The pub isn’t dead, it’s different…

As the Government relentlessly increases the tax on beer, pubs are suffering the most. According to the Campaign for Real Ale, 46 London Pubs have been turned into supermarkets, and a further 2,400 pubs have vanished completely from the capital. But it’s far too early to call time on the local. In London, many of our grand Victorian gin venues are being preserved and beautifully restored, as well as being revolutionised. A brand new breed of beer loving entrepreneurs are stripping back old pubs and revealing their bare essentials and restoring them to their former glory. But Sky Sports and cheap beer are nowhere to be seen. Craft Beer pubs around London can show just what can be achieved by disconnecting the old PA system and replacing it with micro brewed beers. London is witnessing the most active breweries and chain brands since the early 1900’s; but it isn’t just about the beer. The food has improved, nightlife has had life pumped into it – you are never far away from a quiz night, live music or open mic comedy nights. And now, to really outdo the competition, many pubs are hosting in house hairdressers, knitting groups and even vintage fashion boutiques are propping up the bar. With many reasons to stay in on a Saturday night, London’s pubs are offering reasons to get off the sofa and down your local. 

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Kindness UK

The London 2012 Olympics was the epitome of patriotism, sincerity, pride and British culture and attitude. When something big happens, we all come together and share the experience.  And we are sure that Great Britain will share this enthusiasm for the upcoming Paralympics also!

The legacy is the next topic of discussion, and whatever is decided, the London 2012 Olympics and the British attitude should continue, and Kindness UK are making sure that it will.

Kindness UK, a non-profit humanitarian organisation with the sole endeavor of sharing, promoting and uniting kindness, are soon hosting a General Assembly of the World Kindness Movement at their Cricklewood Headquarters from the 18th – 20th September 2012. The conference will bring together kindness movement from across the world including Australia, China, Dubai, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, the USA and obviously the UK. Chosen members of the public will join the delegates and Dr. David R. Hamilton PhD, a world expert in Oxytocin (the Happy Hormone) will be presenting.

David Jamilly, founder of Kindness UK said; ‘we are incredibly excited that London can once again be the forefront of developing a brighter and kinder future.”

 

 

Booking tables Vs. Reservation free

Booking tables Vs. Reservation free has been a debate that has been going on for years. Which way do we prefer to dine? Do Brits prefer to book in advance at a known restaurant so there are no surprises, or do we prefer to be spontaneous and go where we find?

Sometimes life is thinking outside the box and leaving your comfort zone, and not knowing exactly where you are going to eat. This can lead to some of the best restaurants, and some of the worst. But isn’t life all about trial and error and trying new things. How can you taste new experiences if you visit the same restaurant and order the same dish every week? Would you go on holiday and eat British food the entire time? No booking required not only gives you restaurant leverage and life experience it also gives dining an edge.

However, queuing half an hour for a table is not fun, and unless you visit an unpopular restaurant, then queuing and waiting are the ultimate sacrifices. It is a great feeling when the maître d finds your name and ushers you efficiently to your waiting table. There is also a quality of dining, which can only be achieved when reserving a table, and this is beneficial when you bring guests and business prospects. Familiarity of a good venue and great food provides a relaxing experience without any unwanted hiccups.

There are strong arguments for and against, and it is all about individual preference and situation. Finding new restaurants can be just as exciting as dining at old ones, but the comfort and recognition within a good restaurant cannot be beaten. What do you think? Do you prefer booking or reservation free?

 

Proud to be in London!

Starting in Portman Square at 10am and ending in Trafalgar Square at 6pm, with the party continuing in Soho tomorrow night, Gay Pride is set to be an exuberant affair. Although, due to safety and security concerns, this years Gay Pride will be smaller and shorter than previous years, don’t let this – or the weather – put a damper on your plans, the atmosphere will be just as eccentric as previous years!

Hosting a fabulous event calendar including the festival spanning over four days, the procession, and gala dinner and after parties, people are visiting from all over the world to celebrate this day with London.

Through the Door Promotions love Gay Pride. The community spirit, the love, the tolerance. Gay Pride has a place in its heart for everyone! No one is excluded.

Unfortunately, there is no street entertainment this year, however, there is no short of Gay Pride after parties. Heaven will be hosting a G-A-Y Free World Pride Party with no door charge and a free entry wristband, as well as venues in Vauxhall and Brixton offering planned after parties.

Supported by the Mayor of London and many more, London pride will continue to bring together a community that is not divided by sexual preference.

Be Gay, be sexual, be PROUD!

The days of wine and roses are over

Forget wine, abandon the jug of Pimms and put down that chilled bottle of beer, because the must have drink of summer 2012 is the Strawberry Daiquiri. Sales are up 28% on last year alone and it is expected that Brits will drink more than nine million will drink the sweet, crowd pleasing cocktail this summer. The trend is the result of improved weather conditions and an increase in home made cocktails. Wimbledon is also a major factor as it incorporates strawberries.

According to cocktail experts Funkin, Strawberry puree sales are up by 27.62% which is the equivalent of 9,049,700 individual cocktails (or a great weekend) and the Strawberry producers have seen an increase in strawberry harvesting this year.

Funkin also reports that the demand for strawberries has increased massively and strawberry growers have harvested 52,000 tons of strawberries.

There has been a definite rise in cocktail culture, however, it has moved from the bars to groups of friends socialising and recreating their favourite cocktails at home. The days of pouring a simple gin and tonic or participating in the simple act of removing an ice cold beer from the fridge has been replaced with more sophisticated options including the classic cocktails like the Daiquiri. With summer of events now underway and lots of occasions for entertaining, people are deciding to become their own bartenders.

Britain’s second favourite flavour is Rasberry, with 6 million cocktails being made, where Passion Fruit has seen an increase of 29%.

FOOD: A CASE OF COUNTRIES

Jennyfer Taieb and Clemence Groseille are two French interns in Paris. They have come to London for two months to work for Through the Door Promotions. Below, in their blog post, they discuss the issues that they face being hungry students in the bright lights of the city.

As we welcome our second month and continue our affair with London, we are still experiencing a new culture, a new language and a new home.

Food is very important to us and we have been determined to do our own cooking, as we want to learn English recipes, we begun our English journey by writing a shopping list. However, we quickly realised that the price exceeded our simple student budget.

Therefore, because the price for healthier food is greater, crisps, sweets and fast food have become our staple diet. With the desire to eat equilibrium we admitted defeat, as the aspiration to live the high life in London including food, was deterred by the high prices in London.

Basic food prices are similar to those in France, but sincerely, the quality of meat and fish offered in supermarkets do not really inspire confidence. The best option is to go to a butcher or fishmongers, but we are wary of the cost.

But in a month, we have become savvy and have found solutions to this problem (not without difficulty). Buy basics in the bigger supermarkets that are still priced within our budget and make the rest of our purchases in low cost supermarkets. Therefore, we are not cutting quality, only cost. The solution works well, but London remains an expensive city, though this hasn’t removed its amazement, surprise or inviting ambiance.

Location Based Marketing

To put it simply – location based marketing is the art of transferring consumers shared location into revenue.

Location based marketing is very effective tool, that we all most probably use every day without even thinking about it.. But we’ll get to that later.

There are many different form of location-based marketing:

  • Location-based services (LBS): mobile apps such as foursquare and HotList that provide information or entertainment to users based on their location.
  • Near-field communications (NFC): technology that allows two devices that are in close proximity — between two and 20 centimeters — to exchange information.
  • Location-based advertising (LBA): uses tools such as GPS and geo-fencing to locate potential prospects and send them messages.

Out of the apps, Foursquare and Hotlist seems to be the most popular. Both these apps can be linked to Facebook, which is always nice! (It’ll make Facebook a bit more interesting for all of your stalkers.)

Foursquare offers users a fun way to explore their local area. The application works through a phone download. Users add the application to their phones then take it with them as they go out and do things.

HotList is another tool that can help users stay on top of where their friends have been, are and will be going. The application works by integrating Google Maps so users can get a visual on where others are. The user can see where their friends have been and discover places that they like to go. This allows the user to try new places and seek out new local attractions.

If you haven’t heard of these apps, I suggest you give them a go, you never know they might actually help you find something new.

The simplest form of LBM is going to have to be google maps. I think everyone has had that moment when you’re in an area you don’t know so well, and you are starving. The first thing you do is – Whip out the good old smart phone and type a key word like “food” or “Restaurant” into google maps. I’d suggest that all businesses register themselves on google maps, as it is honestly the first thing most of us will turn too.

Near Field Communications is one that has only recently come to the surface, due to the fact that it hasn’t been built into all smart phones (yet).  I’m pretty sure all Londoners have will know how it works, as the oyster card uses exactly the same principle. For example you could have a NFC spot on the outside of a shop and hold your phone up to it, and then all the information about the shop will pop up. You could potentially even do the same with products. I think this type of technology will still take anther year before it is actually used nationally. People always seem to be a little bit hesitant with new technology, especially something like this.

Location based advertising isn’t that big in the UK, but it works on the principle that – Say you are close to a fast food reasturant, and they are have an offer – You’ll receive a message on you phone with a voucher, which would obviously entice you to go there and eat a nice discounted meal.

I think in the next year or so this type of marketing will become the way forward. Most of us will have swanky smart phones that can do supposedly everything under the sun, and we are all on them constantly. So if a business wants to target the consumer, they should target them on smart phones, as we never go without them (Well at least I don’t).