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Archive for September, 2010

Brighton’s Ballroom gets it right

Hectic eclectic

Country, Ska, Pop, Mod and all in one venue: it can only be the Brighton Ballroom.

Recently refurbished and lovingly re-launched, the Ballroom plays host to Brighton’s most eclectic mix of genres and cultural germinations.

One quick look at the play list reveals all:

30 Sept: Ska Toons,  jazzy Ska classics and rock-steady versions of great songs in the old-skool 60’s style.

1st Oct: MISS HOPE SPRINGS presents BEYOND THE VALLEY OF THE DOLLS – Dance to Bacharach, Herb Albert and Tijuana Brass, the Carpenters Sergio Mendez Sylvester, DIvine and latin jazz of the 70’s and let your hair down to the latest handbag hits.

2nd Oct: Boogaloo Stu’s Popkraft – A good old-fashioned party with boogaloo stu, dollyrocket, sparklemotion, the size zero albino & darran duran, with things to make and do – plus pop music too.

4th Oct: Mercury Music Prize Nominees Villagers play the Brighton Ballroom

And from here on it gets more interesting: There’s a We Love Pop night, a night for Mods featuring ‘The Spitfires’ and ‘Departure From Normal’ and even something described as Electro Swing versus Speakeasy Jazz!

Sounds like our kind of night!

More information, look here.

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More food fun!

Yum, Yum

Yum, Yum

It’s world food weekend in Brighton! Everyone knows the UK’s favourite food is curry, but on Hove lawns this weekend you are set for much more than Madras and nan bread.

Expect to see, smell, and taste delicacies from around the globe before wandering back toward your hotel room  for a little treat to finish off with…

Everyone likes chocolate right? Well if even the thought of tasting fine choccies gets you drooling like a bloodhound, you need to take the family to the Churchill Square chocolate market this weekend. Perfect if the weather takes a turn for the worse because its all indoors, so no need to hide in your hotel rooms in Brighton, there are sweets galore and cocoa powder-dusted delights ready for all the family to tuck into!

And after all that, it’s probably tea time – not time for more food, but time for a cuppa (we’ve just heard about this place, Metrodeco not reviewed it yet but sounds kinda special).

So whichever way the weekend takes you, it’s likely you’ll stick on a pound or two – but, after all that dieting for summer isn’t it time we fattened up for Christmas? We think so, so we’ll see you there!

Churchill Square

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Wine and dine, it’s food time!

Food fest

Food fest

In case you haven’t noticed, we are in the middle of the Brighton and Hove Food Festival. This week is set to be a special one; not only is it right in the middle of the best foodie festival ever hosted in Sussex, it’s also packed with wine and food tasting sessions – always your favourites!

Some of the events cost, so we’ve compiled the best of the free ones, that way even people who aren’t so interested in foods can learn about good fresh produce without paying for the privilege.

So, here’s what’s on the menu.

Wednesday 15th: Churchill Square farmers market and live food kitchen.

Don’t expect herds of sheep, country types in tweeds, or cows with rings through their noses – that would be a load of bull. However, what you will find is excellent local produce, seasonable fruit and vegetables from local farmers, fresh meat and fish, cheese and breads, and food demonstrations – and those samples, mmm.

Saturday 18th: Cheese tasting at Infinity Foods, North Road/ Wine tasting at 21 Prince Albert Street

If you are new to the town or staying in a hotel in Brighton there’s a chance you haven’t visited Infinity Foods. You really should if you care about organic foods and cosmetics; it’s the largest supplier of both we know. Well, High Weald Diary will be running cheese tasting sessions, so you can tuck into locally made organic vegetarian cheeses.

Ridgeview, a local winery, will be at the Sheridan Coopers Wine Cellar to show off their award winning sparkling wines, so pop along for a frizante or glass of fizzy pop.

Cockney food night, lovely jubbly!

Cockney food night, lovely jubbly!

Now, if you’re planing on eating out anyway, why not set aside the cash for one of the paid events?

There’s Pudding Club at Temptation in Gardner Street, fruit cookery workshops, a Champagne mini festival, a Brazilian night at the seafront Umi Grill, Sake testing at Moshi Moshi, and our favourite: Cockney Night, when under Kings Road Arches £20 gets you fish and chips, drinks, entertainment and a ride on the carousel – all the fun of the food fair!

For more information and tickets, see here.

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Shopping in Brighton? Bag a bargain

It’s often thought people visiting Brighton are only here for the sun and fun. Well, there’s another reasons hotel rooms in Brighton are full week-on-week: Shopping!

In the first of a new series we are looking at the boutiques that make Brighton the south coast’s shopping destination of choice!

Porta Bags

As a new business, Porta exemplifies the bespoke Brighton shopping experience. Shockingly, before April 1st 2010, there were no stores dedicated to selling fashionable handbags in Brighton. What! So, its little wonder you find tourists and locals taking a good long look in the window!

Shopping in Brighton: Unique and Boutique

Shopping in Brighton: Unique and Boutique

Where is it?

Situated in Bond Street, North Laines, Porta is limited only by its size. Inside you’ll find an intelligently created layout where bags are featured, not piled high.

Few shoppers enjoy a pushy ’sales experience’. Well, assistant manager David has the perfect antidote to the fake world of snivelling sales mantras: be natural.

Here’s a man who knows he’s onto a good thing: the bags are exceptional quality, in a great location, priced really well and when he offers a word to help, it is to help – he clearly loves his products, so if you want to find out more you’ll be happy to ask – he won’t be pestering you.

What’s it got?

Arm candy

Arm candy

For bag fans – I’m not one, but still found some lovely laptop cases downstairs – there are designs from “Coccinelle” and “Ameko”; the vintage Italian butter leather, handmade “Lie down I think I love you” Sweetheart collection; as well as the ever-so on trend “Nica” and “Mischa Barton” bags.

If that’s not enough, you’ll soon spot funky stuff from “Red or Dead”; quirky styles from the “Zandra Rhodes handbag collection”; Eel skin bags, clutches and purses from London brands “Bobelle” and “Makki” and the timeless shapes of “Ri2k”.

Guys are also catered for with great men’s bags from “Skyve and Tool”, “Simon Carter”, “Ashwood” and the Italian “Giada pelle“.

There’s an equal spread of glam bags (upstairs) and stylish utility satchels (downstairs). The only criticism is of the display on the stairs, with the bags hanging off of the lights.

“I want to make Porta the ultimate bag destination in Brighton,” David told me. Well, he may have already done it!

New stuff?

Looking to come winter shopping in Brighton? Porta’s expecting deliveries from “Nadia Lala”, “Hobo”, “the Cambridge Satchel Company”, “Aftershock”, “Miss Budd”, “David Jones” and the best selling and hugely popular brand “Fiorelli”.

Every weekend there’s a bed in a hotel room in Brighton piled high with designer bags, and why not? Try shopping in Brighton after the nightmare of chasing labels in London; you won’t be disappointed!

For more information on Porta


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Brighton? Isn’t everybody gay?

Brighton Pride 2010

That’s the response I usually get when I tell people I live in this city! And the first time they visit, either staying in a hotel in Brighton or crashing over at my place, they are always poised to witness some ubercamp, boy-on-boy, girl-on-girl, tranny, bi-fest!

Living here, we just don’t see it like that. Brighton is very gay friendly. It supports the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bi and Transgender) community. But it’s as much about tolerance and equality than individual sexuality. And to live in a town with such an open mind is truly a privilege.

Yes, you will see public affection between people of the same sex, but you’ll see straight people holding hands and kissing too!

Everyone is welcome here. That’s the beauty of this place, and even on a short weekend break you can pick up the vibe. And forget the stereotypes; there are certain styles and fashions in every community.

Here’s a link to our sister blog aimed more at the LGBT community; regular people going regular things, but just a little better dressed!

The Ambassador’s LGBT blog

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Proper mod

When you run a Brighton bed and breakfast, you get to see a mod or two! Well, this weekend gone there were some of the best dressed people and  best maintained scooters ever.

Sat by the Volks enjoying the weather; scooters rolling up, people drinking, taking in the sunshine and the good times.

So, here’s some pictures for all the guys and girls who rode down. And a big hello to the biker dude who revved his engine on the way past!

If you like the images, just share on Facebook via the link at the bottom and watch out for more…

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By Julia Horbaschk
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By Julia Horbaschk
By Julia Horbaschk

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