Heroine In Heels is a top 10 London lifestyle blog aimed at the modern day woman. Covering things to do in London, restaurant reviews, hotels as well as where to go in the world when you want to escape London

Heroine In Heels is a top 10 London lifestyle blog aimed at the modern day woman. Covering things to do in London, restaurant reviews, hotels as well as where to go in the world when you want to escape London

In January it will have been 3 years ago that I embarked on a slightly crazy trip to the Artic Circle. In the name of Charity I trekked across the very top of Sweden for 5 days with a motley crew of dogs, no electricity or running water and one night, sleeping in an igloo! Needless to say, my experience of Sweden is probably not your average one! So, with 3 years having passed it was about time see a more normal aide of Sweden and actually experience what Sweden has to offer rather than trying not to freeze to death. 

Rather than visit Stockholm, I headed to the west of Sweden for a little 4 day adventure, starting in the totally unexpectedly beautiful Marstrand. 

Up until last week I had never been to Eastern Europe. I feel like I've travelled quite extensively over the last 5 years and yet realised I'd never made the journey East. I've also got another little secret. Until this year, I'd never been to a Christmas Market before! I know, I know! It sounds quite crazy. But all that changed when I went to Budapest for the first time.

I feel like Budapest has grown in popularity in recent years. I've known quite a few friends to go. and rave about it. The mixture of history, architecture and nightlife draw people to it, but to me it has always been a Christmas destination. Somewhere that loves the spirit of Christmas and puts on a great show. I think it's fair to say if you think of Christmas Markets, you probably think of Budapest.

But what else can you do in the city over the Christmas period, and where is the best place to stay, where to eat and all those other niggly bits of information. So without further ado, here's my weekend guide to Christmas time in Budapest.

Selfridges Selection Christmas Hamper At Home

This post was sponsored by Selfridges. All words, thoughts and photos are my own. 

Wow, where has this year gone? It’s now December! How did that happen? It only feels like last week that it was summer and we were all moaning about how hot it was, and yet now here we all are talking about how cold it is!

October and November are the in between months when we are all getting used to the new season, yet now it's December and that’s where the fun real fun starts. 

When in Rome... take lots of photos.

Rome is one of the most iconic cities in the world. With its incredible architecture from 1000s of years ago, absolutely breathtaking landmarks and of course, amazing food, there really is plenty of photo opportunities wherever you look. 

Instagram is very much part and parcel of our travels now, and so after visiting Rome last week, here are my top 7 most instagrammable locations in Rome, all vetted and taken by me, so you know you can get the shot. I've listed the time of day I took the photos and any tips or tricks to getting the shot. 

Also why not follow me on Instagram to get more location inspiration.

When in Rome, do as the Romans do. Thats how the saying goes, and I planned to experience the best of what the Romans have to offer.

Myself and Angie have been friends for years, but we'd never been away together. We talked for months about doing a trip but due to just life we never got round to it. Until during the summer Angie suggested Rome in November. I'd never been to Italy let alone Rome, so I leapt at the chance. 

And so last week we finally made that trip.

The words gourmet and bus don't usually go together. Whenever I think of the word bus, I immediately think of that year I did an internship and got the bus to work along with about 100 other city workers all crammed on at 8am counting down until they could leave again.

However what if I told you that didn't have to be the case?

In London there is a plethora of dining options. Anything you can think of and it probably exists. Which is why sometimes its good to try a dining "experience" to shake things up a bit from the standard restaurant. We've already seen dining in the dark, dining naked (yes really) but dining on a bus? And a luxury bus at that?

Can Paris be done in a day? Well I guess that question really depends on where you are coming from. But if you are like me and coming from London, then absolutely. 

Of course, there is far too much to do in Paris for just one day, but you can definitely make it a worth while day and experience a lot in such a short amount of time. Plus with the ease of the Eurostar, it's not too much hassle to pop back again in you missed anything. 

But if you find yourself with a spare day and fancy a day trip, perhaps one weekend after a hard week at work, then here's some of my personal favourite things to do in Paris. 

Facials. They are the ultimate 'treat yo self' for relaxation and escapism. I love a spa day or even just a couple of hours. It feels like I'm looking after myself and taking care of my body (and hopefully future proofing it a little bit).

The W London hotel in Piccadilly is somewhere I know as a great place to start an evening off. They have a gorgeous swanky bar and it's such a great location to explore London's nightlife. 

However what I didn't know was that they have an award winning spa a few floors up called Away.

You can't buy happiness, but you can buy ice cream, and thats pretty much the same thing.

I don't think there are two mens names that evoke such love more than Ben and Jerry, or Ben and Jerry's to be precise. Which is why when a little email landed in my inbox from the very duo, my heart did a little flutter.

You see, there's a very cool exhibition on at the moment over at Kings Cross, and cool is the optimal word to describe, as it's a dedicated ice cream exhibition!

Last year whilst in Amsterdam I heard of something called De Poozenboat which means cat boat in Dutch. Sadly it wasn't open on the Sunday when I found out about it so I didn't get to see it, but basically it is a boat full of cats. Ok, they are rescue cats waiting for adoption so it's not quite as mad as it sounds, but I mention this as before I went back to Amsterdam I was Googling it and discovered something even better...

A Cat Cafe! Or Kattencafe in Dutch.

As a Londoner, and someone who properly lives the typical London lifestyle; work in the city by day and explore London's food and drink scene in the evening, happiness in this great city is a factor many of us contemplate on a weekly basis.

It's often hotels debated whether the city or the countryside lifestyle makes us more happy. There is points on both sides, but that being said, no one can say living in a city, and London to be exact, can be full on and often exhausting.

Which is why the St James's hotel and Club have introduced their Happiness in the city package to try reset us often burnt out and questioning life types.

Does Coworth Park host the most luxurious picnic in Britain?

Here in Britain, we aren't exactly blessed with good weather often. So it was quite strange finding ourselves with weeks upon weeks of scorching sun. I think we forgot what rain actually was. So true to classic British nature, we went out in droves with our picnic baskets and rugs under arms. However picnics really do range in quality. From soggy tin foil wrapped sandwiches, all the way up to bone china plates in whicker baskets.  However I don't think anything quite compares to the Michelin starred restaurant food and champagne picnic at Coworth Park. It is quite possibly the most luxurious picnic in Britain. 

Who didn't grow up surrounded by Disney as a child? I remember every Saturday we would go to the library and could rent a video (the free alternative to BlockBuster) and I'd work my way through the Disney collection. Whilst Mulan is still my ultimate favourite Disney Princess (she's so kick-ass), Belle will always hold a special place in my heart. Beauty and the Beast is one of the great classic's, with a beautiful love story, special and fun characters and a fight against evil. Plus the original animated film came out the year I was born.

So upon hearing that there was a Beauty and the Beast afternoon tea in London called 'A Tale As Old As Time' I think I did a little squeal and probably London did a collective one as well.

With all the hot weather we've been having here in the UK, you'd be forgiven for thinking we were in Italy! I don't think anyone has ever seen such long sunshine and warm weather here before. Whilst us Brits are famous for a spot of tea, personally I can't drink tea in hot weather. Plus, I feel like tea isn't the most social of drinks either, and when the sun is this glorious, I just want to gather with all my friends.

So, with that in mind, let's take a leaf out of the Italians’ book and delve into the world of Aperitivo.

The Italians are known for their love of food and drink, and aperitivo is all about that. It is in fact a time to drink and enjoy some small plates and nibbles to whet the appetite in preparation for dinner.

Aperitivo was born in the late 18th century in Torino by Antonio Benedetto Carpano who created the first aperitivo drink: vermouth, and as you probably guessed it, this went on to be Carpano, the international bestselling drink brand.

Today, the concept is now an Italian tradition, where for a glorious couple of hours all over Italy — generally between 7pm and 9pm, Italians meet to relax over a glass of wine or a cocktail and light food.

Brunch without champagne is just a sad, late breakfast.

Never a truer word spoken. Brunch is honestly one of my favourite things to do at a weekend. It's a chance to met up with friends and eat some really great food. I mean, it's both savoury and sweet and washed down with champagne. It really is the perfect meal right?

Nobu Shoreditch is still a relatively new hotel and restaurant, having opened a year ago in July 2017. More known for it's Mayfair and West End crowd, Nobu Shoreditch is the latest addition to the high-end cool part of Shoreditch, which includes places like The Curtain and Ace Hotel. Some say it's becoming a mini Manhattan, and actually I tend to agree- but that's an exciting thing!

And after watching many, many episodes of Sex and the City, we know that Manhattan can brunch, so in keeping with this trend, Nobu Shoreditch have just launched their Pink Brunch for the whole of August in collaboration with Verve Clicquot. 

If someone were to ask, what is one thing you could change about your body, it would be immediately my hair.

My hair has been the bane of my life for as long as I can remember. Whilst my friends had lovely silky smooth hair, mine was a mass of voluminous curls. Sure, on paper this sounds wonderful. Images of AnnaLynn McCord or Taylor Swift (pre mega star days) probably come to mind, but that wasn't quite what the hair gods had in mind for me. Think more Kate Bush and you get the idea. 

But it wasn't always like that. Oh no. In fact, looking back at photos, I had rather cute hair, and with hindsight, if I had looked after it properly, it could have been really long and beautiful when I was older, but hey, hindsight is a wonderful thing right?
Ocean Restaurant, The Atlantic Hotel, Jersey

Living in London, I've come to take fine dining for granted. We are lucky in that we have a plethora of choice every way we luck. Fancy some fining dining French food? No problem. Fine dining Indian? You got it. Hey, I'm pretty sure if I googled it, there would be a fine dining burger restaurant.

But back in my home town, fine dining isn't so easy to find. So it was really lovely to be able to take my mum to Ocean Restaurant in The Atlantic Hotel in Jersey for a very special lunch.

Ocean Restaurant is a pure node to its coastal location. The Atlantic hotel is a luxury 5* hotel on the west coast of the island and sits right on the edge of the coast, overlooking some fantastic views of the beach and sea.

The dining room is decorate in  blues, whites and beiges to bring about a calm and relaxing space. 

Executive Chef Will Holland, a Michelin Star holder, has created a menu that reflects the fresh produce of Jersey, with as much as possible coming local from the island.

“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt.” 
― Charles M. Schulz

Chocolate is one of life's great pleasures. It’s there when you are happy, when you are sad, and when you just fancy something truly delicious. 

When I was young, and my parents and teachers would ask what did I want to be when I was older, and all the other children would say a vet or a fireman, I kept saying I wanted to work in a chocolate factory. That image of being a chocolate inventor, creating amazing chocolate treats was a beautiful dream…

Last year it was all the rage to wear tiny tiny crop tops during summer, which are all well and good, but I'll be honest, I'm glad that trend has moved on a bit. I'm all for body confidence, but when I'm planning on a huge BBQ feast, a crop top is not my first choice. 

Which is why I'm rejoicing that floaty floral maxi dresses are this summers big staple. You can't miss them on Instagram, bloggers and in every shop window. 

Hello south of France, is that you?

Well whilst geographically you are making your way over to our European neighbour, in fact this is part of Britain.

Welcome to Jersey.

“There comes a time in every woman’s life when the only thing that helps is a glass of champagne.” –Bette Davis
I feel like I would get on well with Bette Davis. 

There is definitely something about champagne that just makes everything a little bit better. Wether its to aid a celebration, or to help pick yourself up after a bad day, us women (and men too, to be fair) are in love with a glass of champagne. 

Over the years, I've drank my fair amount of champagne- I know, I know, a tough job eh- and I've tired many, many brands, but there is one that stands out head and shoulders above the rest, and that is Laurent-Perrier. 

Laurent-Perrier is a brand I was properly introduced to about 3 years ago, and it really is exceptional. Founded in 1812, it is still a family run champagne house, and I can truly say this as I've been lucky enough to work with them on many occasions, that they really are dedicated to their art. 

Laurent-Perrier have many varieties including brut, ultra brut and vintages, but there is one very special one that is my absolute favourite; Cuvée Rosé, and I was very excited to help celebrate it's 50th birthday last week. 

Cuvée Rosé is as the name suggest, a Rosé variety and so the party was a truly pink affair, and how beautiful does it look! 

Held at the Rumpus Room in the Mondrian hotel, the decorations were amazing. I couldn't stop taking photos!

And here is the birthday girl, the delicious Cuvée Rosé. 

If you haven't tried it yet, you have to. It's sweet, refreshing yet crisp and well, extremely drinkable. 

As well as Cuvée Rosé flowing, there was another champagne treat; Cuvée Rosé filled Doughnut Time, doughnuts! I had heard such good things about these doughnuts with apparently queues round the block when they first opened in London yet I hadn't actually tried one until that night. 

Oh boy, I'm not over exaggerating when I say they are fantastic. I deeply regret giving away my second one to my boyfriend...

Black Bodysuit (Similar) // Wrap Bow Skirt (Gold Sold Out, Black Here) // Bow Heels Here

Cheers old girl. You look half your age!

Overlooking London, Rumpus Room is such a great bar. Again, I’d never been, but I’m going to head back for some Saturday drinks as I can imagine the terrace being fantastic in the summer.

As the night wore on, the drinks flowed, the music grew louder and the real party started. 

I’d love to say I was the first to get up and dance, but I found the popcorn machine in the corner, and well, you know me, that’s where my priorities lie. 

Also can we talk about champagne and popcorn? What a great combination. I really think cinemas are missing a trick here, can you imagine, it would be movie heaven. 

Sadly before the clocks turned midnight I too had to leave. Not for a magic spell but simply for a train as I had work the next day. Oh what a fairytale. 

Laurent-Perrier continues to be my favourite champagne and I honestly can’t see anything knocking it off the top spot anytime soon. 

So raise a glass to Cuvée Rose and celebrate its 50th birthday- not that you need an excuse to have a glass, do you? 

I’ll get straight into it. Polo has not been on my radar previously. I didn’t attend a private school or ride horses growing up, so it seems quite alien to me. I guess I held the preconception that it was a upper class sport and events surrounding it were only attended by those who run in those sort of circles. I mean sure, lets be frank the Royal family play polo so it’s hardly the sport of those kicking it down the local recreation park. However the overall game and events surrounding it are open to everyone and is far more inclusive than I let myself believe. 

Which brings me onto Polo In The Park. Polo In The Park is bringing polo to a wider and newer audience. Whilst the event is still a classy affair, it is more accessible to everyone who wants to enjoy the refined game in a fun setting. 

The funny thing about the British weather is when it’s bad, it’s pretty darn bad. But when it’s good, oh it’s glorious. And the last two weekends, how glorious has it been? I mean, not so much during the week, when your rammed onto the tube commuting, but when you have the whole day to do as you like, it is a dream.

There are many things you can do with your summer weekends, but one of my absolute favourites has to be the great British picnic.

There is something about eating outside that just feels so right. Maybe it’s being amongst nature, maybe it’s the fresh air, or just the fact that it’s a break from routine.

So, at the weekend, off I went for my first summer 2018 picnic.

Ever since I was a kid I wanted to travel and see more of the world. We didn't get to go abroad as a family when I was young, but I patiently waited, knowing my time would come. What I didn’t know was that travel would become such a big part of my life, that I actually got to include it in my work. Fast forward to today and I now go away roughly 8 times a year which for someone with a full time corporate job is pretty good going. 

I’ve found with travel not just as a blogger but as a general trend, we tend to be less switched off than we used to be. Whether that’s using our phones as maps and guidebooks, updating social media on what Instagrammable moment we are having, or taking endless photos and then editing them on a computer. 

Whilst all of these might be helpful to us, fun for us or just part of our jobs, we have to ask, what impact is this having on our eyes?

I’ve always struggled with bad eyes. From when I was young and my Dad saying I was blind as a bat, to at work when I was trying to give a presentation and I realised I couldn’t see the numbers on the screen, my eyes have plagued me. I’ve been standing at an airport alone and had to ask someone to read the flight gates to me as I couldn’t see that far. 

Fast forward to a year ago I finally relented and got glasses. To be fair, they are pretty smart, Chanel ones, and boy can I see, but that vain feeling still remains- do I look like a librarian?

I have to admit, I don’t wear them as often as I should. Yes, I have that warped perception that I’m prettier without them, and look geeky with them. I would never go to a party or a bar wearing them and even if I wasn’t quite so vain, I do sometimes find them inconvenient. Going to the gym, I can’t really be jumping around in glasses, or taking photos, you just can’t look through a view finder with glasses. Minor things, but its lots of little minor things that add up.

And so I have come to discover the world of contact lens, and you know what? Why didn’t I go down that route before?

So let’s start from the beginning shall we? I went for a fitting of ACUVUE Oasys 1-Day with HydraLuxe and immediately at that appointment I learnt more about my eyes than I had ever known. In a nutshell my eyes were quite overworked basically from the constant strain of using screens. I work in technology during the day so am on my computer for 9 hours a day, then on the tube I’m on my phone, then when I get home I’m usually on my laptop blogging, and so actually never off a screen, which had led to near constantly strain on my eyes. No only was my vision bad, my eyes were incredibly dry. My left eye in particular is very dry and I needed to stop straining it, and fast.

And so wearing ACUVUE Oasys 1-Day with HydraLuxe would do two things. One, I was more likely to wear these everyday and for longer and so wouldn’t be straining my eyes as much on screens and trying to read things at a distance, and two, they actually help keep your eyes hydrated and fight the effects of straining.

So why are these so good for traveling?

UV protection

Did you know ACUVUE Oasys 1-Day with HydraLuxe lenses have the highest level of UV blocking available in a contact lens on the market? When you go away you put on sunscreen right? Well think of this as that but for your eyes. It never occurred to me before but now it makes perfect sense to protect them.

Wearing sunglasses

Hello sight and sunglasses! This has been a huge problem for me! It’s bright sunshine, I need sunglasses and yet as soon as I take off my glasses I can’t see properly. Sure you could get those sunglasses with your prescription but then you are limited to just one pair of glasses, and come on, there's so much choice out there!


This was a huge thing for me, and actually a sort of wow moment when I first looked through my viewfinder wearing contacts. First of all, my god was my focus off! Suddenly I could turn the dial and see the image I was about to take so sharply. This has helped my photography no end, as before I couldn’t look through my camera with glasses on, and taking them off made it difficult to see if a photo was truly sharp or not. As someone who not only loved photography, but also gets paid to take photos, it’s paramount that they are perfect. With contacts I can quickly take photos on the go and no faff about with my glasses and hoping the images are sharp. It even gets to the point now where I’m frustrated if I’m not wearing a pair, as I know I could be missing out.

Ease of use

I was worried they were going to be really tricky to put in, but honestly they are incredibly simple. I mean sure, not everyone is comfortable putting things near their eyes. Luckily, I’m quite comfortable with things near my eyes. I think use women have a natural advantage here as we are used to a mascara wand going close to our eyes. It took me only one attempt to be able to put it in, and only a couple of attempts to take one out. This coupled with the fact that as they are only one day use, there's no messing with solution on the road. Just pop a packet in your bag, and each day just put in a new pair. And don’t worry they really are comfortable, so much so in fact I just forget I’m wearing any.

Honestly, wearing Acuvue contact lens has been a game changer for me when travelling. I know that my eyes are going to be protected and that I can actually see clearly and work smarter now. I recently went to Athens and for the first time, I left my glasses at home and just wore contacts. I was worried that in very hot weather they might get irritated but I didn't find that at all. Infact my eyes didn't have that dry tight feeling they usually do in hot climates.

Athens has some truly incredible sights, and trust me, I want to be able to see them in all their sharp, focused glory.

If you’ve had your eyes tested but haven’t been offered contact lenses, don’t be afraid to ask - they may be suitable for you too. To get your own free trial of ACUVUE® OASYS 1-Day Contact Lenses, head to: https://www.acuvue.co.uk/free-contact-lens-trial

This post was sponsored by ACUVUE® OASYS 1-Day Contact Lenses but as always the content, words, photos and opinions are my own.

One great thing about London is that it loves a good pop up. Every night of the week there is practically a new pop up somewhere that will get everyone racing down. We’ve had a hallumi cafe, an avocado restaurant, and now theres a Laurent-Perrier bar.

Ah my love for Laurent-Perrier continues. Regular readers will know that it has been my favourite champagne house for many many years now. Birthdays and celebrations are always accompanied by a bottle… or two. 

Which is why I had to head on over to their new summer garden pop up at Icon Balcony Bar.

I had actually never heard of Icon Balcony Bar before, but it’s right in the centre of Leicester sure over looking the fountain. The bar is part of the Empire casino, but you’ll feel worlds away from a casino. 

The pop up represents a summer garden. With soft “grass”, deck chairs and of course plenty of flowers. The day we went it had been raining in the morning and was still quite grey, however we decided to still sit outside as honestly what is better than sitting out on a terrace drinking champagne? Plus they do offer you blankets if you think you might need one, although after this weekends weather, I’d say that won’t be necessary. 

The balcony terrace is a cute little space, with fairy lights strung up and flowers wrapped around the balcony. But the most striking and of course, photogenic piece is the huge pink birdcage that sits on the balcony. The birdcage represents Laurent-Perrier as it is part of its signature style. The birdcage is actually a small seat for 2 although again as it had been raining sadly I didn’t sit down in it. 

But onto the main event, the Laurent-Perrier. So the deal is, 1 glass of Laurent-Perrier Cuvée and 2 Laurent-Perrier cocktails of your choosing, with some paired popcorn by Joe and Seph for £23. £23 for three Laurent-Perrier champagne drinks is great value as you’d usually pay about £14 a glass for Laurent-Perrier.

I decided to go for Amaretto, cherry, lemon, blackberry as I love cherry, and Hendricks, elderflower, apple, passion fruit as it sounded so refreshing. The cocktails are on the sweeter side here and will certainly get you into the summer mood. My paired popcorn was Eton Mess and never having had Joe and Seph before I was quite impressed. They are an award winning gourmet popcorn company and having tried the Eton Mess flavour which was delicious I can see why.  I could also certainly have ate another pot so thats validation.  

I naturally had a sip out of everyones drinks, for research purposes of course. Most of them were delicious and actually my favourite of the night was the Monkey 47, lemon, violette, sage, pomegranite, rosemary drink. Who would have thought that one would have been the winner? But honestly it's so refreshing. Although sadly I’d say maybe don’t order the cherry cocktail which is a shame as I love cherries, however it was incredibly tart and did actually taste just of cherry juice. For me it was too overpowering. 

With all those drinks flowing we decided to order a platter. The platters aren’t strictly part of the pop up and are from the regular bar menu so some might not think chicken wings and champagne go together, but I beg to differ. 

The balcony terrace is a great little venue, and I’d definitely recommend sitting outside, and with the weather we’ve been having this weekend, it would be the perfect summers day treat. 

Tickets can be booked on Design My Night now until end of July.