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Chatsworth House Package at Mercure Sheffield Parkway.

With October fast approaching, the brighter, warmer days are coming to an end and, like the rest of us, you’ll want to squeeze every last breath out of the remaining summer. Here at Mercure Sheffield Parkway, we want to help dispel those post summer holiday blues…what we need is something interesting, fun and affordable…well, lucky for you, we have just the thing! Say hello to the Chatsworth House Package.

If you haven’t been to Chatsworth House, then you’re missing out on experiencing an integral part of English history; the building acts as a timeline, representing the tastes, passions and interests of 16 generations of the Cavendish family. This truly magnificent piece of architecture is home to 30 rooms, ready to explore, full of beautiful period pieces and interesting historical artefacts. These rooms include the Painted Hall, regal State Rooms, Sketch Galleries and Guest Bedrooms with spectacular Edwardian designs. One of the highlights of the house are the works of art it contains; these span 4000 years and include Roman and Egyptian sculptures, masterpieces by Rembrandt and Reynolds and modern work by Lucian Freud and David Nash.

To make the most of what’s left of the warm weather, make sure to explore Chatsworth gardens. The 105 acre landscape is tended to by a team of 20 gardeners, who make sure to preserve the gardens history alongside introducing contemporary elements. Visit the famous waterworks (the squirting willow tree fountain is one of our favourites) and walk the five miles of pathways framed by rare trees, shrubs and streams.
The delights of Chatsworth House and Gardens are never-ending, but with Christmas coming we understand that it could be a bit of a stretch….however, with our package, you don’t have to worry about splurging!

The Chatsworth House and Garden package includes two nights’ accommodation, with dinner on the first night and breakfast both mornings alongside a visit to the Chatsworth House and Gardens. All of this for just £89 per person. To book, follow this link and enter CHATS1 in preferential code, or call us on 01142615690 or e-mail info@mercuresheffieldparkway.com. **Please enter two adults in the search option if you wish to book online**.

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5 reasons why YOU should start planning Christmas in September…

Okay, we know we’re a little eager but you know what they say “‘if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” Here at Mercure Sheffield Parkway, we’re experts in throwing fun festive feasts, we’re phenomenal at putting up Christmas trees and tinsel, we’re professional party cracker pullers! As you can tell, we think Christmas is something to get excited about at any time of the year. So, this week, we want to tell you the top 5 reasons to start planning for Christmas in September.

1) Christmas Shopping
Christmas shopping can be crazy and chaotic, able to reduce even the most hardened shopper into tears of frustration. According to one Daily Mail article, 6.7 million people in the UK leave their shopping to December 24th and one in ten shoppers resort to purchasing presents at petrol stations! So, to avoid having to buy your loved ones lukewarm sausage rolls and minstrels, make sure to start your shopping now!

2) Family get-togethers
Where are you going to spend Christmas this year? With parents, parent in laws, friends, small children and animals to think about…it’s a loaded question! You could divide your time into two, three, quarters, or extend the Christmas celebrations over two days, three, a week perhaps? Pre-arrangement here is a necessity. Or, instead, you might want to fly somewhere sunny and avoid the drama…

3) Christmas lunch
We won’t suggest buying a pack of Aunt Bessie’s roast potatoes and leaving them to thaw in the freezer for 3 months, but a little foresight won’t go amiss when it comes to planning the perfect Christmas lunch. Bookatable, a company which represents more than 5,000 restaurants in Britain, said its Christmas Day bookings have gone up by more than 150% in the last few years! Make sure to book a table sooner rather than later (did we mention we do a fabulous Christmas lunch here at Mercure Sheffield Parkway…)

4) The Children
Kids love Christmas. They love it even more than us. There’s a short window when the magic is LITERALLY alive; Santa does squeeze down the chimney, reindeers really do pull that sleigh and elves work all night in a tiny workshop making toys. Whilst we understand that you might not want to sign yourself up for several months of, what can only be described as, manic excitement…it’s quite nice to get the countdown started a little early.

5) Weather
To put it simply, it’s a lot easier to get the hard stuff out the way with whilst the days are lighter and warmer!

Make sure to be ahead of the game and book your festive celebrations with Mercure Sheffield Parkway. You can find out more at www.mercuresheffieldparkway.com/christmas-2015. Alternatively, view our Christmas brochure, email at info@mercuresheffieldparkway.com or call 0114 261 5690.

Mumford and Sons are coming the Sheffield!

Sheffield is renowned for its rich artistic history; with 7.2% of its working population employed in the creative industries, 4% above the national average, it’s no surprise that some of the most talented music acts have sprung from the city. These acts include the Human League, Pulp, Joe Cocker and the Arctic Monkeys…to name a few. And it’s not just the big names that Sheffield’s known for- there’s a wealth of talent to be found beneath the star studded crust of the city in the plethora of fantastic local music venues and clubs.

Despite Sheffield representing an array of genres, from zany electronica and thumping drum and bass to urban grime and speed garage, the indie scene undoubtedly reigns supreme. That’s why the city is such a perfect venue for the first leg of the Mumford and Sons UK tour on Sunday 29th November at the Sheffield Arena. Find out more at www.sheffieldarena.co.uk.

Make sure not to miss this fantastic event. You can book accommodation at www.mercuresheffieldparkway.com/stay. Alternatively, call 0114 261 5690 or email info@mercuresheffieldparkway.com.

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British Travel Awards 2015- we need your help!

We are proud to announce that we’ve been nominated for the ‘Best UK mid-scale hotel brand’ and ‘Best International mid-scale hotel brand’ in the British Travel Awards 2015!

This prestigious awards ceremony has been highlighting excellence within the travel and hospitality industries since 2008. The awards include a range of categories which cover the whole holiday experience, from popular destinations and accommodation to customer service and travel. And what makes this competition especially significant is the fact the winners are determined solely by votes received from the UK public, making it the largest consumer voted awards in the UK. Because, after all, it’s your opinion that really matters.

Now we need your help- please get involved and vote for us by visiting http://britishtravelawards.com/btaform.php?nomlink=185. Voting is open from now until 30th September! This is a really exciting opportunity to work together to promote the brand. Having recently achieved a four star rating, this is the next step on our journey to international recognition; let’s make 2015 the year for Mercure Sheffield Parkway!

A levels? Here’s 3 fab hoteliers who managed without!

Yesterday marked a terrifying day for many young people as they received their AS and A levels results. Months of revision, pages upon pages of notes, several sleepless nights and (probably) more than a few tears morphed into one, single grade. Here at Mercure Sheffield Parkway, we want to say a massive well done to everyone- we hope the hard work paid off!

However, we also know it might have been a disappointing day for many- sometimes things just don’t go the way we plan! In order to uplift your spirits, we want to make a few examples of people within our own industry that have been remarkably successful with very little formal education…
Let us introduce our top 3 fabulous hoteliers that, despite all odds, became hospitality giants!

1) Cesar Ritz
If there ever was a name that epitomizes hotels, it’s this one! However, his remarkable history is truly at odds with the luxury and excess the Ritz name carries.

Ritz was born in a small Swiss village and was the youngest of 13 in a poor peasant family. When he was a teenager, his father sent him to a Jesuit boarding school, presumably as a method of escape from the harsh realities of farm life. It soon became apparent that he possessed very little interest in academics and was described as “having shown only vaguely artistic leanings”. After a few years, he found a small job working as a wine waiter at a local hotel. However, he was soon dismissed from this position and told, by one of the hotels patrons, “You’ll never make anything of yourself in the hotel business. It takes a special knack, a special flair, and it’s only right that I tell you the truth- you haven’t got it”. As well as this, at one point, he worked as a waiter in a workman’s bistro where he was later sacked for breaking too many dishes in his desire to work briskly!

After these setbacks, he went to France to find his fortune; he gradually moved up within the industry, transforming himself from a waiter into a maître d’hôtel, manager, and eventually hotelier. Despite this success, his career never ran smoothly! His legacy at the Savoy Hotel was rather overshadowed by his dramatic dismissal after being accused of fraud when more than £3,400 of wine and spirits went missing.

However, In the face of adversary, he always managed to climb to new heights. In 1898, he opened the celebrated Hôtel Ritz in the Place Vendôme, Paris, France. He went on to open The Ritz Hotel in London, United Kingdom in 1906, which became one of the most popular meeting places for the rich and famous.

2) Kemmons Wilson
Kemmons Wilson is responsible for creating one of the most familiar international hotel brands: Holiday Inn.

He had a rough start to life; his father, an insurance salesman, died when Kemmons was nine months old. He was raised solely by his Mother in Memphis, Tennessee. His story is pretty standard until one particularly terrible family trip to Washington. He was continuously disappointed by the quality of the roadside motels in which he stayed. So, he decided to make a stand. He opened his first hotel in Memphis in 1952 and named it after a reference to a Bing Cosby Movie of the same name.

In 1957, Wilson franchised the chain as Holiday Inn of America and it grew dramatically. He followed the basic principles that a hotel should be standardised, clean, predictable, family-friendly and readily accessible to road travellers.

Kemmons’ story demonstrates how a freak bolt of inspiration can change your whole life, with enough perseverance that is.

3) John Willard Marriott
John Willard Marriot was the founder of the Marriott Corporation (which later became Marriott International). Marriott International is a hospitality company that manages and franchises a huge selection of hotels. Marriott International has more than 4,087 properties in over 80 countries!

Unbelievably, this commercial giant started as a small root beer stand in Washington DC! As time went by, Marriot gradually expanded the menu….he added a lot of Mexican food items which, undoubtedly, contributed to the stands popularity! Eventually, his empire grew into a chain of family run restaurants and, later, motels. By the time he died, the Marriott Company operated 1,400 restaurants and 143 hotels and resorts worldwide, including two theme parks!

A true entrepreneur!

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Celebrate National Afternoon Tea week at Mercure Sheffield Parkway

August 10th is the official start of Afternoon Tea Week- a whole week dedicated to celebrating the great heritage and tradition of Afternoon Tea in the UK!

The practice of Afternoon Tea was invented by Anna Maria Russell, the Duchess of Bedford, in the mid-1800s. Surprisingly, back then, it was customary only to have two meals a day in the morning and night. Not surprisingly, however, are the hunger pangs that attacked in-between; the Duchess complained of experiencing “a sinking feeling” midday and started to think of ways to counteract the energy dip. Her solution (and a very sensible one at that we think!) was to have a private snack and pot of tea in the afternoon. At first, this small meal was taken in the boudoir- close friends were invited to join, what was considered at the time, this indulgent guilty pleasure! However, as the popularity of afternoon tea spread throughout the upper and upper middle classes, it was moved into the drawing room. Before long all of fashionable society was sipping tea and nibbling sandwiches in the middle of the afternoon.

Afternoon tea typically consists of sandwiches (mainly cucumber, egg and cress, fish paste, ham, coronation chicken and smoked salmon with cream cheese), scones with cream and jam as well as a variety of yummy cakes (Battenberg, fruit cake, Victoria sponge). And if you have ever wondered why, here in the UK, we love to dunk our biscuits in tea…that all started at one of these tantalising tea parties! Talking of tea, the common choices usually include Assam, Darjeeling, Earl Grey and Lapsang Souchong….although some places offer up to 100 different types!

Here at Mercure Parkway Sheffield, we offer our very own Afternoon Tea package that is delicious and affordable at only £12.50 per person! Book now and carry on the tradition http://www.mercuresheffieldparkway.com/food-drink/afternoon-tea/

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Mercure Sheffield Parkway’s top 5 movie hotels!

The second half of 2015 promises to be action packed, at least on the silver screen anyway! Not only is Film and Comic Con arriving in Sheffield on the 15th and 16th of August, but a whole host of star studded movies are due to be released later on this year. These big blockbusters include the Hunger Games: Mockingjay- Part 2, the new James Bond film Spectre and (the one everyone’s talking about) Disney’s Star Wars: Episode VII- the Force Awakens!

And it’s not just the actors and actresses that gain mass exposure through these films- there’s been a number of hotels, fictional and non-fictional, that have made it big through motion pictures. Although the Mercure Sheffield Parkway won’t be walking down the red carpet anytime soon, we thought we’d share with you a list of our 5 all-time favourite movie hotels.

1) The Overlook Hotel- The Shining

Everyone knows the story of the Overlook Hotel; after all, it is one of the most well known in horror. However, what people probably don’t know is that the fictional Overlook has very real roots. The hotel itself was inspired by the Stanley Hotel, a 140-room Colonial Revival hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. The hotel has had several reporting’s of hauntings that date back as early as the 1970s. Stephen King was inspired to write the Shining after staying overnight at the hotel with his wife in 1974, where they were the only guests.

2) Beverly Wilshire- Pretty Woman

The Beverly Wilshire Hotel is a historic hotel located at 9500 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills, California. The hotel is most famous for its central role in the 1990’s film Pretty Woman and has been a favourite of politicians, actors, actresses and popstars alike. Notable guests include John Lennon, Barack Obama, Dustin Hoffman and the Delai Lama!

3) The Fontainebleau- Scarface, Goldfinger, the Bodyguard

The Fontainebleau Hotel is one of the most significant hotels on Miami Beach. It has a rich architectural and historical past. First opening in 1954, it was designed by architect Morris Lapidus. When it first opened, the hotel embodied extravagance and featured 554 guest rooms over 11 storeys, a hotel tower with a 17,000 square foot lobby, Russian and Turkish baths, an elevated swimming pool, tennis courts, ornamental gardens and much, much more.

4) Park Hyatt Tokyo- Lost in Translation

This hotel definitely has a unique set up- it is part of the Shinjuku Park Tower, the second tallest building in Tokyo. Floors 1 to 8 are occupied by retail stores, floors 9 to 37 are office floors and floors 39 to 52 are occupied by the luxury hotel. Sofia Coppola, who directed Lost in Translation, described the hotel as one of her “favourite places in the world”. She said she was attracted to its quietness, design, and “combination of different cultures”, which include a New York bar and French restaurant

5) Hotel Transylvania

Okay- this one’s just for fun…but with hotel Transylvania 2 scheduled to be released on September 25 2015, we just had to mention it!

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Get inspired with our exclusive wedding packages at Mercure Sheffield Parkway.

2015 has been the year of love. Not only has the divorce rate in the UK dropped to 20% lower than it was a decade ago, we also witnessed a momentous milestone with gay marriage being legalised in several countries and states across the world. And with August being the favourite month to wed (15% of all marriages take place this month), the Mercure Sheffield Parkway feels like celebrating!

We are dedicated to helping you create your fairy-tale wedding detail by detail. That’s why we have put together a range of exclusive wedding packages that include everything from a welcoming glass of bucks fizz to a complimentary bedroom for the happy couple! We also offer a bespoke wedding service tailored to your needs. What’s more, we have just been awarded our 4 star rating by the AA, so we know we can help you celebrate in style.

We are so proud to have been a part of so many special days so far! Creating unforgettable memories is what we do here at the Mercure Sheffield Parkway. And if you don’t believe us, why not take a look for yourself?

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MERCURE SHEFFIELD PARKWAY HOTEL AWARDED FOUR STARS BY THE AA.

The Mercure Sheffield Parkway is delighted to announce that they have been awarded 4 Stars following an audit by the Automobile Association (AA).

The hotel, located only 5 minutes from the M1 and 10 minutes from Sheffield city centre, boasts 78 refurbished bedrooms, 7 meeting rooms for up to 100 guests. The hotel has the Foundry Restaurant and Lounge offering a diverse collection of mouth-watering dishes. Perfectly positioned for corporate and leisure guests alike.

Andrea Hippsley, General Manager of the Mercure Sheffield Parkway Hotel said: “The team and I are extremely proud to receive the official recognition for our efforts in hospitality and customer service and are thrilled to have achieved Four Star status”

There are a number of criteria that need to be met in order to achieve the AA’s prestigious Four Star rating that include ensuring an enhanced service and experience for guests, superior building fixtures and maintenance, high levels of customer care with unobtrusive, polite and courteous staff providing a very good standard of care and showing good knowledge in products and services provided

Sheffield Film & Comic Con 2015

Following the success of last year’s event, Sheffield Film & Comic Con returns to the Motorpoint Arena on August Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th, bringing a whole host of sci-fi stars in its wake. The event features a range of fantastic activities including photo shoots, panel discussions, autograph sessions and hundreds of stalls bursting with iconic TV and Film Memorabilia.

This must see event gives people a chance to meet their favourite artists and writers personally; the Manga and Anime zones gives fans the opportunity to request exclusive artwork from their favourite designers as well as read the latest releases. Notable attendees in this category include Matt Brooker, artist for War of the Worlds, and Robbie Morrison, creator of Judge Dredd!

If this wasn’t enough, you can attend one of the comic writing masterclasses that will be running throughout the weekend. This is a chance to explore the electrifying world of good versus evil by creating your own superheroes and villains. The classes are perfect for aspiring writers as you can get your portfolio of work reviewed. Furthermore, if you’ve already produced your own work, you can sell it in a subsidised area designated for rising stars. Of course, you will also be able to buy your favourite established comics and rare back issues by exploring the hundreds of stalls set up on the day. If this tires you out, feel free to sit down in the Gaming Zone where you can play consoles for free and enter mini tournaments. Be prepared for a blast from the past as some of the consoles go back 20-30 years!

Of course, enjoy all this dressed up as your favourite characters. Cosplay has always been a massive part of Film & Comic Con’s around the world- the event features parades, photo opportunities and competitions for those whole who want to opt in.

This year, the event has secured an all-star line-up; memorable film stars, wrestlers, writers and artists will all be gracing the streets of Sheffield. The list includes Dave Prowse, Colin Baker, Robert Englund and, Game of Thrones star, Ian Beattie!

Traveling from afar? Stay at the 4 star Mercure Sheffield Parkway hotel. To make a booking online please go to www.mercuresheffieldparkway.com. Alternatively, please call 0114 261 5690 or e-mail info@mercuresheffieldparkway.com for special accommodation rates.

Find more information about the event schedule and ticket prices at www.sheffieldfilmandcomiccon.com