Sunday, 23 November 2014

My Cardiff - Victorian Arcades

I love to lose an hour our two wandering the historic arcades in Cardiff city centre. Scattered either side of St Mary’s Street, there are around five and they are a breath of fresh air from all the chain stores on the high street in Cardiff. If you're going to visit Cardiff I highly recommend a trip to the arcades.

Cardiff
There are so many amazing shops hidden in the Arcades but I would say Spillers is the best place to start when exploring them. Spillers stocks a large range of CDs and records, and prides itself on catering to the non-mainstream end of the market. They have lots of in-store gigs promote local talent.
Spillers Records


Duke Street Arcade has great music shop too in the shape of Catapult Records. It stocks electro, dubstep, techno and dance.
Wally's Deli

It's in the Royal Arcade that you'll find Wally's Deli.  Royal Arcade opened in 1858 and is the oldest surviving arcade in Cardiff. Wally's Deli is named after its founder - Walter Salamon.  Walter's family were originally from Poland, and came to the UK in 1939 from Rohrbach (near Vienna) whilst fleeing from the Nazis.

In 2011, Wally’s Kaffeehaus opened upstairs. This Viennese-style coffee house specializes in open sandwiches.  My favourite thing to eat there is the sharing platters of cold meats or cheeses. The menu draws on the deli produce downstairs, so if you particularly like something chances are you can buy it on the way out.  Look at all the lovely 
goodies in the photo below, I wish Wally's delivered this in a takeaway because I would some right now. 



Wally's is a lovely family business, which has become a Cardiff institution. I'm always popping in and buying unusual things to try. I'll be stocking up on continental goodies from there for Christmas.


A place all make up fans and beauty bloggers might want to visit is the only e.l.f in Europe which is in the Royal Arcade in Cardiff. The arcades are full of independent shops so I urge you to pay a visit if you ever come to Cardiff. They have a completely different feel from other shopping areas in the city and you will find some unique and unusual treats in them.


If you want to check out more things to do in Cardiff check out the Millennium Hotels Guide to Cardiff and the Blogger vs Expert Guide to Cardiff that I took part in.

Gemma
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Thursday, 20 November 2014

Cardiff Blogs Christmas Social




It's time for another Cardiff Blogs meet (hooray!!) and as it's the festive season it's time for....drum roll!!

"The Cardiff Blogs Christmas Social"

Yes, it's the season to be jolly so we're all getting together to have a few drinks and generally be merry! As it's Christmas we may/may not play a few games (participation optional) to help you all get to know each other a little better. I've been helping to organise Cardiff Blogs meet ups for a couple of years now and they are always fun an informal events. It's great for fellow fashion/lifestyle bloggers like myself to go and meet people who blog about food, SEO, politics etc and make some blogging friends outside of the usual circles.

The meetup will be taking place on Wednesday 10th December at Milgi on City Road and we have the yurt all to ourselves.  There's free Wi-Fi, so tweeting during the event is encouraged and the hashtag is #cdfblogs.




The event will begin at 6:30pm but if you can't make it for 6:30pm don't worry, just turn up whenever you can, we'll still be happy to see you! If you want to come just sign up for tickets below.

Follow us at @cdfblogs to hear the latest information about the meetups.

Don't forget: our events are free to attend and open to everyone so if you're not a blogger (or not from Cardiff!) don't worry! We'll love you just as much if you come, we promise :)

Gemma
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Tuesday, 18 November 2014

#MyCelticXmas - Festive Afternoon Tea at The Celtic Manor

On Saturday I was lucky enough to attend the first ever blogger event at The Celtic Manor Resort. It was an exclusive preview of their Christmas Afternoon Tea which was totally delicious and a really fun experience. It was also a launch event for their new blog which will feature guest posts from South Wales based bloggers and be a place you can go to see behind the scenes at the resort.

On arrival we were greeted with a glass of bubbly and led in to a very festive room. We go to learn a little more about the resort and Karl the Pastry Chef explained what went into making the afternoon tea and the inspiration behind the food. They normally serve 100 afternoon teas a week but in the build up to Christmas they serve an average of 250 - 300 festive afternoon teas. That's a lot of cake!


The food was absolutely divine and we given some delicious finger sandwiches, Caerphilly cheese & leek tartlets, miniature brioche with prawns and a miniature bagel with smoked salmon. 

The savoury treats were all amazing but there was more... A Penderyn whiskey and marmalade festive Bara Brith, Celtic Manor mince pies, a white chocolate Christmas pudding truffle. I was feeling pretty stuffed by this point so I took home the top tier of the stand which included pistachio marzipan cones, toasted sweet chestnut bouche Noel and glacé cherry & apricot Florentine.



We were also served a afternoon tea staple, scones with jam and clotted cream. Ours had a little twist and contained candied citrus peel.


The mulled wine was to die for and came served in a tea pot with a Christmas cosy, how cute is that?


I would highly recommend the afternoon tea here, the surroundings were beautiful and relaxed and I loved how the menu was inspired by Wales and used Welsh ingredients. 


I tried to dress for the occasion and wore my dress with a  tea pot and tea cup print on it and my favourite old Topshop shoes.



I want to thank India and Jess from the marketing team at the Celtic Manor for hosting such a lovely event. I had a great time and it was nice to chat and relax with some blogging pals in such lovely surroundings.

If you want to enoy the festive afternoon tea yourself it will be served from 1st - 24th December.

Gemma
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Sunday, 16 November 2014

Cardiff Bloggers Meet Up - Petttigrew tea Rooms

A couple of weeks ago myself and two lovely local bloggers - Laura from Side Street Style and Chantelle from Two Hearts One Roof planned and hosted a afternoon tea themed meet up for bloggers from the South Wales area. I've organised a few blogging events in Cardiff before including some with Chantele but I have to admit this was my favourite one so far.

The venue we chose was Pettigrew Tea Rooms in Bute Park which is one of my favourite haunts in Cardiff. They prepared a bespoke afternoon tea for us and there were a few things on the menu that hadn't been served there before, lucky us! If you're ever in Cardiff I highly recommend a visit especially if the coconut and raspberry cake is on the menu.

This is a picture of a cream tea at pettigrew tea room in Cardiff.

We were treated to palma violet marshmallows, lava bread palmier, profilterolls, red onion and goats cheese mille-feuille and bara brith. All of them were absolutely delicious, I really want to try and make some marshmallows myself now. The ones was had were so soft mmmm.


I loved catching up with local bloggers, I think Cardiff has a great blogging community and I always look forward to seeing my blogging buddies. The food was lovely but the company was definitely the highlight of the day for me.


Isn't the interior of Pettigrew Tea Rooms super cute?


We did a drew a raffle and Nina won a cute iconemisis phone cover and we gave away some lovely dotcomgiftshop bunting (they also supplied some napkins and table decorations for the day).



this is a picture of cream tea


I want to thank ArgosGreen PeopleMiss PatisserieMove DancewearFever LondonM&SCrabtreeSt Kitts HerberyDiscount Coffee and By Kirsty for kindly supplying some gifts for everyone.


Here is a list of all the bloggers who attended on the day, make sure you check them all out:

Laura www.sidestreetstyle.com
Chantele  www.twoheartsoneroof.com
Nina http://the-littlenomad.blogspot.co.uk
Danielle http://lovelyappetite.com
Georgina http://www.mummy-pixie.com
Leanne http://asliceofmylifewales.blogspot.co.uk
Welsh Girl Problems http://welshgirlproblems.com
Jo http://ojosworld.com
Hannah  http://themakeupjunkiesdiary.blogspot.co.uk
Kate http://willowmakesthree.co.uk
Amy http://anotherinnocent.blogspot.co.uk
Kerry Norris http://www.seeonebuyone.blogspot.co.uk
Rebecca http://munchiesandmunchkins.com
Jess Wicks  http://http://keepingitwelsh.com
Louise http://www.louloumuses.com
Jayne http://cardiffinateacup.wordpress.com
Ffion http://www.asouthwalesblog.com
Sian http://www.elisgeorge.com
Claire http://www.evans-crittens.com/
Jayne http://jaynelutwyche.wordpress.com
Christine http://treasuretrovetales.wordpress.com

Gemma
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Monday, 10 November 2014

My week in photos

I had a really lovely week last week involving lots of good food, friends and fireworks. It really doesn't get much better than that. I missed out on all the big organised firework displays because Martyn had work on the weekend so I planned a little evening in the garden to celebrate bonfire night.

This is a picture of food on bonfire night, currywurst, hotdogs and mulled wine.

I made a obscene amount of food for two people including hotdogs, currywurst, mulled wine. baked Camembert and toasted marshmallows. Yum! Currywurst is my favourite, I wish takeaway places in the UK served it. The Germans are on to a good thing.

sparklers

I had way too much fun with the sparklers, anyone would think I was 5 years old.


We needed plenty of mulled wine to keep warm and I wore my lovely new Blue Melon hat. They have a wide selection from lots of brands so if you're off to France to ski this season or just want something to fight off the cold British Weather take a look at Blue Melon.


Both neighbours had lovely fireworks, thanks for the free display ;)

firework
This is a photo of my Blue Melon Hat

On Saturday I went shopping in Cardiff and headed to Spillers Records to see what new stock they had in and had lunch in Wallys. (post to follow on this)

This is a photo of Spillers Records in Cardiff

Amy kindly invited me along to Cardiff Comicon with her on Saturday afternoon. I loved seeing everyone so dressed up and I'm definitely going to go as Osgood next time. I've never done any cosplay before but why not ey? It's pretty surreal seeing some of your favourite cast members from shows like Game of Thrones and Doctor Who in the flesh, I hope the Cardiff event grows. Doctor Who and Sherlock are both made in Cardiff so it would be great to see more panel discussions from cast and crew here like they have in the big San Diego Comicon.


What did you get up to last week?

Gemma
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