The Grand National is a British sporting institution. Every year the allure of the turf brings more than 150,000 racegoers flocking to the Aintree Racecourse near Liverpool. From the hat-tastic glamour of Ladies’ Day to the big race itself; for three days the country is gripped in a betting frenzy, as punters hope to recoup some cash when their horse gallups past the winning post. Merseyside usually plays host to the majority of racegoers, so whether you are looking for a lastminute.com hotel deal or seeking things to do in Liverpool once the day’s racing is over; here is a handy guide to the best this stunning city has to offer.
Shopping is a safe bet
If you don’t know your double carpet from your cockle, it may be safe to assume that betting is not something you do everyday. However unlike the uncertain returns from a flirty flutter on a filly, when it comes to shopping, you hand over your money and you get what you paid for; a guaranteed return.
Liverpool One: High-street heaven, boasting more than 150 high-street names under one roof, this shiny new shopping mecca might be your new best friend if you are worried your race-outfit doesn’t quite cut the mustard. Metquarter: If your horse has romped home and you are feeling a bit flush, then this exclusive shopping centre has top-brands from Hugo Boss to Armani to indulge in a bit of much-needed retail therapy after the excitement of the race.
Need a place to stay? Check out the contemporary and stylish 3* Days Inn Liverpool.
In need of a nose-bag?
Whether you are drowning your sorrows or celebrating a winner, the heart of Liverpool is famous for its vibrant night-life. The Art-Deco-styled Sapphire Room in funky Bold Street has everything from tapas to afternoon tea, ideal if you have been dressed up to the nines for a day at Aintree. If the don’t fancy coming back down to earth after the excitement of watching the horse’s navigate the famous course, then a trip to Panoramic 34 will keep your head in the clouds for a bit longer. Offering unparralled views over the city skyline; enjoy some fine dining at the highest restaurant in Britain.
Lap up a bit of luxury: The delightful 4* Hope Street Hotel offers a warm and stylish welcome within the city’s cultural quarter.
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While the going is good…..
After enjoying a quintissential British day out, why not go for something a little different for a night on the tiles. Embrace the carnival style atmostphere at the Alma de Cuba, quirkly situated in the converted St Peter’s Catholic Church. They host a special John Smith’s Grand National Winner’s Party on the Saturday night to help you celebrate in style. If you fancy something a little less flamboyant, then take a gamble on The Philharmonic Dining Rooms, one of the most lavish pubs in Britain and famous for its ornate gents toilets (yes you did read that right!).
Take it easy: The award-winning Base2stay can be found right in the heart of all the action and boasts four-star comfort and service.
So it wouldn’t be a guide to Liverpool without mentioning the Beatles. In fact you would be hard-pressed to avoid any reference to the awesome foursome as the city is rightly proud of being the birthplace of Britains biggest band. The best place to start however is The Beatles Story, an incredible interactive museum. However you can visit everything from Penny Lane to Lennon and McCartney’s childhood homes.
No need to go on a magical mystery tour: Check in at the 4* Crowne Plaza Liverpool which is close-by to the Beatles Museum.
And to “photo” finish
Two stunning cathedrals, countless art galleries and plenty of museums to keep even the biggest history buff happy, if you love a bit of culture, it’s odds-on that Liverpool has something to suit you. Famous for its maritime history, visit the Albert Dock and check out Tate Liverpool at the same time.
Stake a claim at this hotel: Enjoy a bit of Dock-life at the Jurys Inn Liverpool at the Kings Waterfront, which is a short walk to the city centre.