There are some days when an invite drops into your inbox and you have to reply so fast, your keyboard practically steams. Shake it Up at Malmaison was one of those invites. Cocktails? Pampering? Food? SIGN ME UP!
The event was held in the beautiful Malmaison hotel, in their Work and Play space. Work and Play is a flexible space offering everything from two person pods for meetings to large event spaces for dining and parties. It even has it’s own bar, so I collected a glass of fizz on arrival and set off to investigate the pampering options on offer.
Immediately grabbing my attention was Le Petit Spa, Malmaison’s own spa, who were offering manicures. I settled in and selected a bright pink from their range of CND Shellac polishes. Shellac is a fast drying, glossy gorgeous polish that can last up to 14 days, without damaging your nails. My manicurist expertly shaped my nails into the rounded off shapes I like, and began to paint. Shellac really is fact drying, and I was merrily snapping photos again without a smudge in no time at all. I love the finish of Shellac, as it is really high shine, and your nails look glossy and gorgeous.
Next, I went to chat to Cover FX, who are baed in Harvey Nichols. I had heard of them before, for their truly incredible Total Cover foundation which I’ve seen cosplayers use to cover tattoos. Cover FX specialise in products that make your base perfect. All their make-up is vegan, cruelty free and free of parabens, fragrance, gluten, mineral oil, and talc, all of which can cause irritation. Their foundations are available in a whopping 40 shades, and it’s all gorgeous. Deneita (ask for her at their concession in Harvey Nichols, and tell her I sent you) shade matched in record time, and showed off a selection of their products with obvious pride. I fell in love with their gorgeous highlighters, especially in the shade Celestial, and their frankly miraculous setting powder, which is water resistant. They showed off just how water resistant by painting on some foundation to the hand of Alev, of Bella And Robot. They set the foundation with the powder, tipped some water over her hand and then blotted with a tissue. Not a single piece of that foundation moved a millimetre. Incredible.
The spa were also offering up ESPA hand cocktails, and talking us through all ESPA’s lovely products, while other girls were being coiffed by the team from Blow Ltd.
All that pampering was hungry work, but luckily team Malmaison were ready with a selection of dishes from the new summer menu.
We had Summer Minestrone Soup, Smoked Mackerel Pate, Poached Salmon Hollandaise, Slow Roast Beef Brisket, Summer Vegetable and Cherry Tomato Linguine, and Chargrilled Chicken Breast with Crunch Thai Salad. All of it was delicious, light, and perfect for summer dining. It was colourful, with fresh flavours and nothing too heavy. The real stand out was the brisket for me, which was so well cooked and tender.
Suitably fed, it was cocktail time! Malmaison had created a selection of cocktails to match the nail varnish colours on offer. We were given the chance to have a bash at making our own. I am generally pretty crap at making cocktails, but always up for the attempt, so I assembled the ingredients for the pink Metropolitan, a twist on the classic Cosmopolitan.
Under the watchful eye of the bar tender I merrily sloshed vodka, lime juice, cranberry juice and raspberry puree about, and shook the whole lot with ice.
Topped with raspberries, my attempt looked pretty and tasted even better. I was pretty generous with the lime so it was sharp, just how I like a cocktail, and the colour actually did match my nails pretty well.
The most important part…dessert! Fresh red berries and vanilla mascaprone served with shortbread crumb, Banoffee Cheesecake and Warm Summer Pudding. All super pretty, brightly coloured and delicious. Let me back at that cheesecake.
Sadly, with goody bags collected, it was time to go home. The whole evening was excellent fun and I highly recommend you look to Malmaison for all your eating, drinking and fancy nails needs.
I was a guest of Malmaison and East Village. All opinions are honest and my own.