The Olympics and the Paralympics dominated our spare time this summer, but we've also been reflecting on how brilliant the Cultural Olympiad was in the West MIdlands.
964 projects, including 78 world premieres, lit up the region all summer. Our favourite was The Voyage, which took place from June 21-24. The show transformed Birmingham's central square into an ocean-going liner. It was truly spectacular.
There are just over two weeks to go until Style Birmingham Live which takes place at the Mailbox on September 29. This year the show will be hosted by Martine McCutcheon.
You can book tickets for what promises to be a brilliant event using this link http://t.co/s0MPMegZ
We enjoyed a recent piece in the Spectator about Birmingham by William Cook. He said, "When I returned here last year, for the first time in ten years , I was amazed to find this unloved metropolis had had a dramatic facelift."
You can read the whole article here.
The Alternative Weekend is here!
Stay with us on a Sunday and Monday night and you will enjoy brilliant Alternative Weekend discount rates and some lovely complimentary extras.
Alternative Weekend packages start at £99 per night for a Mini apartment and include a free bottle of champagne chilling in your fridge on arrival plus your choice of breakfast on Monday morning from our Extras menu.
Our Alternative Weekend rates for larger apartments are:
Clubman one-bedroom apartment
£119 per night
Maxi two-bedroom apartment
£169 per night
Penthouse two-bedroom apartment
£219 per night
This offer is only available by booking direct (online, phone or email) - please quote the relevant rate code below when you book. You must stay for the two nights (Sunday and Monday). The only exclusions are if New Year's Eve falls on a Sunday or Monday and during the party conference season.
ArtsFest, the UK@s biggest free arts festival, takes place once again in Birmingham this weekend from the 7-9 September.
This year's highlights include the screening of the Last Night of the Proms on Saturday evening in Centenary Square, the Bandstand Marathon as part of the Cultural Olympiad and the screening of the Closing Ceremony of the Paralympic Games on Sunday evening in Victoria Square.
Another event, supported by ArtsFest, will see Mandala take place on the evening of Friday 7th September. This event is another part of the Cultural Olympiad and will see Town Hall illuminated with 3D projections whilst a range of music and dance performances take place.
We were delighted to be reviewed by gentleman-bloggers Deux Messieurs.
Here's an excerpt: "Time to unwind. The living area is a stylish mix of retro and modern; contemporary furniture and artwork have been chosen to reflect the Rotunda's 1960s heritage (I particularly covet the Tom Dixon lampshades). "
"We also play around with the very 21st century gadgetry including Apple TV and iPod dock, but the only entertainment we really need is that view! We uncork a bottle of wine and watch the city buzz away far below."
You can read the full review here.
We' ve launched a new wedding night package at the Rotunda in Birmingham.
The package offers accommodation at the top of the iconic grade-II listed skyscraper with sleek interiors, the privacy and space to relax after a hectic day, wonderful nightscapes and lots of complimentary extras.
On arrival in your 5* apartment, you will find a bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge. Dried rose buds will be scattered on the king-size, pocket sprung Ultimate bed. And, if you feel ravenous later, there will be a Midnight Munchies pack on hand containing delicious snacks.
Next morning, an extended 1pm check time out can be made the most of by enjoying a leisurely breakfast. Everything required to make either a Full English breakfast or smoked salmon bagels will be provided.
Our light-filled apartments are regularly used for fashion shoots and they make a wonderful backdrop for wedding photos. Bridal make up and grooming services can be enjoyed in the apartments courtesy of Urban Retreat at Home.
Staying Cool's wedding night package costs £475 per night for a Roadster penthouse and £250 for a one-bed Clubman apartment. The two-bedroom penthouses are perfect for those who want to stay the night before the wedding with family members or bridesmaids, or to have their children with them on the night of the wedding.
Book via email on firstname.lastname@example.org or please call 0121 285 1290.
If you're staying with us in Birmingham this weekend with kids (or you just love kids' films) then you can enjoy FREE films at the Brindley Place Film Festival. This weekend's line up is:
Friday at 6pm - Ghostbusters
Saturday at 11am - Rio
Saturday at 2pm - How to Train Your Dragon
Sunday at 11am - Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
Sunday at 2pm - Puss in Boots
Please check the film festival website for times, cancellations etc.
Tickets are now on sale for 2012's Birmingham Book Festival, which runs from October 4-13.
Highlights include Caitlin Moran in conversation with Stuart Maconie and Simon Armitage (below) talking about his new book, Walking Home.
Full programme of events.
Elle online gave Staying Cool at the Rotunda a rave review this month. Elle said:
City centre stays don't come much cooler than Staying Cool Birmingham. At the top of the city's iconic Rotunda building, the 26 serviced crashpads are done out in a minimal, Space Odyssey style in keeping with the listed 60s setting, and furnished with bright pink Lou Rota Polymorph chairs, Tom Dixon felt lamps, Naughtone sofas in dark grey and retro photos of models by Nick Smith. "Hotels?" they seem to say, "So passé"
You can read the full review here.
"There are no bellhops nor a gym...instead you get a Mac Mini, free Wi-Fi, an espresso machine and a juicer (oranges included)." The New York Times
"Why go? For an ultra-stylish taste of Birmingham..." Red online
"I liked the fact that all the food products were fairtrade/organic (excellent!). The flat was lovely, wish I had somewhere like that in London.." Kate Cater, Life & Style Editor, The Guardian