What I Wore: Ski Style

ski blogger
The snow bunny is back.

Though I have yet to secure my long-awaited ski dates, the so-called hauls that I have undergone leading up to said event have kept me slightly sane. Slightly. I still found an excuse to break in my ski style selections before hitting a single slope.

As soon as an inch of snow settled, I covered myself in Trespass and ran around for hours with Gatsby (The Pomeranian). With an endless number of pockets, toggles, cords, and general snow-smart additions, I am more excited than ever to get my ski boots on.

What I Wore:
White ‘Solitude’ ski pants from Trespass (they have detachable braces, a four-way stretch, and are genuinely perfection)
Black ‘Marlena’ ski jacket with faux fur hood from Trespass
Tom Ford sunglasses (similar here)
Hunter wellies (similar here)

ski blogger
ski blogger
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In Review: Amba Hotel Charing Cross, London

amba hotel charing cross
I can’t even deal with The Amba Hotel (in the expressively grateful Valley Girl sense, of course).

Last week, I booked in for an evening sandwiched between late events and early meetings and was truly overwhelmed by the whole experience.

First things first: the building. During my review searches, I had seen a number of previous guests coo over its proximity to the tube, but didn’t realise just how close it was. Amba Hotel Charing Cross is literally attached to the rail station and a 180-degree turn to face the front door as you emerge from the Underground. It is also rather majestic (yet unassuming) on the inside; I’m not sure anything could make a Londoner’s heart pitter patter much more.

And then, the service. From the second I went to check in, I was welcomed by a handful of staff that were not only pleasant and professional but genuinely friendly and considerate. I almost felt like a was about to stay in a friend’s (exceptionally enormous) home.

Climbing the grand wraparound starcases to the fifth floor, I entered the room and immediately wanted to cancel all the evening’s plans. The view (adjacent to Trafalgar Square)! The complimentary minibar (with a mini-sized Prosecco bottle)! The walk-in shower (and two-person tub)! The bed (adjacent to a large desk, but much more fun to do work in*)! The free iPad (hello, room service of the future)! The wi-fi (excellent, compared to generic ‘free wifi’)!

While I was Lady Boringpants and spent most of my afternoon having Nespressos over my laptop, its tourist’s dream of a location was not lost on my cold London heart; I opened all the windows to play peeping tom on the tourists and tourism on The Strand below.

After a tiresome evening of events and luxurious night of catching Zzzs, I played ‘Queen of The Amazon’ in the rain shower and sashayed down to The Terrace for a bit of Eggs Royale. Every single part of this scenario was perfection.

It was only checking out that burst the bubble. This hotel has the potential to become quite an expensive hobby.

* (I was recently interviewed for the Gumtree blog about the interior design in the Celebrity Big Brother house and I have to say I have never been anywhere so comfortable while ‘doing work’.)

amba hotel charing cross
amba hotel charing cross
amba hotel charing cross
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New Year, One New Change

one new change
Resolutions can be a recipe for disaster. After the first ‘night out’ drinking soda water or the first dinner-without-dessert since last new year. willpower doesn’t come so willingly. To combat this, I prefer to set myself goals I can invest in.

This year, I have resolved to go on more adventures. The first step was to book flights to and from Bangkok for early March (I am going to jump you like an Olympian, Thailand!) and the second step was to refresh my ski wardrobe at Ellis Brigham in One New ChangeM/b>.

I haven’t been skiing in almost ten years. Though I took to the snow like a fish to water, before I knew it a couple of holidays had passed, a few years had passed, a lot of ladder-climbing had passed, and I ended up here; obsessed with the snow from afar.

It is time to get back on the slopes.

Walking into Ellis Brigham (after the obligatory elevator trip to the top of One New Change to take in London’s dark blues), I was convinced I was going to leave the store with a shiny new pair of ski boots.

I got distracted. Distracted by rainbows of goggles, helmets, skiwear and all of their neighbouring goods. As quick as as money could possibly be spent, I spent it. With black and white skiwear protruding from my closets at home, I opted for the white Era 14/15 helmet from Giro (incredibly comfy, sleek, and made with thermostat control venting) and – my big investment – the Dragon APXs Whiteout 14/15 goggles with pink ionized lenses. Having dealt with a plethora of eye issues over the last year, it was clear goggles took precedence over boots as soon as I started to peruse the cases.

They also make my ski-obsessed Manfriend green with envy. Score.

On the way to check out, I remembered my final piece of non-rentable ski kit essentials – ski gloves – and left shortly thereafter with a bag full of promises.

I’m coming for you, Alps.

one new change
one new change
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The View From The Shard

view from the shard
I’m not sure any view of London is better than The View From The Shard. Even a helicopter ride would have trouble competing.

On a slightly nippy night in December, The Manfriend and I decided to play tourist and zoom sixty-nine floors into London’s skyline for a glass of bubbles. Natch.

Having visited the Empire State building at the start of our courtship, our expectations weren’t set all that high (views of a major city = pushy, camera phone-wielding crowds in my mind) but knew we would enjoy the ‘scene’ at the very least.

After ascending 800ft, our minds were blown. The 360-degree view is more breathtaking than words could do justice. With London’s major landmarks the size of Monopoly pieces beneath us, our small lift-riding group of four fell silent the second the city came into periphery.

Check out our full experience in the Youtube video, below!

Tips:
– Go on a clear day or night to ensure you see the full 40 mile stretch.
– For crowd control, head straight up to floor 72 when you step out of the final lift as the majority will start on 69 and discover the staircase to floor 72 later on.
– Turn your flash off if you’re taking photos.
– Though we went at night (and it was stunning), I would recommend a time slot near sunset to get the best of both worlds.
– The View From The Shard is open-air, so dress for the weather.
– Go to the toilet (the video will explain all).

In Review: Le Meridien Piccadilly, London

le meridien piccadilly
With such an intensely hectic and successful year under our proverbial belts, The Manfriend and I booked in for a too-busy-to-leave-the-country staycation at Le Meridien Piccadilly.

It was a no-brainer.

Though the location is as covetable as any tourist guide would suggest, the hotel – which overlooks Piccadilly – is spacious, luxurious, and filled with the friendliest staff you could imagine.

From check-in to check-out, our stay was seamless. Welcomed to our room by two fresh eclairs and a handwritten note – points for the little things – it took less than a minute to feel completely at home (the London map wallpaper and Piccadilly Circus-branded bathroom mirror didn’t hurt).

A video posted by Lela London (@lelalondon) on

After playing tourist, ridding Gaucho of all their protein (as it’s only around the corner), and returning to crash into a bed for five (for two), we woke up the next morning and headed straight for the swimming pool and sauna. Underneath the hustle and bustle of Piccadilly, Le Meridien guests are lucky enough to enjoy one of the largest hotel swimming pools around – mood lighting, deck chairs and all. It was the perfect start to a jam-packed day and a jam-packed breakfast.

Le Meridien Piccadilly’s Terrace Grill & Bar, you see, turns into a bit of a breakfast wonderland in the mornings. Though you’d call it ‘continental’, the variety of buffet options available for the hotel’s patrons range from carrot cake muffins to very naughty slabs of brie. I am not a big fan of buffet-style set-ups, but was not at all disappointed by the schizophrenic selection of sweets and savouries that found their way onto my plate. Not one bit.

le meridien piccadilly
le meridien piccadilly
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