Brighton Marina – memories for a lifetime, not just for Christmas!

 

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                        The Marina by night in Christmas 2007 – the decorations are even better now! (photography by Clive Sax)

Everyone loves Christmas, but more than the presents or the decorations, it’s the people around you that make it so special. So, with that in mind, why go to your usual city centre for a day out, when you could enjoy a unique and fun-filled day out at the Brighton Marina?

This 127-acre artificial Marina was created throughout the seventies, but has evolved over the years to be an inviting, modern attraction for the residents of Brighton & Hove, as well as tourists and day-trippers. The area is packed to the brim with leisure facilities and restaurants, along with a picturesque inner harbour situated in the middle of Marina Square.

Of course, at Christmas, your main concern will be over food. No matter what your other traditions are at this time of year, a big family feast is guaranteed to be one of them. If the way to your heart is food, what places will you fall in love with at the marina? With everything ranging from French food (Café Rouge) to Indian cuisine (Memories of India) to delicious Italian food (Prezzo), the marina will have you covered.

But, before you decide where to eat, keep in mind that a few of the restaurants in this area have special deals running throughout the Christmas holidays. For instance, Frankie & Benny’s will be offering a free meal for kids on Boxing deal with every adult meal purchased, as well as cheaper deals for meals bought together, making it the perfect eatery for larger families, particularly those who couldn’t help but spoil their children over Christmas.

Alternatively, for families not looking to cook on Christmas day, head to Wetherspoons to pick up your Christmas booking form. From the 11th November until 1st January, you can enjoy a full Christmas meal for a base price of £9.25, with a range of options for desserts and drinks.

If you want more to do on your day out, with food and drink all included, consider going to the Bowlplex, which is offering a variety of great deals for Christmas. Kids will love the SEGA-themed arcade areas, whilst adults will be in their element in the atmospheric bar with plush pool tables. But of course, on top of that, bowling is something everyone of all ages can enjoy!

The ‘Santa’s Tipple’ deal includes a drink for each member from the chosen selection at the bar for £12.50, whilst the ‘Festive Feast’ additionally includes a basket meal. Party packages give you two games of bowling (as well as a 2-for-1 voucher for a future visits), prizes for the best and worst player, and most importantly, a festive Christmas hat for every member!

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                                               The Marina harbour in all its pristine glory (photography by Frankie Sloan)

A year-round activity that’s still just as good at Christmas is a visit to the cinema. The marina’s massive Cineworld is a fantastic place to enjoy top-quality entertainment with family and friends in a warm-comfortable environment to shelter you from the harsh winter winds. Book your tickets while you still can for the jam-packed holiday season. Great upcoming films like The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, and Saving Mr. Banks should offer something to bring together the whole family.

However, not all people want to have a hectic holiday – some of us will be feeling very stressed and worked up around this time of year. Other may be filled with cheer, but a lot of us are filled with worries. How can you unwind and have a pleasurable time during this busy season? Personally, we would recommend the tranquil and serene Spa Tara, located just off of Palm Drive.

From detoxing facials to deep tissue massages, Spa Tara has everything you could ever need to feel pampered and relaxed. The warm aromas mixed with the calming and peaceful music blends perfectly with the tasteful, minimalist design to create an atmosphere of solitude, when everyone else will be up to their necks in wrapping paper and the screams of children.

Spa Tara also offers some fantastic Xmas offers, as you will also benefit from any of the vouchers that you buy as gifts. For example, if you buy a £60 gift voucher, you receive £15 to spend on yourself!

So, in all, there’s an abundance of activities and places to chow down on a trip to the Marina. If you really enjoy it down there, you could even consider staying at the Brighton Marina’s premiere hotel: Seattle. Despite this great opportunity though, isn’t Christmas really a homely occasion? Even still, the Marina will have all your needs covered. The gigantic ASDA superstore in the heart of the complex has everything you will ever need for a wonderful Christmas at home. The food, the decorations, and even the gifts can all be bought on special holiday deals right here.

To get to the Brighton Marina, you can take the 7 Brighton & Hove bus service, call a cab from City Cabs (which is located in the marina itself), or you can drive there using a map from the website. Parking in the Marina is free all day, every day in the massive multi-storey car park with a capacity of 1500 vehicles, which really gives the marina that final edge in being a top location for families to travel to.

Don’t miss out and take a look for yourself now – hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

By Lewis Parker & Frankie Sloan

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