And just like that we're in August, that time of the year where it feels like everyone but you is on holiday. There's no need to feel downbeat however, because whilst they're all losing their luggage to the airlines, the only worry you have is which of these Experiences to use your points on... I know which position I'd rather be in.
(But since we're on the topic of holidays, keep your eyes peeled for an exciting partner drop later this month 👀)
Introducing August's Local Experiences
Arcade Food Hall
Experience: 1000 points gets you £25 worth of food and drink
If this is the future of food halls then we can all sleep easy. No more standing in queues or hotly anticipating the vibrating, flashing buzzer alerting you to the readiness of your food, because at Arcade you can do it all from the comfort of your seat. Order food from one of (or all) eight separate kitchens - which include Indian, Vietnamese, Middle Eastern and Japanese - and let it be brought to you, the civilised way.
Below Stone Nest
Experience: 3000 points gets you £70 worth of drinks
A nod to Soho’s past, Below Stone Nest is a late night dive bar, literally below Soho, serving classic cocktails, low intervention wines, beers and cider. It’s known for its exposed walls, hauntingly beautiful interiors and digestible live music. It’s your next destination for underground candlelit gatherings, special occasions and intimate gigs.
Experience: 7500 points gets you £185 worth of food and drink
You may know more about Hackney’s Nest and less about her little sister in Fulham, FENN, in which case now is your opportunity to familiarise yourself. She sits just off Wandsworth Bridge Road in an unassuming corner of Fulham, serving the best of seasonal British produce, from Cornish crab on crispy chicken skin to British pork loin to Cherry Bakewell Tart. She offers you the choice from the a la carte, or a set menu with an optional wine pairing if you’re feeling particularly fancy.
The Good Egg
Location: Soho + Stoke Newington
Experience: 1500 points gets you £40 worth of food and drink
With two locations in London, The Good Egg has got you covered from breakfast through to dinner every day of the week. With menus inspired by the flavours of the Middle East, the cuisine of Tel Aviv’s street stalls and bakeries of New York and Montreal, you’ll struggle to decide which dish to go for - the shakshuka? Babka french toast? Aubergine shawarma? Cornbread with honey butter? Good luck.
Experience: 7000 points gets you £170 worth of food and drink
The ultimate neighbourhood spot, Angelina is a fun and intimate restaurant in Dalston offering an unusual mix of Japanese and Italian cuisines. If you can, bag yourself a seat at the marble counter and watch the chefs work their magic in the open kitchen. Take your pick of the Kaiseki Tasting Menu (10 courses) or the more informal Omakase Menu (4 courses).
Salt Yard Group
Location: West + Central
Experience: 2750 points gets you £70 worth of food and drink
The Salt Yard family was born out of the founders’ experiences and love of eating and drinking through Italy and Spain - something I’m sure we can all relate to. So if you can’t make it to Bologna, Seville, Milan or San Sebastian this summer, head to one of SYG’s five delectable restaurants. You’ll get all the delights of Italian and Spanish cuisine without the hassle of delayed flights
Location: Soho, City + Hackney
Experience: 1000 points get you £30 worth of food and drink
Specialising in freshly made udon noodles and dashi, even 12 years since opening Koya is still your go-to for udon, donburi and authentic Japanese small plates from breakfast through to dinner. It’s the perfect place to catch up with a friend, or to sit alone and read to the sound of slurping noodles.
Location: 12 locations across London
Experience: 1500 points get you the intro to 1Rebel package (or £39 towards another package for the rebels amongst you)
Known as ‘The King of Gyms’, 1Rebel’s five concepts will put you through your paces. Reformer (pilates), Reshape, Ride (spin), Rumble (boxing) and Rig have all been designed to make fitness ‘fun’ - think dark rooms, big tunes and loud trainers (people, not footwear). So if you’re bored of your current exercise routine and have been thinking about mixing it up for a while, here’s that kick up the backside you needed.