Archive for review

24 Jul 2017

LEGENDS OF THE SANDBAR on your coffee table

No Comments 55Factory, art, lifestyle, my words, review, travel

Legends of the Sandbar by Christopher Bickford

If you ever needed an excuse to learn how to surf, this coffee table book is it! However, this is not just a picture book- even though it contains some of the most stunning images of surf culture that I have seen.

Photographer and author Christopher Bickford, has made a home for himself in the sleepy Outer Banks in North Carolina, and uses it as a base to surf, write and collect documentary images. His book Legends of the Sandbar is an insider’s view of life on the Banks.

 

Legends of the Sandbar

Read more for 55Factory here

 

20 Jul 2017

THERE’S MORE THAN MAMA MIA IN SKIATHOS GREECE

No Comments hotel, lifestyle, my words, review, sara darling, travel

I love Greece. Fact! 

It’s got everything I need for the perfect, peaceful break- sea, sun, sand, sardines, surf.. and a blaring Mama Mia soundtrack!!! 

Although don’t let that put you off. 

If you like beaches, sunsets, amazing food and massages, I would highly recommend the Skiathos Princess resort.. it’s the perfect base for a Robinson Crusoe adventure and learning how to paddle board. 

Read what I got up to here- when I went on my five star adventure for The Bespoke Black Book…

http://www.thebespokeblackbook.com/skiathos/

 

03 Jul 2017

HEAD TO THE MED FOR PURE RELAXATION- TRAVEL WRITING

No Comments lifestyle, my words, review, style nest, travel

I love Turkey. Fact! Read what I got up to when I visited the stunning, luxury D-Resort Gocek for Stylenest here. Warning, you might get some serious vacay envy!!!

The only thing to worry about on your trip to Turkey is what book to take to read!

25 Jun 2017

FRANCE DOES GOOD CHATEAUX: FACT

No Comments 55Factory, art, lifestyle, my words, review, travel

I’m not always first off the blocks when it comes to history, but after my visit to the beautiful French Loire Valley, I can see a bit of a castle spotting addiction coming on. See what I got up to for 55Factory.net here: 

http://www.55factory.net/55travels-blog/you-say-castle-i-say-chateau

And enjoy my pics in the meantime! 

 

 

14 Jun 2017

PESKY POLLEN BE GONE WITH

No Comments bblogger, beauty, health & beauty, lblogger, my words, review, sara darling

Spring has sprung, and summer is in the air. I can’t complain, but my poor eyes can! They positively weep at the jingle of the ice cream man, as that means the sun has his hat on, and the hay fever pollen is out.

I didn’t suffer with hay fever as a child. It is one of those pesky irritations which has developed, and is thriving even though I live by the beach. However, nothing is going to stop this Darling from going out and enjoying herself… and that is why I am very grateful to have found some non-irritable eye drops that soothe my poor itchy eyes, and I’m pretty sure give me some added sparkle! 

Murine_eyedrops

Thankfully, someone recommended Murine Bright & Moist Eyes which you can pop in morning, noon and night and the lubricating liquid gel adds that extra barrier of moisture. Be gone naughty itches! I love my sunglasses collection, but I like to wear make up underneath, with no fear of smudging down my face too! 

Boasting drops specifically for hay fever symptoms, and normal dry eyes, this is a brand I am super pleased to have discovered. Buy yours in most Boots stores, or online here.

 

 

 

 

30 May 2017

PINK FLOYD AT THE V&A

No Comments blogger, lifestyle, music, my words, news, review, sara darling

pink_floyd_V&A

Anybody with a cool mum, dad or older sibling will no doubt have some Pink Floyd records in their collection. Known as a band which influenced past generations, they were most known for their psychedelic approach to pop in the sixties and seventies, when music, dancing and experimentation were wild n trippy! Which was later credited to Syd Barrett, as the other members never re-gained the coolness after he left!

For the first time, London’s V&A Museum, has dedicated a retrospective show to celebrate the band in all their glory. Entitled ‘Their Mortal Remains”, the show provides a complete audio and visual journey through the unique and extraordinary lives of the original band members, to the where they are today.

Starting out as a four piece- Syd Barrett, Nick Mason, Richard Wright and Roger Waters pioneered experimental pop, which was like no other. Popular with the masses, the original songs were social expressions of discontent and flicked their finger up to authority. Fuelled by experimental drug taking, the band were poster boys for the excesses that came with the fame (although they were middle class credible musicians!) However it wasn’t long until Syd Barrett dramatically quit, after experiencing one high too many in 1968….

Replaced by guitarist David Gilmour, the band then took on a much more sensible musical outlook, moving away from fickle pop songs, to longer ballads which wallowed in darkness and melancholy. The infamous album, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ was released in 1973, and still sells 7,000 copies per week, which is an indication of how influential is still is all over the world.

As you make your way down a darkened corridor illuminated by a holographic representation of the pyramid prism from Dark Side of the Moon, you can hear the song via the supplied Bluetooth headphones which bring the static installations to life. 

With the music becoming more musical, the great minds behind the band were still working in overdrive, and the exhibition incorporates the bonkers inflatable flying pigs and sheep from ‘Animals’ and sketches done by political illustrator Gerald Scarfe, designer of the infamous album ‘The Wall’. You can even have a go at remixing their classic tracks. 

A totally immersive experience, this will inspire any fan or think they know it all! You get to hear some of the most astonishing music and iconic imagery of the rock era. Even if you are a second generation conformer, this exhibition is a no holds barred exploration of how a band lives, loves and makes music together- plus all the ugly bits! 

Make sure you leave time for the highlight of the show when the band reunited for 2005’s ‘Live 8’ concert in Hyde Park, and you can lose yourself in the surround sound and image room listening to the extended version of “Comfortably Numb”.

Bands today could take note of making music for the masses, but there will never be another Pink Floyd! 

Buy tickets here

17 May 2017

SIRENS OF TITAN: SWEET SURRENDER

No Comments 55Factory, lblogger, lifestyle, my words, news, review, sara darling

SOUND OF THE SUMMER

When I like a band, I really like a band! And Sirens of Titan is a band I have fallen for big stylee.. Check out my review on 55Factory of their latest track Sweet Surrender. The video rocks too! 

http://www.55factory.net/55platforms/sweet-surrender-sound-of-the-summer

17 May 2017

FOODIE DELIGHT HITS UNSUSPECTING SOUTH KENSINGTON

No Comments food, lblogger, my words, news, review, sara darling

CERU IS THE PLACE TO KNOW FOR FOOD FUSION

Ceru_S.Kens_SaraDarling5

For a taste of the Med mixed with a touch of Arabia, and all the best bits of Turkey, Persia, Egypt and Greece, head to the latest addition to the Foodie Circuit, Ceru, in South Kensington. 

 

Slow cooked, freshly prepared dishes have been rounded into a well flavoured menu of sharing dishes, inspired by the Levant; The owner’s approach to bring the sunshine and spices to experimental customers who love good food and wine, seems to have found the perfect home in Bute Street.

 

An understated exterior, leads to a warm and buzzy interior, complete with candles, booths and mosaics which transport you faraway from Central London.  

Super friendly and knowledgeable staff are happy to help with the small but perfectly formed menu, and offer choices and suggestions for any allergies or dietary requirements. They also know a thing or two about the cocktail and wine menu, and I struck lucky with my ‘Too Hot to Handle’ concoction. A mixture of Famous Grouse, Disaronno, Chilli, Lemon, Sugar, Egg white, it could have gone either way with the chilli, but it tickled my pre-dinner taste buds, and got me excited for more!

 

Ordering a selection of food for sharing is the done thing in Ceru, and the waitress brought the mezze dishes as and when, which was meant there was always something on the go, and something to look forward to! I recommend eight dishes for two people, and definitely try and squeeze in the Chef’s special desert…

 

Depending if you prefer meat or vegetables, (there are plenty of options for veggies/vegans) I would recommend the roast pumpkin and cauliflower salad, (melt in the mouth) lamb kebabs, roast beetroot and fennel salad, crisp apple, mint and pomegranate salad, beef kofta, courgette fritters, fadi dip and flatbreads… And if that sounds like a lot, it is ample! But going to Ceru is a treat after all. AND they serve the delicious Lebanese wine Ksara, which complemented everything!

Ceru_S.Kens_SaraDarling6

Spending hours chatting and making ourselves at home, it was great to end the night with the chocolate surprise. A mousse topped with crumbled pistachios (and a cherry hidden inside).

Yum.

Perfect for couples, catch ups, small groups or mums. They even do an express lunch and afternoon tea. Not sure how this works Levant style, but I’m very keen to give it a try!

See the menu here and check it out for yourself 

 
 
Ceru, 7-9 Bute St, Kensington, London SW7 3EY
 

 

 

18 Apr 2017

CARIBBEAN DREAM

No Comments lblogger, lifestyle, my words, review, sara darling, travel

SWIMMING THE CHANNEL IN THE CARIBBEAN

It’s tough when I get asked to review luxury spas and hotels in hot countries.

Well actually it’s not that tough, but batting off the snide comments from my non-journo friends, claiming that I don’t do a real job is the tricky bit…But I battle on! 

So when I was invited to visit Nevis in the Caribbean, it was an adventure I couldn’t refuse to miss! And it was my first commission for Slink magazine- out now in the Spring 17 issue. It wasn’t all about drinking rum and The Four Seasons, promise…

 

I even had a go at swimming the channel between Nevis and St Kitts. All in the name of investigative journalism…

Read my feature here

Slink_Nevis_Caribbean

 

 

09 Mar 2017

Whiskey in the city at Jackson & Rye

1 Comment flush magazine, food, lblogger, lifestyle, my words, news, review

When I was invited to pop along to a whisky tasting on a Wednesday night, I nearly sobbed! I love whiskey, but too much on a school night could end in disaster! 

However, the fine folk at Jackson & Rye have launched a Flight Night taster sesh on Wednesdays, to give the thirsty public a taster of their fine bourbons, and very fine they are! Read my feature in full for Flush here