It’s not often I get to spend time away from my son in the evenings, but when an invitation popped into my inbox recently, I just knew I had to make it work, and I got to take a friend with me too! Bonus. We were off to enjoy some treat time at John Lewis and KuPP Oxford thanks to the team at Talented Talkers. As you all know I’ve been to John Lewis a few times over the last five times, and actually got to see the store before any of the merchandising was put in place. A surreal experience. I’ve also got to see the Scandinavian KuPP restaurant emerge from its frame to the flourishing eatery that it now is. I’ve eaten there a few times since it opened in October and was really looking forward to seeing what they had in store for us last week.
As I’ve mentioned before, John Lewis is at the end of the newly remodelled Westgate shopping centre which I featured in a post recently. KuPP offers a rooftop eating experience and can be reached through the store itself during their opening times or via an independent life for those wanting breakfast or an evening meal and drinks.
We were meeting up with a number of other bloggers from the Oxford area who cover food, books, ethical and luxury fashion and generally lifestyle. John Lewis are really focussing on the overall experience of shopping in their store, they want it to be a fun and engaging time for all. Did you know that they have events on in store every day? Hopefully they’ll be advertising that more clearly online soon but if you pop to their Experience Desk on the first floor you can find out what’s on in store and when.
The Beauty Team will be arranging an event a week throughout the year, working with brands such as Estee Lauder, Chanel and Charlotte Tilbury. A number of events are free and you can just turn up and enjoy, but their Beauty Spring Gala on 26th April is a ticketed event. The tickets cost £10 and are redeemable against purchases on the evening, and each counter will be giving away gifts. Contact the Experience Desk for more information on that when you’re next in store.
There are a number of beauty counters within the ground floor Beauty Hall, as you would expect from John Lewis. Fresh and Charlotte Tilbury are new additions, alongside the likes of Marc Jacobs, Clarins and La Mer.
The event area on the ground floor is easily found, just look for the wonderful roses on the wall. You’ll soon be able to see the Story Museum coming in store for story time for the children too.
Talking of children, John Lewis Oxford have this great idea to keep the children entertained whilst visiting the store. There are 30 little doors to spot across the store, an Alice and even a disappearing white rabbit. I’ve visited the store a couple of times with my eight year old son and he absolutely loves hunting the doors. We’d been into the store at the weekend and he’d spotted 13 doors on that trip, so looks like we need to return to tick a few more off his list!
You can also purchase Experience Gift Cards at the John Lewis Experience Gift which also includes the nail and brow bar. You can book in for a personal shopping experience with either a one or three-hour free of charge consultation, arrange a complementary bra fitting (did you know you should get this done every six months??). Note – I’m turning 50 in April, if anyone is stuck for a gift idea, it’s right here!
Treat time at John Lewis and KuPP Oxford last week included cocktails (non alcoholic for us drivers), canapes, a sharing Smorgasbord of delights and samples of their delicious desserts. I’m a big fan of their food anyway, but this was a great way to try even more of what they have to offer.
We got treated to a lesson in cocktail making, which included the Scandinavian Smash which is like a mojito but served with dill rather than mint.
The canapes gave us a good idea of the KuPP open sandwiches. Favourites included (to be fair I liked everything) Smoked Chilli Torn Roast Chicken and the Mushroom with Blue Cheese was devine. Whenever I used to travel to Sweden with work, my customers knew I had to get my meatball fix and now I can get it at KuPP, they taste just as good. The Smorgasbord is a great way to try new things, and my non fish loving friend came away having tried and liked mackerel and trout. The smashed avocado was wonderful and the potted rabbit got the thumbs up from everyone. The food isn’t spicy, but it is full of flavour and so fresh. I really can’t recommend it enough.
I can never say no to dessert, and we got treated to mini versions of 4 different KuPP desserts. Oh boy were they good, although for me the cheesecake served with raspberry was my favourite. I’ll be ordering the full size version of that the next time I visit. If you’ve not been to KuPP yet, go. I rave about the place generally and can’t wait for warmer weather to make use of their rooftop terrace.
We had a wonderful evening enjoying some treat time at John Lewis and KuPP Oxford and I’ll be back again soon.
disclosure: we were given a complimentary beauty goody bag and complimentary meal and drinks at KuPP in exchange for my honest opinion