Shop till you drop, breath…and relax!  Hunter 486 at The Arch hotel

Shop till you drop, breath…and relax! Hunter 486 at The Arch hotel


I`m not much of a one for forward planning at Christmas. It’s a combination of idleness, rebelling against the commercialisation of the season (though being a bit contrary I`m an avid consumer) and losing too many arguments about who should get what card etc.

Lovely though she is, few battlefield Generals would last past the first few skirmishes when it comes to my partners Christmas campaign. So, what to do? First up, subterfuge. Go hiding in plain sight by making much of your upcoming trip to Oxford St for some intensive Christmas shopping, and let it be known that good things may be in store for ones loved one. Mention too that there are other streets to be explored, so, like poor Captain Oates you “may be gone for some time”

Having bagged the correct perfume and a couple of other essentials, it’s time to nip round the corner to The Arch at 50 Gt Cumberland Place. Turn the phone down to almost silent, and, depending when you have timed your arrival, get stuck into the festive 3 course lunch for a very reasonable £35, or the afternoon tea at £28

As it’s been a bit chilly, and having made a few purchases already you probably deserve a reward. This may be taken in the form of drink, so it’s quite permissible to order a glass or two at this stage. You may also order one for your friend, who, having made a couple of purchases of his own should be along shortly.

You will be cocooned in the blissful state for about 90 mins before being rumbled, but having feasted on fillet of Stone Bass, the Norfolk Turkey or the Truffle Tortellini, or perhaps nibbled your way through a few finger sandwiches and fancy delights your will be supremely relaxed and able to deal with things. You will be along tout suite, no, you have not forgotten about drinks tonight at the Thompsons, and yes, you have the wrapping paper.

Things can be more pleasurable in contrast, and Hunter 486 is a great way to dial in a little escape form the hubbub. Those still undecided about the 25th can try claiming that Waitrose was out of turkeys, but you have saved the day by booking in here! New Year’s Eve may need a different excuse, but by now you should have had time to think up something convincing.

Gentlemen, I`m sorry to have given away some of our secrets, but let’s not kid ourselves – they knew all along, and we have been indulged for the afternoon.


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