A few weeks ago I got to experience Manchester's new Mengerie Bar & Restaurant on New Bailey Street on the outskirts of the city centre.
Officially launching the following day, we got a sneak peek of the new venue, getting to experience it first - all the name of fashion!
The brand new venue played host to Manchester-based global brand, Forever Unique and the unveiling of the SS17 collection; Treasured By Seema Malhotra.
Seema Malhotra is Forever Unique's Design Director and also a star of ITV's Real Housewives of Cheshire.
The event was filmed for the programme (which, even though I don't watch it, I can't wait to see!) so the lure of the TV cameras, stars of the show present and the new opulent setting meant there was a massive amount of buzz around this launch.
There's been a lot of hype around the the opening of Menagerie. With the promise of an 'immersive' dining experience or 'culinary theatre' as they put it, presumably achieved by attractions such as women dangling from chandeliers to pour your champagne and cocktails garnished with a burning £20 note...
It all sounded a bit ostentatious to me. I'm all for glamorous, slick bars if they have substance behind them but this one was beginning to seem a little gimmicky.
Fortunately, my premonition was wrong. Even though the place is undeniably decadent - step up to the main bar, covered in gold leaf and towered over by a gold statue of Greek God Hermes and tell me otherwise - it's not as intimidating as it sounds.
Every corner of the venue has surprising and interesting little touches; it's incredibly Instagrammable - and I mean that in the best way!
As stylish as the Menagerie is, it's surprisingly not without that substance I was talking about. Throught the event, we were able to sample some of the drinks and food, in the form of canapes, on offer. The modern American-inspired dishes at Menagerie are incredibly flavoursome and well-presented if what we were served is anything to go by. Having seen the full menu, it's also pretty reasonable price-wise too.
After getting suitably sparkled by the amazing girls at We Are Beautiq, we took to our seats for the SS17 catwalk show - didn't I mention that the bar has a built-in retractable catwalk?
The new collection matched the tone of the evening perfectly, exuding glamour and exclusivity. With Forever Unique's trademark high level of detail and embellishment in a fresh spring colour palette, Seema says;
"I wanted to create a collection that would create memories, that’s why I called it ‘Treasured’. Each piece screams luxury - they have been hand-crafted with a lot of attention to detail, so it’s something a woman would invest in and treasure for life."
Unfortunately, we weren't able to take any photos during the show but we were able to get up-close-and-personal with the fabulous AW16 range.
Have you visited the Menagerie yet? I don't know about you but all this sparkle has got me in the mood for party season!