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Malmaison Liverpool for a race day retreat

Helen Ramsbottom heads from a day at the races to a night at Malmaison Liverpool

Written by . Published on May 26th 2010.

Malmaison Liverpool for a race day retreat

A day at the races is a day of luxury, and if you do it properly, excess. It's a chance to upgrade your clothes, drinks, and social 'milieu' and act like you were born to live the good life – if only for an afternoon. When I went to Chester Races with a few friends in May, we wanted to extend the experience as long as possible. Rather than head back home and back down to earth, we booked into the Malmaison Liverpool.

The stay at the Mal made a great day out with the girls into a great night away. With its cocktail bar, chic rooms and central location, this place is very popular with ladies on a city break.

We drove over to Liverpool from Manchester on the morning of the races after pre-arranging an early check-in at the Mal. This boutique hotel is designed to look like a slice of Manhattan transplanted to a dock overlooking the Mersey. Inside, it's Gothic and modern with dramatic proportions and industrial styling. There's a champagne bar and a brasserie, but we headed straight to our rooms to change into our race day outfits.

Like the reception area, the bedrooms are cool and luxurious. The kind you want to laze around in rather than just use for sleep and a shower. There was a whirlpool bath, a walk-in shower, and some very stealable toiletries. It was a great place for a girly getting-ready session.

James Street Station is just around the corner from the hotel. We took the train from there to Chester where the race ground is in the city centre. Lots of betting and lots of bubbly. Maybe a little too much bubbly. We stayed in Chester for a few drinks afterwards, then took the train back to Liverpool – it's a 40 minute journey and trains go every half hour or so.

We'd planned to catch a few scoops in Liverpool before we headed back to the hotel, but the Mal's huge beds were a very welcome sight by this point. I fell asleep (passed out?) instantly.

Earlier, we'd been given the option of ordering the Continental breakfast in our room: orange juice, fresh fruit, yoghurt, croissants, preserves, tea and coffee. The brasserie downstairs serves a full breakfast if you find that a classy fry-up is a better option for the morning after a big night out. Unfortunately, we were up and off at 6am, too early for either option. But the lovely man on reception furnished us with some pastries and fruit for the train.

The stay at the Mal made a great day out with the girls into a great night away. With its cocktail bar, chic rooms and central location, this place is very popular with ladies on a city break.

On 28 May, they're putting on a special night aimed especially at this market: 'Mal in the City' is a Sex and the City-themed package available this Friday (28 May). It includes room and breakfast, cocktails and a ticket to see the 8.30pm showing of the film at the nearby FACT cinema. It costs £65 each, based on two sharing a double room. If you feel like treating yourself this weekend, call Malmaison Liverpool on 0151 229 5021 to book.

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