I'm not normally one for resort holidays or just lying on a beach for a week, but there's a time and a place for it and over my birthday in May, that's exactly what we did for five days. We stayed at the Hotel Gran Meliá Palacio de Isora, a luxury five star on the south side of Tenerife, which has been voted the best resort hotel in Spain in the 2012 and 2014 Condé Nast Traveler Awards. I'm not very knowledgeable about resorts, but I'd be inclined to agree...
The property is vast with rooms, suites and villas dotted around the lawns and palm trees, with a few restaurants and more relaxed lunch places, several bars, a spa and gym, and of course huge swimming pools - 7,500 square metres of them; four for adults, two for children - in which we spent the majority of the trip.
One of my favourite pre, during and post-exercise snacks are the natural energy balls from Australian nutrition brand Bounce.
Since I came back from Paris - where I ate out 6 nights a week for months, with little control of what I was actually eating and came back feeling pretty bad about it - I've been trying to adhere to the 'if you can't spell it, don't eat it' rule and cut out as many preservatives and additives as possible.
Bounce balls fit in nicely with that - they're packed with healthy nutrients, made with the best quality natural ingredients, are all gluten free, some are dairy free and some are vegan. There are plenty of flavours, but I was sent the Almond Protein Hit made from 29% almonds, brown rice malts and whey protein isolate from milk, the Peanut Protein Blast made from 29% peanuts, brown rice starch and tapioca, the Coconut & Macadamia Protein Bliss with 8% coconut, agave syrup and cashews, and the Spirulina & Ginseng Defence Boost made with almonds, oats and sesame seeds. They're all finished with natural seasoning like sunflower seeds, raisins, vanilla and sea salt. Yum. A healthy, convenient way to satisfy your hunger on the go - I now always have one tucked into my cycling jersey on long rides.
Earlier this summer I attended Dune London's AW14 press day in a beautiful Fitzroy Square Georgian townhouse, decorated with fresh flowers, scented candles, clinking glasses of fizz and great food. And about a hundred pairs of shoes...
The new Autumn/ Winter homeware collection from Cath Kidston is inspired by the concept of time; their new prints and products reflect how time influences our day, the season and the way we live our lives.