Recently I had the absolute pleasure of enjoying a much needed catch up with my two favourite beauties from, Next. Alice and Chantelle very kindly treated myself and other media influencers to a luxury overnight stay at Belfast’s 5*, The Merchant Hotel. Included in our fabulous get together was a relaxing treatment and afternoon tea at their iconic Spa.
For those of you who are not familiar with this extravagant establishment, The Merchant Hotel is home to a breathtaking backdrop, art deco suites and Christian Louboutin heaven. Located in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter, the hotel is surrounded by some of the city’s best bars, restaurants and shops. There is also a Rolls Royce service available for those who like to travel in style. The interior is quite victroian and mature, it was built in 1850’s and was once an Ulster Bank. Today you can still find many of these features including the vault which is still present.
As we slipped into our fluffy robes and slippers, we were presented with an adorable afternoon tea and various lunch meals. Me being me, I went straight to the desserts. The decadent white Panacotta was out for this world, so much so that I had three! I have a serious sweet tooth and I made the most of these treats. It probably wasn’t the best idea as we then changed into our swimwear for the pamper phase (hello food baby!).
Next stop on the agenda was the breathtaking Spa. The therapeutic extravaganza started in the state of the art Hydro Pool where we all chatted and moved between the pool, sauna and steam room. For the big day we had a choice of a treatments and I opted for the Merchant Hotel Classic Full Body Massage. It was a much needed treat and I enjoyed every second of it. To say I was relaxed is a bit of an understatement, falling into a therapeutic sleep was my reality. After I came off Cloud 9, we went into the relaxation room and then headed up to our suites to get ready for Next’s (top secret) AW16 preview.
There are two types of suites available, Victorian and Art Deco. I was ecstatic when I first swiped my room key and entered a magnificent art deco inspired suite. The interior and detailing within my room had me in awe, from the HUGE king size bed to the chic bathroom layout, I didn’t want to leave. The bathroom was a grogeous set up and extremely stylish, the glorious tub was a firm favourite of mine. After I explored the my boudoir, I was excited to find a Next bag waiting for me filled with beautiful summer pieces and of course, makeup. (How cute are the vintage toiletries, too cute to use!)
Like I’ve previously mentioned, later in the evening we had a preview of the new AW16 pieces (trust me, they’re majestic) and a FEAST of mouthwatering appetisers, main courses and desserts (yes more sweetness). I applied my usual FULL face of makeup (haha) and met the girls down in the cocktail bar. I can be quite a fussy eater at times so I played it safe with crab, chicken and chocolate! Myself and my partner in crime, Alice had such a fab time gossiping, snapping blurry selfies and drinking wine… naturally!
Usually when I’m staying in a hotel, after a while I’m ready to check out however I definitely could have stayed a little bit longer! In the morning it took me a while to get out of the bed and pack up. The night before antics left me feeling a little tired and I was in slow motion. I couldn’t resist a strong cuppa, an early morning movie (Breakfast At Tiffany’s) and some Eggs Benedict to help give me a some energy.
I would happily relive that adventure over and over again. I’m so lucky to work with such incredible ladies and a brand such as Next. I would like to say a MASSIVE thank you to Alice, Chantelle and the lovely staff at The Merchant Hotel. I had a magnificent time catching up with everyone and I look forward to our *Next* adventure! Haha.