I’ve recently join a blogger collective in Manchester called We Blog Mcr and they let me know about an opportunity to spend the day at Barton Arcade checking out the different shops, eateries and hairdressers located there and getting the word out about it. I was really excited to get involved as I’d been to Barton Arcade briefly once or twice, but never fully explored it. It’s located in a Victorian Grade II listed building on Deansgate in Manchester city centre. The building has a glass and iron domed ceiling so lots of natural light gets in and it’s a very unique and beautiful place.
I met the other bloggers taking part in the Six and Flow offices, they are a digital marketing agency that organised the day and also a popular meeting spot for the We Blog Mcr events. The other bloggers were Eleanor Graceful, Smile At Style, Holly Goes Lightly and My Big Fit Diary.
We started the day at PKB Coffee where we sampled some of their dishes. They are a cafe serving breakfast lunch and cocktails, and of course great coffee! Their brunch menu offers up choices such a N’Duja Baked Eggs, Coconut Porridge and Blueberry Cheesecake French Toast (pictured). The food was all beautifully presented and tasted divine. Filled with wooden benches and exposed pipes it’s casual dining with a trendy feel.
We then went for a wander around some of the retailers located in Barton Arcade. There is a barbers called Barber Barber, who have caused controversy by only allowing men through the door. All of the barbers were dressed in Hawaiian shirts and some sported very well manicured moustaches. Jeffery West sells men’s shoes, they have everything from smart work and dress shoes to more eccentric and colourful options. Jill Black is a women’s clothing store, great for a rummage through the racks and vintage finds.
Then it was lunch time! We headed to Lunya which is a Catalonion deli, restaurant and bar. I’m a huge tapas fan so I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the restaurant was here as I’d never heard of it before. I enjoyed a very tasty lunch of tortilla, patatas bravas with aoili and tomato sauce, and the house salad with soft boiled egg. Everything looked fresh and tasted so good and the portions were very generous.
After lunch it was time to get pampered at Too Funky Hair. The salon is much bigger than it looks from the outside and they have colour specialists and a beauty therapist too. I was taken upstairs for my wash and blow dry. I find getting my hair cut quite stressful, so being able to just go for a blow dry where my hair was only being washed and styled made the experience fun and relaxing for me.
Getting your hair washed at the hairdressers is never usually a comfortable experience what with having to stretch your neck back over the sinks, but the chairs at Too Funky Hair were brilliant and so relaxing to sit in, you can even put your feet up! I had my hair curled by one of their friendly stylists and I absolutely loved the final look!
We ended the day at Be At One, a cocktail bar underneath Barton Arcade. Again this was a new discovery for me. It was very stylish and funky inside and offered a wide array of cocktail options, which we all happily sampled! They even do a Kinder Bueno Cocktail – dessert and drinks in one! I had such a great day at Barton Arcade and I’ll certainly be going back for more delicious food and relaxing experiences.