Work Experience Day Four: Exclusive Luxury Tour and Gin Trail

21 Mar

 

Today was quite possibly the best day of my entire life. I’m a little tipsy again, and eating ‘Clever Cookie’ Ben ‘n’ Jerry’s, but that isn’t even the eighth of it.

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Characteristically early for a mystery errand at Emporio Armani on Deansgate, I sat in Starbucks with a hot chocolate and considered what was ahead. In all areas (apart from the appearance of free mimosas), the morning exceeded.

It turned out to be an exclusive tour of the most luxurious stores on Manchester’s most luxurious retail street: The Avenue, alongside some very sartorially impeccable bloggers and other journalists. We were taken on a tour by the managers of Armani, Mulberry, Brooks Brothers, All Saints, Ted Baker, Oliver Sweeney, and Flannels. At Armani, we were shown the all-white impeccable man of the season, followed by the daringly young and short-hemmed dresses and shorts of the SS13 woman, whose colour of choice varies between Sunset, Strawberry Mousse and Lightning (a canary yellow) – clearly, the palette of the season was decidedly pastels.

At Mulberry, the beauty-induced saliva had to be withheld as we were presented with the softest of Italian leather and melted icecream garments, including the season’s It bag – The Willow.

It bag the Willow - that front pouch unzips as a clutch

It bag the Willow – that front pouch unzips as a clutch

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At Brooks Brothers and Olive Sweeney, I got particularly excited as I’m obsessed with menswear. The Great Gatsby mannequins at BB meant I almost had to be restrained and the surprise shown at my rabid desire for a photograph of the beautiful monk strap shoe at the latter was palpable.

Oliver Sweeney

Oliver Sweeney

Perfect man's shoe of choice - the monk strap

Perfect man’s shoe of choice – the monk strap

I defy any mannequin to be more Nick Carraway

I defy any mannequin to be more Nick Carraway – Brooks Brothers

Ted Baker was also enthralling in the menswear department:

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Flannels was the cherry on the expensive cake. We were shown collections (again, mostly saccharine, short and floral) from the likes of Miu Miu, Matthew Williamson, and menswear such as Lanvin and JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE’S TOM FORD TUXEDO.

The vertiginous Giuseppe Zanotti

The vertiginous Giuseppe Zanotti

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Miu Miu

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Afterwards, we were all treated to a fabulous brunch fry up at new New York-inspired restaurant Neighbourhood where I gustily indulged in poached eggs, sausages and baked beans.

Later on in the day, I conducted a phone interview with Manchester-based DJ Danni Skerritt (or DJ Dirty Freud), which can be found on http://www.vivalifestyle.co.uk. Exhilarating, nerve-racking and fantastic fun.

I just returned from a bar crawl (or shall we more be more erudite and say ‘trail?) at which I was introduced to Cheshire’s very own Hunter’s Gin which was incorporated with apple and elderflower at The Cross Keys, Lemon and Sugar at The Knutsford Wine Bar (fabulous brick walls), and lots and lots of other alcohols at La Belle Epoque – okay, so I might have also had a ginger whiskey (Jameson – natch). There was a tab, wouldn’t you?

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La Belle Epoque

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