This is the first of a regular piece I want to do on the blog to feature local businesses here in Northern Ireland. I know lots of you aren't from here so I won't do these too often - about once a month or so - but in the case of this first one, I've lots of favourites picked from high street stores that we all have at our fingertips.
First up, I've chosen Belfast's original shopping centre - Castlecourt, which has just celebrated its 25th birthday. I came to Northern Ireland 20 years ago this year and I still remember my first trip to this shopping mecca. Coming from a small town in the South of Ireland, it was a BIG deal and I still enjoy shopping there now.
'Why would you shop in Castlecourt?' my friend asked me the other day. She's a Victoria Square woman and admitted she'd not been further than Zara for several years.
For me, there are 4 shops I love to visit - Gap, Dune, Debenhams and New Look.
Firstly - Gap....a brand that I've bought so much from in the past few years. They do jeans so well...I have quite a few different brands in my wardrobe but the Gap ones get worn the most.
the amazing leather ballet flats (sadly too much toe cleavage)
Moving onto Dune London - fast becoming my favourite shoe shop.
Next up - New Look...
Also adore these sandals which have been another blogger favourite:
The final destination for me is always good old Debenhams. I found out on my last visit that they now stock Clarks here - quite a good range too..
On a practical level, there are two further reasons why Castlecourt works for me. Number 1 is that it's got a couple of shops that my kids absolutely love, which means there's never an argument about going there - Hawkins Bazaar....a treasure trove of toys and 'stuff'
Congratulations Castlecourt for becoming my first School Gate Style Local Hero!