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In celebration of last month’s National Tea Day, I set off on my first visit to a restaurant that has been on my Asian-obsessed hitlist for quite some time. Situated at the top of the Royal Garden Hotel, Min Jiang is a stylish space renowned for haute Chinese dishes as breathtaking as its birds-eye view of Kensington Palace.

To put Min Jiang to the test, our discerning table set off on a food and tea pairing of belt-breaking proportions.

Kicking things off with an Ooling Tea-Tail (Havana Club 7 Year Old Rum, Malibu & Spring King Oolong Tea with a slice of orange – the cocktail of my rum-loving British dreams), we quickly segued into a small steamed dim sum platter paired with Dragon Well Lung Ching Organic.

Slightly underwhelmed by the dim sum (I am a prudent judge of all things dim sum), I was very pleased to find the next dish – their ‘legendary’ wood-fired Beijing duck – the best I have had of its kind. As our paired cup of Formoda Oolong was poured, we were bestowed with a number of their most popular dishes (pan-fried Dover Sole fillets in XO sauce, diced rib-eye of beef with black pepper sauce
& seasonal vegetables stir-fried with oyster sauce) before wrapping our shareable savouries up with leftover duck-dusted fried noodles and a cup of Yunnan imperial FOP.

Weighed down with the most caffeinated bellies of Chinese food you could imagine, our bravest table companions picked at a beautiful seasonal fruit platter while the rest of us settled in with a farewell cupful of China Lychee Lizi Hongcha.

A meal at Min Jiang may not come cheap, but with unbeatable views, intimate luxury, and a perfect Beijing duck on the cards, it comes at great value.

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min jiang london 2
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london blogger
For the 90s kid…
…round up your peers and get yourself to Goosebumps Alive. The new immersive theatre experience has taken our favourite childhood horror series from R. L. Stine and turned them into a 90-minute spectacle. Under the ground in Waterloo’s Vaults, you explore seventeen rooms filled with demonic masks, haunted electronics, killer scarecrows, and much more; storytelling has never been so eerie or enveloping.

good ship benefit
For the beauty guru…
…nothing makes more sense than the Good Ship Benefit. The beauty brand have recently taken over the R.S. Hispaniola (the docked ship across from the London Eye) and turned it into a San Francisco-themed attraction coated in all things pink and fabulous. There is a bar, brow lounge, boutique, restaurant, secret underwater lounge, and even yoga classes on certain days!

My initial visit was made to get a private introduction to Benefit’s Cheekathon palette (exclusive to House of Fraser) – an incredible palette of five full-sized Benefit cheek products including cult favourites like the CORALista blush and Hoola bronzer. Initial…but not my last.

good ship benefit

For the London escapee…
Of course, if you’re still feeling restless after all of the above it might be time to get away. In preparation for an upcoming trip to Birmingham (before jetting off to Lanzarote!) on Wednesday, I came across 50% off Virgin Rail breaks on VoucherBin.co.uk as well at 40% off deals with Etihad, business class vouchers and more. If you’re needing a little break from the city, you might as well save yourself some spending money for your destination, eh?

fashion blogger
Last weekend, I took my own tattoo advice and headed down to Lenovo‘s pop-up “Illuminated” tattoo parlour to appease my creative needs and get my tech geek on.

As well as getting inked via temporary illumination, the event gave me the chance to play with the Yoga Tab 3 Pro and its built-in projector. I was surprised to find myself slightly infatuated with the tablet. As well as improving the average consumer’s Netflix And Chill game (imagine projecting a film while you take a bath!), the tablet is surprisingly powerful, crisp, and is built to he held, hung or free-standing for maximum comfort.

The barrier between art and life was well and truly destroyed, inspiring an Oscar Wilde-friendly wander through the equally magical streets of Soho.

What I Wore:
Purple printed cape (similar here)
Printed skirt (similar here)
White tank top from Nike
Scallop-edged Chelsea boots from Daniel Footwear (I have not received so many compliments on a pair of shoes since I first whipped out my Julian Hakes Mojitos)

tattoo parlour
tattoo parlour
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I have spent a number of my London Years hot-footing it through Victoria with little time spent getting to know the area itself.

I mean, I know the station better than I know members of my own family: I know the platforms which take you to South London the fastest, the right time to strike for the freshest bagels, and my favourite seat in every coffee shop within a mile, but I could never claim to know Victoria. Not until I spent the weekend there.

You all know I love a staycation (or, if you’re new here, hello and you do now!). Playing tourist in your own city is not only a schedule-conscious way to “get away” but a real opportunity to practice gratitude…

A photo posted by Lela London (@lelalondon) on

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