As you’ll have seen on my social media a couple of weeks ago, I went on a short 2-night trip to London. I went on my own to meet up with a friend, and attend the UK premiere of a film we worked on together, at the BFI London Film Festival 2019. My dear friend Andrea Chalupa is the producer and screenwriter of the film Mr Jones, which had its UK premiere at the festival. Andrea is from New York and we got really close last year when she came to Scotland to film this movie that I worked on. A friend i’ll treasure for life! It stars James Norton (Grantchester) and Vanessa Kirby (The Crown), alongside Peter Saasgard.The film tells the story of 1930s British journalist Gareth Jones, who gained his fame by being the first foreign journalist to interview and fly with Adolf Hitler. Now, in this film, he is after an interview with Stalin and travels to Russia under a press visa. Whilst pursuing his interview he stumbles upon something huge. The Russian government was to keep him in Moscow where they can keep an eye on him and stop this happening; but Jones escapes on a train to the Ukraine to understand more of what is going on. Here he uncovers the truth of what is going on under Stalin’s regime – there is not the prosperity and efficiency that his propaganda promotes – grain farmers in the Ukraine are not enjoying a good life as a result of their efforts. They are making Stalin rich, whilst they starve without food. Jones is caught and arrested, and when back in Britain, he struggles to get people to believe his story. The remainder of the film follows him as he writes his story and exposes the truth.Point A Hotels*** kindly offered me accommodation for my trip at their fairly new Kensington Olympia hotel – a 5-minute walk from Earls Court tube station. This is an affordable hotel with a lot of style, and THE BEST continental breakfast spread I have ever experienced!The reception is chic and packed with colour, and there is a small bar area just off of this, to grab a cold bottled drink or a quick snack. This area is also where breakfast is served. Breakfast is insanely good and is worth every penny! There is a selection of warm sweet and savoury pastries, fresh greek yogurt pots with a variety of toppings, compotes and syrups, porridge and cereals.The rooms in Point A hotels are small – there’s no getting away from this fact. I would really have struggled with having someone else in my room. To me, it was suitable for one person only. This is an affordable hotel. It’s in a nice location, decorated beautifully, offers good free wifi and has amazing breakfasts, but the inevitable cost-cutting from the brand is shown in the room sizes. The rooms are almost pod-like, and very much like what Citizen M offers. There’s air conditioning, an extremely comfortable Hypnos bed with bedside cabinets attached, a TV screen opposite, a small shelf and some hooks to hang clothes on. The bathroom is also very small; but does feature a very powerful, fantastic rainfall shower. There’s also some very high-tech mood lighting that I really struggled to work.I arrived on a Saturday night and I just immediately got into my room, into a hot shower, and this into bed for a pamper night. I used the Verb Hydrating Hair Mask (£15 from Revolve) on my hair, a lovely Jo Malone English Oak and Redcurrant Body & Hand Wash (£32 from John Lewis), and a new Primark Beauty Naturals Body Scrubber (£2 from Primark). I cleansed my face with my beloved Frances Prescott Tri-Balm (£46 from Frances Prescott) and the pollution-fighting Oskia CityLife Cleansing Concentrate (£36 from Space NK).Once I climbed into the very comfortable Hypnos bed, I lathered on some of my trusted sleep-inducing Lush Sleepy Body Lotion, applied some This Works Stress Check Breathe-In Aromatherapy Rollerball to my wrists and temples, and spritzed my pillows with the This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray – this little duo comes in their Dream Team Duo (£10 from This Works). I then watched some Strictly Come Dancing with some rose-scented under-eye masks on that I picked up from TK Mazz, and I then applied the new Primark Naturals Overnight Sleep Mask (£2 from Primark) to my face. Once I was ready to go to sleep, I put on the Spacemasks in aid of The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity mask (£15 for 5 from Spacemasks). This was lovely and warming, but it had no real scent at all to it, which is worth noting if you were hoping for this.
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The next morning, I met up with Andrea in Mayfair to go for breakfast at The Wolesley. This is such a beautiful and stylish place, that makes breakfast a real occasion. I had the pancakes with berries and fresh cream, as well as a pineapple juice, and it was incredibly good! It’s a luxurious spot with prices that reflect that. If you want brunch that gives you more for your money, check out these bottomless brunch in London ideas.I then had a walk – it’s a great time to go to see London’s autumn colours – and a look around Fortnum & Mason and Selfridges, before going to the Harrods food hall to pick up some lunch. I then headed back to the hotel to have an afternoon nap before heading out to the film screening and Q&A at night. You can see photos from the night here.
I definitely want to spend time in different areas of London on my next trip – especially to explore Notting Hill as it has such a chilled vibe. What is your favourite area of London to stay in?
Images – Mr Jones – Film Produkcja
Image – Point A Hotels breakfast – Point A Hotels
***This post contains a complimentary press stay, but all opinions are my own.
You can see more of what i’m loving, and what i’m doing, over on my Instagram.