New Restaurant: Temple & Sons

On 21st November, The Social Company opened the doors to Temple and Sons, a new City grill restaurant and bar. Situated adjacent to the iconic Tower 42, Temple & Sons is a second partnership for Jason Atherton with Restaurant Associates. With a more casual approach, it contrasts the high-rise fine dining at neighbouring sister restaurant, City Social. The venue is set across two floors, each offering a different dining experience: a 66-cover grill restaurant and a 30-cover all-day deli and bar serving snacks and small plates, championing British produce throughout. Executive Chef, Paul Walsh, who also heads up City Social, is overseeing the kitchen, working closely with Jason to create the restaurant’s more relaxed but equally innovative menu.

The name Temple and Sons is a nod to the history of Tower 42; Palmerston House was previously built on the site, named after British statesmen Henry John Temple, Third Viscount Palmerston, who was twice Prime Minister in the mid-nineteenth century.

On the ground floor deli and bar, the menu and interiors are inspired by a traditional British grocery store, complete with artisan snacks and sandwiches including game sausage roll, creamy mash & HP gravy and Old Spot spiced pork belly sandwich on brioche, spicy slaw & butter lettuce, alongside a range of British cured meats from Cannon & Cannon.

At night the deli transforms into a cocktail bar, with carbonated cocktails canned on site, including Strawberry Can Can (Monkey Shoulder whisky, Chamberyzette strawberry wine, Chambord, Campari) and Peach Tea Pop (Monkey Shoulder whisky, Rinquinquin peach liqueur, Earl Grey tea, sweet & sour). Cocktails served in card milk cartons and cans again take inspiration from traditional British provisions, such as Yellow Paint (Sailor Jerry spiced rum, Colmans mustard, elderflower, lemon) and Martinny (Ford’s gin, Lea & Perrins distillate, fino sherry, olive). Also available for the first time at Temple and Sons is The Social Company’s own signature bottled English lager, The Subtle Fox.

Upstairs, the restaurant kitchen operates entirely from a custom-built grill using varying types of wood, charcoal and hay. Continuing the theme of British heritage, many dishes are designed for family-style dining, with grilled fish and meat served whole or in large cuts, with a selection of sides to share. Comforting and nostalgic but with the group’s characteristic focus on innovation and flavour, dishes include wood-fired pork chop, collar & crackling with sage & pine nut crumb and Maldon oysters Rockefeller, baby fennel & confit lemon salad, tartar sauce & crispy potatoes. For dessert, the menu plays on Britain’s great repertoire of puddings with the likes of trifle, gingerbread, poached rhubarb & crystallised ginger and caramelised vanilla rice pudding with pistachio & homemade jams.

Overseen by Russell Sage Studio, the interiors have been designed to evoke a Victorian grocery, with stacked timber shelves brimming with a variety of goods. A palette of rich, caramel tones with flashes of orange and teal create a warm and inviting space, with timber panelling embellished with antique brogue detailing and brass ironmongery. Feature lighting includes Victorian angle-poise lamps and a custom-made feature light suspended over the staircase between the two floors.

James Boyle, Managing Director of Restaurant Associates, comments, “We are delighted to be partnering with Jason and his team again. The work we have done together at City Social has been outstanding and we hope to mirror some of this success at Temple and Sons. There is an appetite for a more casual style of dining in the City of London, and we are thrilled to be part of its growing food scene.”

Commenting on the launch of Temple and Sons, Jason notes, “Temple and Sons is my tribute to our great British produce and dining traditions. Following the success of our partnership with Restaurant Associates on City Social, I’m very happy to be working with them again.”

Reservations for Temple and Sons are now open: Tel: 0207 877 7710 Email:

Christmas Gifts for the Children from The Heart Home Shop

We wouldn't want to leave out the little ones, now would we? After all, Christmas is more about the children than the grown-ups. But we must confess, that when we chose items for the younger generation to put in our shop we were thinking more about the things we wish we could buy for ourselves. Forget the plastic robots, the computer games, and this years' latest trend. We want to buy items that look good, will last, and will out-see fickle fashion.  Gifts that are not just for Christmas.

But don't forget, if you don't see anything you like below, pop over to the shop (see the tab at the top of the page) where there is lot's more to choose from.

Introducing Jasper Conran's First Hotel - L'Hôtel Marrakech

L’Hôtel Marrakech is a privately owned riad set in the heart of the ‘red city’s’ Medina. L’Hôtel is conveniently close to the vibrant Jemaa El Fna square, the bustling Souk and nearby the 12th Century Koutoubia Mosque. This historic 19th Century riad, originally the central part of a Caidal palace, comprises five spacious suites, not usually found in the riads of Marrakech surrounding a uniquely wide courtyard garden and swimming pool. This charming retreat combines delicious food, great comfort and service whilst capturing the elegance of hotels of the1930s. Owned by Jasper Conran, the riad combines superb Moroccan craftsmanship with pieces of antique furniture, textiles, lighting and art from his collection, making it feel more like a home than a hotel.

The restoration has been executed using local craftsmen and traditional materials. An atmosphere of timeless relaxed grandeur has been created, white voile curtains flow on the terraces giving privacy to the generously proportioned suites. Simple whitewashed walls, high zouak ceilings, warm, soft, restful colours and unfussy decoration give a relaxing feeling of charm and serenity.

The roof terrace offers extraordinary views of the Atlas mountains and the skyline of Marrakech. It is a place to unwind after a day’s foray into the souks, and somewhere to lay out on sun loungers. Breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea can be taken under the pergola. Cocktails can be enjoyed amongst orange blossom and fig trees, a wilderness of honeysuckle, bougainvillaea jasmine and scented roses whilst watching the sun go down over the snowcapped mountains.

In the evening, dinner can be enjoyed in the dining room. On cooler nights the curtains are drawn and a fire is lit whilst traditional Moroccan food is served. On warmer evenings large glass doors open out onto the courtyard garden allowing the gentle sound of the water fountain and the scents of the garden to flow through rooms.

On entering the hotel you will find yourself in the courtyard garden, planted with banana, orange and lemon trees, welcomed by the soothing sound of water from the central fountain surrounded by zelige tilework. Birds sing, perfumed roses and jasmine abound whilst bougainvillea and honeysuckle cascade down the whitewashed walls.

The garden is also home to one of the few swimming pools of the Medina. Enjoy a calm relaxing swim in the ten metre pool (heated in the cooler months). A pleasure that can be enjoyed from early morning to the approach of nightfall as glowing lanterns and candles are lit, enveloping the riad in a magical atmosphere.

Planted with orange, fig and olive trees, jasmine, bougainvillea, honeysuckle and geranium the roof terrace is the perfect place to unwind and relax. Here breakfast and lunch is served under a curtained pergola. Elsewhere on the terrace, tables are set out, one can enjoy afternoon tea, coffee and cocktails. Sun loungers are arranged on a tiled raised terrace so that guests can enjoy the warmth of the Moroccan sun.

L’Hôtel Marrakech prides itself on its approach to serving delicious traditional Moroccan cooking. Food can be served on your private balcony, the dining room or on the roof terrace. Seasonal local produce is brought to the kitchen daily. Dishes prepared celebrate the subtle aromas and colourful enchantment of Marrakech. Guests can enjoy a vibrant array of salads, fresh vegetables, slow cooked tagines, grilled meat and fish as well as the perfect steak and chips. To complete the meal, there are refreshing sorbets, ice creams and fruits to choose from.

The hotel is available for private hire. The riad is the perfect retreat for a group of friends, family or a honeymooning couple. Intimate dinners and parties can also be catered for. The riad is the ideal place to go if you wish to enjoy a large private home without the responsibilities of ownership. Whether reading in the shade by the pool, soaking up the sun on the roof terrace enjoying the array of fine food and drink on offer or venturing out into the city and its souks, everyone is able to enjoy something a little different.

A Peaceful, Rural Retreat up in the Treetops

Extract from Bold and Bright by Maíra S Teixeira, published by Ryland Peters & Small. 

Located 210 km/130 miles from São Paulo in the state of Minas Gerais, the city of Gonçalves is set against the panoramic backdrop of the Mantiqueira Mountains. This region is famous for its dramatic natural beauty and is rich in lush valleys and plunging waterfalls. It is a popular area for climbers and trekkers, who are drawn to the high peaks and the well-preserved forests full of native flora and fauna. Renowned Brazilian photographer Bob Wolfenson first visited the area more than 20 years ago. A frequent repeat visitor, in 2011 he found the perfect spot for a home in the mountains: ‘I saw this site and I fell in love,’ he says.

Bob’s choice of architect was pretty much a foregone conclusion. The architect André Vainer was a childhood friend and the two of them had already worked together on a variety of projects , including a house in São Paulo and a beach house. Bob’s brief for this mountain abode was a modestly sized space that would be both a peaceful rural retreat and a place where friends and family could come together. And, after working on so many projects together, André ‘felt an obligation to create a beautiful home’.

The sloping, densely forested site presented a few challenges, but André came up with an ingenious solution that not o n l y preserved the existing trees on the plot but also made the most of the spectacular views from this elevated vantage point. The house consists of two separate blocks on different levels that curve protectively around the hillside. One is the living or ‘social’ block containing the kitchen, dining and living rooms. This light-filled, informal space boasts huge windows and a broad terrace overlooking the treetops.

The private block, tucked behind the living block and on a slightly higher level, houses three simple yet spacious bedroom suites. The two blocks are connected by a pink concrete staircase. ‘This was a way to divide up the functions of the house, giving more privacy to the residents , ’ explains André.

The house was assembled using local labour and materials. It is mainly constructed from glass and garapeia wood with internal brick walls and concrete supporting pillars. The sail-like white roof is made of sheet metal, which reflects sunlight a n d h e l p s retain heat from the traditional wood-burning stove and the open fireplace. All along one side of the main living block, floor-to-ceiling windows of tempered glass with frames made from muiracatiara wood provide a remarkable view of trees and mountains. Lofty and airy, the house gives the sensation of being embraced by the forest. The teal colour used to paint much of the woodwork helps the house blend into the surrounding greenery and contrasts with the white roof.

The bedrooms are located in the upper, private block. Each one has independent access to the garden, allowing guests freedom and privacy. Bob’s bedroom is located at one end and offers breathtaking views over the green tapestry of the valley below. There is a sense of space and tranquillity in this mountain perch.

Bold and Bright by Maíra S Teixeira, published by Ryland Peters & Small.

Available from Amazon

Photography by Maíra Acayaba © Ryland Peters & Small

Gifts Under £50 From The Heart Home Shop

Finding the perfect gift doesn't mean that one needs to break the bank. In fact lets not forget that Christmas is all about tradition and kindness. It only takes a small gesture to show someone you care, after all it's the thought that counts. Therefore we've put together a list of gifts all under £50 to make that someone's Christmas that extra special. It's the simple pleasures that make the difference. 

And don't forget, if you can't find what you're looking for below, you can visit our shop by hitting the tab at the top of the page where we have lots more lovely gift ideas for you.

Christmas Stocking Fillers from the Heart Home Shop

Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without a few bulging stockings hanging by the fire. And it's not just the children who expect a few little extra bits and bobs in our experience. Or maybe you have a family tradition of wrapping up a small gift to put by the side of the plate at the dinner table? So we've put together a few ideas for little gifts that are not too expensive, just for you.

And don't forget, if you don't find what you're looking for below, you can visit our shop by hitting the tab at the top of the page where we have lots more festive goodies.

Introducing Sian Elin's SS17 Collection

Today we are totally feeling inspired by Sian Elin's new SS17 collection.

Inspired by mid-century Op Art, the brand new Mosaic collection from designer Sian Elin is distinctive, expressive and full of movement. The quirky blend of bright and delicate pastels energises the Scandinavian clarity of pattern to create a sophisticated design.

Bold geometrics teamed with a delicate pastel palette create a fun and optimistic springtime mood in Sian Elin’s much loved Tress collection, re-imagined in a brand new, gentler colour-way.

Designer brand, Sian Elin offers pattern-led and colourful homewares. Inspired by the enduring aesthetic of Scandinavian design, Sian Elin creates lively prints that balance bold graphic lines with a fresh and welcoming colour palette. The collections bring a modern Scandinavian perspective to designs from across the globe.

The new collections are hand-drawn and digitally printed in the UK on 100% cotton and are available as cushions, lampshades, and fabric by the metre.

Whole Roast Duck with a Honey and Cardamom Glaze, and Cumin Roast Potatoes

Today's whole duck recipe is perfect for a cosy night in, or a great idea for an alternative Christmas roast. The choice is yours.

Serves 4

Prep/cooking/resting time: 20 minutes per 500g of duck plus an extra 20 minutes and 30 minutes resting time (E.g. If your duck is 1.25kg cook for 70 minutes and then rest for 30 minutes, giving a total time of 1 hour 40 minutes)


1 Gressingham Duck

For the glaze: 

3 tbsp honey
1 tsp dry sherry
1 tsp cracked black pepper
Juice of 1 orange
5 cardamoms, husks removed and seeds crushed

For the vegetables:

1 Savoy cabbage
1.5 kg Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks for roasting
3 x sprigs of rosemary
150g duck fat
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 bulb of garlic split into cloves


1. Pre-heat oven to 200°C, Fan 180°C, Gas Mark 6. Remove all packaging from the duck and remove the bag of giblets (if included) from the cavity. Weigh the duck. 
2. Prick the skin around the duck legs and season with salt and pepper.
3. Place the duck on a rack in a baking tray big enough to allow you to also fit the potatoes, and add the duck fat (or vegetable oil if you do not have duck fat). Place the duck in the oven. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes per 500g, plus 20 minutes extra. 
4. Meanwhile prepare the glaze by mixing all the ingredients together and gently warm in a small pan. Then leave aside in a warm place. 
5. Prepare the cabbage: peel off the leaves, discard any that may be spoilt and remove the core. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil. Blanche the cabbage by plunging the leaves into the boiling water and then into a pot of cold water. Drain well, slice thinly and set aside. 
6. After the duck has been cooking for 45 minutes, place the potatoes into the roasting tray around the duck, then add the rosemary, garlic and cumin seeds. Baste with the duck fat and season. Turn the potatoes once during cooking. 
7. Ten minutes before the end of cooking take the glaze and paint all over the duck with a pastry brush. 

8. When the duck is ready, remove from the oven and carefully take out of the tray and place in a warm resting place for approximately 30 minutes. 
9. Then take the potatoes from the tray and put into another roasting tray, baste with the duck fat and return to the oven to finish cooking.
10. Pour off all the fat from the liquid left in the tray, and save for another cooking opportunity. 
11. You should be left with just the juices to create the sauce. Pour into a saucepan and place onto the hob, bring to the boil, add a generous dollop of butter and simmer. 
12. When you are ready to serve, quickly fry off the cabbage in some butter for 2-3 minutes. 
13. Test the sauce for seasoning and adjust accordingly. Remove the potatoes from the oven. Your meal is now ready to serve.

Gressingham has lots of recipes along with ‘how-to’ videos on their website


Christmas Gifts for The Home from The Heart Home Shop

Next up on our Christmas gift guide are pretty accessories for the home. There's nothing more satisfying than finding the perfect gift for the home that makes it that extra special. Here at Heart Home we've got you covered, so to make it that little bit easier for you, we've compiled a lovely gift list to kick start the Christmas shopping!

If there's nothing that tickles your fancy below (which we find hard to believe), then don't forget that there is so much more in the Heart Home shop. Just click the 'shop' tab at the top of the page. Happy shopping!

In the Mood for Colour - A Soft Look

Extract from In the Mood for Colour by Hans Blomquist, published by Ryland Peters & Small.

Creating a soft and gentle scheme is quite easy, as the different shades in this colour spectrum tend to be harmonious and will give you an up-to-date interior that is comfortable to live in. You can either embrace the look wholeheartedly by choosing furnishings in toning colours, or introduce contrasting darker hues. A gentle scheme is traditionally romantic and can feel quite feminine, but if you accessorise it with contemporary furniture and objects, you can make the look more neutral. 
Having said that, I prefer not to label colours – or anything else, for that matter – masculine or feminine, as I think we can be more creative than that. We all have the right to choose the colours we love and to furnish our homes with our favourite furniture and accessories.

Dried flowers are one of the most beautiful things there are. The colours of most blooms become even more stunning when dried and their petals and leaves take on a tactile, paper-like quality. These peonies were just too glorious not to photograph for this book, both for their texture and colour inspiration (above). 

The romantic room above illustrates a perfect soft combination, with the light pink sofa and a duck-egg blue wall that has been painted and patched with roses and leaves. Both inviting and stylish, it would be a successful look to recreate.

This is an inviting spot to hang out (above), where layers of printed textiles are mixed with plain fabrics and pillowcases in soft textures and tones. A few darker colours have been introduced to break up the scheme and give it some depth. The French metal daybed was found at a flea market and the cushions and textiles are a mix of new and vintage. The backdrop has been painted in two tones, using soft Dorchester Pink for the panelling, and mixing it with pale grey Mono for the walls, both from Little Greene.

I have had a soft spot for floral patterns for as long as I can remember. A traditional choice for country-style interiors, florals are often considered old-fashioned by those who prefer a clean, contemporary look, but for me, floral prints work everywhere and can be incorporated into any look you want. Of course, a soft-looking interior with floral patterns sits very comfortably in a country-esque setting, and maybe that is where it fits best, but I would love to see more creativity than that when it comes to mix and match, and urge you to be adventurous. Layer different kinds of floral patterns, using faded vintage prints and soft linens to create a perfect corner for daydreaming in your city apartment or country house (above right). 
Another idea is to use vintage maps as wallpaper, or to make a headboard by papering a square the same width as your bed, then dress the bed with soft dyed textiles to add textural layers to your bedroom (above left).

This image (above) was photographed in fashion designer Marie Sixtine’s apartment in Paris. The warm mix of natural wood, painted furniture and soft textiles make the space very inviting, while the layers of textures give them a very personal look. The way the interior is decorated and the combination of soft colours used throughout give it a calming vibe.
The space was exceptionally relaxing and comfortable to be in, and all my senses – especially touch and sight – felt instantly soothed.

In the Mood for Colour by Hans Blomquist, published by Ryland Peters & Small.

Available from Amazon.

Photography by Debi Treloar & Hans Blomquist © Ryland Peters & Small. 

Keeping Cosy This Christmas With Calor

With Christmas approaching fast and the darker, chillier nights now upon us, we want our homes to be warm and inviting for visitors over the festive period. However heating the whole house, especially those spare guest rooms, conservatories and office spaces that you may use only occasionally isn’t always practical.

Well there is a quick and easy way to add instant warmth to a space without spending a fortune or compromising on design – by adding a Calor gas portable heater.

Modern portable heaters have changed from the bulky boxes in the corner of Grandma’s living room! Now they can provide the look and feel of a classic woodburner, but without the mess.

They are also far cheaper to purchase than fixed solid fuel alternatives, require no flue, and, with no cables and trailing leads can be easily moved around to make even the coldest spots feel warm and inviting*.



Hot up your home

There is an extensive range of portable heaters available from Calor to help keep your home on trend. Requiring no installation, they are a no fuss, no mess option for occasional heating needs.

Portable heaters also offer speed of heat, and can warm a room much faster than most electric heaters. Some models even boast a real flame effect, for that cosy glow.

Calor’s Manhattan model is a modern and stylish portable heater that will appeal to those with a preference for contemporary design. Costing only £199.99 and emitting 3 kW of heat, it’s both efficient and stylish.

Calor’s Provence model, which can be bought for £269.99, has a traditional stove design, with a real flame and two heat settings for flexibility. With varying colour options including matt black, gloss black, dark blue and cream, you’re sure to find a colour to suit.



Off-grid central heating

As well as offering a range of portable heaters, Calor also offers LPG as a fuel for rural homes without a connection to mains gas. LPG is the closest alternative to being on mains gas, and you can supply your central heating and hot water, gas fires, cooking, and even appliances such as tumble dryers!

LPG is the cleanest and greenest of all off-grid fossil fuels and is also really efficient with modern condensing LPG boilers achieving efficiencies of 90 per cent and more. And what’s more, unlike oil or solid fuel, it is virtually impossible to steal.

Automatic top-up technology is available on Calor LPG tanks, which monitors gas levels and alerting Calor when a delivery is required, meaning there’s no need to check fuel levels or re-order. Calor also retain ownership the LPG storage tank, and for a small monthly charge, insure and maintain it, so you don’t need to worry about its upkeep.

An LPG tank can be easily hidden underground which looks nicer, and if you’re short of outside space or have lower heating needs, compact cylinder packs are available too. LPG suppliers such as Calor also offer fixed rates for certain periods, which is a plus if you’re looking to keep in-control of your heating costs.

What’s more, if you’re a new Calor customer you can receive an above ground tank installation free of charge, including tank delivery, installation, civil works and the gas connection**.

So keep your guests cosy this winter with a portable heater, or if you’re off-grid then consider the switch to Calor gas, and create a warm and welcoming home this Christmas.

* Guidance for usage applies. Visit

** Terms & conditions apply


The Dorset Cereals B&B Awards 2016 - The Winner!

Last month we visited three amazing B&B's as judges for the Dorset Cereals Awards 2016. All unique in their own right, we decided that the winner for 'best quirkiest' B&B goes to Camomile Cottage in Suffolk. You can see our review here.

What really stood out for us about Camomile Cottage was just how personal it felt. It was so homely and we felt we were at a friends house rather than a regular B&B. Aly the owner just really made us feel totally comfortable and throughly spoiled us..


It really was about the small details that made the stay at Camomile Cottage that extra special. The guest kitchen was stocked with every tea and coffee we could want, there were chocolates in the bedroom and bowls of sweets, toffees and chocolates in the sitting room and so on. It was the perfect and most comfortable stay we could have wished for. 

Congratulations Camomile Cottage!

Dorset Cereals has a brilliant relationship with B&B's across the UK, with many owners serving their cereals as part of the all-important breakfast. As a result, Dorset Cereals set up their annual B&B Awards in 2015 to celebrate wonderful and unique places to stay in the UK. The awards honour Britain's breadth and variety of B&B's - from beautiful and quirky, to rustically charming or magically modern.

Christmas Gifts for Him from The Heart Home Shop

Why oh why, are men so difficult to buy for? It seems to take that much longer to search out the perfect Christmas gift for the brothers, husbands, sons and boyfriends in our lives. But the good new is, we at Heart Home have compiled a lovely little prezzie list for all of those men. 

And don't forget, if you don't find what you're looking for below, there is much more in the Heart Home shop. Just click the 'shop' tab at the top of the page. Happy hunting.

City Guide: Santiago de Compostela

There's something grandiose about the convoluted name of this Galician city, flung out in the far north west of Spain's peninsula. In fact, it refers to St James (‘Sant Iago’) and ‘the field of a star’ so there is a poetic element which reflects both the literature and the magic that Galicians specialise in.



Remote in place and in spirit, the character of this regional capital with its strong Celtic and Portuguese links is quite distinct from the rest of Spain. Not so long ago it took a week to get here from Madrid. Yet, for more than 1,000 years the city has opened its arms to a steady flow of pilgrims, on foot or on horseback, coming from all over Europe.

After a long lull in popularity, the tradition resumed a couple of decades ago, bringing dozens of nationalities kitted out in walking boots, clutching staffs and with symbolic scallop shells dangling from backpacks. Some Lycra-clad followers of the Camino now arrive on bicycles. It is this foreign cultural input that has helped make Santiago unique.

Street scene in Santiago

Street scene in Santiago

Beside the cathedral stands the world’s oldest hotel, opened in 1500 as a hospital for pilgrims and now top of Spain’s chain of national paradors. There are glorious patios, halls, galleries and grand staircases, making it all too easy to be bewitched by the time-travel atmosphere of this city. There are sober granite houses, narrow winding streets, leafy squares, stone arcades, glassed-in balconies (typical of windy Galicia) and magnificent religious buildings.   

Cathedral night view

Cathedral night view

Galicians are also increasingly fine-tuned to sharp design. In the arcaded rua do Vilar, upmarket designer Katuxa Plateros ( transforms gold, silver and semi-precious stones into dreamy shapes and, a few doors away, tiny Baraka ( stocks imaginative pieces by an array of local designers.

Garlic and onion wreaths

Garlic and onion wreaths

Food is of course a priority in this land of verdant pastures, cattle, smallholdings and two coastlines whipped by the waves of the Atlantic. A dazzling range of products are now wrapped in chic packaging for specialist delicatessens. In the streets behind the cathedral there is Mestre Mateo, rua Nova 3, a delicatessen which stocks unusual black Galician pottery beside conserves, chocolates, rare Galician olive oil and wine.

Quiet evening in the monastery garden

Quiet evening in the monastery garden

Even the wine is looking up, as dusty old labels are replaced by clean modern fonts. Galicia's white Albariño wine from the Rias Baixas has shot up the oenological hit parade, and sprightly red Mencía from the Ribeira Sacra is following fast behind – even if production dates from the Roman era.

Dancing the traditional muñeira

Dancing the traditional muñeira

Out & about in the rias:

One of Santiago’s great assets is its easy access to the crazily indented coast that harbours Galicia’s famous rias, or inlets. Here you can teeter over the crashing surf beside the lighthouse at Cabo Fisterra, about 90km from Santiago on the Costa da Morte, and observe the rocky source of all those delicious percebes (goose barnacles).

For hedonism, though, head south of here to Galicia’s longest beach at Carnota – seven blissful kilometres of blinding white sand where you might come across cockle-gathers or surfers.

Finally, the beautiful dunes of Corrubedo, which are protected as a natural park, offer an idyllic escape from other sun-bathers, while plenty of wind-surfers dot the waves. Any of these destinations make an easy day outing by rental car from Santiago.

Square in old Santiago

Square in old Santiago

Where to stay:

Fishmongers at Mercado de Abastos

Fishmongers at Mercado de Abastos

Where to eat:

  • O Curro da Parra A charming rustic restaurant near the food market serving exquisite Galician specialities prepared with a light, modern touch. A la carte about 35€.
  • Sexto II, Near the Cathedral off the Rua da Franco, an old-fashioned temple to seafood, graciously served on white linen tablecloths. A la carte about 40€.
San Fructuoso Church

San Fructuoso Church

How to get there:

Santiago, Contemporary Art

Santiago, Contemporary Art

Images and article written by Fiona Dunlop, brought to you by SPN

Christmas Gifts for Her from The Heart Home Shop

Buying gifts for our mothers, sisters, and friends is always easy for us at Heart Home. Why? Because we only buy the things we'd really love to receive ourselves. With a few little concessions to the recipients personal taste of course. And that's the way we've stocked The Heart Home shop. With everything we'd love to find in our own stockings this year.

And if you don't see anything you like below. Pop over to the shop (see the shop tab at the top of the page) where there's lot's more to choose from.

Interior Design: Stunning New Penthouse In The Heart Of London

FORMstudio has imaginatively transformed an apartment in Westminster to create a stunning new penthouse.

Built in the 1990s, the original layout of this central London developer-built flat had conformed to the standard cookie cutter solution. Defined almost entirely by compliance with regulations and conservative market convention, the front door had opened onto an unwelcoming windowless L-shaped corridor, with solid fire doors providing the necessary separation from the rooms, including a charmless and entirely separate internal kitchen - an arrangement with which we are all familiar.

FORMstudio’s re-imagining of this flat demonstrates how a fresh approach can make much better use of the available floor area in a typical developer flat of this type by incorporating the previously wasted the space of the internal corridor, optimising area to create a more generous, flexible and naturally-lit open-plan arrangement. 

Within this open-plan space, a central ‘floating’ block, articulated with a concealed LED strip around its top edge, now conceals an existing structural column and houses a home office work station. It also, crucially, allows a spacious kitchen to be incorporated within the open plan living space, as well as providing an alternative escape route to the front door. Two full-height concealed fire doors on electro-magnetic holds, complete the enclosure of a protected escape route from both bedrooms and living space in the case of a fire, and also provide flexibility for separation of the work area from the living area, or temporary increased separation of the open living/cooking area from the bedrooms as and when required. 

Bathrooms and storage, which are located logically in the deepest internal area of the plan, are finished in grey glass mosaic to enhance the ‘cave like’ sense of them having been carved out of the carefully detailed white finishes; white-oiled wide plank Douglas fir flooring unifies the other naturally-lit areas of the flat.

FORMstudio aims to create places that can be inhabited and experienced by people in a natural and instinctive way. Enjoyable places with a tranquil sense of simplicity, which create a supportive and uplifting backdrop for life. Photography © Bruce Hemming

Christmas Decorations From The Heart Home Shop

Are you one of those people who like to have the decorations up by the 1st December, or do you like to uphold the family tradition of dressing the tree on Christmas Eve? Either way you need to do a little forward planning if you don't want to be rushing out to the shops at the last minute because you forgot the dog ate the fairy last year. And that's where we can help. We have stocked our Christmas shop with all the baubles (not to mention wreaths, cards, and bits and bobs) you might need to make this year the most magical holiday of all.

Travel Spotlight: Saint Martin de Belleville

If you’re looking for a skiing resort like no other then we highly recommend Saint Martin de Belleville. At an altitude of 1,450m, Saint Martin is one of La Vallée des Belleville‘s resorts, with the valleys of Méribel and Courchevel as part of Les 3 Vallées ski area. This internationally famous ski area is known for its amazing pistes (600km of pistes) but it also excels by providing a great variety of activities. Connected to this exceptional ski area, Saint Martin has earned its label « the village of Les 3 Vallées ». A village known to those who have chosen to combine great skiing with the art of living.

Saint Martin remains an authentic Savoyard village, dominated by its church tower, with its winding narrow streets and stone clad farms. The village still maintains its charm and is the perfect spot to welcome its guests. The farms have been transformed into cosy accommodations, the ancient stables into restaurants and the church often hosts concerts.

Situated in the heart of the village, in an old local farm, the Saint Martin Museum retraces one hundred and fifty years of this high Savoyard valley’s history.

There is plenty to do in Saint Martin, not only for those solely interested in skiing. Walks on foot or snowshoes, a dog-sledge getaway, heritage discoveries, also shows and torchlight descents are on offer throughout the winter. Not forgetting the musical après-ski concerts in the church. From concerts, activities, events, exhibition, museum, tournaments, all through the winter, it really is hard not to find something to do. Saint Martin has also an array of excellent restaurants to choose from, so you really are spoilt for choice.

If you’re worried for the young ones, then there is no need. Everything has been thought through with them in mind. They have their own events, activities with the Roc’n Bob toboggan, the new Speed Mountain toboggan run, the walibi gliss, the BK park and, above all, they will appreciate skiing with the Ski schools.

You will find everything that you need: clothes, ski and snowboarding equipment, souvenirs and presents and numerous local and regional food products to please your taste buds.

Different types of accommodation varies for all tastes and price ranges. The aesthetics, style and harmony will be noted by 3 colours: Bronze, Silver and Gold. Have a look and see which package suits your needs.

We are extremely fond of the Chalets on offer especially Les Chalets Cocoon. These 7 Chalets are located in the charming village Saint Marcel. They provide a totally relaxing atmosphere with their unique, personalised, authentic décor. They offer a typical Savoyard feel which makes it so cosy.

If you’re planning a winter fun holiday then look no further, Saint Martin is a winner!

I partnered with the brand to write this article but every word is mine

Introducing New Dream And Palm Springs Collections By Chivasso

World-leading fabric house JAB Anstoetz has added two new and exclusive Chivasso collections to its range.

The Dream collection features bold and bright botanical prints in vibrant hues and the Palm Springs collection incorporates a Caribbean-inspired leaf motif for a tropical feel.

Bright and colourful bold prints adorn the new and exclusive Dream collection by Chivasso. The designs feature floral motifs in a variety of interpretations, and are printed on a pure, heavy linen, making this a great fabric option for use as curtains for the home.

Dream collection by Chivasso, RRP from £49.60 inc VAT.

Dream collection by Chivasso, RRP from £49.60 inc VAT.

The fashionable Palm Springs collection by Chivasso features a Caribbean leaf motif, adding a tropical feel to the home. The range is also available in five colourways to suit varying interior colour palettes.

Palm Spring collection by Chivasso, RRP from £49.60 inc VAT.

Palm Spring collection by Chivasso, RRP from £49.60 inc VAT.

Orange and Cranberry Crusted Salmon

Make this your fruitiest festive season yet, with this orange and cranberry crusted recipe courtesy of Nadia’s Kitchen in collaboration with The Saucy Fish Co. It's sure to be a hit with the non-meat-eaters in the family and yet it's special enough to serve up to guests. 

(Serves 4)

-        X4 fillets of salmon
-        55g pecan nuts
-        35g chopped cranberries
-        30g breadcrumbs
-        X2 orange zests
-        2-3 tbsp olive oil
-        Seasoning

STEP 1: Finely chop both the pecan nuts and cranberries into small bite size pieces.
STEP 2: In a large mixing bowl place the chopped pecans, cranberries, breadcrumbs and orange zest and add olive oil.
STEP 3: Stir thoroughly to ensure that the mixture is fully coated in olive oil, this will help firmly bind your topping together
STEP 4: On a sheet of grease proof paper, spoon generous helpings of the mixture on to each salmon fillet
STEP 5: Bake at 200’c in a pre-heated oven for 10-15 minutes until the crust appears golden and crispy. Whilst your salmon is in the oven, why not roast your favourite festive veg for the perfect accompaniment?

Watch the video

Saucy Fish Tip! To spice up your salmon, we recommend drizzling our Chilli Lime & Ginger dressing over the salmon fillets for a sensational injection of flavour!