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Shopping in the city

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Leeds

Over the past few years, Leeds has seen a real growth in shopping centre stores. With the new Trinity Centre dominating the skyline, and the impressive range of retailers that inhabit Leeds’ newest offering, there are plenty of high street names on offer. The beauty of Trinity, when compared to other centres, comes in the fact that the stores within the facility compliment the pre-existing stores in Leeds, as opposed to duplicating them. If you’re after something higher end, the Victoria Quarter, situated a mere walk across Briggate offers a more quaint and boutique experience, perfect for those with a more expensive taste. It’s fairly typical that the city centre offers a vast range of high street retailers for you to choose from. When in Leeds, the principal pedestrianised shopping street is Briggate. Housing many of the UK’s premium high street names, along with an assortment of tech and gadget stores, you’ll find most shops within a small radius of the street. Meeting the street at a perpendicular, The Headrow also offers fashionable retail stores, meaning that you don’t have too far to travel when you fancy a leisurely browse. If you’re after something a little different from your trip, Leeds also offers a choice of smaller, independent stores. Whether you’re after men’s fashion in The Hip Store, or knickknacks and crafts from the assortment of stores inside the Corn Exchange, it’s worth taking a look online at what the independent traders of Leeds can offer you.

Manchester

Manchester is renowned for the assortment of retail options available. With the Arndale Centre located centrally in the middle of Manchester, the area has a similar feel to Leeds, with both large shopping centres and high street stores all within close proximity. If you want to avoid the city centre hustle and bustle, the Trafford Centre is just a short journey away. Manchester is a huge city, and the assortment of high street retail options makes it ideal for a weekend shopping break, especially in the run up to Christmas. If you’re heading to the premiere shopping destination in the North, the mix of department stores, big name retail chains and smaller independent offerings all in the centre of the city make it ideal if you’re planning a weekend break in the heart of the city, and with an abundance of bars and restaurants on hand, it makes for the perfect weekend getaway.

Newcastle

Similarly to both Leeds and Manchester, Newcastle has a number of shopping centre options, if you’re looking for a bit of retail therapy, whilst guarding yourself from the autumn and winter elements. Just a short journey from Newcastle, you’ll find the renowned Metro Centre. The vast shopping complex has plenty to offer, and to this day holds the crown as Europe’s largest covered shopping and leisure centre. If the drive into Gateshead is too far, Intu Eldon Square, located in the city centre, yet again offers plentiful retail offerings in the heart of Newcastle. With high street retailers also lining Grainger Street and Pilgrim Street in the city, take advantage of any early autumn sunshine as you browse Newcastle at your leisure.

If you’re planning a city shopping break, make sure you check in to a Roomzzz hotel, for a convenient city centre base.

CC image from en.wikipedia.org

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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Evening entertainment in Manchester

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Manchester is a city of great culture, and the abundance of theatres, shows and musical events in the city make it a great city for a weekend break for any age group. The coming month has a lot to offer, so whether you’re a fan of music, of a gripping theatre experience, we’ve got you covered.

The Palace Theatre

The story of Britain’s greatest and most iconic ever band is playing between at the historic Palace Theatre in Manchester. Let It Be incorporates the iconic music of The Beatles and gives you hours of spectacular performance, packed with over 40 of The Beatles greatest hits. Having enjoyed a successful run on London’s West End, this international hit show invites you along to celebrate the legacy of the world’s greatest rock ‘n’ roll band. Described by the Daily Telegraph as ‘A non-stop parade of hits’ this show is a must for any fan of British music. Tickets prices for the show range from £16.90 to £47.90 and runs from 28th of February to the 8th of March.

Manchester Opera House

Heading to the Manchester Opera House at the end of March, Kindertransport is a stunning story of 1930′s Germany combined with 1980′s England. Starring big names from the world of Television, including Maggie Steed (Stella, Jam and Jerusalem, Pie in the Sky) and Janet Dibley (Doctors, EastEnders, The Two of Us), the story begins in pre-war Germany as the clouds of conflict begin to gather and a torn mother forces her nine year old child onto a train to avoid the danger of an impending war. Also examining a peaceful suburban England where another mother faces a similarly tough situation, Kindertransport has drawn huge critical acclaim from influential titles including The Times and the New York Times. Running from 25th to the 29th of March, tickets for the show can be picked up for roughly between £12 and £32

Manchester Apollo

If you’re after something a little less formal over the upcoming month, the Manchester Apollo has a range of great musical acts on show. Fresh from their Brit Award for the best British breakthrough act, Bastille play two nights at the famous Apollo venue. Despite a relatively small back catalogue to choose from, the band are renowned for their live performances having learned from the experience of supporting Muse on their UK stadium tour. With hits such as Pompeii and Laura Palmer, tickets are well worth hunting out for their 28th February and 1st March dates.

If you prefer something a little less contemporary, but in a similar alternative rock style, a month later sees the hugely successful Welsh band Manic Street Preachers at the Apollo. Having been a commanding figure within UK rock scene for the best part of the last30 years, catch the successful rockers out on 1st April.

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

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