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Luxury holiday inspiration

Luxury holiday inspiration

It’s chilly outside so what better time than to plan and start thinking of a hot exotic getaway to look forward to in the new year?

To help you take the plunge and maybe treat someone this Christmas to a break away, we’re looking at the best luxury holiday websites to book your well-deserved holiday.

Flash Pack

Flash Pack connects like-minded professionals in their 30s and 40s in groups to travel together. Flash Pack curates the group dynamic, so that everyone is on the same wavelength. Around 95% of Flashpackers fly solo and most are single, but this is more about friendship rather than dating. They also have a kind-people only policy: to make sure that everyone shares the same travel values.

Flash Pack’s idea is simple, match like-minded souls with comfort-bursting adventure to create some great memories and make the most of their holidays. Flash Pack also sets up the Flash Pack Foundation to channel money back into local communities the groups travel to and support local businesses.

Sandals Resorts International

Family-owned Sandals Resorts International has transformed itself from one brand and one resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica to become one of the most well-known and award-winning hospitality companies in the world. With five brands and 24 properties in seven countries including Antigua, The Bahamas, Grenada, Barbados, Jamaica, Saint Lucia and Turks and Caicos, Sandals Resorts International is the go-to for Caribbean holiday experiences.

Every resort represents luxury from the Suites to the entertainment and restaurants, Sandals Resorts International will make sure you have the time of your life. Bear in mind most Sandals Resorts are adult only so if you wanted to bring the little ones be sure to check the hotel policy before you book!

Destinology

Every Destinology holiday is unique; tailor-made by a destination expert, from a hand-picked selection of superb resorts meeting their exacting standards, by virtue of their excellent quality and enduring appeal. So, whether you’re thinking of a short break in Spain, a multi-centre adventure around Asia, a honeymoon in the Maldives or a fabulous villa that the whole family will love, they’ll make sure you have a special experience.

With Destinology, you’ll have your own personal travel consultant who will look after you right from your initial inquiry, all the way through to returning home. They understand that everyone has different tastes and preferences when booking a holiday, so they’ll listen carefully to you to create your ideal itinerary.

Secret Escapes

Secret Escapes negotiates exclusive rates for luxury hand-picked hotels and holidays in the UK and abroad. As hotels don’t like to have empty rooms, they manage to negotiate attractive prices to make sure hotels are fully booked.

Secret Escapes is a member-only website, all you need to do is to sign-up and you’ll receive targeted deals to your inbox daily. Trust us, it’ll give you massive travel envy every morning.

By partnering with Designer Travel, Secret Escapes is now able to offer a ‘bespoke’ holiday, a personalised holiday service available to members only. So, if you fancy a bespoke option, Secret Escapes will put you in touch with their partner and see how they can create the best holiday package at the best rates  for you.

Black Tomato

Black Tomato is a bespoke luxury travel agency. Everything they do is bespoke, led by the needs and desires of their clients. From organising an unforgettable Honeymoon to putting together a family holidays where all the family can be entertained, the choice is yours.

Their website is a great inspirational tool, giving you ideas for your next trip abroad. Black Tomato also created some experiences like Tasting Notes, a series of immersive, luxurious journeys that their travel experts have co-created and designed with Michelin-starred chefs and food-personalities from around the world.

Are you looking to boost your bookings for 2019? Do you need help diversifying your customer base? Speak to our communications experts today to find out how we can help you.

Five Companies Turning Art into an Asset Class

The global art market was worth more than $63.7 billion in 2017, and art is one of the fastest growing alternative investment classes. Art’s invulnerability to political upheaval allied to the increasing digitisation of the world of investment is making the sector more accessible, and attractive, than ever.

These five companies are using different strategies to turn art into an asset class for everybody from wealthy collectors, to everyday investors, and even making the market more lucrative for the artists themselves.

The Established Heavyweights:

The wealthiest players in the art market want the best investment advice, and The Fine Art Group offer their clients unrivalled expertise in collection management and art financing. Their speciality is in using art as collateral for lending, and in late 2017 they announced plans to deploy over $1bn in lending to collectors in Asia over the next decade. Fine Art is at the exclusive end of the market, and The Fine Art Group dominates that space, helping collectors and dealers to borrow against their assets: https://www.fineartgroup.com/en/

 Art Investment for All:

Maddox Fine Art, twinned with the luxury gallery based in Mayfair, is a specialist art investment consultancy with expertise in contemporary art and emerging artists. Their sweet spot is in spotting contemporary artists and art whose work has the potential to greatly increase in value, and pairing investors up with those emerging talents. Anybody can invest from £4,000, so Maddox are perfect for those looking to make an entry into the art investment space, or for those who fancy themselves as having an eye for the next Damien Hirst: https://www.maddoxinvestments.co.uk/about-us/

 The Digital Challengers:

The Maecenas platform uses blockchain technology to give investors the opportunity to own fractions of masterpieces in the form of digital shares. This is a different way for an investor to build up and diversify their portfolio, focussing on accruing shares rather than entire works. CEO Marcelo says that ‘Maecenas aims to be to fine art what NASAQ is to shares’. Maecenas see themselves as the inevitable response to the transaction fees that auction houses and banks charge, and their streamlined, efficient model is the perfect example of how technology is making art more investable: https://www.maecenas.co/

Whereas Maecenas is harnessing blockchain to democratise the art market, Arthena is using big data to put a 21st-century spin on art investment. Based in New York, Arthena analyses data points including the identity of the artist, the size of the art and the style of the piece, to identify which pieces will appreciate in value. Arthena operates funds from the high-risk, focussing on upcoming artists, to the low-risk, focussing on more established artists and works. Arthena’s model is bringing a scientific element to a traditionally emotional world so that anybody, not just experts, can analyse art and make informed investment decisions: https://arthena.com/

 The World’s First Agency for Artists:

MTart are wholly unique, as their model focusses on investing in artists themselves rather than in art. Founder Marine Tanguy, part of the Forbes 2018 30 under 30 list, wanted to create a model that supported artists, that was accessible to all demographics, and that could help art reach people from all backgrounds. MTart review 200 portfolios every month and select the artists they see the greatest potential in. Selected artists then have their studio costs covered, press exposure managed, sales of their work handled, and commercial and cultural partnerships struck. MTart partners with major brands, galleries, and even cities to place the work of their chosen artists. Collectors, clients and partners can then buy into artworks from the talent on the MTart roster: https://www.mtart.agency/about/

Are you looking to raise vital funds for your business? Our team of specialists are here to help. Contact us today to find out how we can help you gain breakthrough for you and your business.

Black Friday – How to spot the best deal

We’re in the eighth year of the UK population embracing what has become one of the biggest dates in the retail diary – Black Friday. With consumers spending £1.39bn in 2017, according to data from IMRG. Retailers are hopeful for another increase in 2018.

But how do you know if you’re getting the best deal and not being sucked into all the hype? We check out the price trackers you can use this weekend to help make those all-important spending decisions.

Idealo:

Idealo is a German based start-up, founded in Berlin 17 years ago. Their mission is to help users make better buying decisions. Today, they are Europe’s leading price comparison platform and one of the largest websites in the German e-commerce market with 330 million offers across their platform.

Idealo is a comparison platform that can notify you when a product has reached your target price. A useful tool, especially when you’re inundated with Black Friday offers and you want to know which retailers are offering the highest value for money. The tool provides a graph of the price fluctuation and how it has changed over the year, so you’re sure you’re not overspending. If you like the look of it, they also compare flights!

CamelCamelCamel:

CamelCamelCamel is an Amazon price tracker that provides price drop alerts and price history charts for products sold by Amazon. You can either use the website which gives you a good overview of what products are on amazon and you can also download their plug-ins which means that every time you look at a product on Amazon, you can check the price history as well as the third-party price to compare. You don’t need to create an account to use it, making it easy and hassle free.

Which?:

Which? Is the largest independent consumer body in the UK with 1.3m members. Their commitment is to provide unbiased advice. From choosing a TV, phone, car, or holiday, to getting a mortgage or writing a will, they’ll help you make the best decision.

Last year during Black Friday, they carried out an investigation into product prices and found that you might get a better bargain if you wait until after the Black Friday sales. In fact, they found that 87% were the same price or cheaper than their Black Friday price at other times of year. So, this year, they are giving you some really interesting tips on how to find a bargain including buying lesser known brands, or doing some research before your purchase an item.

Trusted review:

Sometimes it’s not just about the price. Trusted review allows you to get reviews on thousands of products and gives you the best deals around. Their Black Friday section is a long list filtered by retailers and category so whether you’re looking for a TV, a video game or a game for Christmas, the website will help you find the best deal you can get around. Their blog section is also useful, giving you tips and tricks on Black Friday.

If you’re interested in raising your profile in the media, get in touch to find out how our team can support you in achieving your business goals.

The best Christmas advert of 2018

We’re feeling festive thanks to all of the great Christmas adverts that are appearing on our screens! Gone are the days of waiting to see your favourite brand’s advert on television; now you can head to your social media channels and see the advert at your leisure and share it with your friends.

We’ve created a  list of the most notable campaigns, along with our added opinion of who’s come out on top in the Christmas advert war this year…

John Lewis

Let’s start with the big dog. Sorry to be cliché, but we couldn’t compile a list like this without mentioning John Lewis. They have taken a rather untraditional route this year by starring Sir Elton John, featuring ‘Your Song’ and recreations of Sir Elton throughout his life. The advert ends with a very young and cute Elton John opening his first piano for Christmas with the tagline, ‘some gifts are more than just a gift’, suggesting that this gift shaped his career. We are big fans of Elton, but as for the advert, the link between a young boy receiving a piano for Christmas and growing up to become a star is a little weak. Where are the bells? Where is Santa? Granted, past John Lewis Christmas adverts have included a man on the moon and monsters under the bed, which some may argue doesn’t exactly scream ‘CHRISTMAS!’, but they were full of sentiment and a strong sense of storytelling. This year’s advert felt more like a teaser for Sir Elton John’s biopic film, Rocketman (due to be released in May 2019).

The piano featured in the advert is also worth over £800 and considering Sir Elton John grew up in a council house, it is also unlikely that the average working-class family in the 1950s could afford such a luxury. In fact, how many of us watching the advert can afford that? Lidl saw this as an opportunity and Tweeted a hilarious response:

With over 25,000 likes, Lidl has managed to gain serious recognition at no advertising cost. John Lewis however reportedly spent £7 million on this year’s advert.

The department store has created the most buzz around their Christmas advert than any other brand since 2007, but according to The Telegraph’s recent poll – their latest ads have never lived up to the original. Has the pressure of generating new ideas and exceeding expectations gotten all too much for John Lewis? Capturing an audience, whether from a comedic or sentimental angle doesn’t have to cost millions, perhaps John Lewis should go back to basics with a strong story instead of a famous face?

Iceland

Iceland Christmas advert

Once again, the power of social media has given us an exclusive preview. Perhaps the most thought-provoking advert this year, Iceland’s advert was deemed too political to appear on TV. The animation tells the story of an orangutan who has had his home taken away and his mother killed due to the deforestation that is undertaken to produce palm oil. Despite it being banned from TV, Iceland took a stand and decided to share this advert with their followers and viewed over 15 million times. There is also a petition to air the advert on TV, which has received over 670,000 signatures. The advert has been very successful in terms of sparking conversation around the consumption of palm oil and the supermarket chain have been commended for their advocacy. It has even opened some great collaboration opportunities for Iceland as Selfridge’s are now stocking their mince pies to show support for their efforts. That’s the great thing about social media, rules can often be broken and it is so easy to share things you like or dislike with a community and rally an audience together.

Sainsbury’s

A simple and humble concept that tells the story of a school play involving some ridiculous costumes and amazing voices. The ad features a young boy dressed as a plug, which led to a trending hashtag, #PlugLife. This lucky young boy, Harrison from Rugby, has become an internet sensation. Sainsbury’s have even released an interview with him on their social channels and he even got to switch on the Christmas lights in his local town! Furthermore, Sainsbury’s have done an impressive job of engaging with users about the advert and much like Lidl, have teased John Lewis in the process:

The slight irony, as Sainsbury’s have been criticised by some for creating an ad that is very similar to John Lewis’ Queen tribute advert earlier in the year, which also featured a school play and a big musical number. Putting those accusations aside, it is a great advert with a lovely family vibe.

McDonald's Reindeer

Mcdonald’s

We wanted bells and Santa and finally, they’ve mcdelivered! The #ReindeerReady advert shows Santa and his reindeers flying from house to house, but unfortunately, no one has left out any carrots for the reindeers. The poor reindeers are exhausted, so Santa stops at a Mcdonald’s and buys a sack-load of carrots for them. A truly traditional advert that is sentimental and heart-warming. There is nothing more magical than the idea of Santa flying through the sky at Christmas and to make Mcdonald’s little packs of carrots relevant to Christmas is genius. If this doesn’t make kids choose the healthy option for their Happy Meal we don’t know what will! The advert has received high praise from social users with some even saying that it made them cry!

Boots

Boots Christmas Advert

Boots have managed to capture the genuine love between a mum and daughter in their ad this year. It successfully highlights the usual female conflicts and interactions between a mother and daughter, such as the daughter using her mum’s perfume, then the daughter gets ready to go out with friends but her mum forces her to remove her bright pink lipstick. The daughter is, of course, annoyed but watches her mum sing in a choir in a bright red shade of lipstick and decides to buy her mum the lipstick for Christmas. This is all whilst singing a spoof version of Robbie William’s ‘She’s the One’ in a northern accent. The lyrics say “if there’s somebody spoiling my fun, she’s me mum.” We’re definitely able to relate to this at PHA Social, however, general social reaction to the #GiftsThatGetThem has been mixed. Some consumers have said that the advert ‘sends out the wrong message’ as the removal of lipstick could be interpreted in a few different ways. Other criticism comes from those who have branded the advert insensitive, as not everyone has their mother with them at Christmas. It is becoming increasingly difficult for brands to know what will offend consumers, as social media makes it so easy to voice criticism, but overall, for every negative comment there is a positive comment for this advert and boots should be happy to be a part of conversations around feminism and social good.

Asda

As a wise man once said, ‘don’t fix what is not broken’; The formula of snow and Santa at Christmas never fails to impress, and this advert has plenty of both. Santa lights a cannon whilst a crowd dressed in sequins, onesies and festive jumpers run through the snow. There are motorbikes, a polar bear float full of toys, and even a man riding a Christmas tree! Most importantly, there is plenty of product placement with an amazing feast of turkey, macaroons and every sweet treat you could ever want! It must have been a very difficult advert to film because of all the fast motion movement and for that we commend Asda. Disappointedly, Asda hasn’t been very active on social in comparison to their competitors, the advert could have really of benefited from a hashtag to direct consumers to the conversation. They also released the advert at the start of November, which was perhaps a little too eager.

Overall, it’s been a good year for Christmas adverts and of course, the winner is up to interpretation, but for PHA Social, it’s the Boots advert. We admire brands that are brave enough to take on old classics and evoke emotion and response. Christmas is such a crucial and competitive time for brands, standing out can be tough but sticking to tradition and getting that perfect balance of humour and sentiment is definitely the way forward.

If you need any help with telling your story on social, PHA Social is able to provide you with a compelling campaign that is both relevant and timely using all of the latest industry insight. Contact us here.

PHA Christmas Social

Best UK staycations for your next holidays

This summer was one of the best for UK tourism, as Brits decided to stay in the country and enjoy all the British Isles has to offer.

This trend is likely to continue in to 2019, especially with Brexit on the horizon with many more UK families starting to think about taking their annual holiday in the UK. With uncertainty around the value of the pound, almost two thirds of Brits (65%) said they were worried that a further fall in the value of the pound would drive up prices for overseas travel and so they would rather stay in the UK for their annual holiday.

So, for those of you who are planning ahead for next year and dreaming of your next break we’ve helped you out by taking a look at the best UK staycations for your 2019 holidays.

CENTER PARCS

Center Parcs revolutionised the holiday market in Holland over 40 years ago, before arriving in the UK in the 80s. Today, Center Parcs has five villages across the UK – with more to come. Center Parcs’ villages are built deep within the forest, enabling families to enjoy acres of unspoilt woodland where they can interact with nature. The Dutch brand aims to be one of the leading sustainable ‘Large Scale Tourism Destinations’ in the UK. Center Parcs also offers a large choice of activities for all the family, from aerial adventures to aqua jetting and nature walks, not to forget the main attraction, the swimming pool complex which will always entertain the little ones!

BUTLINS

Eighty years ago, Billy Butlin changed the face of British holidays. His aim was to make the British seaside break accessible to all. He wanted to create a place of happiness where quality activities and entertainment would be provided, so that families could really enjoy their time together. Eighty years later, Butlins has three different parks within the UK and welcomes thousands of visitors every year. Each park is designed with family at the heart, with multiple hotels, self-catering apartments, dozens of restaurants and bars, a fairground, flumes, go-karts, climbing wall, multi-sports courts, stages, and shops.

HOSEASONS

From Woodland retreats to action-packed holidays for all the family, Hoseasons is a great choice for UK based breaks. Over one million holidaymakers chose to book with Hoseasons every year. We really like their Starboard packages including cruises and boat rental options – a different way to travel the country and see beautiful landscapes. Hoseasons also produces beautiful travel guides on their social channels to help travellers discover the wonder of Britain and decide which trip is right for them and their family!

HOLIDAYCOTTAGES.CO.UK

When thinking about British holidays, one of the first thoughts that comes to mind is a beautiful, traditional cottage in a picturesque village setting. Well, this dream can now become a reality thanks to Holidaycottages.co.uk. A UK based website that helps you book cottages for all your family, friends… and even pets. If you fancy a last-minute getaway, this site will also give you all the latest vacancies.

FOREST HOLIDAYS

For the adventurers amongst us, Forest Holidays will tailor each holiday makers’ trip depending on the activities you want to focus on. From zip lining to gorge scrambling and bike rides, there’s something for everyone. They’ll also find you a cabin in the woods, so you and your family can have some happy times together using the hot tub or even have your own in-cabin chef. Make sure you check their “forestipedia” blog, it’ll give you some interesting insights on nature and what to do depending on the time of the year.

Are you looking to boost your bookings for 2019? Do you need help diversifying your customer base? Speak to our communications experts today to find out how we can help you.

The best Halloween campaigns

Happy Halloween! For some this is a time to head to a fancy-dress party or send your little one’s trick or treating.

To celebrate the scariest day of the year, we’re looking at the best Halloween campaigns we’ve seen spooking consumer this year.

Jägermeister

Jagermeister is focusing its advertising on Snapshat with an impressive $100,000 budget to reach out to Millennials. The Jägermeister’s AR campaign, called “Divine the Darke”, allows users to swipe up on Snapchat ads and trigger AR Snapchat lens featuring tarot cards meant to reveal users’ “cocktail fate.” Snapchat users can also access the experience through nine different Snapcodes found on Jägermeister products in bars and stores.

The campaign already generated impressive results, including 32 million impressions, and 450,000 Snapchat users have swiped up into the lens experience. Not too bad for a campaign which only started on October 19.

Fanta

Fanta Halloween

To celebrate Halloween, Fanta is throwing one of its biggest campaigns so far, including the launch of two new Halloween flavours, spooky limited-edition bottles and cans. The fizzy drinks brand is using Snapchat lenses and filters, and an experiential Halloween event called Twisted Carnival to promote the release.

With a £3 million marketing budget for both outdoor and digital campaigns, it’s impossible not to have spotted the scary characters on the street of London. Fanta has also teamed up with Lad Bible and influencer Joe Tasker to bring the campaign to life with light-hearted content.

The Coca-Cola- owned brand worked with Merlin Entertainments to throw the ultimate Halloween experience. The event takes fans on a freaky journey and promises to leave them equally thrilled and terrified in different parks including Thorpe Park, Westfield London and Birmingham Bullring.

M&Ms

While M&M’s are a Halloween staple, it’s been 11 years since the brand released a new commercial marking the holiday. This year’s new commercial takes a humorous look at “surviving” the scariest night of the year as it suggests that Yellow may have died!  The ad takes a Halloween-themed look at the brand’s longstanding irresistibility storyline to show what life (or death) is like when you’re a delicious piece of chocolate. With the famous two characters, Red and Yellow, M&Ms are always finding ways to bring some fun to any occasion.

Along with the new commercial, the brand also created new Halloween-themed print ads, as well as some easy cooking videos on how to create Halloween treats using M&Ms. They are also promoting their usual Halloween flavours: Pumpkin Pie and Candy Corn and are using the season’s colour in all their social media posts to keep the theme alive.

Dior Makeup

It’s not just F&B brands that are using Halloween to campaign their products. Dior Makeup got into the spooky vibe with an influencer campaign featuring Bella Hadid, where the supermodel demonstrated how to create makeup looks just for Halloween. The campaign in its second year has been a big success.

Dior Makeup as part of the campaign created a landing page where shoppers can buy the full look, full of red and black products. Dior is mastering the use of influencers and understand that videos are key to attract their audience.

ASOS

ASOS Halloween

Sometimes it’s the small details that matter the most. ASOS are always brilliant at changing icons on their website depending of the time of the year. Halloween is no different, when ASOS changed the profile logo to a little ghost. A funny touch that will remind people that Halloween is around the corner and that they can always use ASOS to find the perfect costume for this year’s Halloween party.

ASOS are also producing inspirational content to show shoppers how to use their products including makeup and clothes. The online retailer is partnering with brands such as Gypsy Shrine to showcase dazzling face and body decorations. There is even a discount code just for today SCREAM15.

Snapshat and Perrier

Perrier Halloween

French water brand Perrier has paid homage to Kanye West dressing up as one its bottles by allowing Snapchat users to virtually do the same for Halloween. One month later, Perrier’s social team has consecrated the performance via the power of a Snapchat filters. Looking to capture the 18-24-year-old market, the brand has developed an AR lens that turns users into a green bottle, just like Ye. Snapchatters can then record a clip of themselves awkwardly bobbing and send to their friends. No need to buy a costume!

Do you agree with our choices? To find out how public relations can benefit your business then please get in touch with a member of our award-winning team.

Our top CSR campaigns for Breast Cancer awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a worldwide annual campaign where thousands of organisations highlight the importance of breast cancer awareness, education and research. Multiple brands participate, usually using the famous pink colour to remind their customers of the great cause. Below are some of our favourite CSR campaigns from this year.

StellaMcCartney

Every year, the famous fashion icon uses the power of influencers and celebrities to help raise awareness. Alicia Keys was at the forefront of the campaign in 2017 and this year’s ambassador is Modern Family star Sofia Vergara. A clever choice from the brand as Latin women are said to have one of the lowest rates of breast cancer screening, with limited access to formal health care than other ethnicities in the U.S.

Vergara is promoting McCartney’s limited-edition bra named Rose Romancing, which is available on their website. Sales of the lingerie set will benefit the Linda McCartney Centre in Liverpool, the Hello Beautiful Foundation in London, and Memorial Sloan Kettering in the U.S. The money will go toward early-detection programs and treatments for breast cancer patients.

Flower by post

There’s nothing quite like that warm feeling you get after you receive a gift you’re really going to appreciate and love. Even better than that could be receiving a present that also helps a great cause. FlowerByPost, a flower delivery service joining forces with Breast Cancer Now. The Flower shop designed three beautiful new pink bouquets in aid of the charity. With every bouquet sold, £5 will be donated to help make life-saving research happen.

Kitchenaid pink october

During Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October, for every KitchenAid Artisan Mixer sold £50 will be donated to Breast Cancer Haven. So, you can help a great cause, and also become the new Great British Baker as it’s impossible not to make delicious cakes for the office with this iconic mixer! A brilliant Christmas present to add to your list.

M&S Pink October 

M&S is supporting the cause by donating 20% from its sales of selected pink lingerie and sleepwear. The website also features some inspirational stories of brave women who have faced the disease. The testimonials also include the stories of partners, friends, children and other family members– because the campaign not only recognises those diagnosed but also the amazing network of people who support patients. M&S’ website’s testimonials are powerful and makes their campaign very emotive.

EasyJet are taking part this month by launching on-board collections to raise money for Breast Cancer now and Prostate Cancer UK. Cabin crew have been given an opportunity to don special charity branded uniforms, including ties, neck scarves, pink and blue epaulettes and pin badges, to further show their support for the cause.

To find out how public relations can benefit your charity or gain exposure for your corporate responsibility initiatives please get in touch with a member of our team today. Whether it is strategy planning, CSR workshops or simply promoting your business we’d love to help.

International Coffee Day

What goes best with a cup of coffee? A top up. Whether it’s sitting in a cafe for hours gossiping with your friends or desperately trying to stay awake sipping from your takeaway mug, coffee is a key component of many people’s daily routines.

Today marks International Coffee Day, and to help you celebrate we’ve compiled a list of our favourite coffee brands in London. So, may your coffee be strong, and your Monday be short.

Workshop

Workshop place a huge importance on being able to work closely with the right coffee farmers, producers, exporters and co-operatives to produce the best coffee. Those at Workshop firmly believe that if they understand every aspect that goes into making a brilliant cup of coffee, they can successfully make one.

They work closely with the same farmers year on year, yet are also developing new relationships all the time, predominantly focusing on travel and purchasing in Africa and Central and South America.

Workshop pride themselves on having a genuine and sincere commitment to developing on-going relationships with producers, that facilitate their objectives of better financial reward for their handiwork, and our desire to serve for the best coffee possible.

Dark Arts

Launched in 2014, after a meeting between Bradley Morrison (MD) and Colin Mitchell (director) at a motorcycle festival in 2013.

Bradley Morrison had been working as a barista but wasn’t at all keen on the coffee they were serving and thought he could do a better job. He approached the owner with the proposition that if he started a roastery, would they change their supplier? So, Dark Arts began.

The roastery’s quirky décor is a mix of Americana and artefacts from motorcycle culture and retro horror films. Whilst having fun is high on their agenda, they are ultimately driven by their passion to produce quality products.

All Press

It seems all good coffee is built on good relationships. All Press put their success down to every person in the coffee making journey, from the people they choose to partner with, their first café customer to the staff around the world.

All Press recognise that the best tasting coffee is not all science, nor is it all craft. It’s the combination of both.

Climpson & Sons

Pioneers in the evolving London speciality coffee scene. They work to source, roast and craft some of the finest coffees from Ethiopia to Guatemala and more, right in the heart of East London.

They place a huge emphasis on their ethos towards sustainability and ethical sources and consequently ensure that their coffee has both character and a transparent story.

Ozone

Another company who really thrive off the friendships they get to build between a huge range of interesting and talented people; from coffee lovers through to coffee farmers. They love their ability to be able to connect these people.

Having started in a small New Zealand surf town, with just three passionate coffee roasters, they have invested in their product, people and community and have consequently grown around the globe continuing to do what they love.

Square Mile

Founded by 2 people with a wealth of experience and passion in the coffee industry, from barista work, machinery support and coffee training to import, cupping and roasting.

With the ultimate goal to make London famous for good coffee, they source, buy, import, roast and deliver the best coffee they can find.

Are you in need of a communications strategy to help gain exposure for your brand or business? Our expert teams are on hand to help you do just that. Speak to us today to find out how you can gain cut-through in online and national media.

 

Alternative Gifts: Our Top 5 Gifts

Nowadays, people seem far more excited about receiving presents which have required a bit of thought above the traditional pair of socks, money, or the latest gadget. Of course, we still like to receive materialistic gifts, but there’s nothing quite like that warm feeling you get after you receive a gift you’re really going to appreciate and love.

If you’re stuck for ideas look at some of the alternative gifts you can get for your loved-ones this Christmas.

How many times have you made a New Year’s resolution which involves either learning or trying something new? And how many times have you fulfilled that resolution? Maybe if the lesson involved something a little more exciting (*cough*, beer, *cough*), then you’d be more likely to tick it off the list. This Christmas think outside the box and treat someone to a beer making lesson, after all, #DryJanuary isn’t for everybody.

The London Beer Lab in Brixton provides workshops for people to choose a type of beer they want to learn how to brew themselves… a great way to continue the Christmas spirit through January. You’ll be provided with the recipe and ingredients to brew about 20 litres of your all-grain beer. Each workshop takes between 4/5 hours and a further 2-3 weeks to ferment until it will be ready for collection and drinking!

  • Acts of charity

There are plenty of charities and organisations which let you buy something for someone who truly needs it, on behalf of your friend or relative who doesn’t.

Unicef Inspired Gifts are real, life-saving and life-changing supplies that get delivered to children and communities around the world. The process is simple, you can select a gift, dedicate it to a friend or loved-one with a personalised gift card and Unicef will deliver your inspired gift to children in the greatest need.

The gift range includes things like footballs or text books for children, vaccines and treatments to protect children to necessities such as a toilet and water pump.

  • Adopt an animal

Everybody is a sucker for our furry friends, and with people more concerned than ever about our planet and animals’ wellbeing following the Blue Planet Effect, donating or adopting an animal is the perfect Christmas gift.

The WWF offers the ability to donate or adopt an animal this Christmas. Donation options include things like 40 seedlings for forests in Tanzania and a Rhino Ranger’s salary for 10 days. Or you can adopt an animal and help work to protect some of the world’s most vulnerable animals. In return, you will receive a cuddly toy, regular updates, a fact pack and a wonderful gift that will protect your chosen animal and their habitat.

This is a great, quirky gift for any occasion including Christmas. Alongside a named star, you will receive a certificate, a celestial map and your star will be registered in the Registry, meaning that through a unique naming number you can retrieve your record anywhere in the world, at any time.

There are different packages available from naming a visible star to naming a visible star in the constellation and naming two stars orbiting each other which is great for couples, the choice is all yours. A present for life.

Have you ever wondered where exactly in the world your heritage lies? Living DNA can help your loved ones discover where they come from and provide a highly detailed insight into their family history.

Simply order a test online, take your swab and post the sample back using the free returns bag and view your results online within 10-12 weeks. So why not help your loved one find out where they come from with the world’s most advanced DNA test. We bet that’s a Christmas present they’ve not received before!

Would you like to find out more about how to get your product placed in the press for Christmas? Get in touch with us here for more info.

Best Food Delivery boxes

We know what it’s like. You come home after a long day at work, you’re not in the spirit of cooking up a storm and suddenly all you want is a takeaway. That might be why we’re seeing an increase in the market in food delivery boxes. Now smaller, niche players are getting in on the act, offering specific meal kits tailored to particular dietary preferences, food styles and health trends. We look at our top four diet food boxes.

Love Yourself Box: 

 Love yourself box

Calorie controlled gourmet diet; freshly prepared and delivered daily. Love Yourself box serves pre-made fresh, locally sourced seasonal products to your doorstep. The Love Yourself subscription box allows you to choose your meals based off one of five categories: vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, balanced (meat, fish and veg) and an additional balanced option minus the fish but including the meat. So, everyone will find their ideal box and the food is excellent. The website even allows you to track your diet via the MyFitness App.

Mindful Chef Recipe Box: 

Mindful chef

The creators of the UK’s very first vegan recipe box, Mindful Chef also caters to meat and fish diets using pre-portioned ingredients from sustainably sourced small British farms. Targeted towards nutritionally balanced diets, the recipe boxes can be delivered to your door once a week and provide the option of dishes for one, two or four people. Designed for the health conscious, Mindful Chef’s meals are free from dairy, gluten, refined carbs and refined sugars. They never deliver pasta, bread or white rice and instead all their recipes are based on innovative uses of fresh vegetables.

Pure Package:

Pure package

Whether you’re looking to lose weight or simply eat healthily, The Pure Package’s tailored programmes can suit all needs and lifestyles. A team of experts will work closely with you to create your own plan and make sure it suits your lifestyle. Once the plan has been confirmed, the quota of healthy food is delivered daily, so there’s no need to plan meals, go food shopping or worry about portion control; every meal and snack is already prepared to be eaten and enjoyed by you. You can even enjoy a personal chef programme which will be completely tailored to your needs. Plus, the luxury delivery box company is starting a campaign to combat pollution with nutrition, definitely one to watch!

Jane Plan:

Jane Plan

Choose from a one, three or four month plan which includes breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as a daily snack. The menu can be tailored to your own tastes, so you won’t be presented with any meals you don’t like. Dishes such as lasagne and thai chicken curry can be found and despite the plans being typically under 1200 calories per day, the portions are generous. There’s also a support service in place, so you get to speak to a qualified nutritionist at the beginning of the plan and during, whenever you need to. If you have a week where you go off track, the support service can help you to work out your next steps. Jane plan also provides wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free and halal diets.

Could your brand do with a serving of PR or a communications strategy to launch a new campaign? Why not get in touch to find out how our award-winning consumer team can help you.