Business

A KuPP half empty @KuPP_Exeter

London lifestyle and the choice of food outlets are the two factors which make the capital so vibrant.

What are customers attracted by? The vast menus and the layout/decor of stores – whether it is a business selling shoes, hats or a restaurant.

KuPP Paddington seems to have the winning formula. Great location, view, menu, interior design. Some people like to say “it is like eating in an IKEA store”. When you think that there are meat balls on the menu… what else can we ask for?!

The “Food Drink Coffee Store” concept is like everything under one roof if you are after that Scandinavian themed eaterie. It all goes from breakfast through lunch to dinner and cocktails if you fancy a bit of a social late night around a beer or homemade drink.

As there was a buzz about a second KuPP venue, we made our way down to Devon. Exeter Queen Street dining quarter is where things have been happening.

Various new restaurants have opened their doors: it is about pizzas, burgers, chicken, lebanese food and… KuPP Exeter.

We headed towards the newly developed Guildhall Shopping Centre. KuPP is encased between the back of GBK and WHSmith. There are no real views when sitting inside.

We arrived late morning and the place was quiet… a few people were having their morning coffees. Of course Devon is a bit more laid back than London…a different pace. A few members of staff were all standing around the bar, almost ignoring us. We still stepped in and asked whether the restaurant was open for service.

We were relieved to know that everything was fine and a table was given to the four of us as well as the lunch menus – the waiter made us aware that breakfast is served until Midday then lunch would start. We had a mini lunch menu (12pm to 5pm) as well as a bigger version (12pm to 10pm), with more dishes available.

Then a waitress came to see us asking if we were here for coffee or to eat!? A confusing question as we all had the lunch menu in our hands – after all she was just checking that we have been looked after.

Time was ticking (15 minutes) and no sign of our waiter. A team member, seemingly a supervisor, said “hello” and when we asked if someone could take our orders, he replied that he will oblige as the waiter was on his lunch break!

Not too sure that such timing is the best way to run a restaurant – aren’t waiters suppose to work when guests are arriving and break to be taken before or after peak times?! The first impression wasn’t exactly what we expected.

Anyway, food orders were taken and send to the open kitchen. Great to see professional chefs preparing your food. We had a second visit from the waitress (same person as mentioned above) who just stopped and apologized as she didn’t know if someone looked after us/took our orders.

At that point, no one was certain if the food we ordered would be served by a fourth member of staff. We could clearly see that the Fika corner was the focus point – as the barista was dealing with take-away hot beverages, fresh juices as well as serving cappuccinos to other guests sitting nearby.

We were excited and impatient to get our open sandwiches with Gravlax, crushed avocados and torn chicken… At least we could all share different flavours.

Eventually, an “army” of staff brought our lunches. It was a battle to determine which was which as the waitresses told us that they haven’t seen those dishes before…

Everything was rather tasty, beautiful to the eyes… the service was painful to watch and a certain lack of confidence was visible. We will certainly return to KuPP Exeter hoping that we won’t leave with the feeling of a KuPP half empty.

scandinavian design and cinnamon swirl

scandinavian design and cinnamon swirl

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Business

Will 2016 be a year to save or invest?

For quite a while people have been holding back on their investments. Whether for a car, house, flat or just daily purchases.

A friend of mine has seen people reducing their day-to-day spending and for instance having a coffee with no pastry because budget was tight.

January and February 2016 are no exception.

Are people actually saving for 11 months in order to be able to buy want they want for the festive season (presents, drinks, food, holidays…etc). But, is Christmas not a bit too excessive making the following months a real struggle?!

Modern lifestyle is almost perceived as wanting to own everything. Is this to be seen as cool or wealthy?

A few years back (early 2000) not that many people had a mobile: it was rare. Nowadays, it is consider as strange, if you don’t have an email, computer and smartphone. You have to be “connected” with the latest technology and ideally got one of these wearables. How did we do previously?

Is social media draining our spare time or is it actually bringing something positive to our already busy schedules?

Families are rushing to work and school then it is a kind of a race to reach their beach holiday destination. And it is the same when it is time to go back to the daily routine. An endless and stressful pace for parents and children.

So, how can individuals find enough time to make an appointment for home/flat viewing when there isn’t already enough hours in the day to complete basic tasks?!

Investing in a property is also something which takes time. There are various stages and a couple of acquaintances managed to get their properties after 6 to 8 months following several appointments with solicitors and banks.

A neighbour who works part time hours has decided with his wife (and new born) to buy a house and a second hand car at the same time! In this particular case, investing to get on the property ladder seems to be as natural as buying a pint of milk. His wife is a trainee doctor… this is probably the reason why this young couple has been able to move forward after renting and sharing various accommodations.

The mortgage will be in the long term cheaper than the monthly rent. The most important is to be able to put the hefty deposit on the table and the rest is history!

Are we going to see more people buying a roof over their heads in 2016 or will it be a slow walk to the top of the mountain – as it has been for the past years?

your money in 2016

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Culture

Never too late for Christmas shopping

Each year it is the same rush, race, organized chaos for Christmas shoppers and sales assistants/shop owners.

For Londoners, the choice is vast.

Christmas shopping London

Christmas shopping London

There is also the alternative: the mighty internet… However, this is not the same experience.

There is a certain beauty to go out and to enter a carefully decorated store – whatever the size – to feel that unique atmosphere of Christmas.

For some reasons, people want to buy expensive and big presents. Sometimes it is a real headache for sellers and buyers. It is about guiding, giving support and directing customers towards the right gift. In other words, there is no room for error! No one wants to have their Christmas ruined.

Have people lost the actual sense of Christmas?

It can be worrying/surprising to see decorations for 25th December in some shops from late August.

Technology is taking over nearly everything. From toys for toddlers to gadgets for adults. There must be WiFi, USB and other mandatory connections. Some are after the latest tablet or perhaps the newcomer that are wearables!

So, now time is running out. Just a few days to go and some are literally running after work to some shops looking for THE present(s). Late night opening and Sunday extra hours seem not enough to reach the “golden ticket” which will make that December day special.

Stepping back from the mayhem, all can look slightly over the top. We do have 11 months to plan that day. But… the last minute thing is currently part of our “busy” lifestyle. How can we be so busy? Technology is supposed to help us to have a better and easier life?!

We certainly are spending too much time on social media sharing this and that with other followers, friends and contacts.

Let’s scrap this for a short time and concentrate on the most urgent task to complete then eventually “instagram” the moment. There is always a solution to purchase something for someone. What is important to remember: it is all about the thoughts and not the price tag or the size of the Christmas gift. Everyone is after a little something! It can be a book instead of a Kindle, a voucher instead of a garment.

In the recent years some people have decided to orientate their choices towards hotel stays or fishing holidays in order to give something different and usable whenever it is convenient for the recipients. Tastes are changing and receiving a pass for a holiday or leisure park is certain to please everyone and there is no worries to have about sizes, colours…etc

What does this mean?

No need to stress, rush and panic as in most cases the simpliest things will please everyone. A Christmas present is not just for Christmas… but for the entire year.

Keep Calm Christmas Poster

Keep Calm Christmas Poster

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