BY CATHERINE MURPHY
We’re always looking for new places to eat, play and visit. Founder of The Sleepover Campany, Catherine Murphy shares her special places here.
The Aquadrome, Rickmansworth
Winter or summer this is one of my favourite days out with my boys and the dog. There are fabulous walks round the lakes, loads of wildlife, games and football areas, a sailing club, a water sking lake, a play ground, several picnic areas and a fabulous café serving proper food. We spend many mornings there running the boys ragged then having a delicious bacon sarnie and a frothy coffee. Website: click here.
Luna Rossa, Gerrards Cross
This is our favourite family restaurant. We started going there before it changed it’s name and revamped. But the welcome and the delicious food have stayed the same. We will go there for a quick pizza, or a long lunch with our extended family. We had our prewedding dinner there and have celebrated endless birthdays enjoying the hospitality. The service can be a bit haphazard but they are always smiling and have that charming and tolerant Italian attitude with children. It is the go to place to keep us all happy. Website: www.luna-rossa.co.uk
The Wallace Collection, Manchester Square, London W1
This is a favourite rainy Sunday destination. It is a huge house full of fabulous things collected mainly by one man, left to his son and then gifted to the nation. There are rooms of armour,( always a bonus for boys) amazing paintings, furniture, and china. It is completely free to get in. And needless to say there is a yummy café ( and a grown up restaurant). After we have fed our minds we will wander into china town and fill our bellies. Website: www.wallacecollection.org
Hakkasan, Hanway Place London
For a grown up dinner this is the place! Waitresses from a Robert Palmer video, Gorgeous setting, cocktails to die for ( the Hakka my favourite) and the yummiest Chinese food that ever passed your lips. A total treat. Website: click here.
The Magdalen Arms, Iffley Road Oxford
After a day wandering round Oxford, or punting on the river we love to eat here. Don’t be deceived by the mismatched furniture or crockery the food is top notch. Unusual and traditional, seasonal and sourced from artisan producers, the food is divine. The service friendly yet slick. On a Sunday they have whole roasts served to the table for you to share. I wish it was closer to home! Website: www.magdalenarms.co.uk
Portabello Road Market, Notting Hill
When I was a poor young student I had a flat close to the market, and we would go there to buy cheap food from the stalls, now we go there on a Saturday to browse for antiques, look at all the amazing things made by artisans, marvel at the clothes, shop for delicious food and I get to spend some time in my favourite bookshop “Books for Cooks.” Website: click here.
Filippettos, Little Chalfont
Simply the best Deli!! Delicious Coffee, creative sarnies, tempting cakes, yummy ice creams and amazing homemade take home food. According to my husband I spend far too much time and money here!! Website: www.filippettos.co.uk