Heavenly Hotels: The Nadler

There are two Nadler hotels in London, one in Soho and the other in Kensington, both offering affordable luxury lodgings in the city. Rather uniquely the hotels do not offer any meals with no restaurant on site but instead have Local Ambassadors available 24 hours of the day to advise you on places to eat and things to do in the immediate area. If you prefer a leisurely breakfast in the comfort of your hotel room the Nadler Soho has an exclusive arrangement with the nearby Prici’s bakery simply make your choice by 10pm from Princi’s breakfast menu, provided on the on-screen directory, for delivery to your room the following morning.

nadler nadler2Nadler also have a very unique take on their loyalty scheme, instead of earning points which you inevitably end up being unable to use every time you reach a milestone number of stays at one of their hotels, you will be treated to a special gift from thoughtfully chosen gourmet cupcakes to complimentary room upgrades.

Holy Cupcakes Batman: Bea’s of Bloomsbury

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It’s been a while since I posted a Holy Cupcakes entry but I figure so long as it’s only little and often rather than every week like I was doing initially it should be OK right? So when I was ridiculously early for last months #LondonBookClub  I figured I’d pop in past Bea’s of Bloomsbury for a quick cuppa and a cupcake to pass the time and I’m so glad I did as it is such a cute little place! With a motto like Life is Short, Eat More Cake you can’t really go wrong can you?

The Bloomsbury store is the original Bea’s location but they have two other stores in Farringdon and St Pauls as well. This one is really comfy and more like being in your own sitting room than at a cafe which is great if you want to just hang out with friends and catch up over a cup of tea!

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I was a very naughty blogger and forgot to take a picture of the entire cake selection they had on offer because as soon as I saw that they were offering a special rainbow cupcake in celebration of LGBT month I just knew that was the cake for me! Doesn’t it look beautiful? The tea and cake set me back £5.00 so not the cheapest snack but not the most expensive around either.

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It was a light vanilla sponge cake with a zingy and creamy lemon buttercream topping. Just delicious and absolutely perfect with my pot of earl grey tea as well. I was in the store for almost an hour right up until before closing and I never felt like I was being hurried or rushed which was lovely especially seeing as I was there on my own.

The geniuses as Deliveroo have also teamed up with Bea’s to offer delivery! Yes, you read that right, you can get gorgeous cupcakes delivered right to your door for when you need that ultimate cake fix. Brilliant!

Cupcake Rating – Alfred- Capture (118x70) (113x62)Capture (118x70) (113x62)

Heavenly Hotels: The Zetter Hotel & Townhouse

Named The Zetter, as it was once home to the football pools company of the same name, the 59-room boutique hotel and restaurant was voted one of the world’s ’50 coolest hotels’ by industry bible Conde Nast Traveller. Indeed the calm, cooling colour schemes that they have chosen really appeal to my sense of style and I love the quirky wall art in each of the rooms as well.

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The Zetter guarantees that they will offer you the best price on their rooms and if you book directly through their website you get the added bonus of a free conti breakfast thrown in. If you’re looking for something even fancier why not book The Bruno Experience. Specially created for foodies the experience includes your room, a glass of champagne, a special 5 course menu at Bistro Bruno Loubet AND a full breakfast in the morning.

FREE: moreLondon festival

I happened to be wandering the Southbank while the Wimbledon final was playing on Sunday and came across the moreLondon festival. More London Estates organises this four-month free outdoor festival every year and there is something for everything happening at The Scoop. During June was the Fringe; an eclectic mix of free music, dance, theatre and opera. Then was the Wimbledon fortnight when every match was shown live, the atmosphere when I walked past was awesome. People were so chilled out and just enjoying themselves which was nice to see.

Starting today for the next three weeks (every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday lunchtime and evenings) is the live Music section of moreLondon everything from Ronnie Scott’s Rejects & the London Swing Dance Society to Elements who are some of London’s finest Reggae Musicians. Definitely something for everyone.

The fourth stage of moreLondon focuses on theatre with not one, not two, not three but FOUR! different plays being performed each night brought to life by the Gods and Monsters Theatre Company.

Join us as we bring an extraordinary cast of gods, giants, nymphs, dwarfs and humans to life, revealing how mortals and immortals fall under the spell of a powerful ring, possession of which brings the chaos and glory of absolute power! The story unfolds over four hours interspersed with generous intervals and builds into an unforgettable, family friendly evening of mythical romance, comedy and drama. Catch them on different nights or see them all in one epic visit.

There are also a number of post-show Q&A sessions for those who want to know a bit more about the process of bringing these stories to the stage.

The final section on the festival is the one I’m personally looking forward to; four weeks of current, classic and cult films screened in the open air including beauties such as Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Goonies and The Lego Movie.

All of the moreLondon events are completely free of charge and seats are on a first come first serve basis so get there early. You are more than welcome to bring your own food and drink with you but please leave any glass behind for safety reasons. Given that they are being held in the open air there is the chance that they will be cancelled at the last-minute due to the weather however a decision will be made 30 minutes prior to the start time as to whether the event will go ahead.

For the full schedule please check out the moreLondon website and maybe I’ll see you at some of the events!

July Goals

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First off here’s how I did with last months goals:

    • Take lunch with me to work every day
      Fail. I lasted about a week!
    • Go for a 30+ min walk at least every other day
      Fail. The weather was too unpredictable.
    • No spending money on entertainment
      Fail. Fail. Fail.
    • Finish writing my 30 by 30 list
      Pass. Check it out here.
    • Earn some extra money
      Pass. Not much but sold a few bits on eBay.

For July…

  • Get flat rented out
  • Pay it forward
  • Sign up to Thames Path Challenge
  • Make a financial plan
  • Enjoy some time off

Spending Report: 28th June – 4th July 2014

Saturday (£0.00)
No spend day!

Sunday (£0.49)
-£0.49 KwikSave (Groceries)

Monday (+£607.76)
-£74.00 Council Tax (Essentials)
+£681.76 Green Scheme (Essentials)

Total: +£607.27
(Essentials: +£607.76, Groceries: £0.49)

Tuesday (£480.70)
-£366.17 Mortgage (Essentials)
-£38.00 Scottish Power (Essentials)
-£31.50 Maintenance Fee (Essentials)
-£0.49 KwikSave (Groceries)
-£3.65 Greggs (Groceries)
-£37.50 National Theatre (Entertainment)
-£1.00 Cloakroom (Miscellaneous)
-£2.39 McDonalds (Eating Out)

Wednesday (£54.63)
-£33.00 Three (Essentials)
-£11.84 Boots (£8.05 Health/Fitness, £3.79 Groceries)
-£0.90 Greggs (Groceries)
-£8.89 Cooperative (Groceries)

Thursday (£43.10)
-£40.00 Oyster (Transport)
-£3.10 Tesco (Groceries)

Friday (£4.00)
-£3.00 Tesco (Groceries)
-£1.00 Cloakroom (Miscellaneous)

Total: £582.43
(Essentials: £468.67, Groceries: £23.82, Eating Out: £2.39, Transport: £40.00, Entertainment: £37.50, Health/Fitness: £8.05, Miscellaneous: £2.00)

Heavenly Hotels: W London

W London has one of the best locations of all hotels in London being on one of the corners of Leicester Square. Excellent if you want to attend a red carpet premiere or just stay right in the middle of the action. Leicester Square is truly an area of London that never sleeps. The rooms are gorgeously decadent and the different levels have names like fabulous room and marvellous suite.

w hotel w hotel2The rest of the hotel also shares some of the glitz and glamour of its location with dozens of mirror balls in the lobby and some simply stunning artwork. There’s also a spa, private screening room and the Wyld bar for you to relax however you choose.

July 2014 NET Worth/Budget

Credit
Cash – £2.54
Santander 123 C/A – £3,067.42
First Direct C/A – £1,376.54
EasyCash – £1.00
Credit total – £4,447.38

Debts
Capital One C/C – £892.69
Creation C/C – £562.30
MBNA C/C – £3,319.92
MBNA C/C 2 – £4,118.40
Debt total – (£8,893.31)

Net worth
£4,447.38 – £8,893.31 = -£4,445.93

So there it is, I finally have an accurate number of how much debt I am in and wow it makes me want to cry. I have never really been in any kind of debt before and even though I know that this is a necessary evil for the time being it does not make me feel good to see it written down. The good thing about it is I finally feel like I know where I stand and I feel more empowered to make a plan to get back to the positive numbers yet again.

Budgeted Actual +/-
Rent & Bills £600 £567.39 -£32.61
Essentials £3,500 £2,772.61 -£727.39
Everything Else £750 £525.93 -£224.07
- Food/Drink £300 £321.72 £21.72
– Groceries £154.94
– Eating Out £166.78
- Travel £200 -£106.05 -£306.05
– Transport £0.00
– Breaks -£106.05
- Entertainment £0 £237.90 £237.90
- Miscellaneous £250 £72.36 -£177.64
– Clothes £0.00
– Beauty £11.99
– Gifts £11.00
–Charity £0.00
–Fitness £8.05
–Other £41.32
£4,850 £3,865.93 -£984.07

The good thing is that I came in almost £1,000 under budget this month so things could have been worse. I spent very little on Miscellaneous items but way too much on entertainment because I forgot that I would need to sort out tickets for London Film and Comic Con this month rather than after the first of July to beat the online store closing. Overspent on food yet again but only slightly and I don’t intend on doing any big shops over the next month as I’m only in London for two weeks before heading home for another two where I can raid my mum’s fridge. (Sorry mum!)

Budgeted Actual +/-
Rent & Bills £600
Essentials £500
Everything Else £500
- Food/Drink £150
– Groceries
– Eating Out
- Travel £150
– Transport
– Breaks
- Entertainment £100
- Miscellaneous £100
– Clothes
– Beauty
– Gifts
–Charity
–Fitness
–Other
£1,600

I’m waiting to hear if I’m getting a pay rise this year and if I do it’ll be reflected in my July pay in two weeks which would be great. My flat is now (bar some cleaning) finally ready to be rented out which I intend to get resolved when I’m at home mid-month so it should be rented out and earning me money very soon as well. Although I figure the first months rent will be eaten but by fees etc sadly.

June Reading

I finished reading Take Back the Skies and wow bloody wow! I found myself so completely sucked in by Lucy’s steampunk world in a way I haven’t recently. It was a wonderful, heart-breaking read. Luckily there are other books in the series planned albeit set in different countries in the fictional world other than Anglya and I greatly look forward to them being written as Lucy’s writing talent begins to grow.

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With the movie due out (although it’s no longer getting a cinema release :() I decided to re-read the first Vampire academy novel, something I don’t think I’ve done since moving to London. It’s not a fabulous piece of literature but I do adore it and it definitely helped to remind me of the plot before I watched the film.

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As you probably know Maya Angelou died recently so #LondonBookClub chose to tackle her first autobiography I know why the caged birds sing as our June book. I confess I knew absolutely nothing about the woman before her death and I was intrigued to read this. It was difficult going, her life was definitely not plain sailing which made it was a hard slog for me to get through it all. It’s one of those books that you can’t say you enjoyed but you’re glad you read.

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I devoured Insurgent in just one day yesterday as I was off work ill. I knew after reading Divergent that I would love it but I didn’t expect to get through it quite so quickly!It’s just as good as Divergent if not more so because the foundations have already been laid and I’m really looking forward to the movie but sadly have quite a wait as it’s not out til 2015!

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I’m now on to Allegient but I’m struggling with it as it flips between Tris and Four’s narrative which didn’t happen in the first two books. I think I’m so used to hearing Tris’ voice in my head that it’s difficult to switch between them. It would be interesting to know why she chose to structure the last book in this way and not the others…

BOOKS READ THIS MONTH: 4
BOOKS READ SO FAR THIS YEAR: 22.5
BOOKS READ FOR 30 BY 30: 7

Spending Report: 21st – 27th June 2014

Saturday (£26.07)
-£5.09 KwikSave (Groceries)
-£20.98 Argos (Miscellaneous)

Sunday (£31.22)
-£0.49 KwikSave (Groceries)
-£15.73 The Pheasant (Eating Out)
-£15.00 Renaissance (Eating Out)

Monday (£29.98)
-£2.24 Kwiksave (Groceries)
-£5.00 Wedding Collection (Gift)
-£4.00 Groupon (Entertainment)
-£18.74 Sainsburys (Groceries)

Tuesday (£190.05)
-£0.55 KwikSave (Groceries)
-£189.50 Showmasters (Entertainment)

Wednesday (£32.50)
-£16.75 The Prince Charles Cinema (Entertainment)
-£5.75 Adobo (Eating Out)
-£5.50 Beas of Bloomsbury (Eating Out)
-£4.50 The Rugby Tavern (Eating Out)

Thursday (£43.63)
-£1.51 Sainsbury (Groceries)
-£42.12 Ocado (Groceries)

Friday (£498.49)
-£480.00 Rent (Rent/Bills)
-£2.09 McDonalds (Eating Out)
-£1.71 Tesco (Groceries)
-£14.69 Gallus (Eating Out)

Total: £851.94
(Rent/Bills: £480.00, Groceries: £72.45, Eating Out: £63.26, Entertainment: £210.25, Gift: £5.00, Miscellaneous: £20.98)