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Superflashy newsflash: all the local goss right here

Hot off the Muddy presses! Why we're going wild for a new North Devon spa, celeb-spotting in Kingsbridge, the BRIT award-winner hitting Plymouth next summer, and a cool new cocktail hotspot in Exeter.

Winter Wonderland hits Exeter

Dust off your ice skates! Exeter is getting its first ever Winter Wonderland, taking place in the city’s Northernhay Gardens from 17 November 2021 to 2 January 2022. Festive fun includes an undercover ice rink – with real ice not the dodgy plastic stuff- a Santa’s Grotto, a German bar, carousel and rides. Booking essential to see the Big Man (over 1’s) and skating, open every day except Christmas Day. See you on the Penguin Dodgems!

Go wild for this new spa-aaah

Muddy’s eyes have been out on stalks since spotting Ravendere Retreats’ new HomeToGo offering, the very sexy Wildwood Spa, located in Woolacombe on the North Devon coast.

Sitting pretty in 12 leafy acres of ancient woodland, here you can book a bespoke spa staycay all to lil ol’ self, complete with heated infinity spa pool, a cedar sauna, woodland waterfall shower and outdoor fireplace, all clad in Shou-Sugi-Ban timber.

Although we hear it’s already booked out for 2021, if you fancy a jaw-dropping back-to-nature experience – and I mean, why wouldn’t you?! – there’s a chance to win a 2-night stay here, complete with a champagne reception and six-course menu at Ilfracombe’s Michelin-starred restaurant, Thomas Carr 1873. Let me know if you need a hand lighting the candles…

Hallo, Paloma!

Did you catch Paloma Faith talking candidly about being a working mum in the recent BBC documentary, Paloma Faith: As I Am? It’s well worth a watch – and if you liked that, you’ll love the news just in… The BRIT Award-winning songstress is bringing her Summer 2022 UK Tour, The Age of Optimism, to Plymouth’s Central Park on Saturday 9 July. Tickets are on sale from this Friday, 15 October.

Book now! The Botanist, Exeter

Fans of killer botanical cocktails, hanging kebabs and leafy instagrammable interiors, listen up! The Botanist, opening at Exeter’s Guildhall in November, is now taking bookings, so if you want to be first through that leafy door, now’s your chance. Opening hours are ‘coming soon’ but they are taking bookings from Monday, 1 November from midday for burgers, light bites and roasts on Sunday, plus walk-ins welcome.

Hollywood hits Devon

Pic credit: Jim Broadbent with Fika Kingsbridge co-owner Julie

You can’t walk down the street lately without tripping over a Hollywood actor: Game of Thrones and Aquaman star Jason Momoa seen filming Aquaman 2 on Saunton Sands in North Devon, and Jim Broadbent of Harry Potter and Paddington fame filming scenes from The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry on Exeter’s cathedral and – clearly a man of great taste – at Muddy Award Best Cafe finalist in 2019, Fika Kingsbridge (pictured).

New openings

Pic credit: The Sail Loft

The Sail Loft on Foss St in Dartmouth is getting a lotta love from locals. Muddy’s going next month – we hope…They take bookings only on Saturday nights for groups of 8 and over. But given they have expanded this glorious space from the original downstair bar and courtyard with an upstairs lounge (pictured), and upped opening from 4 days to 7, we’re hoping there’s room for a little one. For autumn it’s Thursday through Monday) for nibbles, pizza and drinks, and in my insta-feed shortly!

If you’re after some lush, Gothic-inspired interiors, hotfoot it to Tavi for a trot around Tillius, an unusual new gift and homewares store on Market Street. It’s a gorgeous mix of cushions, lampshades, Plum & Ashby fragrances, house plants, and here’s the quirky bit – animal taxidermy (ethically sourced of course). Ask if you want to see the wet taxidermy (like to nose to tail eating, everything gets used) – it’s hidden away in the wooden cabinets. Not for the squeamish but fascinating.

*Sniff* Waves hanky

One of Exeter’s best spots for Sunday lunch, The Oddfellows on New North Road is shutting up shop, *sobs*. But it’s not all bad news, as owners Yvan and Faye will be popping up as Barnova Events, including at Exeter Cathedral Christmas Market (yep, it’s happening!) Thurs 18 November – Sat 18 December.

Over in South Brent, Pieter and Fran, the owners of award-winning Glazebrook House Hotel have announced from Jan 2022, they’re closing the hotel and opening on an a limited, exclusive-use only basis. Missing their Alice in Wonderland inspired interiors, already.

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