Before we went to Liverpool last month, I admit my knowledge of the city was, well, stereotypical. The Beatles, Cilla Black, Ken Dodd. I don’t really know why, but a Liverpool weekend break just wasn’t on my radar. I never even watched Brookside.
I went to Anfield on a school trip once (thinking back, I’m not sure what I was meant to learn from that) but that was the only visit I had made to Merseyside and I’m not sure that would even count. But, I was sure that there was more to the scouse than a “calm down”, a wig and a moustache and it was clear my knowledge needed an update so, with this as our justification, we booked our train tickets.
We stayed at the BEST WESTERN Alicia Hotel located opposite Sefton Park and about 10 minutes from Liverpool city centre. Mat, the general manager, and his team of staff went out of their way to make our stay comfortable and enjoyable. Their friendliness and hospitality really put the personality in our slogan ‘Hotels with personality’.
The Albert Dock was our first port of call, heading straight to the Beatles Story Museum. This is an association to Liverpool I am pleased has not been lost. I’m sure many want to forget the shell suit days but no one could forget this legacy. We followed the masses of Chinese, Americans and other die hard Beatles followers to the famous Mathew Street and the replica Cavern Club and after tracing the footsteps of musical history (and a few shandys) we stumbled our way through the city.
There was an audible groan from my purse (or maybe that was from Johnny?) as soon as we found the main shopping centre, Liverpool One, aka “shoppers delight”. The Rocky-esque steps we climbed to enter were well worth the scale. From the arcades in Peter’s Lane to the aptly named Paradise Street, spending your pennies is unavoidable if not impossible. Well, for me it was anyway! There was a camera crew filming the TV advert promoting Christmas shopping whilst we were there so keep your eye out for us loitering around in the background if you see it! With only 64 days until Christmas (yes, I have downloaded the countdown to Christmas app on my iphone), I recommend you do your shopping here.
It wasn’t all shop, shop, shop whilst we were there. Oh no. It was eat eat eat too! We ate in the Glass House Restaurant at the BEST WESTERN Alicia hotel that evening. I defy anyone to leave that restaurant feeling hungry. If you like big portions, this is the place for you. The burger stack was more of a mountain to be marvelled at piled with bacon, cheese and onion rings – it was huge! All the food we sampled was delicious, really fresh and imaginatively presented. Our aching feet were pleased that we didn’t need to look far either!
It was only a brief ‘Hello, Goodbye’ but I am pleased to say it was enough to change my embarrassingly narrow perceptions, and, as it turns out, the Pool really is the place to be!