August and September: Monthly Favourites
Wow, where has the time gone? August already seems like an age away, and September is flying by much quicker than I’m okay with…I thought I’d combine my usual monthly favourites roundup, and fill you in on what I’ve been loving over the last couple of months.
At the end of August, I visited Morocco for the first time during a trip to Fez. Morocco is a country that has been on my bucket list for a very long time, so I was thrilled to get the opportunity to visit. Three days in Fez was the perfect amount of time to explore the old medina, and enjoy the comfort of Riad Fes and Hotel Sahrai, the two luxurious hotels we were hosted at. I absolutely loved our time here and I’m hopefully planning a trip to Marrakech soon…
The rest of August saw weekend explorations around the UK (we attended a number of our friends’ weddings), including Dorset and Kent, where we stayed at The Rose, a gorgeous boutique hotel in Deal. The Wes Anderson-esque interiors at this seaside hotel, as well as the unique colour palette throughout the property instantly won me over…oh, and did I mention the delicious breakfast menu on Sunday morning (you can order as much as you like off the menu)?
At the beginning of September, I also travelled to Newquay for the first time to stay at Watergate Bay Hotel with a friend; our trip included surf lessons in the sunshine, fish and chips on the beach and afternoon massages: I absolutely loved this short break on the Cornish coast.
The last couple of weeks have been pretty manic preparing for my wedding and also planning a house move, but amongst the madness, we did manage to try some restaurants in our new local area. Gold in Notting Hill is a firm favourite of mine, which features three floors of beautiful restaurant and bar space, and a delicious Mediterranean menu.
September also saw the opening of The Hoxton Hotel’s latest branch in Southwark (and third in London). I’m a huge fan of The Hoxton, having stayed in their hotels across London, Paris, and Amsterdam. The Southwark branch is their slickest one in London yet, featuring all-day brasserie Albie on the ground floor, and stunning rooftop restaurant Seabird, which has incredible views and a Spanish-inspired seafood menu.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve been treated (or treated myself) to a couple of spa treatments in the run-up to the wedding. Whilst at Babington House in early August, Oliver and I indulged in a couple’s massage at the Cowshed spa (the biggest and most beautiful in the UK). Later in the month, I was also invited to the Cowshed spa at The Ned, which is just as luxurious, and features a Moroccan hammam, indoor pool, and individual treatment rooms. If you’re looking to spoil yourself in London, I’d definitely recommend booking brunch at one of The Ned’s nine restaurants, followed by an afternoon at the spa; if you’re feeling like treating yourself even further, why not book a room to stay in afterwards too?
My sister and I also decided to have a sister spa day in London and book a couple’s massage at Agua Spa at Sea Containers. The interiors here are slick and minimal, the staff are all super friendly, and it was one the best massages I’ve ever had (plus you get given a bottle of massage oil to take away with you!).
Lastly, I also decided to book a facial at Sarah Chapman’s Skinesis clinic, after a lot of ‘um’ing and ‘ahh’ing over where I was going to get my pre-wedding facial. After seeing a lot of people rave about Skinesis online, followed by my best friend’s glowing testament, I decided to book a Bespoke Luxury Facial here. From the professional service, to the minimal and private treatment rooms, I loved every minute of my facial, and left with refreshed and firm skin, that was radiant the next morning.
There are two new albums that I’ve been loving lately and playing on repeat. First up is The Lumineers’ third album, full of lilting and jangly folk songs, my favourites being the mournful, romantic ‘Salt and The Sea’ and bonus track ‘Democracy’. The end of August also saw the release of Lana Del Rey’s latest album, Norman F*cking Rockwell: my favourite song has to be the self-indulgent ‘The Next Best American Record’.
In September, I was also invited to see Once Upon A Time in Hollywood at Song HQ, which I absolutely loved. I wouldn’t label myself a diehard Tarantino fan, but I do appreciate his clever way of playing with time, and character development in films like Kill Bill (and Kill Bill 2) and Pulp Fiction. Once Upon A Time In Hollywood was probably my favourite movie of his I’ve seen: the film features an all-star cast, set against the heady backdrop of golden-age Hollywood. The movie revolves around the real-life murder of burgeoning actress Sharon Tate by the Manson Family (a creepy cult living in a commune just outside of Los Angeles), but features plenty of comedy, and a clever twist at the end. Go see it if you can!