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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.

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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.

 
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Our guide to a refined evening in Manchester

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If you’re looking for a diverse and memorable night, Manchester is an ideal getaway. The birthplace of timeless musical acts and cultural movements as well as being home to a host of busy clubs and bars; the city possesses an electric contemporary vibe that will carry through the night. Manchester really is the place to be for great food, music and a taste of the best of nightlife in the north of England.

Drinks

To start the night, pay a visit to Apotheca in the city’s suave Northern Quarter. Offering a range of bespoke, award-winning cocktails with a stylish backdrop, you can take a sip of the finest drinks before starting the second half of your night. Whether it’s at the vast Phones 4U Arena to see anything from a boxing match to a music concert, to a performance from one of the areas up and coming comics at the Comedy Store.

Dinner

For a bite to eat, you can stay at Apotheca and enjoy their range of evening meals or visit 63 Degrees on Church Street and enjoy their exceptional French cuisine. The food is made with a warm family feel and the restaurant is very popular for its ambiance and professional service. Not far away from the Northern Quarter, you can enjoy a delicious meal within walking distance of the city’s bars and clubs. The close knit feel of the city means you don’t have to spend too much time getting to one place from another and that makes it the perfect destination for a weekend break.

Entertainment

Long established as a go-to place for an amazing night out, Manchester doesn’t disappoint with a hostof lively nightclubs and super-cool bars. For a great nightclub experience, visit 42nd Street for a Rock n’ Roll vibe or for some smooth House sounds take a trip to Venus Club in Blackfriars. As for bars, a true VIP experience can be had at Cloud 23 Bar, located in Deansgate. The bar offers a spectacular view of the city, and you can enjoy the finest beverages whilst observing Manchester’s unique skyline – a mixture of contemporary and classic architecture. For something a little more vibrant, pay a visit to The Liars Club on Back Bridge Street and sample their vast collection of rums and cocktails which number well into the hundreds. If you’re looking for a bigger night, the Phones4u Arena offers a varied scope of events. Hosting artists from McBusted to Nine Inch Nails, there’s a performance for whatever mood you are in.

 

So, if you’re looking to enjoy a weekend of entertainment this month in Manchester, make sure you book in at Roomzzz to enjoy a full weekend of comfort.

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Weekend preview: Our guide to city events

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Manchester

Craig Charles Funk & Soul Club – Band on the Wall

In visiting Manchester, you’re in the city that birthed Oasis,  The Smiths, New Order and Joy Division, so it seems only fitting that whilst in the city of great musical heritage, you should take in one of the best musical offerings of the weekend. Known throughout the industry for his eclectic musical taste that has seen him broadcast on the likes of BBC Radio 2 and Radio 6 Music, Craig Charles takes to the decks this weekend for a Saturday night fuelled with Funk and Soul classics. Taking place at Manchester’s Band on the Wall in the city’s Northern Quarter, from just £15 per person you can spend the night enjoying the biggest names in funk and soul, from James Brown to Stevie Wonder and many more.

 

Newcastle

Boxe Boxe – Theatre Royal

If you don’t want to spend your weekend in Newcastle doing the same old things, then we’ve got a great option for you to broaden your horizons and take in a performance that you might not ordinarily consider. France’s Companie Kafig return to the UK with Boxe Boxe, a breath-taking show offering the likes of which you won’t see anywhere else, which fuses the noble art of Boxing with dance. Eight industry renowned dancers mix the ancient practices of martial arts,  with street and contemporary dance to create a spirited and stunning fusion of hip-hop and fighting. Incorporating contemporary live music from an onstage string quartet, the dancers move in perfect unison on stage. The choice and meticulous timing of the music is said to “inject a further dash of romanticism and melancholy into scenes.” Taking place in the heart of the city, at the famed Theatre Royal, the performance takes place at 7:30 and lasts just over an hour, meaning that once you’ve taken in the latest offering from renowned choreographer Mourad Merzouki, you still have the whole evening to sample some of the finest bars and restaurants in the north of England.

 

Leeds

Derren Brown – The Grand Theatre and Opera House

One of the nation’s leading illusionists and performers, Derren Brown, heads to Leeds for the last weekend of March, as he performs his Infamous tour at the Grand Theatre and Opera House up until 29th March. For Infamous, a more ‘personal’ show, Derren has re-united with his close collaborator and friend, Andy Nyman, with whom he completed some of his most popular works. The Infamous show is Brown’s  sixth show since 2002, and he’s toured every year since then. With over an estimated audience of over 2 million people his shows have won two prestigious Olivier Awards, for Something Wicked This Way Comes (2006) and Svengali (2012), so it’s no surprise that Brown still carries a passion for performing live shows. Tickets range between £20 and £38 and performances are taking place on both Friday 28th and Saturday 29th March.

 

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

 
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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.

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“Don’t hesitate – book!”

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“Don’t hesitate – book!” – I don’t think we could put it better ourselves! It’s what clmswallow wrote about our Manchester city centre hotel on Tripadvisor…
5 of 5 stars 
Reviewed 13 February 2012
I travel to Manchester 4-5 times a year for work and I will always stay at Roomzzz and not bother looking at other accommodation options because it meets all of my requirements – central, secure parking very nearby, value for money and great customer service provided by the lovely reception staff.

Because work are usually paying I tend to book the cheapest rooms but they are by no means basic. I don’t know of any other hotel where you can stay in such luxurious surroundings at such a low price.

This weekend however I was in Manchester with my boyfriend so we booked The Maxima Suite. If you’re thinking about treating a loved one to a romantic weekend away or just like a bit of extra space then this is the room for you.

Down stairs you’ll find:

A kitchen area complete with dish washer, cutlery, hob, pans, plates – basically everything you would need if you were planning to cook and eat in. The hotel have a pantry in reception so you can buy pizzas, curry sauces, soft drinks etc
A large living space with a couple of sofa’s, a desk, iMac, iPod docking station and a large flat screen TV mounted on the wall
A down stairs bathroom with a rain fall shower and a decent sized bath tub with a TV built into the wall (a great touch!)

And then up a spiral staircase you’ll find your bedroom:

A huge bed
Another toilet so you don’t have to navigate the stairs at night
And a third TV

The rooms at Roomzzz are modern, light and clean.

The grab and go breakfast is great – coffee’s, juices, fruit and freshly baked pastries.

My only small gripe is the outside noise but that comes with staying at any City centre hotel. My boyfriend slept through it but the odd siren or loud groups of people have disturbed my sleep when staying here but not enough for me not to book again but I think it’s something the light sleepers amongst you may want to know about.

Make a reservation, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple

The Treasure is a free night in Manchester!

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It’s Friday and the final clue day for our Friday Favourites Treasure Hunt! This week our lucky winner will win a night in our fabulous Manchester City Centre hotel

So what to expect if you follow the clues and hit the nail on the head!

Manchester Roomzzz has 48 individual apartments fully fitted for the practicalities of daily life, finished with a subtle suggestion of the Orient inspired by the bustle of nearby Chinatown. As you’d expect from a luxury hotel, there’s every concession to contemporary style and comfort. 
 
Key features of your stay at Roomzzz…
– Free wi-fi broadband internet
- Free local and national UK landline calls
- Free Grab & Go breakfast
- Pantry at Reception
- Fully fitted kitchen
- Discounted parking at adjacent car park
Manchester Central convention complex for conference and exhibitions and the Northern Quarter – the home of fashion outlets, art galleries and quirky boutique shops are all within walking distance, and the Trafford Centre is less than 6 miles away, its ideal for those wanting to experience the true spirit of this vivacious city. We’re easily reached from Manchester Piccadilly railway station, and with Piccadilly Gardens just a few blocks away, and the Manchester Evening News (MEN) Arena is less than a mile away, you’re never far from the heartbeat of this vibrant 21st century metropolis when you stay at Roomzzz!
Award wining Grade II listed building boasts high ceilings, long windows, soaring interior spaces, and kitchens equipped with Smeg appliances. This is the height of luxury, by design in a city centre hotel.
We love our Manchester Roomzzz and we know you will too… so even if you’re not our lucky winner why not come along and visit anyway? Book online or call 0844 499 4888… and don’t forget to join our Royalty Club and you’ll get a discount on each stay!

Read all about it…

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Our reviews this week are about Manchester Roomzzz.… we love your comments!
Seansaudi:-

5 of 5 stars 
“Perfect Stay”
Reviewed 9 November 2011

Great location and the studio suite was clean, comfortable and had all you would need.

Staff were very helpful at reception.

Would stay again for sure.
Highly recommend.

Stayed November 2011, travelled with family

Mirry1802:-
4 of 5 stars 
“Superb” 

Reviewed 8 November 2011 
We have stayed for 3 nights in this apart hotel and it was a great experience! The room was very clean and neat and the bed was comfy. Also, the kitchenette had everything including a wok, which made cooking easier and faster. The grab and go breakfast included fresh croissants, sweet pastries and fresh fruit which is also very convenient if you’re in a rush! … The apple tv installed in the room was great, perfect for checking out the weather and news online :)

The only downside is that the parquet floors are a bit squeaky and noisy when you step on them. But it is only a minor issue.

Would definitely stay in this hotel next time I visit Manchester!

 
Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
Fivedolla:-
4 of 5 stars 
“Overall Good”
 
Reviewed 6 November 2011
Usually stay in hotels when away, but loved this apartment hotel. The facilities in the room were excellent, we had the basic studio apartment and had everything we needed. I real mini home from home. Everything was clean, and the bed was lovely and soft. My only complaintwas the noise, we could hear the floor boards squeaking when people walked around in the apartment upstairs, also the doors on the other rooms banged very loud, and woke me in the morning.

Stayed November 2011

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Whooohoooo! We’re at it again… our next one day 50% blue cross sale… join the Royalty Club by the 1st November and you will have exclusive access to this amazing offer!
From 8am – 8pm on the 9th November 2011 you can book any apartment, any location on any date* until the end of March 2012 with an amazing 50% discount!
And that’s not all… once you’re a member of the Royalty Club you can enjoy a minimum of a 10% discount! It’s even free to join… what’s not to love?

*subject to availability

It’s official… Manchester Roomzzz is “Amaaaaazing”!

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“Amaaaaazing”
5 of 5 stars 
Reviewed 21 September 2011 
Have stayed all over Manchester, even the Lowry and this place is definitely on par! The rooms are absolutely gorgeous, so modern and luxurious. Perfect location, 5-10 minute walk to all the shops and literally on the door step of Chinatown.
 
Staff were lovely and helpful with everything, from ordering taxi’s to chinese takeaways!
 
Bathroom absolutely stunning, huge double shower, two sinks.. And to go back to the room, 4-poster bed, soooo spacious, imac computer which spins round so you can watch tv in bed! Big wardrobe, cute little modern kitchen area, so so sooo nice!! We were on the second floor, heard some bad reviews about thin walls?! Never heard a thing, decor throughout is amazing, even the corridors and reception. three huge windows in our apartment (Grande Studio) with gorgeous black shutters on the inisde and then roller black out blinds as well. Can’t comment on the grab and go breakfast as we never got up in time for it haha! Also people moaning about the air con, the air con was brilliant and kept the room constantly very cool!! Will definitely be returning have already recommended to my family and friends… Just brilliant!
Stayed September 2011, travelled with friends

Reviewed by Americanaaa from Lincs…. thank you!