I’ve been living in Stoke and working in Manchester for just under a month now. Manchester is by far one of my favourite places, ever. But something about the affordable rent in Stoke just keeps me here for the time being. I thought after going there every day I might grow a little sick of it. But I simply haven’t. Every lunch time I spend the full hour strolling around town, discovering new places to eat and new things to see.
Last weekend I was invited to Manchester by Mercure Hotels and it’s like they knew I just couldn’t get enough of the place. Immediately I said yes. My old work pals and I have been gearing up for a night out in Manchester for weeks now and it seems that when it comes to booking hotels in Manchester
, it’s quite a tricky decision to make; with so many in such prime locations. So thank you Mercure for solving this woe and sorting us out!
Whilst we were there we drank lots of bubbles, ate a great deal of food and danced a little bit as well. Mercure treated us to the delights of a seasonally local 3 course menu after an evening of exploring the city.
Featuring a rang of locally sourced food, the menu had all the delicious North West classics you need. Lancashire Hot Pot, Cheshire Cheeses, Bury Black Pudding… All washed down with some amazing cocktails which were mixed to perfection at Mercure’s very own bar. Shortly after the meal, we were so stuffed (and a little tipsy), so we retreated to our lovely twin room… For a while. We then caught wind that Satan’s Hollow was having a Harry Potter themed evening. Of course, we needed to attend.
After a pretty heavy evening, I more than welcomed the breakfast options! Usually I will skip the hotel breakfast buffet, as I just don’t rate them. Globby scrambled eggs and sweaty bacon? No thanks. However, when I saw the Mercure breakfast buffet I was endlessly impressed.
Not only did they have ACTUAL fried eggs (hey, it’s the small details that make it), but they also had potatoes and the most deliciously juicy sausages. With a minor hangover forming, this was all such a welcome addition to my morning. Not only that, but the fruit selection had watermelon, which we all know is the best hangover cure, ever.
It wasn’t all about the hotel though, let’s just take this opportunity to sing the praises of Manchester even more….
The 5 Reasons I love Manchester:
The food situation is kind of a blessing and a curse actually. Each day for my lunch I wonder around, unable to decide where to go. My personal favourite place for a ‘quick lunch’ (LOL) is Northern Soul grilled cheese, up towards the Northern Quarter. There is of course, Taco Bell as well, which is great for a burrito on the go… Amongst many more. Each week I make a mini hit list of where to eat next for my lunch, with Crazy Pedros Part Time Pizza Parlour at the top of the list and Go Falafel in the mix as well.
Planning a more lengthy eating occasion with friends can be equally as exciting, with SO MANY PLACES TO CHOOSE FROM. Solita, Almost Famous, Zouk, Yard & Coop, Wahaca… everywhere in the Corn Exchange. I’m currently eyeing up the newly opened Bundobust and I’m desperate for a Tiffin Box from Mowgli!
I was thinking that my 20 minute walk from Picadilly to Deansgate would help me tone up, however, the variety of food going in to my belly each day is kind of counteracting that….
As mentioned, we did go to Satan’s Hollow on Saturday and not only because they had a Harry Potter night on. I absolutely LOVE the place and will go any opportunity I get. I mean, where else can you go and dance about to Stevie Nicks and nu-metal classics under one satan themed roof? Okay, a few places, but Satan’s is my favourite.
There are SO many places to go for just as much dancing fun though. If you like retro music that’s not shit, then FAB Cafe is the place to head to. B52’s, INXS, Human League and any retro song you can shake a stick at can be heard in there. Canal Street, Deansgate Locks, Northern Quarter and more… There’s so many places to choose from, depending on how you feel. And the best part? You can make minimal effort as everyone is so laid back.
Which funnily enough leads me on to the next reason I love Manchester – the PEOPLE. The people are friendly, laid back and know how to have a good time. Somehow, they also have that DGAF attitude as well though. I mean, you only have to look at Liam Gallagher or Shaun Ryder to gather that.
It’s not just people around the city now that make it what it is though. You’ve only got to watch the Northern Soul documentary on iPlayer, or any music program about the Indie scene, to see how Manchester people helped to create some of the best music and cultures going.
Not to mention, I’ve met some brilliant bloggers from Manchester too…
With so many museums, galleries and areas of street art to see, the culture of Manchester is there at every turn. Whether you’re snapchatting the David Bowie mural in Northern Quarter, or exploring MOSI; there’s a place on every corner to immerse yourself in some stunning art work and history.
If one place closes down, another 3 crop up to replace it.
You can go anywhere from Hard Rock Cafe to HOME
and experience another undiscovered gem or nugget of culture to keep your love of Manchester alive.
Okay, a tedious one to some, but as it’s literally my life now I’m throwing the commute in there! Before I drove to work every, single day. Every job I’ve had I’ve driven the journey and if my car wasn’t working I wouldn’t even consider public transport. With Manchester only being 45 minutes on the train, I actually welcome this in to my life! I’ve watched all the Planet Earth Episodes, the Oasis docufilm and caught up on emails each day – instead of sitting in my car getting road rage over tractors or getting stuck in traffic. Granted, the cost is a bit of a kick in the face, but it’s still tolerable and as long as I have enough iPlayer downloads to watch, I’m happy.
Unfortunately I don’t just work by the train station either, HOWEVER, the walk to work is actually so refreshing! It’s about 15/20 minutes down to the office and I feel so much more awake as soon as I’m there. It really does blow the cobwebs off – in a good way! I also get to stop by my new discovery in the form of Mangobean, which is a new coffee place which has the tagline ‘Coffee Wonderland’. Immediately talking my language…. I’m currently working my way through their ‘Coffee Cocktail’ menu. (Bonus tip; download the app for a free coffee!).
Unfortunately the Manchester Christmas Markets have drawn to an end now. But I’d still recommend taking a winter break
in the city, as there’s so much to see and do!
What’s your favourite city?