All your local goss right here, in one delectable dose, from a super-exclusive new spa opening, to a hospitality hero, and the best indie high streets in Britain.
SERVICE WITH A SMILE
One of our fave places to head for a fancy date-night dinner, Paris House in Woburn, has been voted number 8 in The Caterer magazine’s list of best places to work 2019. 96% of the staff say there’s a great work-life balance, which is all down to the efforts of the owners, exec Chef Phil Fanning and his wife Claire, who have made this a priority – unusually for the industry, staff here get two days and two evenings off per week, which sounds veeerrry civilised. But what does that mean for the punters, I hear you ask? Well, service with a smile of course! Plus, the restaurant is closed on Wednesdays for staff training, when they can learn about new dishes and wines, help to develop the menus, discuss diners’ feedback and swot up on their regular customers’ likes and dislikes to make them even better at what they’re doing. Happy staff = happy customers!
HIGH STREET HEROES
While some well-known chains have been having bad times lately (sorry Jamie…), our support for local and independent stores on our high streets is out in full force. In fact four Herts and Beds high streets made it into a list of the UK’s top 10 for that very reason! Last week The Telegraph reported the findings by estate agents, Hamptons International, which saw Ampthill and Shefford in Beds claiming the top two spots for small town high streets based on the amount of independent shops and growth in house prices. Tring and Ware in Herts claimed 7th and 8th places. Even more excuse to shop local and support your local high street. Go Herts and Beds!
Calling all spa connoiseurs – here’s one you need on your radar! Sopwell House is all set to unveil the country’s first ever private members’ spa this summer. The three-storey, state-of-the-art, totally exclusive club, Cottonmill, cost £14m (yikes!) so we’re expecting it to be fahhh-bulous! Alongside the organic sauna, plethora of steam rooms, vitality pools and high-tech gym, members are promised signature treatments harnessing the soothing and healing powers of sand and water, like thermal therapy on an Amber & Quartz Crystal Bed, and bespoke hydrotherapy; a spa garden created by award-winning garden designer Ann-Marie Powell; luxe touches like Tom Dixon lighting, Dyson Supersonic hairdryers and sensory showers. We. Can’t. Wait.