Article: 'Flip Flop Fantastic!' (09.06.08)
Pack your flip flops for some fantastic summer fun in Birmingham. Despite being a landlocked city, Birmingham will be getting ship shape and in the holiday mood with a new cruise ship, beach and even an island. Visitors to Birmingham over the summer won’t believe their eyes as a cruise ship is launched right in the city centre.
The team at Bullring has created a unique, fully constructed Britannia Cruise Ship in St Martin’s Square that can hold up to 200 people for a host of ‘nautical but nice’ events, including a fashion show and karaoke competition over the holiday period. Britannia Cruise Ship is unlike anything ever seen before in the UK, and is expected to prove a huge attraction that will draw people to choose Birmingham as their summer destination. Themed around a love of all things British, Britannia will be open to the public offering free events and activities for everyone to enjoy throughout the summer.
Your next port of call should be Chamberlain Square, where the Emirates Beach will open on Friday 4th July for ten weeks. With free admission, it’s a chance to relax and watch the world go by from deckchairs whilst sipping on a fruit cocktail. Emirates is planning a series of themed weeks and a changing backdrop will reflect some of the popular and idyllic destinations around the world that they fly to including Dubai, Australia, South Africa, Thailand and Mauritius. There will also be beach volleyball demonstrations and regular lunchtime keep fit sessions.
Send your holiday postcard from Ikon Eastside. The gallery space in the city’s creative quarter will be home to Soi Project Island until they say bon voyage on 22 June.
Japanese architect Jiro Endo and Thai artist Wit Pimkanchanapong Soi have created a three-dimensional island, an imaginary land mass made from a composite of satellite images drawn from Google Earth. The passage of time on the island is simulated through the use of lighting that gradually shifts from night time darkness through brilliant daylight over a 24 minute cycle. Visitors, and fans of TV programme ‘Lost’, are encouraged to influence the landscape and occupy areas of their choice by attaching templates of buildings, swimming pools and beach umbrellas.
After all your travels, cool down with a Birmingham Sundae at Morelli’s Gelato the heavenly ice cream parlour in Selfridges Foodhall. With its superb repertoire of over 60 ice cream flavours, 20 of which are freshly made on the premises every day, customers will be able to sit back and watch their favourite sundaes, milkshakes or alcoholic sorbetto cocktails being made by Morelli's Gelato Masters.
Morelli's has also introduced authentic Italian paninis as well as a delicious range of patisseries. These are ideal for a quick brunch or light lunch and enjoyed with a glass of prosecco or wine shared with friends. A trip would not be complete without one of Morelli’s creamy cappuccino made with Morelli's specially selected blend of coffee beans.
Keep the nautical theme flowing with an overnight stay at nitenite hotel, whose rooms are fashioned on a luxury yacht cabin. The chic but comfort-conscious interiors include a 42” plasma screen, avant-garde design and a great city centre location next to the Mailbox. Throughout the whole of June, July and August, there’s a special room rate from £44.95 per night.