Review: An evening at the Celtic Manor

Is ‘DATE NIGHT’ coming up soon? Do you need somewhere to entertain the future in-laws? or maybe you’d just like to treat your mum to a lovely meal on Friday night?  If so, did you know that the Celtic Manor have recently opened three new restaurants at the resort? Yes, THREE! They can even cater for intimate weddings too!

Steak on Six, The Epicure Experience by Richard Davies and Cen.

I was lucky enough to be invited to an event called #nightatthemanor a few weeks ago. Alongside some of Wales & Bristols’ leading bloggers, I was treated to a tour of each restaurant, served divine cocktails and sampled a selection of lavish food from each of the restaurants (I was one lucky and very FULL girl afterwards haha).

All images in this post by me: Maria Farrelly Photography


Signature Lounge

 The evening started with cocktails and canapés in the recently opened Signature Lounge.

Diners at Steak on Six can enjoy drinks before lunch or dinner here which boasts spectacular, elevated views across Coldra Woods.

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-166Maria_Farrelly_Photography-161I was pretty fascinated with this hand carved cured ham, it tasted incredible.

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-164 Maria_Farrelly_Photography-165Maria_Farrelly_Photography-158Each of these canapés were a delight and i think if you were considering hosting a small intimate wedding here, the food would certainly wow your guests. I just don’t think one of each canapé would be enough for my friends… they’d LOVE all of this and i’m pretty sure they’d happily of taken the tray off the waiter.

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Steak on Six

In a spectacular elevated setting on the sixth floor of the Resort Hotel, this recent addition serves succulent steaks from around the British Isles and has already earned the coveted accolade of two AA Rosettes!


Most of the tables in this restaurant were laid out for two which instantly made me feel this was an intimate couples restaurant rather than somewhere a family/large group would dine. I really liked that. Their website does state they will accommodate a maximum of 6 per table. Its also worth noting there is a dress code. I’m afraid you’ll have to leave your flip-flops where they firmly belong (at the beach). 

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-168Alongside signature cuts of the finest steaks from around the British Isles, diners can also take their pick from an array of other fine meats and fresh fish, all grilled to perfection.

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-171This unique setting with its spectacular views over Coldra Woods and breathtaking combination of stunning surroundings and exciting, creative culinary concept, are fast making The Signature dining destination a popular choice.Maria_Farrelly_Photography-169

The Epicure Experience by Richard Davies

The Epicure Experience by Richard Davies promises a memorable and exciting, modern restaurant experience sure to impress the most discerning of gourmets.

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-173 Maria_Farrelly_Photography-177Formerly of Gordon Ramsay London, Sawyards in West Sussex and the Manor House at Castle Combe, award-winning chef Richard Davies returns to The Celtic Manor Resort.

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-174 Maria_Farrelly_Photography-176Richard’s intricate menus reflect seasonality with a strong emphasis on the use of locally sourced ingredients, producing fresh, intense flavours for an unforgettable dining experience.

Maria_Farrelly_Photography-179It was such a pleasure to meet Richard, he was lovely and clearly passionate about his craft. He welcomed us with an introduction to his food as well as sharing a few trade secrets (my lips are sealed Richard) but all I will say is that I now have another use for my crinkle cutter! 

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At Cen, you can discover fresh, unique and truly inspired Asian fusion cuisine by Larkin Cen, 2013 finalist of BBC’s MasterChef UK.

Offering a deliciously different dining concept, this striking new restaurant features an exciting menu of fresh, contemporary Asian cuisine created by one of the UK’s most up-and-coming talents.


Before we dined at Cen, we were treated to an exclusive masterclass from Larkin himself where he showed us how he creates his mouth-watering Duck dish. Maria_Farrelly_Photography-192 Maria_Farrelly_Photography-193Maria_Farrelly_Photography-194

From delicious fluffy steamed bao buns to slow cooked oriental pork belly and succulent sharing platters of Cantonese duck, savour this sociable dining experience bursting with authentic pan-Asian flavours.

And there we have it! I bet I’ve made you all hungry now! ~ Maria x 

Review: The Marine Spa, St Davids Hotel, Cardiff Bay

Charlie and I were recently invited to review The Marine Spa, St Davids Hotel, Cardiff Bay. I have to say, with all these weddings I’m shooting at the moment, the late night editing and drafting of blog posts, I was rather excited at the thought of a spa day. All for work purposes of course :) The images in this post are taken by me (Maria Farrelly Photography) unless otherwise stated.Marine Spa review


I did of course bring my camera along to show you all just how fabulous this day was and Charlie is here too to give you a run-down of what we both got up to. Over to you Charlie! 

When I was asked if I would like to go along and help review the St David’s Hotel Marine Spa I absolutely jumped at the chance and I can honestly say I enjoyed every minute. When Maria and I arrived we were given robes and slippers and told we could help ourselves to towels. The changing rooms were warm, clean and spacious and there were plenty of lockers. The pool area was so warm it was like being abroad, but unlike being abroad the pool was warm too! Stepping into the Jacuzzi was like stepping into a nice hot bath and we spent our morning lying in the hot bubbles looking out at the gorgeous view over the Bay- heavenly.


Lunch was served upstairs in the private dining area which had incredible views across the bay. It even had its own private lift so we didn’t have to walk through the hotel in our robes :) We were treated to a glass of bubbly and a fabulous light lunch before having our treatments.




After lunch, we were taken to the lounge area to await our treatments. The views alone where incredible!



I had chosen to have the Salt & Oil Scrub and the Back, Neck & Shoulder Massage.  Maria had the Express Facial and Head massage. Jade did my treatments for me and started with the scrub which is designed to exfoliate and get rid of dry skin while making your skin silky soft. It was so relaxing, I was lying on a hot water pillow (which I really want at home now!) and the room itself was cosy and warm.


In between having the scrub and the massage Jade instructed me to rinse off in the shower, what she didn’t warn me was that it was a cold shower! I am such a wimp I didn’t stay in there for long. But once dry I got back on my hot water pillow and all was forgiven when the massage started! The whole experience was very peaceful and relaxing and I would thoroughly recommend this for any brides-to-be who want to de-stress in the days leading up to the wedding. The massage was incredibly relaxing and the salt & oil scrub left my skin so soft and smooth afterwards.

JZ0C3236Charlie having a her back, neck & shoulder massage

With my treatments, it was impossible for me to take pictures at the same time but oh my…what a fabulous experience!  I had never had an express facial before and could not believe how soft my face felt afterwards (like a baby!). What fascinated me most was the sensory test Kate conducted before the treatments. The sensory test is given as the body choses the oil depending on how the body is feeling – i.e. If you say you want to feel relaxed, the body will naturally choose the correct oil for what it really wants.  Coupled with the Head Massage, I was amazed at how rejuvenated I felt. Here’s a cheeky selfie for you to check out my skin after the treatments

express facial


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When my treatments were over I asked if I could have a fresh robe as mine was quite damp by that point, then I went into the relaxation room (where there are wicker chair-beds with big cosy duvets!) to wait for Maria and could have quite easily fallen asleep!  I would definitely love to go back and try the other treatments they offer, hopefully I will soon!


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We didn’t get to experience everything but for those wanting to, you can look forward to not only the indoor swimming pool, sauna, a water corridor that leads to swan neck fountains but also hydro therapy spa pools and a fully equipped gym. And for pampering, there is a huge range of luxury treatments available as well as those everyday must-haves such as manicures, pedicures and tanning.


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Guest passes for the day to use facilities, hydrotherapy pool, relax lounge, waves, gym, and juice bar are £25 Monday-Wednesday and £35 Thursday-Sunday. You can check out their latest Spa day offers here. Also, how about having a pamper day with your other half? Spa days aren’t just for ladies! We were informed they do have quiet a lot of men that enjoy a variety of treatments. Why not treat your other half? 

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Thanks again to The Marine Spa for inviting us along to experience and review their facilities.

If you would like us to review your business and share our experience with our readers then email us at