Tag Archives: Student

Nostalgia In Leeds

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Heeeeey!

In a few of my previous entries I have recalled certain venues and places which remind me of my teenage years but there is really only one city which sums up my young princess years – Leeds.

(BTW: When pronouncing Leeds, try and say it in a short, snappy kind of way with a reeeally deep voice with an emphasis on the LE. Leeds, say it again Leeds – Good job!)

So yes Leeds was the first city where I was allowed to go shopping with my Girlfriend’s for the first time. We would get the train, hang around outside the Corn Exchange for a few hours looking super cool (An action that young people still do as it happens – Note to self, they don’t look cool, they look cold and miserable) then we would head to a pub for the remainder of the afternoon.

I have a few friends who went to Uni in Leeds, so we decided to head up to see what the students of 2012 are up to, we hadn’t been for a good 12/13 months and we felt like we were missing out – on what exactly I’m not sure…but oh well. Next stop Leeds!

All the decent pre-club bars in Leeds are about a 10 minute walk away from the train station heading up towards The Light shopping/cinema complex. You have your usual suspects, Wetherspoons, Yates, Woo Woo, and of course what city would be without a Varsity and an Oceana! OOOP and would you look at that, the two just happen to be next to each other. Now that’s what you call convenient!

I tell you what – Varsity has sure changed since the last time we were there. 100% changed for the better, it looked completely different. Loved the different types of lamps over the bar and the leather chairs round a fireplace. Fixed seating had been put on a new terrace and a new dance floor had been put in at the back of the pub.

I liked that there were several different areas, each had a different feel to it and I could get a big group of mates together in one area or have a quiet dinner/drinks with one person in another.

Hands down, my favourite part of the referb is the addition of (what I now call) The Lipstick Bar in the girls toilets. It’s perfect for doing a few touch-ups and the likes.

I ordered a southern fried chicken wrap (minus the chips) which was very yummy, as was the glass of Rose Pinot Grio I washed it down with. Great promotions actually – buy two large glasses and get the rest of the bottle for free. I think that’s a pretty good deal when you spilt the rest of the bottle between two people.  The staff were really attentive and smiley which was a nice change from the grumpy faces from the others on the strip – step it up guys cuz Varsity sure have!

We had a few more drinks before moving on to Oceana, the plan was to move on to another bar but to be honest, we didn’t need to. It was comfy, with good prices and great music too.

Scores on the (royal) doors: 

Food and service:  Service with a smile.
Atmosphere and decoration:  Great new décor, really brought it up to date and stood out in comparison to the other bars in that area
Facilities:  Beautifully clean and pretty!
Talent Radar:  Perhaps…….
Fun Factor: Great to re-visit Varsity and catch up with friends
Perfect for: Pre-clubbing, cheap food,  large parties, small parties too!
In 3 words: Var-Sit-eyyyyy

The Graduate, York

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The Graduate York

On the way back from my Newcastle/Sunderland jaunt I decided to stop over in York. No particular reason, just fancied seeing what was happening in York! My mum and I used to always go to York around Christmas time to do present shopping and Party Dress Shopping, a tradition which we still carry out now. York also brings back great memories of our annual primary school trip to the York Transport Museum and Yorvik day out. For anyone who hasn’t been to Yorkvik, its brilliant – overpriced yes but very educational – if the Vikings float your boat.

After a day of burning through my wages, I needed a place to relax. I have a reputation for being notoriously picky when it comes to finding a decent bar, though I don’t see it like that. I like somewhere clean, with a good atmosphere, good music, reasonable prices and a high potential of good eye candy!
After walking past the same old, Wetherspoons, Yates, Revolution, blah blah blah, I was getting bored and about to give up and just go back to my hotel when I fell across a really cool old bank style building called The Graduate. The music coming from inside sounded good and the decoration looked good from looking inside through a window. Funny side story actually, the window I looked through looked onto a booth style table and my friend from college’s sister was sat at the table, I waved, she didn’t recognise me and I felt really really stupid!


Back to the Graduate. I was walking around trying to find a seat but it just kept going. I would turn a corner and there would be another room, another book, another snug type room, another cluster of sofas and finally I discovered an outside beer garden. The whole bar was immaculately kept and brightly decorated. The pictures say it all really.

There were references to The Graduate the film all the way through the bar, a film poster here, a film shot here. Really cool, it had me singing “Mrs Robinson” before I knew it.

Really nice to have table service all night, I didn’t have to get up once!

It just so happened that the bar was the first on the Carnage Pub Crawl. For those who don’t know Carnage, it is a University based pub crawl that takes place all over the country. People buy the T-shirt with the pub route and have to tick off certain challenges whilst dressed in the theme of the night which in this example was Cops and Robbers. Once again, some great photos.

Scores on the (royal) doors: 

Food and service:  Very attentive table service.
Atmosphere and decoration:  Very impressive, funky and very unique.
Facilities:  Spotless, so well kept, the staff deserve a big thumbs up.
Talent Radar:  A few robbers stole my heart! HA!
Fun Factor: Has the potential to be a massive party hot spot!
Perfect for: Food, beer garden, group bookings, small groups, pizza party
In 3 words: GO THERE NOW!

Party Princess Meets Geordie Shore

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Hey Guys!

What do TOWIE, Desperate Scousewives, Made in Chelsea and Geordie Shore all have in common? Well despite their obvious production values, complicated characters and deeply layered story lines, they have all created a persona and stereotype about their inhabitants. I’m ashamed to admit that I have given in to the addictive nature of Geordie Shore on a few occasions and when I got an invitation to party in Newcastle I was very excited about meeting the cast and finding our deep and mutual love of Partying.

Its only a matter of time before Im invited to be the newest cast member.

As it happens I didn’t meet Sophie and didn’t make James fall in love with me, Hooooowever, I did have a proper canny night and in an unexpected place – Trillians Rock Bar!

The stage back-drop

In my younger Party Princess days I spent a good deal of my time in various rock/indie music bars trying to be cool drinking pints of cider and battling with the sticky floors but I’m VERY happy to report that none of these party sins have been committed in Trillians.

Quietly hidden behind the main shopping street and opposite the city library is Newcastle’s diamond in the rough bar. Down a short flight of stairs you will be greeted with a deceptively large area with a more than adequate stage, sound system, dance floor and seating all around the edges.

On first glance you may think this was your average rock bar however, look deeper and there were some awesome little touches. The main bar was made up of old LP’s and CDs and the smaller tables were made of varnished old music magazines, photos, CD’s and LP’s.  Very unique, big fan. Several TV screens were showing a Transformer movie (little odd) but later it was showing Hulk, and I love a bit of Ed Norton.

Love this idea, so unique.

On my way to the bathroom I found myself following a long trail and lipstick marks along the wall. Even though the bar staff have tried and failed at removing the marks, I thought it was a really fun and interesting feature. I couldn’t go past without adding my own lips! MMWWWHHHA!

Loved the themed burgers, I didn’t chance to try one but the “Metallica burger” looked pretty kick ass.
I had come to see a band called “This Machine”, a cover band playing proper 80’s rock and roll. They played a great mix of Kiss, ACDC and Guns and Roses.  A pretty decent crowd had formed and the dance floor filled with dancing fans whopping their hair back and forth (Not in a Willow Smith way though!)

And a message to Geordie Shore, Trillians will give you a run for your money any time!

Left overs from the night before! That's quite a collection!

 

Scores on the (royal) doors: 

Food and service:  Staff were really cool, very friendly!
Atmosphere and decoration:  Very VERY clean, staff obviously take pride in their pub.
Facilities:  Kissable!
Talent Radar:  Few younger rockers #wink
Fun Factor: Geordie Shore can suck it!
Perfect for: Chill out with mates, quiet drinks, OR LOUD DRINKS!
In 3 words: Kissably Rockin roll!

Leicester, Take Two…ACTION!

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Huzzah dear readers! x

Given that my last jaunt to Leicester was so fantastically awesome, it would be incredibly rude of me to turn down an invitation to hang with those crazy Leicester students again. This time my invitation was from the second Varsity on London road.

Expecting a heavy night, I packed my berocca, my heels and a toothbrush and whizzed up to Leicester. Talk about timing, it would so happen that my visit coincided with the end of exam celebrations, I couldn’t have asked for a better excuse to round up the students of Leicester and De Montfort, and boy were these guys ready to party!

Even at 12pm, hoards of relived, blurry eyed and smiley student piled through the doors of Varsity looking for food and most importantly…booooze! The J-bombs started to flow and even got a cheeky few passed my way. Yes I know 1pm is a little early to start but, whilst in Rome an’ all! An army of burgers and curly fries made their way out of the kitchen to feed the students.

I got talking to one very lively (to put it lightly) group of chemists. Well, one thing leads to another and I ended up challenging one boy to a Man Vs (Varsity) Food!

Mission (Should you choose to accept it) “Consume a Dirty Dogs Dinner in less than 5 minutes, with your hands tied behind your back!”

Granted, that doesn’t sound too bad, well hang on and let me explain what the Dirty Dogs Dinner actually is. Imagine a mountain of sausages, a big pile of chips smothered in Heinz Baked Beans and smoked bacon pieces, all served in….(wait for it) an actual steel dog bowl! Doesn’t that sound beautifully glamorous! Unsurprisingly it wasn’t! Seeing the poor bloke bobbing his head in and out of the dog bowl, we didn’t think to cut up his sausages beforehand which made watching the whole gut busting experience a little gross. Soon he had the whole bar including the staff cheering him along and he managed the dish in 5.30 minutes, so close, dang and blast!
Surprisingly, I lost my appetite for lunch and dinner!

"Hi Im Jonny Knoxville and Welcome to Man Vs Food!

On to the nightlife! Shots, J-bombs, pints, glasses of wine and bottles all £1! The Varsity Pound Party had begun. The tunes were rolling out and the crowds were rolling in to join in the party. The upstairs section of the bar had been booked out for an international students party and the downstairs was split between the cool kids at the back of the bar on the sofas playing pool and the rest of the nutters throwing out some choice moves on the dance floors.

I couldn’t have a night out in Leicester without visiting my buddies over at The Reynard and Varsity on Friar Road. (Read my previous Leicester blog here) I met my future Party Prince, Jef (DJOneEf), and sat and had a nice drink with the guy at The Reynard who told me about the success of their own student social parties on Wednesday, do I hear another invitation?! I think so!!

Scores on the (royal) doors: 

Food and service: Doggie-licious?! I did actually share a dirty dog bowl, and with proper cutlery, it’s pretty darn good!
Atmosphere and decoration:  Big and airy, mixture of sofas and booths along the side.
Facilities: HUGE girl’s bathroom!
Talent Radar:  If you love chemists with a face full of beans, then YES!
Fun Factor: As always, Leicester rocks it.
Perfect for: Filling your tummy and rocking out on the dance floor.
In 3 words: Student hang out.

Read other reviews for Varsity London Road here at View Leicester, Inapub.co.uk, BBC.co.uk and Qype

See you on Friday for my Newcastle/Sunderland Tour Part 1 through 3 

Aberystwyth – Small Town, Big Heart

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Hey!

As you have gathered, I’m a busy bunny, I’m constantly travelling about visiting friends, partying or away with work but every now again the Party Princess needs to hang up her heels, throw on some slippers (granted sparkly multi glitter slippers) and just sit and breathe.

FINALLY I got the chance this week. Those who read my previous blog about Brighton know that I love being by the beach, I lived in Eastbourne for 3 years and miss the sound of seagulls yelling my ears and, as my other previous blog about Cardiff says, I’ve started a brief love affair with Wales. So what do you get when you cross the seaside with Wales? No not a Welsh Seagull but – Aberystwyth! And what a lovely little town it is, quiet, slow, cosy and I could feel myself instantly relax as the train ran through the open countryside, not a car, building or corner shop in sight. Heaven.

Now what could be better than walking around in the cold sea air wrapped in in coats, scarves and hats? Walking into a warm pub and warming up with a hot chocolate and a pub dinner. Surprisingly that is EXACTLY what I did. I found a cute little pub which I thought was called The White Horse Hotel, turns out it’s a been converted into a Varsity. It looked nothing at all like the other Varsity’s I’ve been to in the past, couldn’t be further from them actually.

 

Bay windows had become cute little seating areas, the original wooden flooring and the ceiling mouldings gave the place a really cute old-ey world-ey feeling to it. All it needed was a giant open fire place and a book shelf and I would have been in some old Sherlock story from the 1880s

After a round of hot chocolates and a Jim Bean burger – which may I say one of the tastiest burgers I’ve had in a long long time – I started to wind down.

Before I knew it I was chatting to half the bar! The staff were so friendly, didn’t seem stressed and seemed to be happy to be at work which considering some of the bars I’ve been to in the past – that’s a massive achievement. The locals and regulars joined in our conversation and what felt like minutes became hours and soon the students came in looking for cheap bargains before heading out again. The staff told me that normally on a Wednesday the bar is filled to the rafter for sport social and I was lucky it was such a quiet night. I would be interested to go back and see what it’s like on a busy night.

The bar soon filled up, the music got louder but my bed was calling me. A few cheeky glasses of wine later I wrapped up my conversations and headed back to my hotel. Fantastic little break and surprisingly it was Varsity that help me relax which is funny as they are the ones I normally end up dancing about and having wild crazy nights in. I guess you can’t judge a book by its cover!

Scores on the (royal) doors:  

Food and service:  couldn’t have asked for better staff.

Atmosphere and decoration:  Warm, cute and downright lovely.

Facilities:  liked the faux fur on the stools.

Talent Radar:  Sweet older guys up for a nice chat – if that’s your type of course.

Fun Factor: different kind of fun to what I’m normally looking for but fun none the less.

Perfect for: Afternoon tea break, dinner after walking on the beach, cheaper than average prices.

In 3 words: quiet pub – big heart (I know its 4 but hey!)

Check out other reviews and info on Fancyapint.com or Qype

Varsity Cardiff

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Holla At my blog readers

When you think of UK party cities, you think of London, Liverpool, Manchester, Bournemouth, Newcastle and of course….Cardiff! Until last week I had a little Wales shaped hole in my list, I just had to tick Cardiff off my party list and boy did Cardiff deliver.

First of all I must comment on what a lovely city Cardiff is, walking round the city I noticed the mixture of the old (cathedral) and the new and the locals were so welcoming and friendly. Great first impressions.

After spending a VERY long time trying to stay away from the shopping centre it was time to get dressed up and paint the town red. We had hunted the best nightlife spots before we came and visited a few of them whilst wandering round the city and found a street with 5 of the better bars in the city.  We floated around from bar to bar but they all seemed to lack a bit of spark and atmosphere, it’s difficult to pin point what was missing, the party X-factor or the PP Factor –Party Princess Factor but somehow I don’t see that catching on much.

Our sprits were low; we were slightly disappointed with Cardiff but pushed on and tried our luck in the last pub on our list. Varsity. Frankly, we should have gone there in the first place! We were greeted by a lovely groups of cheeky chappies on a birthday party and coaxed us in the bar with the promise of a few drinks and dance.

We walked in and the bar looked a little empty but its only because everyone was on the dancefloor. Ideal really – no queues for drinks and a chokka dancefloor.  I grabbed my self a long island ice tea and headed towards the floor! Just as we started to loosen up and enjoy the music, it was announced that a dancing competition was in session and the winner would be given a large pitcher of their choice. The mood changed, dancing was no longer for fun…this was serious. There were some pretty funky shapes being thrown about by some people, and even though I didn’t win (I’m not bitter….much!!)

" I said ooops inside your head....."

Also…the Captain Morgan promo team popped out from no-where and the Capt’n himself, dressed his finery joined in the dance competition and lead a stupidly long conga out of the front door, back and through the bar – madness. Highlight of the night was dancing with everyone to “oops upside your head” song, I’m sure that’s not the real words but ill investigate.

Scores on the (royal) doors:  

Food and service:  Super-fast, super friendly, super awesome

Atmosphere and decoration:  Little quiet but MORE than made up for it.

Facilities:  Huge mirror to fix my bronzer disaster

Talent Radar:  The Capt’n was look mighty fine.

Fun Factor: F.U.N spells fun,

Perfect for: Pre-clubbing, cheeky mid-week dance, quiet nights turning crazy.

In 3 words: Dance, pitchers, conga.

For other reviews visit: Cardiffpubs.co.uk, Qype and /View Cardiff or visit this lovely little video

Fun in Sheffield – A mini pub crawl.

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Hey Guys

Last week I felt an uncontrollable urge to go back up to the North. (Granted it’s not that north but when you live in London anything above Watford is north) I had it good authority that Sheffield is an awesome night out so with high hopes I decided to brush up on my northern accent and hopped on the train.  Next stop Varsity Sheffield!

Varsity Sheffield is smack in the middle of West Street – the main street in the city where you can find most of the bars, pubs and clubs in the city, hence why it has been re-named “wobble walk”. The bar has just had a refurbishment and had a great trendy, warehouse style feel to it. Sections of the bar were sectioned off with shiny beaded curtain. The bar swept round in a semi-circle in the centre of the room and the large floor rugs and the happy staff warmed the pub up from the freezing temperature outside.

Beer tower anyone?

The best thing about this Varsity is the Karaoke booth! Students and karaoke are a match made in heaven, especially when you throw in cheap drinks!

Once my tummy was sufficiently filled with burgers and chips and coke, it was time to move on the next pub! The bar staff recommended The Bessemer, so next stop The Bessemer!

The Bessemer is only a short 5 minute walk from wobble walk towards the town square which on this occasion had been turned into a mini fair, I’d like to think for purely my benefit but who am I kidding! It’s a lovely bar with a real homey feel to it with lots of character.  I really liked the idea of putting all the old real ale signs on the main pillar by the bar, and the old LPs around the DJ booth, it was a nice little touch.  At the back of the pub there were a couple of pool tables and a darts board which was great for keeping the kids quiet and a bit of light entertainment in the afternoon. I’m not sure if I can class a game of pool as exercise but we are told to do 20 minutes of sport a day and pool is classed as a sport. A glass of jelly beans and a few rounds of drinks brought a nice close to the evening.

DJ Party Princess?

 

Scores on the (royal) doors:  

Food and service:  Lovely talkative staff in Varsity

Atmosphere and decoration:  Great family feeling in The Bessemer

Facilities:  Love the pink bleach in Varsity!

Talent Radar:  Too occupied by pool and jelly beans to notice!

Fun Factor: Not a mad crazy night out but lovely still.

Varsity Perfect for: Karaoke, student hang out, pre clubbing drinks

Bessemer Perfect for: Family friendly fun, bar games, real ale.

In 3 words: Sheffield rocks….a-lot