A Weekend in: Manchester

I’ve just returned from my first ever trip to Manchester this weekend and I had the best time, courtesy of The Slate Yard (massive thanks to Leanne for all of her help). We managed to explore Manchester as well as heading to the theatre and eating & drinking some top notch food and drink. Read on to find out what we got up to on our mini adventure!

 

We hopped on the train at London Euston on Saturday morning, it’s just over a two-hour journey, which means that we arrived in good time just before midday. We decided to walk to our accommodation so that we could get a little bit more familiar with the layout of the city and to try and find our bearings (which didn’t fully happen until something clicked in our brains on Sunday and we realised that we finally understood where we were and where we were going).

 

The Slate Yard is situated just a few minutes from the area called Spinningfields, which hosts a whole range of restaurants and bars. Perfect for finding somewhere to spend an evening! The Slate Yard is a new development which offers stylish spacious, modern apartments for rent with hand-crafted furniture and features superb services and facilities at no extra cost. They have a 24 hour-customer service (with Trudy on the front desk, she was great) and a beautiful social area called the residents lounge, they even have an on-site maintenance team. They offer flexible contracts and have no lettings fees so it’s really a deal not to be messed with and I’m sure the spaces will fill up in no time at all. Plus, there’s free Wi-Fi and coffee, these are the only things you really need in life. Oh. And pets are welcome!

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Trudy took us up from reception to our apartment, it had two double bedrooms (one with an ensuite) as well as an extra bathroom and an open plan kitchen and living room with a sweet little dining area. It was amazing and made me realise exactly the kind of space I’d like to live in back in London (although I’d probably be forking out a small fortune to live somewhere as new and nice as here with such a good ethos). It was very modern with grey accents such as the sofa and the bedroom carpets. The bathrooms were also grey with slate tiles (hence the name of the development maybe?) and everything was just very clean and chic.

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The Slate Yard really went above and beyond with our visit, they’d laid out some nibbles and breakfast bits including croissants, yoghurts, strawberries and cheese and crackers as well as a bottle of Prosecco for us to celebrate our first ever night in Manchester. As well as this there was a little moving in hamper which included soap, some sweets, a reed diffuser and a torch. So sweet. As well as this I went into one of the bedrooms to find a lovely little bath set with everything you need for a little pamper, not to mention it was prosecco and cassis flavour. Everything was just exactly how I’d pick it if I had actually been moving in for real. Cute little books (one about Instagram which I loved) and notebooks. As well as cookbooks and flowers and my friends personal favourite…a set of gold knives. She was absolutely obsessed with them. Maybe I’ll have to get her some for Christmas!

 

We didn’t have long to settle in as The Slate Yard had organised for us to go see a show! We picked to go to the matinee of Sunset Boulevard which is currently touring the UK and has Danny Mac (from Hollyoaks and more recently Strictly Come Dancing). I wasn’t too sure of what exactly to expect as I haven’t seen the film, which stars Glenn Close (although now I know I neeeeed to watch it as soon as I have time. It was a great show and both Danny Mac and Ria Jones who plays Norma were incredible, as was everyone. Just great! I was singing the songs all the way back to the apartment (which must’ve been annoying as I only knew two lines).

 

We dashed back to get glammed up and pop open the prosecco before heading back out to Neighbourhood (a New York inspired vibrant dining restaurant and bar – they also have branches in Leeds and Liverpool) for dinner and drinks!

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We were very happy to find out that Neighbourhood was only around 8 minute’s walk away because it was absolutely freezing but we managed to make it there in one piece and were shown to our table before more prosecco was brought over to us. Let the party begin.

 

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I loved the decor of the restaurant/bar which later got livelier and even had dancers on various tables and stages around the venue. There were lots of neon light quotes and signs and even a flower wall! Such a cool place to spend an evening, I’d definitely recommend it…you may even see a few celebrities chowing down in there like we did.

 

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We started with a selection of small plates which were all absolutely incredible. We chose: Lobster Wontons with Kimchi mayonnaise, Cheese Beignets with Dijon mustard, Chicken Lollipops with Lime & Coriander dip, Tostadas with Chicken, Shredded gem lettuce and cheddar cheese, everything was delicious, my favourite being the Lobster wontons but the cheese beignets were a close second. They were so cheesy and dreamy. But this just left us wanting more so we continued to order the Lobster Mac ‘N’ Cheese to share. This was also great although I struggled to find a huge amount of lobster, I think my friend was stealing it. You can’t go wrong with a Mac and cheese though can you. It’s just the rules.

 

 

By this time, we were stuffed and so opted to switch out desert for an array of cocktails, beginning with an espresso martini each. I then felt a little more adventurous and so decided to try out the Sugar Lips cocktail which consisted of Bacardi Rum, Wild Strawberry Liqueur, Disoranno, Lychee and Lemon. Although it said on the menu that it was ‘served blue’, I wasn’t expecting it to be as blue as it was. It was tasty nonetheless and the pink cream that it was served with was gorgeous. Not to mention the Strawberry Chocolate Lollipop that came with it, which was in the shape of a pair of lips! As well as this we both tried the pornstar martini, which was bubbling! I’ve never seen it served like that before. When you popped the bubbles steam or smoke or something came out which was cool, and it tasted quite pineapply which I’ve never experienced from a pornstar! Top marks Neighbourhood!

 

From here we went on to Manchester House which is 12 floors up and gave some beautiful views of Manchester. It was almost bonfire night and so we also got front row seats to some of the city’s firework displays! We then moved on to another bar a little further up the road to continue our one night in Manchester, although I didn’t manage to remember the name of it.

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The next morning was a monumental struggle. The error of our cocktail mixing ways was apparent as we failed to make it out of bed before 11, to then just crawl to the sofa to scoff our croissants left by The Slate Yard team. We finally mustered up the courage to shower and get dressed before descending back onto the streets of Manchester to find a suitable place for a hangover breakfast. We walked past so many places that would’ve been adequate but finally came to the decision that we would head to Home Sweet Home, which had been recommended to us by Leanne. Sadly, because we were so late in getting up and out of the apartment we managed to miss breakfast. But luckily for us, Home Sweet Home were still including various brunch dishes, including waffles and pancakes as well as a variety of avocado and toast dishes. My friend went for the slightly less adventurous egg and avocado on toast whilst I opted for the Steak Benny. It was phenomenal and exactly what I needed that morning. It consisted of; Seared pink rump steak, chorizo (which I decided against on this occasion), avocado, peppered mayo, light blue cheese crumb, soft poached egg and creamy hollandaise sauce. It was like a dream in my mouth and cured my hangover almost instantaneously. Wow. I washed it all down with some rose lemonade and then followed it with a very naughty S’moreo hot chocolate (this was their special) and came with whipped cream, marshmallows and an Oreo smore. So bad but so good.

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We headed back to the apartment to collect our things before making our way back to the station to make a start on our way back to London (sad). Obviously, our train was over 2 hours late which put us in a bad mood but hasn’t stopped me wanting to return to Manchester in the near future! Does anyone else have any recommendations on where to go if I return?!

Thanks so much to the team at The Slate Yard! You can find out more about about the apartments HERE

 

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