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Culinary Experiences

Bonds Lifestyle: Shop, Cafe and Antiques Emporium

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“On our way to Stratford-upon-Avon a few years back, we drove past a sign to a shop and cafe we had not visited before, one of these places where you’ve seen the sign a couple of times and decided to definitely pop in sometime.. and today was that time.

Well, to say we didn’t know what to expect and that we were completely bowled would be the understatement of the century. Because Bonds Lifestyle is…. ‘Amazing’, ‘Fantastic’ and ‘An incredible shopping experience’? Yes, it’s all of those things, but they don’t actually quite describe Bonds Lifestyle well enough.

We just have to show you… click the video above and when you’ve watched it, if you think you’ve seen what it’s all about, you’d be closer but you still wouldn’t have seen even a fraction of the utter fabulousness that is Bonds Lifestyle”.

Mette ♡

Bonds Lifestyle are all over social media – follow them here: FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

 

 

Culinary Experiences

The Farm in Stratford-upon-Avon

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“Yesterway we visited The Farm in Stratford-upon-Avon for the first time. I had heard lots about The Farm, had seen pictures and pretty good idea of what to expect… or so I thought. The Farm more than lived up to my great expectations of a wholesome food destination set in beautiful surroundings and offering ethical and sustainable culinary produce and products. The Farm is an absolutely wonderful place for shopping, eating and getting together… we all loved it, you will too”. 

Mette ♡

An experience for everyone

Set close to the town of Stratford-Upon-Avon, in the heart of the Warwickshire countryside, the aim of The Farm was to create a memorable place that can be experienced by everyone. A unique destination that promotes wholesome, ethical and sustainable food prepared by Artisan producers from the local area, Great Britain and the world.

 

Food and Wellbeing Destination

The Farm is a family run business that offers a unique food and wellbeing destination that showcases local Artisan produce and promotes ethical, wholesome and sustainable food. The Farm was once a fruit farm, home to hundreds of apple, pear, plum and cherry trees, which produced for the likes of Waitrose and Mr Kipling. The Farm was popular with South Warwickshire residence for it’s ‘pick your own’ fruit and strawberries. In recent years The Farm struggled to survive and became derelict. the current owners took on the re-development in 2017, and with a shared vision and a lot of hard work, they created a truly stunning environment for all to enjoy.

Head to The Farm in Stratford-upon-Avon.

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Culinary Experiences

A Happy Stay at The Howard Arms

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“On this cold and wet Sunday in January I came home from our stay at The Howard Arms in Ilmington. It was just before midday and I had no other plans than sitting down by my computer to write this very feature on our wonderful experience. But then life happened… the kids needed the mum-taxi, the house looked like it had been robbed (which, thankfully, it hadn’t), the washing needed doing and the fridge was empty so shopping needed to be done… but it was okay, I was in a great mood and I could do anything!

Then the dog was having it no longer, he wanted to go out, so off we went for a long walk. It was really cold, I wrapped up warm, put some music in the headphones and off we went. As I was walking around this enormous field, Lady Gaga and I were singing our hearts out (“You look at me and, Babe, I wanna catch on fire”, my favourite song these days: ‘Remember Us This Way’ from the ‘A Star is Born’ soundtrack) and I was thankful there was nobody around to hear me but the dog (and he’s nearly deaf so he doesn’t mind), I realised I was still in a great mood, I could still do anything… in fact, I hadn’t stopped smiling all day and no amount of shopping, taxi’ing, washing, cleaning, dog-walking and tidying was going to change that”.

Mette ♡

The Howard Arms works wonders

It turns out a wonderfully relaxing time with your loved one in a beautiful and cosy country pub like The Howard Arms does wonders for your wellbeing… not that we were overly stressed to begin with, but life is busy and without even realising it, a nice afternoon walk in the Warwickshire countryside, a delicious meal by a country pub fire, a lovely room with a super-comfy bed and a hearty breakfast in the morning was just the thing to get us to wind way down and find ourselves again at the end of a busy week… Ahhhh!

BOOK YOUR STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS HERE.

 

 

A cosy and luxurious Bed & Breakfast

The Howard Arms in Ilmington is a luxury Bed & Breakfast, an incredibly popular country dining pub and quite the destination for people from near and far in the UK and beyond. Located right in the centre of a quiet Cotswold village, it overlooks a stunning old chestnut tree on the green and is mere moments from several great walking paths. An idyllic setting indeed.

When we arrived, we decided to explore some of the beautiful scenery surrounding the pub, so we wrapped up warm, put our walking boots on, found the nearest public footpath and off we went on the most wonderful walk across some beautiful fields. It was only when it became a little darker that we decided to turn back, but we could have walked on and on.

 

The pre-dinner snooze

When we returned, it was time for the pre-dinner snooze (yes, it’s a thing, you should try it, it’s fabulous!) in the comfortable and super-soft bed in the beautiful room and before we knew it, it was 7 o’clock and time for dinner. In the cosy restaurant the fire crackled, the bar was buzzing and the restaurant was filling up nicely. It was a very busy Saturday night but from the standard of the service, it could have been a slow Monday at lunchtime, because they did not skip a beat and our every need was met with a smile from start to finish.

BOOK YOUR STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS HERE.

 

Wonderful Food

The award-winning Head Chef at The Howard Arms has created a menu of top-quality pub favourites alongside imaginative starters, mains and irresistible puddings and we had the most wonderful dinner experience on this Saturday night. The food was amazing, the atmosphere fantastic and we so enjoyed our nearly 3 hours at what must be the best table in the house, close enough to the fire to feel a comfortable heat, surrounded by happy fellow diners but tugged away in the window seat creating a nice, private space for two.

 

A hearty breakfast to finish

The next morning we came back down for breakfast to see the very same restaurant transformed into a calm morning scene with a lovely Continental breakfast buffet and a mouth-watering menu of cooked breakfast dishes. We went for a traditional English breakfast and salmon on toast, both utterly delicious.

BOOK YOUR STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS HERE.

 

And so was the conclusion of our wonderful, relaxing stay at The Howard Arms in Ilmington. We absolutely will be back again… anything that can set your mood on a positive path and keep a smile on your face for days, is worth revisiting for sure.

Mette ♡

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Culinary Experiences

Fifteen (more) things to do in Stratford-upon-Avon this summer

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This is our Fifteen Super Things to do in Stratford-upon-Avon PART TWO. We’ll never run out of places to go and things to experience in this wonderful town of ours, so we’re sharing it all with you in parts. Read Fifteen Super Things to do in Stratford-upon-Avon PART ONE here.

 

1. Hooray’s

A favourite in Stratford-upon-Avon, Hooray’s British Gelato Kitchen is the home of a mouth-watering array of delectable delights to tickle your taste buds. Hooray’s style and inspiration can be classed as a fusion of influences ranging from Classic Cotswolds and the Best of British, to Cosmopolitan Chic and Global Gourmet, with the common denominator always being great flavours and delicious treats.

At Hooray’s you can enjoy a ravishing range of cool gelato and fruity sorbet, all made onsite in the Gelato Kitchen, hot crepes and waffles, yummy cakes and locally roasted gourmet coffee, all prepared fresh and ready to be enjoyed in the cosy restaurant on the High Street in Stratford-upon-Avon.

 

2. The Howard Arms

The Howard Arms is a glorious pub, restaurant and bed & breakfast. Peacefully overlooking the old chestnut tree on the green, it lies in the heart of the idyllic village of Ilmington. Inside, the fire crackles and the bar bustles with locals and visitors drinking from our carefully chosen selection of ales, beers and wine.

Read our review: A HAPPY STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS.

 

3. The Butcher’s Social

The Butcher’s Social is one of our all time favourites… alongside the famous salted caramel chicken wings, you can choose from a specially crafted main menu, bring the family over for Sunday Lunch or enjoy that timeless classic – a champagne brunch. With a fully stocked bar, a gorgeous garden and some top secret plans for this iconic building, The Butchers Social is the place to be.

Read our review: THE BUTCHER’S SOCIAL – BAR & RESTAURANT.

 

4. All Things Wild

All Things Wild is a fantastic year-round family attraction, comprising of plenty of activities both indoor and outdoor, to keep all ages entertained whatever the weather!

 

5. Trivia Trails

Trivia Trails, a very enjoyable quiz trail in Stratford-upon-Avon or Warwick town centre. Walk past timber-framed mediaeval buildings, the River Avon, theatres, Shakespeare’s homes, churches and castles, quaint lanes and gardens looking for the answers to a mix of historical observation and a couple of fun questions with a little competitiveness thrown into the mix.

 

6. Tudor World

Right in the centre of town, down a little cobbled alley off Sheep Street, is Tudor World, a 16th-century barn steeped in rich and exciting history and with literary connections to William Shakespeare himself, on a site that dates back to the birth of the town in the late 12th century and the history of Stratford-upon-Avon. It is Tudor World, an independent museum where different areas of Tudor life are recreated, interweaved with stories of the building’s rich history.

 

7. Henley Chocolates

Henley Chocolates is the Warwickshire home of hand crafted artisan chocolate. Just outside Stratford-upon-Avon a team of ‘chocolate fairies’ make fabulously tasty products with the best fresh, local ingredients that they can lay their hands on. Henley Chocolates sell silly chocolate and serious chocolate and everything in between, they’re even eco-friendly.

You can buy the delicous chocolate online but also visit the workshop to see, hear, taste, touch and smell the chocolate, or even try your hand at making chocolate pizzas or hand piped lollipops.

 

8. Hathaways Tea Rooms

Hathaway Tea Rooms is a quintessentially English Tea Room, independently run and situated right in the very heart of Stratford-upon-Avon and offering the traditional tea room experience with cream tea and afternoon tea offered alongside an extensive breakfast and lunch menu. 

 

 

9. Everyman

Everyman Cinema in Stratford-upon-Avon offers the latest movies, independent and classic films alongside a warm and friendly atmosphere, excellent food and drink selection and fantastic customer service. Furthermore, this exciting venue in Stratford-upon-Avon hosts special events, launches and a diverse calendar of live satellite broadcasts, there really is is something for everyone at Everyman.

And it’s not just about the movies, it’s also good food and drink from a super bar menu of drinks or hot food and snacks that can be enjoyed in the bar area or in your cinema seat.

 

10. Hotel du Vin

Hotel du Vin in Stratford-upon-Avon is a stylish boutique hotel with the famous French bistro and relaxing bar with al fresco dining available in a beautifully landscaped courtyard.

 

11. The Queen’s Head

Situated right in the centre of our popular town, The Queens Head is surrounded by an abundance of historic buildings and stunning natural beauty and is an ideal base from which to explore all that Stratford-upon-Avon has to offer. Being only a stone’s throw away from the beautiful River Avon and the birthplace of the world’s most renowned poet and playwright William Shakespeare, you will never be stuck for things to see and do.

 

12. Molemi

Molemi is an independent, family-owned business located right in the heart of Stratford-upon-Avon on High Street.  Molemi select their collection from brands that offer high quality at reasonable prices. Styles that offer practicality as well as comfort.

 

13. Stratford Mini Golf

One of the premier minigolf venues in the country, Stratford Mini Golf is situated on the bank of the river Avon and maintains a good test of skill and judgement for players of all levels. Open since 2001, this Miniature Golf Course in Stratford-upon-Avon has enjoyed entertaining visitors from all over the world, year after year tourists, visitors and locals keep going back to the course for an hour or two of good family fun.

 

14. Shakespeare’s New Place

Walk in Shakespeare’s footsteps at Shakespeare’s New Place and meet the man behind the works in a fascinating new exhibition. Discover beautiful gardens and specially-commissioned artworks.

Shakespeare’s New Place was his family home from 1597 until he died in the house in 1616.  The house was demolished in 1759, a registered garden has been designed to commemorate the importance of the site and allow visitors to make their own personal connection with Shakespeare.

 

15. The RSC Tower

For the ultimate view of our wonderful town, there’s no better place to go than the tower at The RSC. On a clear day you can see for miles.

 

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