Happy 5th Birthday at House of Fraser Belfast!

While in one way, I can't believe House of Fraser is 5 years in Belfast on the 6th March, on the other hand, I have vivid memories of it opening up because around that time in 2008, I found out I was pregnant with the twins! So although I remember wandering around the store blown away by the glamour and decadence of it all, I do also remember lingering (in a bit of a daze) in the baby section.
So when House of Fraser asked me to help mark the occasion, I came up with the 5 things I love most about the store. My favourite treat when I've got a morning to myself, is to nip into Belfast after leaving the kids off and pay a visit to a couple of these ground floor wonders.. 
1. Jo Malone
2. Bobbi Brown 
3. Shavata Brow Bar
4. Nails Inc 
5. The Ivory
Well, this week, House of Fraser invited me in for the ultimate pampering morning and what I actually discovered (dangerously) is that ALL 5 can be achieved between my school drop off and pick up...I could get used to this..

First up - Jo Malone where I was met by the lovely Sharon and this tray of goodies..
I was in luck on the day as Jo Malone are currently doing a limited fragrance range based on delicious desserts - sounds strange but it works! Sharon mixed one of my favourite JM fragrances, Pomegranate Noir, with Redcurrant & Cream during my complimentary hand and arm massage - the end result was one very relaxed and beautifully scented mama!
L-R - Candles & Candy, Redcurrant & Cream Limited Edition Fragrance, the Jo Malone Vitamin E skincare range, the current range of limited edition scents, cologne intense for those who really love their JM scent, Sharon working on those stressed out hands
Chilled Out Mama
Next up on my yummy mummy pamper morning, I visited the Bobbi Brown counter to  have my eye make up done using one of their new spring/summer palates. Now I don't wear much in the way of eye make up so it was great to be shown some tricks of the trade to give me a more defined, open looking eye, without looking too made up. 

There's a great offer on at the Bobbi Brown counter at the moment. With a spend of £60, you will receive 3 generous samples to enjoy. I'm a complete convert to their foundation after many many years of trying every other brand out there so if you're looking for that elusive perfect match, I highly recommend booking some time with the girls on this counter. 
With my gorgeous eye make up complete, I moved onwards to my next favourite House of Fraser treat,  Shavata Brow Bar. This was just my second time having my brows threaded and I'm really hooked. It hurts less, gives a better shape and is more gentle on the skin than waxing.

Before & After - difficult to capture the difference under shop lights...check out the lunch photo below!
This time, as well as shaping my brows, I had the Shavata brow perfector applied. This is a palate of three colours that can be mixed to give a matching subtle colour that filled gaps in my eyebrows, giving me a fuller, healthier looking brow. This palate is made with castor oil which helps encourage better brow growth. It and the brow highlighter were really impressive products that I will be adding to my make up bag. I've heard it before but now I believe - great brows do make you look younger!
Shavata products: Heart Tweezers, Brow Perfector & Mirror - perfect for Mother's Day!
Next it was Nails Inc. for a Bio Sculpture 3 Week Manicure with Marion, one of the longest serving therapists here who really knows what she's doing. The manicure took just 45 minutes and was about as perfect a manicure as I've ever had.

You get your choice of Retro Sweeties to keep energy levels up during your manicure!

I went for a taupe shade - one I've had before called Jermyn Street. It's very versatile and the regrowth is not as obvious as with a darker red or plum.
Finally, with time to spare, instead of staying on the Lower Ground floor and having a quick lunch in the Ivory Cafe, I tried out the Ivory Restaurant on the top floor. I have been here lots of times for fashion events and shows but I've never actually had lunch here.
It felt so special being up on the top floor, overlooking the city. The service was excellent and the menu impressive. I always know I'm in for a treat whenever I can't decide between several of the main courses. In the end, Mr SGS (who was invited for this part of my morning) went for crab linguine and I opted for the squid...and a side of the best chunky chips I've had in a while.
L-R Trying out my new eyebrows, Crab Linguine, Squid, Chunky Chips
While we waited for our food, we were brought delicious breads with tapenade & oils. The basil oil was incredible..I had to stop myself devouring 4 slices of bread before my chips even arrived! I'm hungry just looking at those pictures. 

Seems like such a lot to fit into a morning but without rushing any of it, I still made the school run at 1.30pm with a minute or two to spare. 

So with Mother's Day approaching (and the LONG Easter holidays) House of Fraser Belfast's 5th Birthday celebration week (6th-9th March) is the perfect time to pop in for a bit of pampering and a browse. And if you spend £100 or more during the celebrations, you'll get £20 to spend on your House of Fraser reward card in your May statement. You can sign up for a reward card in-store when you're in - it works like a Boots Advantage card and points can be collected right across the store.

As well as this reward card promotion, there are tons of events going on during the week including special offers in fashion & beauty on each of the 4 days of celebration, competitions, live music, activities for the kids and great dining deals in The Ivory Restaurant.

Happy Birthday House of Fraser, my favourite destination in Belfast for a tired mum 'pick-me-up treat'. Thanks for the last 5 years and here's to many many more!


  1. That sounds like the perfect way to spend a morning! It would be my idea of Heaven :) Helen

  2. What a fabulous morning you had Avril! I adore Jo Malone so I would have been in my element! Love your brows and make look gorgeous:) I have had my Sunday dinner but now I am suddenly very hungry again!
    ~Anne xx

  3. I'm so jealous Avril I love HOF, what an amazing day you had. I wear pomegranate noir too! Your photos look great here too. I have to check out the brow bar, I so afraid of anyone going near my brows but I think the time has come.

  4. Is it weird that I could eat all that at 9.38am! You look like you had a great time. Eyebrow Threading is definitely the best, your eyebrows look fab.

  5. Sounds amazing Avril - not jealous at all! ;)

    Nic x

  6. Oh my what an amazing morning! I didn't realise Nails Inc did gel manicures. Kept thinking this post couldn't get any better and then you had bread and oils and tapenade - a favourite!!!

    Looks like you had a lot if fun in HoF xx

  7. Really enjoyed reading this. Looks like you had a marvelous morning, I felt like I've experienced it vicariously. You looked fabulous, of course. I loved your coat with the pattern of the scarf. x

  8. Woww you had such a great experoiece!! And you look so fab!!
    Don't Call Me Fashion Blogger

  9. What an amazing morning!! And are you Benjamin Button? - I swear you are looking younger in every post! x

  10. beautiful post ! :D
    what about following each other?
    let me know :)

  11. Hi there!! Wow, what a lovely morning of treats and pampering and to end it with a gorgeous lunch with your husband-perfection!! xx

  12. I'm impressed you managed to fit all 5 counters PLUS lunch between school runs. I adore both Jo Malone and Bobbi Brown. Mind you, which woman wouldn't!

  13. Sounds like a perfect morning and Mr SGS gets a treat too! xx


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