My friend and I were lucky enough to both have half a day off work and so could make the most of our visit, arriving at Kings Cross in the middle of the afternoon. As a birthday treat, I had received tickets to see Bloc Party, a British indie-rock band, at the 19,000 capacity Earls Court venue on the Friday night. The atmosphere was electric and although we were miles from the stage, this didn’t take anything away from the experience. The evening was fantastic and we returned to stay for the night in Battersea, buzzing from the great music.The next day, we decided to take a trip to Covent Garden as we had no plans until the afternoon. It was bitterly cold, and so the shops provided welcome shelter as well as some retail therapy. The previous day at the office we had confirmed a 3.30pm booking at the well-known restaurant and bar Planet Hollywood, so we made our way to Haymarket, on foot as it wasn’t far. As we arrived at Planet Hollywood slightly early, we were treated to a couple of drinks at the bar – my friend having a Transformers cocktail (keeping in theme with the restaurant’s persona) while I had that classic American beverage: an ice-cream float.
Once we were joined by our other friend, the three of us were shown to our table. We were seated at a central table where we could see the entire goings-on in the restaurant which was great – including the digital screen which read “PH Welcomes Georgia from Group Travel World Magazine” (I ignored the misspelling of my name as it was such a generous display!). We all decided on the VIP platter to start with, which was made up of a selection of the menu’s single plate appetisers. It included buffalo wings, Texas tostados, chicken crunch, parmesan dip, tortilla chips and potato skins. The platter was a great starter and we caught up on missed conversation as it was an easy-to-share dish and a sociable way to eat. Almost as soon as we’d finished, our main courses arrived – fantastic service, although after such a hearty starter we were unsure we would be able to squeeze them in!
Our main courses were the Hollywood Bowl Salad, Sweet & Sour Chicken and Double Up Burger and they were served along with further drinks. There was nothing more we could’ve wanted, and while we let our food go down, it was fascinating to see the Hollywood memorabilia that decorated the walls. Although the restaurant was very busy and there was music playing in the background, the noise levels were not too high. We very much enjoyed our desserts of double chocolate brownie and cheesecake irrespective of our full stomachs. We had further drinks to wash down the last course and the service ended just as it started; impeccably. We left the restaurant fully satisfied with the food, atmosphere and service. A little too full and rounded (due to our own gluttony), we caught the packed tube to Temple. In Temple, we met a few friends from our hometown of Peterborough at the Walkabout Pub. There was little room as it was packed with football and rugby fans supporting their teams. After a drink and a chat we caught the bus directly to Brixton to see the NME Awards Tour at the O2 Brixton Academy. The Academy was much more intimate and smaller than Earls Court, but the atmosphere was just as exciting. We were seated in the balcony stalls which meant we could see Palma Violets, Miles Kane and headliners Django Django with ease. All the bands did an amazing set, each just as good as the other. A short train ride the next day brought us back to reality and finished a great weekend away which combined good food, music and friends perfectly.