The William Curley chocolate empire continues to swell with the opening of the patissier and chocolatier's latest venture in Belgravia. Curley has worked with the best in the business and still advises and supplies chefs including Marco Pierre White, Raymond Blanc, Pierre Koffman and Anton Edelman. This Orange Square shop boasts an incredible chocolate and ice cream counter, a café and patisserie, a specially designed dessert bar, a chocolaty deli for scrumptious baked goods, and a kitchen for chocolate making master classes (where you can do a course and learn how to make truffles or sea salt caramels). Curley was awarded the Best British Chocolatier four years in a row, 2007-2011, by the Academy of Chocolate, and is renowned for his unusual taste combinations which mix chocolate with flavours like rosemary and olive oil or apricot and wasabi. His wife Suzue - who has worked at Claridge's and The Savoy - inserts a Japanese influence with sweet treats like Yuzu filled chocolates and Miso and Walnut biscuits. So, those who can't face making the trip to Richmond to the inaugural shop now just have to mosey into Belgravia to pick up their mum's sweet fix.
Mother's Day Presents
The renowned chocolatier creates sweet treat luxurious enough for all mum's.
198 Ebury Street, Orange Square, Belgravia, London, SW1W 8UN
Tube: Sloane Square Station
If it's good enough for the Queen, it's perfect for your mum.
14 Princes Arcade, St James's, London, SW1Y 6DS
The Queen obviously has a great taste in consumer goods as demonstrated by the high quality of all the shops that enjoy royal patronage. Prestat is her official supplier of cocoa products. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory author, Roald Dahl, adored their truffles too. The shelves brim with over thirty different types of chocolates and truffles stacked in myriad forms. Sweet-toothed shoppers are really spoilt for choice here. The recent Kitty re-design of the interior has transformed it into a vibrant, cartoon-esque den of psychedelia. Chocolate brings out childlike qualities in people, so it makes a great setting for their nostalgic range of sweets, including the delectable sugared mice. Everything is presented in neat gift boxes fit for a queen - a great little something for mum. A classic selection of dark chocolates for the high flying business mum, or a pride of truffles for a retired relaxed mum. Chocolate really is a universal pleasure.
Treat your mum to some high-end pic 'n' mix.
70 Long Acre, Covent Garden, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 9JS
Covent Garden got a little bit sweeter at the beginning of 2012 with the opening of SugarSin. Run by Anna and Josefin, two Swedish sisters, it's a high end sweet shop that is as aesthetically pleasing as it is to the taste buds. With white walls, splashes of bold colour and shelves stocked full of large glass jars brimming with every kind of sweet imaginable, it is a sweet-tooth's heaven. From dangerously moreish salted caramels to traditional rhubarb and custard, they've got all the ingredients for true indulgence. As well as familiar favourites, the sisters also pay homage to their Swedish roots and import some Scandinavian goodies. Expect to find lots of Daim bars, Swedish fish, salted liquorice (an acquired taste), and Marabou bars - one of Sweden's most popular chocolate brands that release new seasonal varieties each year. So, if your mum is more of a sweet lover than a chocoholic, be sure to treat her with the highest quality pin 'n' mix.
Sweeten up Mother's Day with tempting cupcakes.
42 Tavistock Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 7PB
If cupcakes are your mum's cup of tea then head to the Covent Garden outlet of Primrose Bakery, a family owned enterprise which makes the most scrumptious (and colourful) mini cakes in town. Co-owners Martha Swift and Lisa Thomas started out selling their tasty morsels at Melrose & Morgan, the fabulous deli opposite their original Primrose Hill branch. Their clients include U2 and Primrose Hill's most famous resident at the time Kate Moss (though presumably she doesn't actually eat any cakes herself). Delicious homemade recipes, made with the finest organic ingredients, create fairy cakes that look so cute it's a shame to eat them. Layer and wedding cakes are also available and made to order. This second central London branch makes their cakes more accessible, perfect to pick some up and take to your mum, or the cute cafe is ideal to stop by and eat your cakes in with a spot of tea.
This grand food hall is the perfect place to pick up Mother's Day goodies.
181 Piccadilly, St James's, London, W1A 1ER
The Royal Family's favourite food hall, Fortnum & Mason is one of the oldest and most famous stores in Piccadilly, if not the capital, and is the perfect place to create a luxurious hamper full of goodies for Mother's Day. After 300 years of trading, this historic department has a pre-war gentility; its gilded furnishings and exquisitely wrapped produce offer an appealing anachronism in today's modern age of convenience. Quintessentially English, this historic department store owes its royal patronage to William Fortnum's grandson, Charles's years of service with Queen Charlotte. Still the purveyor of food and wine to the Royal Family, Fortnum's is a must-see for anyone visiting London. Opened by Messrs Fortnum and Mason in 1707, the store has supplied provisions during both the Napoleonic and Crimean wars. Despite stocking a solid range of accessories, perfumes, furniture and homeware, the shop is, understandably, famed for its fantastic, upmarket food hall piled high with gastronomic delights and adorned with chandeliers and marble pillars. Some of the delicacies here are a little overpriced but the quality is exceptionally high. If youre visiting London in the summer months and want to sink your teeth into a top-notch picnic hamper, look no further; Fortnum's has supplied hampers to high society types at events such as the Henley Regatta and the Ascot Races. Even if you're not a foodie, the shop itself is worth a visit just to check out the fantastic decor. It is also an excellent place to pick up a gift. All the delicacies and luxuries on sale here come so beautifully packaged you won't want to open.
Events at Fortnum & Mason
Friday 11th July 2014 - 12noon-2.30pm | £75
Best-selling crime novelist Sophie Hannah will be talking to Eve Pollard about her literary career over a two-course lunch in the Drawing Room at Fortnum & Mason.
Quintessentially English scents, sold in the traditional style.
41 Wellington Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 7BN
Tube: Covent Garden Station
For a sweet-smelling, sensory overload, Penhaligon's has to be the place to go. From the original Hammam Bouquet to the Winston Churchill's favourite - the Blenheim Bouquet - these delicate scents are quintessentially English, sold in the traditional style one would expect from a holder of two royal warrants. Established in the 1870s by William Henry Penhaligon, the store's perfumes and pomades quickly became a favourite with the aristocracy and have continued to attract high profile attention to this day. The shopping experience here is open, relaxed and informal, despite the shop's reputation for exclusivity. Make sure you ask for advice if you're not sure what to choose - the staff are more than happy to share the Penhaligon smells' secret with you. If you're unsure - you can opt for their scent library product which allows you to try every fragrance. Quercus and Bluebell are two of the better known flower perfumes, which are expensive but worth it. Soaps, candles and shaving equipment are also on offer. The gift-wrapping here is as exceptional, as you would expect, making it the perfect place to seek out a special gift. Admittedly, these products don't come cheap, but 130 years of history, royal patronage and unmatched quality don't come cheap.
Pamper your mum with one of these renowned remedies.
15 Neal's Yard, Covent Garden, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9DP
There is no better gift on Mother's Day than a smart little navy blue package of heaven from Neal's Yard. Most mums can spot these goodies a mile off. Hand them one all wrapped up and you'll see them deliriously happy. Neal's Yard Remedies are still going strong after more than two decades and they continue to stand by their commitment to creating only natural remedies and toiletries. The company claims that it doesn't sell anything it feels won't genuinely give benefit to people's lives. This is ambitious but nevertheless we love the fact the fact that no artificial preservatives, chemical derivatives or synthetic aromas are used. Prices can be on the steep side but their beauty specialities are just such high quality. For new mums they have a dedicated mother & baby range including mothers massage oil with calming properties and to help prevent stretch marks. For mums who want to stay young looking the delicately scented Frankincense Nourishing Cream is a beauty editors' favourite. The Wild Rose Beauty Balm and Rose Facial Oil are also very mum-friendly and smell just delicious. Gift packs containing the best of their products are worth splashing out on, beautifully packaged, they usually offer savings on buying all the products individually. There's a whole raft of combinations and mums will feel incredibly pampered when they get to take their pick from a selection of gorgeous goodies.
Limited edition gift sets designed to give mums an evening of luxury.
Unit 10 The Piazza Covent Garden, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 8RA
If your mum prefers to relax at home with a glass of bubbly than venture out, treat her to some extra bubbles with some of Lush's pampering products. The homemade cosmetics company are known for their overpowering scented shops and always do a good job of creating seasonal products suitable for the occasion. This Mother's Day they've got a range of gifts including a collection simply titled 'Mum', which includes five bathtime treats to ensure busy mums can relax throughout the week. Further options include 'Mum's Goodies', a bouquet of bubbles and fizz; 'Madame Butterfly', a reusable bubble bar scented with Rose Jam; and 'Hello Sunshine', two uplifting citrus scented goodies.
From traditional to contemporary, this florist has something for mums of all ages.
8 Symons Street, Knightsbridge, London, SW3 2TJ
Tube: Sloane Square Station
Part of London's rich mosaic of tradition, this esteemed florist's is one of the city's oldest and most established with over 130 years in the trade. Moving across the road from its former home within Peter Jones, the flower shop can be found on the opposite side of Symons Street at The White Company store just off Sloane Square. A bunch of Moyses Stevens' flowers is all elegance and refinement. Providing besotted boys with bouquets for generations, Moyses Stevens puts together arrangements exquisitely. Pedantic about quality, they import only the finest flowers. A team of hugely creative florists and plant experts prepare bouquets and arrangements for delivery across the UK. From more traditional tastes to fantastically chic and contemporary designs, they're utterly dedicated to getting it right.
Individually-designed bouquets, ideal for making mums feel special.
29 Great Queen Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2B 5BB
Bloomsbury Flowers don't do off-the-peg, so if you want to be in and out in two minutes think again. However, if you want to impress with an extra-special individually-designed bouquet this is the best place in Central London. Customers can speak in-person with the florist who'll be putting together their bunch of flowers, so you can direct them exactly or reap their expert advice. As well as the classic hand-tied bunches, fastened with sea-grass, you could also settle on an overflowing basket, an exotic orchid or a longer-lasting plant. The perfect way to make your mum feel as special as she deserves.
Wonderful early morning market with stall upon stall of fresh, wholesale blooms.
Nine Elms Lane, Battersea, London, SW8 5NX
Tube: Vauxhall Station
New Covent Garden Flower Market is where the florists go, meaning that you can buy flowers, plants and foliage at wholesale prices. There are fresh daily deliveries from abroad as well as a full range of English produce available with 55 companies setting up camp at death o'clock (3am) every weekday morning (traders have a lie-in and don't get there till 4am on Saturdays) to sell their stock. The selection is vast but that's half the fun as you let your imagination run wild with colours and styles to make a lush bouquet full of all your mum's favourite flowers.
World-famous florist with a natural flair for flowers.
32-34 New Cavendish Street, Marylebone, London, W1G 8UE
Tube: Bond Street Station
For sheer quality Jane Packer has to be a top pick. The lady herself is famous for arranging the flowers at Charles and Diana's wedding and her client list is brimming with A-listers and VIPs. Starting out in a small flower shop in the West End in the 1980s, she transformed the world of floristry, using wild, colourful flowers and unusual textures and shapes to create fresh, artistic arrangements. Her designs still have just the right amount of edge; they're adventurous enough to be stylish and glamorous but not too arty so that the flowers keep that natural, just-picked look. From bold, striking styles to clusters of soft pinks, the range caters for all tastes and, for such an exclusive establishment, prices are surprisingly affordable with some gorgeous bouquets starting at £55. They'll have some fabulous and fashionable ideas for Mother's Day and they're guaranteed to provide a bunch that's impressive enough for any mum.
11th July 2014
IN THIS ARTICLE
William Curley, Belgravia
Fortnum & Mason
Neal's Yard Remedies
New Covent Garden Flower Market
Mother's Day in London
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