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Summer events in the city

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A weekend break is great, and provides plenty of time for relaxing and taking in the culture of your city of choice. If you’re heading to Leeds, Manchester or Newcastle this July, here is our guide to summer events in the city.

Newcastle

Cats

If you’re in Newcastle for a weekend city break over the coming month and need an evening event to help fill your time, then the Theatre Royal in the heart of the city is playing host to two big name performances this month. First up, with a two week stint running from 1st July to the 12th,  Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s extraordinary record-breaking, smash-hit musical Cats returns to Newcastle Theatre Royal.

Originally adapted from TS Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, Lloyd-Webber’s famed dramatisation of the story offers an enjoyable blend of fantasy, drama and romance set on the night that the Jellicle Cats meet for the Jellicle Ball in a sparkling fusion of music, dance and verse. With an amazing musical score that includes the timeless Memory, spectacular set designs, stunning costumes and breathtaking choreography, this show is one not to be missed if you’re visiting throughout the show’s two week run. One of the longest-running shows in West End and Broadway history, Cats has enchanted audiences in over 300 cities around the world. With such a successful and famed history, the show is sure to prove popular in the Toon, so plan early to enjoy this feline focused phenomenon of the stage.

Grease

If you’re after another well known and highly popular tale to enjoy on the stage, then between the 22nd and 26th of July the Newcastle upon Tyne Musical Theatre Company don their Pink Lady and T-Bird Leather jackets for their 2014 production of Grease.

In the well known tale of teen love, it’s 1959 and Rydell High is filled with rebellious, thrill-loving students. In the midst of this scene, Sandy Dumbrowski enters as the new girl in school and, well…we all know how it plays out.

Manchester

Star Wars Festival

It’s one of the biggest film franchises of all time, and with a diehard following and a reputation of producing one of the greatest ever films, Star Wars is heading to Manchester on Sunday 6th July as The Printworks will play host to Greater Manchester’s only Star Wars themed day. If you’re a fan of the film, then this free event is a great place to head for an hour if you’re in the area for a weekend break. With film star signings, numerous exhibitions, cosplay competitions, live music, merchandise stalls and much more, it’s a more diverse way to spend an hour whilst visiting the city.

Beer ‘n’ Blues Weekend

After something musical this month but not a fan of the mud and camping culture that comes with a traditional festival. The Beer ‘n’ Blues Weekend hits Manchester on the 12th and 13th of July in what is a perfect way to spend an evening whilst enjoying the luxury of the city. This year, Band on the Wall present the finest artists the UK’s blues scene has to offer together with a 20 pump bar featuring brews from local breweries Green Mill, Hornbeam, Brightside, First Chop and many more. With a great line-up, it’s well worth heading to if you’re planning to spend some time in the city.

Leeds

The biggest event of July for Leeds is undoubtedly the huge sporting event that is the Tour de France Grand Depart, which launches over the weekend of the 5th July. For a full rundown of the weekend events, check here. Other than this, Leeds has a number of other events worth checking out.

Waterfront Festival

What better way to enjoy the summer sun than to bask in the warm weather on the Leeds waterfront. It might not be the landmark event that the Tour launch is, but if you’re enjoying a sun soaked weekend in the city, it’s an idyllic way to spend the day. With the festival boasting a fantastic eclectic mix of music, performance and art, you’re free to trawl up and down the Leeds waterfront and enjoy creative workshops including knitting, jewellery making and fun family activities from crazy golf to face painting and boat trips stretching across 4 miles of Leeds waterfront.

If you’re heading to Leeds, Manchester of Newcastle to sample some big city culture this July, make sure you check in to Roomzzz, to allow you to truly enjoy your weekend break in comfort.

Photo Credit: pierofix via Compfight cc

Heading for the Tour de France in Leeds

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With just over a week left until the world’s best cyclists head to Leeds for the commencement of the biggest event in the cycling calendar, the UK and the streets of Yorkshire in particular have been whipped into a Tour frenzy. With spectators expected to travel from all corners of the UK to see the 2014 Grand Depart, it’s time to start planning your trip, if you want to see British yellow jersey contender Chris Froome launch his bid for back to back successes in the French sportive.

The Tour de France in Leeds

It might seem confusing that the Tour de France is commencing its 2014 run outside of the host country, however it’s a standard practice with the competition that every two years ‘Le Tour’ launches in a nearby European location. After hard work from Welcome to Yorkshire, and all the relevant authorities within the Yorkshire area, the big launch takes place on Thursday 3rd July at Leeds Arena, with racing commencing on Saturday 5th . Racing between Leeds and Harrogate on day one, the 190km ride will see the peloton leave from The Headrow stating line, before heading along city streets and heading out of the centre and through to other areas of West Yorkshire. The vast open countryside of ‘gods own country’ will host the first two days of cycling’s flagship event, with day two boasting a 201km route from York to Sheffield. Day three sees the event head down south to Cambridge and London on day three, before then shifting back across the Channel for the rest of the 23 day race.

It’s worth watching because

The Tour de France is one of professional cycling’s three Grand Tour events, and is arguably the one held in the highest regard within the world of cycling. The highly competitive field includes the biggest names in the sport. With previous winners Cadel Evans, Alberto Contador and Chris Froome all expected to compete.

When is it?

The tour itself runs from 5 to the 27 of July, with the first day being a 190km mile flat stage between Leeds and Harrogate, and the second day stepping up the challenge with a 201km hill stage between York and Sheffield. After the brief fling with Yorkshire, riders head down to Cambridge for a 155km run through to London before returning home to French soil. With the remainder of the tour passing through landmark French cities such as Lille, Ypres, Nancy, Saint-Etienne and Carcassonne, beautiful French architecture and countryside will take centre stage on our television screens, as we’re reduced to watching the remainder of the event from the living room.

Head to Leeds

With the eyes of the cycling world focusing squarely in on Yorkshire, and Leeds in particular, now is the time to really get your plans for the weekend set in stone.  Whether you’re a local to the area, or plan to visit from another UK location, Welcome to Yorkshire and other Yorkshire authorities are really pushing the boat out for you. Five impressive grandstands are to be erected on The Headrow, allowing huge audiences to gather and enjoy the peloton cycle out to start the world’s most famed bike race. Spectator hubs are also expected to be in place, allowing you to line the streets and await the cyclists arrival whilst not missing a minute of the race action as it is shown live on big screens. Spectator hubs outside the city are expected to be located Scott Hall playing fields, Harewood House and in Otley, along with a number of other locations.

 

If you’re a fan of cycling or just want to head to Leeds for a feel of the atmosphere surrounding the huge event in the city, head to Roomzzz Leeds for a place to stay over the landmark weekend.

Photo Credit: Insane Focus via Compfight cc

A month at the theatre

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Newcastle

Theatre Royal – Dirty Dancing

Loved by millions, and seen by even more on the big screen, the story of Dirty Dancing is world renowned. Having arrived at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal earlier this month, the musical has received rave reviews from local press, and has even seen its run extend until 31 May. The classic story boasts a heart-pounding musical score, passionate romance and sensationally sexy dancing. Seen by millions across the globe during its run, this worldwide smash-hit tells the classic story of Baby and Johnny, two fiercely independent youngsters from entirely different worlds, who come together in what will be the most challenging and triumphant summer of their lives. With hit songs that’ll undoubtedly have you humming along to the likes of “Hungry Eyes”, “Hey Baby”, “Do You Love Me?” and the heart stopping “I’ve Had The Time Of My Life.”

With a cast including Gareth Bailey  as Johnny Castle, Roseanna Frascona carrying the watermelon as idealistic Baby Houseman, and Claire Rogers will play Penny Johnson, fans of musical theatre are in for a treat. Tickets for the performance are available from £16.50, with a limited number of premium seats available.

 

Leeds

The Grand Theatre and Opera House – West Side Story

Heading to Leeds’ Grand Theatre and Opera House, West Side Story is the classic tale of the rivalry between the Jets and the Sharks, two teenage street gangs of different ethnic backgrounds.Fresh from a sell-out season at London Sadler’s Wells and following international critical acclaim West Side Story is not playing at The Grand until the close of the month. With ground breaking choreography by the legendary Jerome Robbins, an unforgettable score by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, West Side Story changed the face of musical theatre for ever. Now Joey McKneely’s vibrant stage production is thrilling audiences all over again. The show, which is based on the well known Shakespeare play Romeo and Juliet comes to Leeds packed with unforgettable songs such as ‘Maria’, ‘Tonight’, ‘Somewhere’, ‘America’ and ‘I Feel Pretty’. Drawing huge acclaim on a national scale, the Telegraph state ‘there’s nothing more exciting or engaging at the moment on stage.’

 

Manchester

Royal Exchange Theatre – The Last Days of Troy

Capping off our round up of city theatre offerings is The Last Days of Troy at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester. Telling the story of two civilizations at war, this theatrical offering is tense and intriguing, with moments of great tragedy and breath-taking humility. Focusing on the story of a nation commemorating WWI, the story centres on a legendary battle between the ancient city of Troy and the Greek soldiers attempting to lay siege to it.

The story, which is brought together by Simon Armitage, brings the war to a brutal conclusion. Through it, he considers how we are locked in the same cycles of conflict and revenge, of east versus west, and the same mixture of pride, lies and self-deception that fed the Trojan War.

Running through until 7 June, tickets are available starting at £14.50.

 
Photo Credit: Stuck in Customs via Compfight cc

The best beer bars in the city

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If you’re heading for a night out in the city, the chances are that bars and clubs won’t be tough to find. However, if you’re after something a bit more specific from your drinking location, and don’t just want to follow the crowd, we have you covered. Cocktail bars and standard lagers are available in abundance in all major cities, however in an age where most of us look for something a little more refined in our drinks, many new establishments have seen growing success from serving craft brews. If you’re after a good craft serving bar to kick off your night before heading onto the major city centre venues, check out these destinations in Leeds, Newcastle and Manchester.

Leeds

North Bar

Describing itself as one of the original pioneers of the city’s bar boom, North Bar can be found in the hugely popular Northern Quarter of Leeds, which has seen a rapid rise to popularity of late. With around 130 different beers on offer, patrons of the bar won’t be short on choice, and you’ll have plenty of scope to vary and broaden your drinking horizons. The draughts on offer at the bar tend to vary seasonally and the drink rotation that North Bar offers means that regular visitors will be provided as much choice as possible.  In recent years, draught beers from specialist craft brewers have become increasingly popular, and with beers from America, Europe and the UK all featuring predominantly on the drinks menu, you won’t be short on options when kicking off your night out with a beer.

Newcastle

BrewDog

Located in the popular nightlife area that is Dean Street, the destination is located perfectly between the historic Grainger Town and the picturesque Quayside of Newcastle and Gateshead. In a city more accustomed to cocktails and champagnes, BrewDog states that this particular bar ‘injects a much needed dose of hardcore craft beer into an area rising from the ashes of a previously Smirnoff-soaked landscape.’ With its impressive glass front that immediately catches the eye on passing, head into the venue and you’ll immediately notice the dual level setup. Popular and busy on most weekends, the venue is a true lover of British punk music and you’ll be greeted by the likes of the Sex Pistols and the Clash upon arrival; however if you head in at a less peak time when the buzz of activity isn’t at its peak, you can relax, hang out, play board games and even rock the vintage pin ball machine. Brewdog’s success since starting up in its original Aberdeen location has now lead to there being 13 locations of the bar throughout the UK.

Manchester

Port Street Beer House

If you’re searching for craft beer in Manchester, then Port Street is the obvious choice, as its vast selection and great critical acclaim puts all competitors to shame. Described by  The Guardian as being in the “top 10 bars and pubs for craft beer”, Port Street gets it right by offering favourites from up and down the UK, along with offerings from over the Atlantic, and many European favourites. Their full and impressive drinks list can be found online, and the bar is located on Port Street, just a short walk from the Piccadilly area of the city

If you’re looking to enjoy an evening of entertainment this month, make sure you book in at Roomzzz, to enjoy a full weekend of comfort.

Photo Credit: christian.senger via Compfight cc

Things to do this weekend…

If you are wondering what to do this weekend why not visit Yorkshire? You could check into our city centre accommodation in Leeds and take a look around…
Not far away is the city of Bradford and this weekend sees the celebrations opening City Park a six-acre public space in the heart of the city which contains the largest man-made water feature in any UK city. 
City Park’s 4,000sq m mirror pool features more than 100 fountains, including the tallest in any UK city at 30m (100ft), laser light projectors and mist effects. It promises to be an action-packed day which showcases the park and encompasses different parts of the six-acre site, including the mirror pool, Centenary Square, the grass-topped Pavilion building, City Hall and the BBC Big Screen. 
I think that’s where I’ll be headed this Saturday! And then kicking back in Roomzzz before heading into Leeds for dinner and a dancing…. perfect…

The Roomzzz 12 Days of Christmas! Day 5

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On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…. FIVE GO-OLD RINGS!
And the next couple of clues in the Roomzzz Christmas Treasure Hunt…
The number of apartments we have in Manchester City divided by the number of hours our concierge works – also in Manchester and then apply the 1=a, 2=b, 3=c rule!
Don’t forget the winner of the hunt gets a luxury weekend away in one of our fabulous locations – we have hotels in Leeds and apartments in Manchester! Have you visited them all yet? If not then why not take advantage of our double discount January offer, to do some sales shopping? Don’t forget all Royalty Club members get double their usual discount in January*!

And the next clue…. as we’re talking rings… which letter is represented by the ring?

So day 5 and two clues – there are seven more days to go! Keep searching Roomzzz Treasure Hunters!

*Bookable with valid Royalty Club membership only. Discount applies to new bookings made by 06/01/2012 for stays until 31/01/2012, subject to availability. Cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. We reserve the right to amend or cancel any offers as appropriate without prior notice.

Roomzzz on a budget? No problem – just join our club!

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As you may be aware we here at Roomzzz just love to give our loyal guests special treats and so we created the Royalty Club… We have a whole host of new members and so we thought we’d make life simple and put the facts  and the most frequently asked questions down together….
How much does it cost to join? Its free of charge, there are no fees to participate
How does it work? The membership number on the card relates to your discount entitlement. Once you log in on the Roomzzz website you will be recognised as a Royalty member and the discount will be applied
Do I need to take my card to the aparthotel to check-in? Yes, you will be required to present your Royalty Club card and membership number when you check-in
Can I recommend to others? Yes, you can recommend to friends and family to apply for their own membership. Members must be over the age of 18 and a UK resident.
Can my company join the scheme? Yes, we also have a Corporate Royalty Club, please contact sales@roomzzz.co.uk for details on how to join
What discount do I get? You will start on the Silver level which entitles a 10% discount
How do I reach the Gold and Platinum levels? You will be automatically rewarded with the Gold membership after staying with us for 25 room nights and Platinum membership after 75 room nights
Will I get the discount each time I book? Yes, as long as you use your personal login when booking online or quote your membership number when calling the central reservations team
Can I use it at any Roomzzz Aparthotel? Yes, and we are actively seeking opportunities to expand, so keep an eye out for new aparthotels in a city near you
Can I let my friends and family use it? No, the card is specific to you
Do I have to stay a minimum number of nights? You only need to stay once to be eligible to join. After booking 25 room nights you will move to the Gold membership which increases your discount to 20%
What if I lose my card? Simply email royalty@roomzzz.co.uk to request a new one
So that’s all you need to know about our Royalty Club Membership… click here to sign up!

Leeds City on Trip Advisor!

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Skarch from Bangalor stayed with us at Leeds City...

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 November 2011

My wife and I stayed here for 10 days in October 2011. The location, the room (smart studio) and the staff are all excellent.

One could not ask for a better location in Leeds city centre. It is close to the train station, bus stops, the best shopping and top rated restaurants and pubs.

The smart studio has a king size bed, excellent bathroom, a small sitting area with a view of the city, a very well equipped kitchenette, washing machine & dryer and a Mac Mini which doubles as a TV. The TV swivels 180 degrees to face the bed or the sitting area.

The staff are very friendly and helpful without exception. The housekeeping crew made up our room, bath and kitchenette spic and span everyday!

The property is built on a small lot and therefore the corridors are narrow for large luggage. The fire doors make your task of moving in and out a bit difficult along the narrow halls. The room doors close with a rather loud bang: so a neighbour returning late can wake you up. The wood flooring in our room (301) creaked a lot, probably due to faulty laying. These were minor irritations in an otherwise perfect stay.

Overall, we had an excellent stay and would not hesitate to go back next time.

Remember remember the 5th November!

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It’s nearly bonfire night, and as Guy Fawkes was actually born in Yorkshire where we coincidently have 3 lovely hotels, we thought we’d take a look at what’s happening in the area, so here’s a round up of bonfires around Leeds!
Guy Fawkes fireworks in yorkshireFriday – Roundhay Park, Leeds (fire lit at 7.30pm and fireworks at 8pm) FREE
 
Friday – Springhead Park in Rothwell (fire lit at 7pm and fireworks at 7.30pm)
 
Friday – East End Park, Leeds (fire lit at 7pm and fireworks at 7.30pm)
 
Friday – Middleton Park, Leeds (fire lit at 7pm and fireworks at 7.30pm)
 
Friday – Woodhouse Moor, Hyde Park, Leeds (fire lit at 7pm and fireworks at 7.30pm)
 
Friday – Bramley Park, Leeds (fire lit at 7pm and fireworks at 7.30pm)
We love bonfire night here at Roomzzz – we love that we can go outside, huddle around the fire, watch some amazing fireworks, eat our fill of toffee apples and then come back to Roomzzz and snuggle up! 
*Thank you to www.yorkshire.com for the listings