Great atmosphere

Location: 

Blue Cabana
Mabushi
Abuja
Nigeria
NG

Blue Cabana is an outdoor and indoor restaurant in Abuja that besides a restaurant has a gym and a beautiful outside pool where you can swim and relax. It is one of the nice upscale places in Abuja and when you go indoors you feel like you could be in any other city, it feels western and modern. It was a very hot day (above 30 degrees) and we decided to sit indoors with AC, although in the evening it is cool enough to sit outdoors by the pool and smoke shisha if you wish to.

Maija rated: 

3.00

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Location: 

Quality Chop House, The
88-94 Farringdon Road EC1R 3EA
London
United Kingdom
GB

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My friend Paul suggested we go for lunch to The Quality Chop House, a place I strangely had not heard anything about, especially considering how amazing the restaurant was. The Quality Chop House is a dining room, wine bar, butchers & shop on Farringdon road. It was originally opened in 1869 but obviously the original owners have changed since then and it is a different type of restaurant.

The restaurant apparently is great if you love wine, with a long wine list and a wine shop alongside the bar and dining room. 5 of us came here for lunch and one of us ( South African) ordered a glass of wine (the rest of us did not drink) and surprisingly was recommended a South African wine. The Butchers & Food Shop located next door sells a range of British meats as well as home-made condiments and pies. I did not visit it, but Paul went there after our lunch to stock up for his supper, and Paul only eats the best food, so this must be a great shop.

Maija rated: 

4.00

Location: 

Colony Grill Room, The
The Beaumont Hotel, 8 Balderton Street W1K 6TN
London
United Kingdom
GB

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I don’t always agree with what other food critics write, but I always read what they say, as I love eating food, watching food programs, cooking food and reading reviews about food. In one such review mentioning best 2014 restaurants, I noticed that the Colony Grill Room was mentioned. I had never heard of this place, which was strange as it was so close to where I live, less than 5 minutes away from Selfridges. So on one Saturday, my boyfriend and I decided to go there for lunch.

The Colony Grill Room is located in the Beaumont hotel, which I did not know about before, but which looks very pretty. I was a bit surprised about how much I liked the room where the Colony Grill Room was located. The hotel is sort of hidden from the main streets but when you walk into the Colony Grill Room, the room is grand and beautiful and it is buzzing and has so many people there. It is amazing to find something so hidden yet so much fun.

Maija rated: 

3.50

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Location: 

Smoking Goat
7 Denmark Street WC2H 8LZ
London
United Kingdom
GB

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Smoking goat is the new restaurant everyone is talking about. It is a Thai Barbecue restaurant (they say it is in Soho, but it is really closer to Tottenham Court Road and Covent Garden). It opened mid-October and already was full when I went there and is getting more and more attention. The restaurant is owned by Ben Chapman, and the head chef is Seb Homes who comes from the very good Thai restaurant, the Begging Bowl in Peckham.

 

Maija rated: 

3.50

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Location: 

Oscar Wilde bar, Hotel Café Royal
68 Regent Street W1B 4DY
London
United Kingdom
GB

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My boyfriend took me to the new Hotel Café Royal for Afternoon tea this weekend. Hotel Café Royal is a 5 star hotel next to Piccadilly station, in the middle of London, and recently refurbished. It used to not be a great hotel, but it closed in 2008, refurbished and re-opened in December 2012. I walk past it frequently, but had never been in there and actually did not know it existed.

Royal Café Hotel is now a beautiful hotel, beautifully redecorated, with rooms in different styles. The lobby and reception seem modern, but the Oscar Wilde room, where we had our afternoon tea, was made up in an old school style with mirrors and paintings and bold golden frames. It is a beautiful room and there are so many things you can look at. There was also a man playing the piano on one side of the room, creating that extra special atmosphere.

Maija rated: 

3.50

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Location: 

Fenix
Nispetiye Caddesi, No.79
Istanbul
Turkey
TR

Fenix is one of the trendiest new restaurants in Istanbul and when it first opened in March it was seriously difficult to get a table there. It is located on that busy street (Nispetiye Caddesi) that houses many of the best restaurants in Istanbul, including my personal favourite – the Nusret steak house. The inside of Fenix is very stylish with a cool bar, something you would expect to see in NY, and trees inside, it has a cool vibe about it. There is also an outside dining area, heated up using the heat lamps and which is where we sat, and did not feel cold at all. It is a very pretty place.

Maija rated: 

3.50

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Location: 

Sketch Gallery
9 Conduit Street W1S 2XG
London
United Kingdom
GB

I had not been to Sketch in a very long time and was so pleasantly surprised about how great it was. Sketch is sort of a house in Mayfair (Conduit street) that has 2 restaurants and various bars and lounge areas each very quirky and in their individual and very cool style. If you like design, art and furniture, then Sketch is a must visit for you. As the website says “Sketch is a complex and unique site”. The people behind Sketch, that opened it in December 2002, are French master chef Pierre Gagnaire (who has a 3 Michelin star restaurant in France) and restaurateur Mazouz.

Maija rated: 

4.00

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Location: 

Fischer’s
50 Marylebone High Street W1U 5HN
London
United Kingdom
GB

Fischer’s is now one of my favourite Marylebone restaurants. It recently opened on the premises that an Italian restaurant Cotidie used to occupy before it closed down. Fischer’s is a sister restaurant to Wolseley, The Delaunay and Brasserie Zedel and the style and interior is done in the same last century central European style. Just like the Delaunay, Fischer’s focuses on Austrian food, but in contrast to the Delaunay it is a much smaller restaurant which makes it more intimate.

 

Maija rated: 

4.00

Badges: 

Location: 

Beast, The
3 Chapel Place W1C 1HF
London
United Kingdom
GB

The beast is a Norwegian red king crab and hand selected Nebraskan beef restaurant in London. It is located just north of Oxford street by Debenhams and is the new restaurant by the people behind Goodmans and Burger and Lobster. I had heard a lot about this restaurant, it has generated a lot of hype due to its unusual menu.

 

Maija rated: 

4.50

Location: 

Barrafina Covent Garden
10 Adelaide Street WC2N 4HZ
London
United Kingdom
GB

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Barrafina Soho (MMMMM) is one of my favourite restaurants in London, which got this year its first Michelin star (which I think is too little too late… they should have got this years ago). One of the problems with Barrafina is that it is such a small restaurant and queues can be super long (they don’t take any bookings) and so you could wait a long time before getting a table. That is why I was quite excited to hear that Barrafina opened another restaurant a few months ago in Covent Garden, about 10 minutes’ walk from the original Soho branch.

Maija rated: 

4.50

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