Saturday, December 12

The Christmas Tag!

 photo IMG_1415.jpg  photo IMG_1418.jpg


Thursday, December 10

Brunch At Counter | Vauxhaull Arches, London

 photo counter1.jpg  photo counter2.jpg  photo counter3.jpg  photo counter5.jpg  photo counter6.jpg  photo counter7.jpg

I recently went to a Secret Sleepover with the team at Bloggers Hangout. We stayed in a London Apartment and had a great night, be sure to catch up with the post here!

The following day, we were treated to brunch. It was a total surprise for me on the day and as I was told Counter* was a fantastic restaurant, I packed my camera and wanted to share our brunch with you!

Located in Vauxhaull Arches, right next to the station, Counter has a really cool vibe. It's not too posh for brunch but I could definitely envision myself returning for a nice evening meal too. The decor is beautiful, with a choice of glass tables or more of a 'booth' style private seating arrangement. It stretches really far back and is much bigger than it looks on the outside. The whole restaurant was extremely clean, even the toilets are modern with dyson dryers. The bar is centrally located, with plenty of staff to help. 

I have a real sweet tooth and and normally love pancakes for brunch. I was also treating myself after winning at the Cosmo Blog Awards two days earlier, so I opted for the Cinnamon & Apple French Toast. I can honestly say it was the best I've ever had. The portion size was huge too! My friend Khrissie chose Eggs Benedict with crispy bacon, poached eggs and hollandaise on a muffin. It looks amazing. Meanwhile, Rach selected baked eggs, truffle mushrooms, tomato and spinach with walnut pesto. I love how the menu has healthy, savoury and sweet options for everyone, I'd love to take my mum one day.

We all enjoyed a pot of tea and fresh juices. Once we finished, the Manager showed us 'Make Your Own Bellini' too, a gorgeous peach syrup and Prosecco treat. Each of our meals was priced at £8 and with drinks etc, you're looking at about £12 per person which in my opinion, was really great value for money for the quality, service and experience we had.

Massive thanks to Counter for having me, you did not fail to disappoint! It was truly wonderful and I will definitely be stopping by again soon!

*Counter & Danielle at Bloggers Hangout kindly invited myself and two bloggers for a complimentary brunch in return for an honest review.


Wednesday, December 9

My Winter Makeup Routine ♡

 photo IMG_1405.jpg

Saturday, December 5

Top Ten Revision & Exam Tips!

Looking back at my teenage life, I really wish there were more YouTubers around with videos on learning to save my money, how to drive and tips for studying. This year, I set out to create all three for girls and guys who are currently going through any of these experiences, and I did it! This is my final 'advice' style video for 2015 and to top it off, I teamed up with an app called Gojimo too. Let me know if you're studying any of these help you and be sure to share your experience using Gojimo over on Twitter - @brogantatexo.

Finally, if you're doing mocks or exams, GOOD LUCK. You can do it!


Friday, December 4

Novotel Hotel Stay | Blackfriars, London

As a blogger who lives two hours from London, there are many times during the year I need to stay in a hotel. When the lovely people at Novotel* offered to accommodate both Amelia & I for the Cosmopolitan Blog Awards, I was very grateful for a place to rest my head. I knew it would be a wonderful stay from reading the TripAdvisor reviews (4 and half stars!) however, this truly exceeded my expectations.

Located on Blackfriars Road, Novotel is close to London Waterloo Station, The Thames River, London Eye and Tate Modern. I was in a Superior Room on the 10th floor and had great views of London. I used Uber to drop me off and my driver could pull up right outside too.

 photo NOV1.jpg
 photo NOV2.jpg
 photo NOV5.jpg
 photo NOV4.jpg
 photo NOV7.jpg

Lets be honest, a hotel room in most places does exactly what it says on the tin, but it's the little details that leave the biggest impression on me. For example, plug sockets with little shelves next to the beds = WIN. Perfect for charging my phone. Thank you Novotel.

Secondly, they have Bluetooth speakers!? I couldn't believe it! I had a room to myself so as you can imagine, there was something a bit nice about blasting Bieber around my room whilst I did my make up for the awards (not too loudly, obviously). Free Wifi is also a massive bonus for me, the signal strength worked great in my room and was so easy to connect.

The bed. Oh the bed. It was HEAVEN. Feather pillows and crisp white bedding. I was almost glad I didn't have to share the luxury however, there is plenty of room for two and it's unbelievably comfy.

The 'coolest' feature which I didn't feel the need to use was the glass screen that separates the room from the bathroom, it becomes transparent or opaque at the touch of a button!

Finally, the bathroom was gorgeous, especially the rainfall shower and super bright lights! I loved the the design and how the doors blended into the walls when you had them open too.

 photo NOV6.jpg  photo NOV3.jpg
 photo NOV8.jpg

Also good to know..

- Self check in / check out
- USB charging ports
- Flat screen 32" TV
- Safe
- Minibar
- Fridge (which Amelia & I successful fitted a bottle of champagne standing up right in!!)
- 'Smart' pillows for extra comfort
- Room service available (the club sandwiches are delicious)
- Pets are allowed!

I didn't eat dinner at the restaurant but I did come down to experience breakfast which was included in our stay. Amelia did the opposite and had hers set up as a room service however, I'm fussy and like to pick what I fancy that morning (especially as I had a hangover).
The food was amazing, full English Breakfast, pancakes and all! The manager came down to check all his staff and guests were happy which didn't go unnoticed either.

Final thoughts
The hotel also has an indoor heated swimming pool, fitness centre and sauna however, I didn't have time to experience these. The customer service in reception was fantastic however, and the area was extremely clean and tidy. To use the lifts in the hotel you had to tap your room key before entering the floor you required, which made me feel safer.

Overall my stay at Novotel Blackfriars was fabulous. Priced from £150 a night, I can honestly say that I'll be staying again in future. I really enjoyed it and couldn't fault a single thing!!

ps. I filmed a little 'hotel room tour' in this vlog too!
*Complimentary stay in return for an honest review.
© Brogan Tate | All rights reserved.
Blog Design Handcrafted by pipdig