf club in hand ready to swing into action and get on it like a car bonnet.  Yes, there is a slide, and yes you can actually slide down it too!  Party people, this is the place to be with UV Lights, loud music and flashing lights, while you get funky on the golf course and strut your stuff.

13.The Range Golf Simulator at the Range

Roll up to the Range for a High-quality Golf Simulator experience.  The lovely Charli looked after us, settled us down in our own private curtained booth, as she briefly explained the high spec Gc2s Launched monitor technology.

Try your hand at virtual play on golf courses throughout the world including Pebbles beech.  Along with the tech, added features include music, salt smells, blowing winds to give you an all-round realistic immersive simulator experience.  Hit the ball essentially against the visual facing “bed sheet” to bag yourself a hole in one.

14.Clue HQ: Cell Block C

Clue HQ, the live escape game, located under Manchester Piccadilly Train Station was where criminal Danny Badd framed myself and friends for a crime we did not commit, locked up in game Cell Block C crying out “We are innocent” but no one was listening!

With no chance of an acquittal and our appearance in court was just over 1 hour away, we were left with no option, but to try and break free before the cuffs are placed and that prison door slams for life.  We just missed out, the jury found us guilty, so we donned the orange jump suits and prepared to do the time.

15.Rock Over Climbing

Rock over Climbing Manchester, a brilliant bouldering centre, prepares you to soar new heights and prepares you to climb your way to the top.

Our lovely lady instructor, a real diamond, was fab and just what you want when you are a complete novice; practical, patient, friendly and gave you the confidence to tackle the climb. Want to get to the next grade, well I’m sure Rock over Climbing, will get you on peak form.

Now, the only challenge left is, that you just need to work your way through the full list, have fun!

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx

Marks & Spencer Opticians Manchester Review

Marks & Spencer Opticians Manchester Review: September

Exciting times for retail giant Marks and Spencer, as in collaboration with Galaxy Optical, branded as M&S Opticians, they are currently trialling optical practices throughout five of its UK stores including Bolton, York, Derby, London and Manchester city centre.

Manchester city centres 700 sq ft practice offers a fresh and fabulous approach to eye health and your optical requirements.  Manager Paul along with his dedicated team clearly have a customer focused strategy, providing a relaxed environment balanced with warm, welcoming and knowledgeable service, aiming to make you see the best Marks & Spencer Opticians has to offer.

After checking in with the team at the front desk manager Paul whisked me off to the pre-screening room for three core tests.  The machines test for fluid pressure, photo screen the back of eye to look for burst blood vessels, retina damage etc and also measure the curve of the eye cornea which is relevant if a prescription is required.  Also, a super cool moment was seeing the image of my own eye on screen – fascinating!

After which the results are forwarded to your Optometrist for review, prior to you entering the consultation room. Optometrist Monica provided a prompt and professional service and please even though the equipment can look a bit intimidating there is nothing to worry about, as at the other side of the machine you are simply resting your chin on a ledge to conduct further non-intrusive tests.

Not failed a test before, but they say that there is a first time for everything and a prescription was indeed required.  Manager Paul, talked through a range of considerations before choosing the correct prescriptive glasses such as colours, shapes, styles, tips such as the frame following the eyebrow line and metal vs plastic frames; a particularly important point for those with allergies.  Marks and Spencer offer a range of their own branded frames or designer offerings such as the Marc Jacobs glasses, I opted for.

After reflection, through this process, it made me realise it is not just a question of if you need glasses or not, but how much we underestimate our eye health in general.  Not having an eye test can severely impact on our day to day life’s, such as the ability to safety do your job, avoiding day to day eye strain, if prescriptive glasses are required and safety whilst out on the road.

Importantly, a new scheme is being piloted, throughout selected areas in the UK, whereby three police forces in England are planning to test every motorist they stop and if drivers fail to read a number plate from the mandatory DVLA standard of 20m away the driver’s licence will be instantly revoked.  Therefore, not having a simple eye exam can be a costly and stressful experience.

Making an appointment online is easy, followed up with a confirmation email and a reminder text when your appointment is due.  Also, life after your appointment is catered for with an after-care call from the team at Marks & Spencer Opticians, to make sure all is going good.

As a Lake District lover and all-round fan of the great outdoors, after yoga and during hiking, it was nice to pop on the specs and see the stunning scenery in all its detail and breath-taking magnificence.  Life’s too short to be blurred and reading between the lines, so get crystal clear vision with Marks & Spencer Opticians.

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx