Posted by Emma Jones on Mon 14th November 2011 at 10:12 AM, Filed in Unusual Christmas Gift IdeasEaster Gifts IdeasGift Experience VoucherGifts For HerGifts For HimHen Party GiftsLuxury Gift IdeasValentines gifts

Let Urban Retreat at Harrods give you the Gift of Beauty this Christmas. During the run up to party season, a girl needs a little help to ensure she is looking her most fabulous best.  This year, why not opt for the best of the best with a superb ‘Jewel Package’.  Well, they say that diamonds are a girl’s best friend, and with a little help from Urban Retreat you will know that statement is true!  With packages such as Diamond, Sapphire, Ruby and Pearl, all including an ultimate pampering session, there will be no lady left disappointed this year!

Urban Retreat invites you to envelop yourself in ultimate luxury with the help of a shining team of hair, makeup and skincare specialists. This is a present guaranteed to delight a loved one or a well deserved treat to you.  Any choice from the specially selected packages of indulgent treatments will leave you glowing with inner radiance, allure and glamour.


On hearing of these wonderful ‘Jewel Packages’, I knew I had to get someone to try it out!  A friend was lucky enough to sample the Pearl Package (£110) and was truly delighted with it all.  This package capture’s the true lustre of the ocean’s most precious jewel, leaving you glowing with classic elegance.  It includes the following:-
• Blow-dry
• Custom manicure
• Makeup Application with the Daniel Sandler Team
• Glass of Champagne

Here is what she said:-

“On entering Urban Retreat, it really was a fabulous salon – A true Retreat in the middle of Urban London.  James was waiting for me for a wash and blow-dry. He gave me a very good wash and the most wonderful blow dry I’ve ever had.  He used large rollers to ensure full body – it was the best blow dry I have ever had. The end result was my hair was full bodied, bouncy and beautiful.

A delightful girl Jenni arrived to do my manicure. I had a cut, file, moisturise, soak, cuticles, buff, base coat, two colour coats and a top coat. At the last minute one of my nails had a very small hair on it, so she started from scratch again on that nail. I commented that it was ok, but she said it had to be perfect! Included was a hand and lower arm massage – all very nice!

I then moved on to have my make up done. I’ve never had my make up done for me before, so I was a little bit apprehensive! Adel was lovely – gentle and friendly. She asked and I explained that I prefer the natural look. She explained every action – foundation, concealer, eye shadow, eye liner, mascara, blusher, lipstick and gloss.

Overall, I found the whole experience wonderful.  I left the Urban Retreat feeling like Pretty Woman – my hair was bouncy and beautiful, my nails were buffed and gorgeous and my make-up was a real treat – I felt great.  The staff were gentle and friendly, helpful and attentive, thorough, professional and polished.  I was told the complete package would take 1 hour 15 minutes – in fact it took 1 hour 40 minutes, which shows that each person took their time to do a good job. There was a really nice atmosphere – very buzzing and happy.”


This all sounds amazing; what a treat!  And, with the Pearl Package being the cheapest, just imagine what it will feel like with the Diamond Package at £450?  A voucher for any treatment at Urban Retreat in Harrods will make a remarkable gift for many this Christmas – or in fact any time of year.  To find out details on further treatments and Christmas packages please check out  To book a treatment at Urban Retreat at Harrods please call 020 7893 8333.

Posted by Emma Jones on Mon 23rd May 2011 at 10:46 AM, Filed in Gift Experience VoucherFathers Day Gift IdeasGifts For HerGifts For HimLuxury Gift IdeasMothers Day Gift IdeasValentines gifts

I would love to share my recent experience with our readers, and highly recommend it to those who will be visiting or who live in Northern Ireland.  The Galgorm Resort & Spa is nothing but true delight throughout and if you ever get the opportunity to stay here, you will not be disappointed!  With a stunning setting and extensive grounds, Galgorm offers a perfect luxurious experience – one in which you can relax and get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  Their Spa is something else altogether!


The Thermal Spa offers you the chance to experience the ancient rituals of bathing in cold, cool, warm and hot environments to aid detoxification, purification and relaxation. The infinity hydrotherapy pool contains massage jets to ease away tensions while the heated cabins provide varying degrees of heat and humidity aimed at targeting different parts of your body including your respiratory and circulatory systems, your muscles and your skin. An invigorating rub with ice from the ice fountain will truly awaken the senses while a spell in the experience shower will prepare your skin for further treatments or maybe a relaxing soak in our outdoor hot-tub.


The World Class Spa at Galgorm is a true haven of peace and tranquillity – it really is a magical place.  I had the ultimate pleasure of experiencing two treatments at the Spa, and to say I was calm and relaxed is an understatement! On first walking into the spa, you are overwhelmed of the peacefulness and I knew then that I was in for a right treat!  Starting with a truly magnificent Hot Lava Shell Massage followed by a fantastic Deluxe Manicure, I left feeling like a different person. 

My ‘me time’ experience was then followed by a delectable dinner at Gillies Bar which had no faults whatsoever.  And then, what lady could refuse sampling a few cocktails from the cocktail bar!  Here (if you’re lucky) the gorgeous Jamie can conjure up mouth-watering drinks effortlessly – I have to recommend the Artic Mintree, totally divine!

As a truly wonderful gift, I feel that a Gift Voucher from Galgorm Spa would be unique and unexpected!  With treatments available for men and women, couples, mum’s to be plus much more, there really is something for everyone.  So go on, I urge you to give your loved one a truly wonderful experience!

Another wonderful experience which I had during my visit was a tour of Belfast’s historical sites, with NI Black Taxi Tours. Their Belfast Black Taxi Tours are the best way to explore Belfast. The guide was knowledgeable and completely unbiased. He picked me up from the hotel and after the tour dropped me at the best spots for some retail therapy. Recommended!

Please visit for further information and spa treatment prices.

Posted by Paul Handley on Tue 29th March 2011 at 08:53 AM, Filed in Gift Experience VoucherGifts For HerGifts For HimGifts For KidsLatest Gift NewsBig Boys Toys Gifts
If you are looking for a different kind of gift, something that will stay with the recipient forever, you just cannot go wrong with this one. The Dublin Invasion promises to be a perfect gift for all Star Wars fans…

Sci Fi conventions have been labelled as maybe a bit geeky, but Emerald Garrison’s Dublin Invasion is the real deal. This is an exhibition of what is, to many, the best loved film of our childhoods.

This Easter weekend (April 23rd, 24th and 25th), Dublin will host the invasion. The exhibition is recognised as one of the most professional in the world. The attractions include the most amazing replica props.


Emerald Garrison have delivered authentic and realistic models, such as life size Y wing fighter and life size AT ST walker (!), speeder bike, Sith speeder bike and skiff.

You can get photos with Darth Vader, Princess Leia, R2-D2, the menacing Emperor and Darth Maul. Storm Troopers will also be there to maintain order, so best behaviour is advised!

The working model of R2D2, whirling around the exhibition is like an electronic Pied Piper, and it’s not just the kids who give chase!


Some high profile members of the original cast will be present, so bring your autograph books! Already confirmed at Dublin Invasion are Kenny Baker (R2D2), Paul Blake (Greedo), Michael John Kingma (Tarfful the Wookie), Julian Glover (General Veers), Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett) and Garrick Hagon (Biggs Darklighter), not forgetting mega collector and Star Wars author Steve Sansweet.

I challenge you to find a better day out. This, for me, represents an awesome gift idea for young and old.

I am going, and I am counting down the days. A full report on this stunning Star Wars exhibition will follow…..

Posted by Emma Jones on Fri 16th July 2010 at 08:40 AM, Filed in Baby Shower Gifts IdeasUnusual Christmas Gift IdeasEaster Gifts IdeasGift Experience VoucherGifts For HerGifts For HimGifts For KidsMothers Day Gift IdeasPersonalised Gift IdeasWedding Gift Ideas

For those who have been to a Build-a-Bear workshop, you will agree with me that it is the most enjoyable, exciting thing you can do with your child.  For those who have not been there, I have to ask you ‘Why Not?’  I completely urge you to visit a store and explore it for yourselves.


As a family, my Fiancé, two boys and myself went to the Build-A-Bear Workshop.  We were greeted at the door by an enthusiastic assistant and manager Glen, whom then introduced us to Roisin and Alana, who really got us all excited about the experience ahead of us.  If all the staff at Build-A-Bear Workshops are like these assistants, then you will definitely get in the spirit within seconds!

What soon became apparent was a genuine care for the child in question. This is totally for the children, with the emphasis being on giving the little ones experiences (and bears!) that they will not forget. All the staff were extra friendly and completely in tune with the kids. It was refreshing to see this kind of attitude as opposed to everything being about profit.



Posted by Bob Bulmer on Sat 19th December 2009 at 01:43 AM, Filed in Unusual Christmas Gift IdeasGift Experience VoucherFathers Day Gift IdeasGifts For HerGifts For HimLuxury Gift IdeasMost Expensive GiftsMothers Day Gift IdeasStag Party GiftsValentines giftsWedding FavorsWedding Gift IdeasWine Hamper Gifts

For the wine lover you may like to consider one of the superb Vinopolis gift sets this Christmas. Over the past 10 years the company has built a sterling reputation for its famed wine tour and tasting under dramatic Victorian railway arches on London’s Bank End, a short walk from Tate Modern and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre.

This year the company have compiled a good range of gift sets for most pockets:

Under £50
Try something that little bit different this year. Teach someone about the joy of wine by giving them two tickets to the Vinopolis Grapevine Tour. For just £39, your loved one and a friend can enjoy a ‘How to Taste Wine’ session, five regular wine tastings, a Bombay Sapphire cocktail and a Vinopolis tasting notebook.

Under £60
Treat wine lovers with The Grapevine Vinopolis in a
Box – enjoy two tickets to the Grapevine Tour with five wine tastings and a Bombay Sapphire cocktail, and a bottle of Vinopolis red or white wine to take home.



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