One of Leeds’ most admirable traits is its beautiful, vibrant and characterful wharf areas.
Home to the DoubleTree by Hilton, Granary Wharf is an ideal setting for those visiting the city for a long weekend/few days away. Overlooking the river Aire, the DoubleTree is surrounded by cute bars and restaurants, so it pretty much covers all bases for a UK city centre break.
I was kindly invited to stay in the DoubleTree recently, which I was very excited by! One thing I am guilty of, is (unintentionally) not spending enough time in Leeds, and actually embracing what the city has to offer. Weeks can go by where I’ll seem to spend weekends in every other city in the country, except from the one I actually live in. So, I took this opportunity to be a tourist in my home city.
We stayed in a twin room, that directly overlooked Granary Wharf. On a summer evening, the river facing rooms are an absolute sun trap and I would definitely recommend specifically requesting a riverside room! Greeted with a warm welcome cookie, my friend and I caught up and got ready of a G&T in the room, before heading downstairs to the Lock Kitchen for our evening meal.
Again, it’s a lovely setting with seating outside on the riverbank. We were eating from the kitchen menu, and decided to share 3 starters between us (an option for £11). From the ‘Nibbles’ menu we had the houmous with pitta bread (£4), and the herb crusted Portobello mushroom fries with blue cheese dip (£4.50), and chicken tacos(£5). My favourite of the starters was the mushrooms, although the blue cheese dip was more of a melted butter as opposed to what I’d call a ‘dip’. The houmous was tasty, although far too bigger portion. It would have sufficed for 3 people sharing one starter!
For mains, I went for the Sea Bass fillets with samphire and spiced prawns (£17), with a side of ‘tiger fries’ (£3.50) which are a combo of sweet potato and skin-on fries. My friend chose the steak (£15.50) which she had medium-rare. My Sea Bass was nicely cooked, and I really enjoyed the salty samphire it was served on. I didn’t feel as though the prawns were necessary, and without them I would have been able to eat more of the dish! My friend’s steak was cooked exactly how she wanted.
Our aim was to have dessert, but we were both so, SO full having not been able to finish our mains (it could be due to eating too much houmous for starters).
One of the hotel’s perhaps most well known features is the Sky Lounge rooftop bar, which has amazing views of the city. We headed up after our meal for a sophisticated ‘nightcap’ (of course this didn’t end up being the case).
My go to post-dinner cocktail is an espresso martini, particularly if I haven’t been able to stomach dessert as I find it’s a nice compromise. My friend went for a pornstar, which was deliciously sweet. So naturally, we both ordered another for our second.
The following morning was a stunningly sunny Sunday, so back upstairs for brunch at the Sky Lounge 10 hours later was the perfect post Pornstar Martini remedy.
Brunch is served from 11am, for £20 you get 2 courses, including unlimited mini pastries, which is a pretty good deal! To start, options include homemade granola, pancakes, and grilled asparagus with eggs. There’s the usual mains; Eggs Benedict/Florentine, full English, and more ‘hefty’ dishes including goats cheese gnocchi and lobster tagliatelle. There are also dessert options! I definitely couldn’t stomach two full courses (I never thought I’d say this, but I think I need to retrain my stomach to be able to fit more food in!). So, we both just had pastries to start, and I went for Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon and spinach. Lovely dish, the hollandaise was just the right consistency! I like my eggs a little runnier than they were.
We ordered Bloody Mary’s to help cure our (ever so slight) hangovers, and admired the gorgeous views, feeling very much like something out of Sex and the City!
My friend and I had an absolutely lovely stay. We were treated like queens for the day, and it was a surprisingly uplifting exercise – being a tourist in the home city!
I was kindly invited to stay at the DoubleTree by Hilton to review the room, and Lock Kitchen.