Eat and Drink: The Petersham Hotel, Richmond 

I celebrated my birthday with my family this week at a beautiful hotel in Richmond, The Petersham

This was the stunning view from our table, overlooking the meadows and the river. Thank goodness for the picturesque view, as the small children running up and down and shouting for an hour, at the next table, were a real challenge to our notion of a fancy afternoon tea. 


The champagne was lovely and the food, particularly the scones, was yummy! It was a real shame that the restaurant ran out of tea strainers (bizarre!), so we had to share and mix up all our different teas, but we made do! 

One week on and I’m still waiting for a reply to my feedback to the hotel. Would I recommend it? For the beautiful view, yes. For the service and overall experience, probably not. 

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Visit: Hotel du Vin, Brighton

Half term holidays offer teachers a little bit of headspace and time to rest. My partner and I, along with our puppy, visited another Hotel du Vin for our half term break. This one was in Brighton, as we wanted a taste of the sea air and rambles on the beach. 

The hotel was fab. My favourite part of our suite was the double bath situation with sea views – seriously, how amazing?! The Ren products lent themselves to relaxing evenings in the tub. 

We treated ourselves to the package that included breakfast and my favourite was definitely the eggs royale. There was a whole host of heathy choices to choose from. 


One of the great things about this hotel is that they welcome small dogs, so we were able to bring Hector with us! As you can see, he made himself at home on our bed and ignored the dog bed that the hotel kindly laid out for him! He also enjoyed snoozing on the armchair and watching TV. It made all the difference to our stay knowing that he could come on holiday with us. 

Visit: Birmingham city centre 

I recently went to Birmingham for a spa mini break and had a little time for a quick bit of sightseeing. I’d never visited Birmingham before, so was keen to explore a new city. 


There’s a wonderful mix of historic and modern architecture and art and everything is within walking distance of Birmingham New Street station. 


My favourite place was the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, which I spent a wonderful few hours wandering around. I didn’t have time to stop for food, but there’s a gorgeous cafe in the building. It’s also a very child-friendly museum. 

Spa Visit: Hotel du Vin, Birmingham 

A few weeks ago, I treated myself to some proper alone time and a little spa weekend in Birmingham. Perhaps not the most obvious choice, but I had found return tickets on the Trainline sale for £8, so it was a no-brainer. 

I stayed at the lovely Hotel du Vin, which was conveniently situated to get around the town centre, but was a little haven of tranquillity once inside. 

I purchased the spa treatment plus two course lunch deal and had a heavenly aromatherapy massage. 


Lunch was fine, nothing amazing, but it did the job! 


I wouldn’t go back for the food, but I’d definitely return for the peaceful hotel and the spa treatments.