Christmas Shopping in Bath – Part One

With the Bath Christmas Market in full swing, we thought we’d also add to your shopping miles by suggesting some great independent traders to visit while you’re staying in the city. The Market is a mecca for local businesses but we’d hope that you’d take some time out to explore a bit more of the city on foot and perhaps one of these shops you will stumble across may tempt you too.

Christmas-Shopping-2

Clothing & Accessories

Bath is so lucky to have many independent retailers within the City, plus lots of great charity and vintage shops too. These will require a separate post another time; but here are a choice few for your Christmas delights.

ShoppingStreetinBath

* Liz Cox – Since 1995, Liz Cox has been selling her 100% Made in England bespoke leather handbags here in Bath. All produced locally you can even create your very own customised bag to suit your style (or even your car or dress, whatever takes your fancy!). Men aren’t left out either with their own range of bags and accessories as well. With the monogram currently fashionable on the catwalk, you can make sure your clutch or satchel is initialed too. Head up towards The Royal Crescent and this hidden shopping street of other great independents is found between the Crescent and The Circus. [17 Margaret Buildings]

* Grace & Ted – We all love a bargain and this mother and daughter run boutique is an Aladdin’s den of designer resale clothes, shoes and accessories for both men and women. The fashionable set of Bath come here to sell on their last season wardrobe as well as pick up a Prada or Hermes classic. They also create bespoke hats and fascinators here too. Found in the 18th Century delight of Kingsmead Square there are plenty of great cafes and restaurants around here in which to rest your weary legs. [10 Kingsmead Square]

* The British Hatter – A really unique find, you can almost walk past this shop without realising. It feels like a step back in time when you go in, but The British Hatter still creates and sells headware to the gentlemen and ladies of Bath of styles both contemporary and traditional. Perfect for that hat for races, weddings or garden parties. [9-11 Walcot Street]

* Alexandra May & Not Cartier  – There are many wonderful designers and both small and big shops in Bath that deserve mention; but I will mention in this blog two businesses who bring out the magpie in most people. Alexandra May can be found on the walk up to The Royal Crescent from The Circus; a fabulous shop crammed with jewellery, beads, gifts and curios that will be perfect this Christmastime for stocking fillers. Not Cartier is based inside the Guildhall, and sells everything from early plastics to 80s cast offs and everything diamante in between. Great to pick up that princess tiara, but it’s the earrings and necklaces that truly dazzle here. Clip on Earrings also are a great find for those with unpierced ears.

Books & Maps

Independent+Bookshops+of+Bath+bookshop

If you’re a Biblophile then you’ll love spending hours in these wonderful shops getting lost amongst the tomes.

* George Bayntun – Antique Books & Bindery. Dates to 1894. Located just next door to our sister hotel, The Royal Hotel; which is opposite the station. [5 Manvers Street]

* Topping & Co. – Lots of collectible books and very popular talks by authors. To be found just at the top of Broad Street as you turn right onto The Paragon. [The Paragon]

* Bath Old Books – A co-operative of 5 experienced book dealers who run this small but fascinating shop. Filled to the brim with general and specialist books on two floors. [9c Margaret Buildings]

* Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights – winner of Independent Bookshop of the Year twice this haven for booklovers is hidden around the back of busy Milson Street. [14-15 John Street]

* Antique & Map Shop – Located on the world famous Pultney Bridge, this small shop is full of maps from all around the world from the 16th to 19th Centuries; along with books and atlases too. [9-10 Pultney Bridge]

Antique Shops/Markets

VintageMarketBath

Bath was once filled with lots of independent antique shops at once point, but there has been a decline of late. Some have remained though and the ever popular Bath Vintage & Antiques Market that’s run out of Green Park Station every fourth and first Sunday of the month and is a great place to start searching for that gem that will get you on The Antiques Roadshow! Occasionally on a Saturday there is also a pop up Flea Market in the car park next to the Hilton Hotel on Walcot Street; however there are no regular dates for this, so best just to walk along to check.

* Bartlett Street Antiques Centre – This is a great undercover place to visit where there are over 150 dealer showcases and 12 stands filled with jewellery, fine art, glass, toys and many other pieces of Ephemera and Collectibles. Bath’s Goldsmith Company are also on site for restorations, repairs and commissions. It’s to be found on your way walking up to the Assembly Rooms and Circus. [8 Bartlett Street]

We hope we’ve wet your appetite and that you’re looking forward to Part Two coming soon!

A Festive Competition

We’ve decided to help out Father Christmas this year and help make Christmas extra special by offering you all the chance to WIN a fantastic Spa Break for two people at The Bailbrook Lodge.

The prize consists of 1 night’s accommodation for two people in one of our luxury Four Poster bedrooms with en-suite bathroom, toweling robe and slippers. There is a free parking space per room so you can leave your car and enjoy Bath without having to worry about parking tickets. The winners will awake in the morning to a delicious award winning breakfast with champagne and a choice of continental or cooked to order breakfast. Afterwards you can enjoy a 2 hour session at the world famous Thermae Bath Spa where you can enjoy the hot spring waters of legend including the spectacular roof top pool. Towels, slippers and robe are provided by the Spa as part of your prize. On top of all this,  the winners will be treated to either a lunch or dinner for two at the fabulous Brasserie Brunel in the heart of the city.

To be in with a chance of winning this wonderful Spa Break, simply “like” our Facebook page and follow the instructions there. The closing date for this wonderful competition is midnight Monday 22nd December 2014. The draw will be made and winner announced on Tuesday 23rd December. Good Luck!

Christmas In Bath

Although it is only November, the countdown for Christmas has begun. Last Wednesday saw the Bath Christmas Light switch on, performed by the Bath Rugby Team. Tonight sees the magical Lantern Parade run by the Holburne Museum wend its way through the city; tomorrow, Friday, 21st November, sees the opening of the “Bath on Ice” Ice Rink in Royal Victoria Park, and next Thursday, 27th November is the beginning of the wonderful Bath Christmas Market that flows in and around the historic buildings of the city, tempting you all with tasty treats and local gifts.

Bath Christmas Market

We’ve been decorating The Bailbrook Lodge too, so we’re all in a festive mood as well.  Our lovely fire is lit and keeping guests warm in our lounge; plus they can enjoy a well deserved nightcap from our small Bar before heading upstairs to their comfortable beds, worn out by all that shopping and sightseeing.

If you’re thinking of visiting Bath for the Christmas Market (27th November to 14th November) we’ve a few rooms left for both Sunday nights; but be quick, they’ll be snapped up fast!

If you can only get time off the week before Christmas, then we are offering you a fantastic deal – an en-suite room and our award winning champagne Breakfast, free car parking space per room; plus dinner or lunch at the fabulous Brasserie Brunel in the centre of Bath, all from only £99.00 per COUPLE per night! This Shopping Plus package is available from Sunday 14th December until Tuesday 23rd December. What a perfect excuse to come and enjoy the delights of Bath at Christmas.

 

Bath on TV

Want to know more about Bath than you can learn at the usual family attractions? Then check out Bath on TV. Bath on TV creates professional films on Bath’s events, personalities and businesses, and with new videos uploaded to the website (www.bathontv.co.uk) regularly makes for interesting watching on a diverse range of subjects.
Continue reading

The legend of Bath

You don’t have to have the most vivid imagination to be inspired by Bath…with its historic sites and Roman remains it’s easy to imagine that the myths and legends connected to it have some truth to them – and part of the fun of a stay in a B and B in Bath is exploring them further!

We all know the Roman history that makes Bath so fascinating, but it’s the origins of the area that are steeped in legend. Look carefully at two of Bath’s spas and you’ll find each has a statue of king Bladud – the son of Hudibras. According to folklore, Bladud founded the city of Bath all the way back in 863 BC, after being exiled from court when he showed symptoms of leprosy. He decided to live out his days in the area’s marshes and was cured by the mud there, enabling him to return to court in full health.

He relocated the court to the place that he believed cured his illness and gave it a name – ‘Aquae Sulis’ which translates to ‘Waters of the Sun’. Did Bath’s muddy marshes really cure leprosy? Perhaps we’ll never know, but the legend lives on.

Have a Georgian Christmas at No1 Royal Crescent

If you think your household puts a lot of preparation into getting Christmas perfect then just imagine how things were in the Georgian home! Better yet, experience it for yourself with a visit to No1 Royal Crescent this festive season. You’ll be able to watch the cook getting everything ready for a feast to impress, and if you’re feeling energetic you can put on an apron of your own and make some sweets to take away with you.

Continue reading

Famous People of Bath – Mary Shelley

Mary Shelley, writer and English novelist is well known across the world for her Gothic novel Frankenstein, which has been reproduced many times and is as popular as ever today despite being written in 1818. Mary Shelley (nee Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin) was born in 1797 and died in 1851 after a rather troublesome and unusual life filled with tragedy, heartbreak and problems.

Continue reading