My stay at Devonshire Club

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post and so I thought I’ll tell you about my recent trip to London where I thought I’d take full advantage of the Virgin Trains East Coast 1st class seat sale (it would be rude not to) and save my other half from his regular commute home from a week of working in the city. Having finished work early on a Friday afternoon, I jumped on the train from York down to London and settled into my seat with my headphones in and a Gin & Tonic to ease myself into the weekend. We had the intention of a nice chilled weekend, catching up with friends and finding a nice pub for a meal and a few drinks, or so i thought. As a rolled into London around 6.00pm (by which point I’d found myself slipping my 4th gratis Gin & Tonic) I gathered my luggage (not one to pack light) and prepared myself for the rush hour dash on the ThamesLink to Wimbledon – still oblivious to tonights change of plan.
I stepped onto the platform and made a swift exit towards St. Pancras before i was surprisingly greeted by my other half stood waiting for me. A little confused, as we had already planned to meet in Wimbledon, he took one of my bags and began to head for the tube, telling me that we just need to call somewhere on the way back. Assured we were not going straight for dinner and that we would first be dropping my bags off and would have time to change, we headed to the tube for Liverpool Street. Four stops later we were there and as I fought my way through the commuter crowd with my case I was battling against my inner Verruca Salt from shouting ‘I just want to go and drop my bags off!’. However I decided best to reign in the red mist and just walk, ‘not far’ … ‘nearly there’ … etc. We soon arrived at a cool little square, buzzing with the after work city crowd enjoying drinks in the sunshine, and were stood outside a discreet entrance to a building called the Devonshire Club, which i soon realised was a small boutique hotel that Dave had booked us into as a surprise for the evening.
In case you haven’t heard of it, The Devonshire Club is a recently opened private members club with a boutique hotel bolted on (one of several that seem to be popping up all over London at the moment) which contains a range of bars, restaurants, lounges, a health club and stylish accommodation that you can make use of only if you are a member or staying at the hotel. We wandered through the dark and dramatic mirrored reception towards the gold lifts and up to our room on the 3rd floor where we were greeted with a view of the Gherkin.
The room was softly lit using lamps to highlight the key features and the bed was beautifully dressed with stark white bedding, a mustard velvet throw and adorned with complimentary cushions against the towering upholstered headboard. The bed sat against a feature wall of red and white heavily patterned wallpaper, which, although very busy, actually worked very well against the soft lighting and clean lines of the white bedside tabled. In front of the floor to ceiling windows and the dark grey woollen drapery sat two grey upholstered occasion chairs and a dark oak circular end table. There was a matching dark oak desk/dressing table positioned to the corner of the room with an orangey peach velvet tub chair and was finished with a retro desk lamp. The bathroom was kept minimal but effective with a dark wooden vanity unit, vertical grey brick tiles and large rainfall shower, however the large glazed shower was poorly designed. The shower door hit the large pan rainfall shower head as it opened and the shower controls were tucked behind the door in the corner of the shower making it impossible to turn on the shower without first fully entering, shuffling around and closing the door. Looking beyond the shower issue, the room was not, as is the case in many hotels, a case of style over substance but the finer details and the little touches that make it special were all taken care of – a smart tv with an Apple TV box, a nespresso machine with a range of coffee pods and a complimentary mini bar of premium soft drinks and snacks. If I had one complaint with the room it would be the lack of a kettle and a decent sized cup  to enable me to have a proper cup of tea, which, if you’ve read any of my previous posts, you’ll know is essential to my day to day living! Using a nespresso machine to get hot water didn’t feel right and the small coffee cups, whilst perfectly adequate for an espresso shot, don’t really allow for a decent brew!
Having been impressed by the room, we decided to have some pre-dinner drinks in the Champagne bar where a DJ was playing some chilled tunes getting us in the mood for the weekend. Located next to the reception area, the Champagne Bar follows the same design concept as the room with a similar, albeit more muted range of colours, and was eclectically furnished with a combination of seating. A mixture of bright velvet sofas and armchairs sat against a selection of more sofas and chairs in  muted creams and greys, with the tables and sideboards all kept to the same dark wood. The lighting was kept soft with use of ceiling spot lights and gold floor lamps that all bounced stunningly off the gold and mirror clad bar. Aside from the amazing large white and blue splatter effect floor rugs (one of which I definitely need!) , the room was dominated by a large high gloss gold sculpture of a naked male placed in the middle of the entry staircase.

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Yellow is the new black 

Hey! So here it goes this is my £100 mini makeover challenge! Dave set me the challenge of making his bedroom look at little fresher and brighter; the black wall was probably not the best choice in hindsight – and not one I made! My initial thought was to bring light in to the room through the use of colour.

Before

Having used orange in the spare room, and still trying to keep a masculine tone to the room, my initial thoughts were to use black and white and monochromes. The only downside to this was I would be putting further black into the already dark room. Not one to give up (or admit I am wrong) I poured myself a strong tea and began deeper research for some inspiration. It was only when my mind began to wander that I looked around my lounge – you could practically hear the penny dropped when I thought yellow!! I am a massive ambassador for yellow when it’s done right. If you haven’t read it already, check out my Dayroom Daydream where you’ll see I have gone for a subtle Regency day room yellow. However this room needed a brighter, more vibrant, yellow to inject some much needed light and personality.

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