It’s coming to that time of year.
“What do you want for Christmas?”
“Er dunno. What about you?”
“I’m not sure…”
Choosing what you want for Christmas used to be so much easier as a child. I used to love flipping through the Argos catalogue with my sister; drawing big circles around the toys we wanted. But now, as an adult, there’s not too much I’m in need of. Money is great, of course, but I always find I very rarely actually spend it on anything decent. Instead, it ends up being spent on stuff like petrol or coffee.
One day – probably while I was procrastinating – I came across Buyagift, a brilliant company which offers hundreds of experiences to choose from to suit the recipient of your gift, whatever the occasion. There’s literally something for everyone. Afternoon tea, spa days, skydiving, track days and so much more. There’s a variety of price points too depending on your budget and let’s be honest, we all get so much more out of an actual experience than the latest make-up palette. I really like the idea of picking something special you can do with a friend (should they er, invite you that is).
After choosing which gift you’d like to book, you pop in your payment details, the address where you want your pressie to be sent (to yourself or directly to the recipient) and you’re all done! The next step is left to the receiver to organize the date they want to take the experience or should they wish to exchange it for a different experience, they can do that too.
I was offered the chance to review Buyagift for myself so chose the Two Nights for the Price of One hotel break which included breakfast. As it was our seventh anniversary approaching, Matt and I decided to treat ourselves for the occasion. Our voucher arrived in just two days and one evening we sat down together to choose which hotel we would go to. There were lots of hotels to pick from (72 locations to be exact!) and the website provided lots of handy information about each of the hotels to help us make an informed decision.
In the end, we decided on The Lawrence Hotel, a boutique hotel based in Padiham. All we had to do was send them an email with our voucher code and the nights we wanted to stay and the very same day we received a confirmation email of our booking.
I knew I would like The Lawrence Hotel before we even got to our room. Before we arrived, we were invited to build our own breakfast on the hotel’s website where we could select all the elements we wanted for a full English. This is such a great idea as not only does it prevent wastage but the breakfast is completely tailored to you. We could even select the time we wanted to eat.
On arrival, we were met by Michael the owner who showed us around the hotel and introduced to his gorgeous dog Hetti who we both fell in love with (sorry Luna…). Michael asked if we would like some Oreo cheesecake brought to our room and how could we possibly refuse? He also informed us we’d been upgraded to a suite which we were thrilled about.
The room was a mezzanine room with a huge bed and upstairs was the bathroom of our dreams – a rainfall shower and rolltop bath. We loved the little touches Michael had included – there was a sweet jar to dig into, a tablet to browse the internet, an Alexa, a coffee machine, Temple Spa toiletries even Matt raved about plus a huge Smart TV with full access to Netflix and YouTube. Such small things that make a real difference in making your stay feel even more special.
Other elements I really liked of The Lawrence Hotel was the honesty bar where you could make yourself a drink, alcoholic or otherwise at your leisure and then just had to make a note in the honesty book. This would then be checked and payment would be taken from your card at the end of your stay. There was also a cosy snug room where you could curl up with a book or board game for the evening.
You’re also in a great location for things to do too. We were 15 minutes away from The Woodland Spa, which we went to one day and has won dozens of awards. It was probably the best spa I’ve ever been to. On our last day, we headed to The Trafford Centre in Manchester for a bit of shopping which was only a 40-minute drive away.
Our stay at The Lawrence Hotel was the romantic anniversary I’d hoped for and I know we’ll be going back. I’ve also recommended Buyagift to pretty much everyone since we got back from our break. Not only does it appeal to me massively because I don’t have to go to the shops (lazy, I know) but it means my friends and family will receive gifts I know they will truly cherish.
*We received our Buyagift voucher in exchange for this honest review. All views are 100 per cent my own. Read more on my disclaimer here.