So my boyfriend (AKA my personal photographer – who you’ll probably hear about a lot as he’s normally the one getting dragged out to the places I visit!) and I decided this year to do something a bit different for valentines. Usually we don’t celebrate it and would just go for a meal locally, but we used it more as an excuse to go eat nice food, spend some time together and get dressed up (who doesn’t like getting dressed up?!).
We started our weekend at Hotel55 in Ealing, it was convenient for me as my sister lives in the area and the tube was close by. I booked through the hotel directly, which meant we got breakfast included in the room rate and managed to get a garden facing double room for £80, which definitely felt like I got a good deal. The room was easy on the eye, clean, big enough for us both and the staff were friendly and attentive too.
197 Chiswick Firestation
After dropping off our bags at our room we made our way to lunch at 197 Chiswick Firestation. Anyone that knows me well knows I tend to be late whenever I go out, so I’m sure it comes as no surprise we were running behind schedule and weren’t going to make our original 1pm booking.
We rearranged our booking and when we got off the tube jumped in a taxi to take us to the door of the restaurant so we wouldn’t be even later…HOW WRONG WERE WE! Instead of our taxi driver taking us to “197 Chiswick firestation” he took us to THE ACTUAL FIRESTATION. OMG. We ended up finally getting to the restaurant at 1.45 (FYI it’s only a 6 minute walk from the station…. Taxis making your journey easier?! Yeah right!) but it was definitely worth the aggro getting there.
Beautifully designed inside with tall ceilings, hanging lights, velvet sofas and cactuses and a stunning bar in the centre of the restaurant. It’s an Instagram addicts (like me) dream! I ordered my favourite brunch meal, Eggs Royale and a cocktail – the rose petal martini, whilst Matt ordered the classic 197 burger; and they did not disappoint.
Primark Express Blowdry
I work a stones throw from Tottenham Court Road which is also where there is a huge Primark. I usually pop in here in the mornings when I get to work early and whilst it’s still quiet, clean and doesn’t resemble a jumble sale yet. I saw them holding a new temporary section on the ground floor of an “Express Blowdry bar”. (YEP you read that right) Primark had a blow dry bar!
I thought this would be great before dinner as I usually take ages doing my own hair and can never decide how to do it, so being express it wouldn’t take long either. The pricing was £1 a minute – minimum £10 and maximum £25. Bargain! As you can see from the photos it gave me loads of volume and added curls to the ends of my hair.
I was probably most excited about going to this restaurant out of our whole day / weekend and we definitely saved the best place until last! I have seen a lot of bloggers posting recently about being here and it was just as amazing as it looked in photos. Walking down the entrance walkway (great photo opportunity here girls) we were greeted by the reception desk who took us to the bar upstairs whilst we waited for our table.
We chose a valentines special sharing cocktail which came out in a rose gold pineapple finished with flowers and fruit for decoration on top. It tasted delicious and went down so easily, almost too easily! They had really good upbeat and popular music playing in the background too to set the fun vibe of the restaurant. It was dim lit inside with two trees in the middle with fairy lights which I also loved and gave a bit of a romantic feel.
We were taken to our table and we were given a set menu of 3 courses & a glass of bubbles for £28 each. Another bargain! Although we went over this price with our drinks and ordering sides with our meals it was still well worth the money.
The whole restaurant is very instagrammable and picturesque with a flower wall with “ours” written on (another great photo opportunity) and palm tree and rose gold themed ladies bathroom!
If you are wanting to go to a restaurant where you can have a cocktail, dress up nice and take lots of Insta photos – I would definitely recommend here!
My jumpsuit was from AQAQ, which have a small store based in Carnaby Street, who sell classy but quirky designed outfits mainly going out pieces. I fell in love with my jumpsuit and knew I had to have it. I love the cut out side and mesh across the top and back. The high-quality fabrics and trimming made it well worth the money – it’s a true standout piece if you want to make an entrance! You can buy it here.
Hope you enjoyed this!