We reward a super Mi Rewards shopper!

We reward a super Mi Rewards shopper!

We reward a super Mi Rewards shopper! Mi Rewards is the brand-new loyalty programme that rewards you every time you visit a participating Perth business. You’ll build up Mi Points, which earn you Perth Gift Cards, and you’ll also earn perks, prizes and random acts of kindness. In this spirit of giving, we wanted to reward local resident Debbie Hutchison, who is one of our most active Mi Rewards shoppers. So we sent her a £50 Perth Gift Card to say thank you, and asked her to tell us what she loves about Perth’s independent businesses. When we phoned to catch up with Debbie, she was just buying something in a Perth shop and we had to call her back. Now that’s what we call a great customer! Here’s what Debbie thinks about shopping in Perth, and her favourite places to go. (We’ve put an asterisk * next to the businesses where you can earn Mi Rewards.)
Why do you like shopping in Perth? “I find it convenient. I live in Perth and this morning I just popped down to get a few items. It’s fairly compact; I can park close to the High Street. I’ve just been to five stores and got a couple of bits in each, using my linked credit card! I’ve bought some homewares, stationery and herbal supplements, that sort of thing. Largely the range of shops is pretty good. “I tend to drive into town, and I’ve got a hybrid car these days, so I can use the new electric charger in the Mill Street East car park. I find that’s handy, so I often park there and walk all around the city centre getting bits and bobs. “I find that the shopkeepers in Perth will take time to help you, whereas maybe in Edinburgh or Glasgow it’s so much busier and you can feel like ‘another customer’.”
Do you also like to go to the cinema, theatre and concert hall? “Absolutely. I’m off to Perth Playhouse Cinema* tonight for the Dog Friendly Perthshire screening of 101 Dalmatians. I had been a bit sceptical at first about taking my dog to the cinema, but we went to Lady And The Tramp, and it was hilarious. The dogs reacted to the cats and dogs on the screen with barking and howling, so everyone was really laughing and connecting with each other. “And I’m often at Perth Concert Hall*. I’m a real sucker for social media posts about acts who are coming to Perth. I was sitting at home with a glass of wine and I saw that Marti Pellow was coming to Perth, so I bought the tickets there and then! It’s the fact these acts are coming to Perth, you have to support that. And the gigs like the Big Weekend are brilliant.”
Which shops and businesses do you like, and why? “I like the friendliness of cafés such as Blend Coffee Lounge* – it’s like a home from home. I can take my dog in, and the staff know me now. “I was in Beales today – they had lured me in with an offer – and there’s a lot more there than I anticipated. I’ve got three kids at school and I was thinking, I should come here for teacher gifts and things like that. They had lots of really nicely packaged stuff for under a tenner. I might not have thought to go there for those kinds of things. “I also like Provender Brown. I’ve known the owner, Diane, for quite a few years before she set it up, and she’s the perfect person to run that as she’s passionate about food, cooking and ingredients. That’s a nice store to go to when you’re looking for quality and something different. “I really like Boo Vake*, too. I like the whole design flavour in there. And I like Underneath the Arches for homewares and interesting, quirky things. Silver Linings* has really nice cards and pictures, as well as jewellery; that’s a nice shop. I also like going in for a wee browse to Whispers Of The Past. “I like going into Revival Designer Dress Agency*, because things are a one-off, with some great brands and designer names. I love the thrill of finding something in my size with a great brand name – and it’s unique. If you’re going to a function you know that, if you shop at Phase Eight, there’s a good chance someone else has bought the same dress as you, so Revival is great for that uniqueness.”
Why do you think it’s important to support Perth’s businesses? “I’ve been involved with a local business in a different sphere and I know how important it is that people give you your custom. It is easy to go online and think you’ve got all the answers online, but with the local High Street it’s ‘use it or lose it’!”
What’s your reaction to being rewarded with a £50 Perth Gift Card? “It’s amazing! I’m very appreciative of being rewarded. I was thinking we could go to Blend and get waffles on a Sunday, to save me cooking for the family; that would be a lovely treat! It’s good to be putting it back into a place that I love. It’s also great that I can spend the Perth Gift Card on experiences as well as on shopping, and I can treat others.” Sign up for Mi Rewards today Now you’ve seen all the places Debbie likes to visit, how would you love to start earning rewards and perks while you shop, see a film or concert, go for a swim or even take flying lessons? It’s so easy to join. Just visit the Mi Rewards sign-up page, add your details and link your spending cards – and that’s it. You’ll start earning towards a Perth Gift Card, and get lots of perks along the way!   *You can earn Mi Rewards at these businesses!
Mi Rewards Is LIVE – REGISTER TODAY for Points, Perks & Prizes!

Mi Rewards Is LIVE – REGISTER TODAY for Points, Perks & Prizes!

Register Today For Points, Perks & Prizes!

The UK’s first card-linked loyalty programme has launched in Perth. Whenever you shop local you support local jobs and enrich the local economy. This gives you every reason to feel good about yourself. But wouldn’t it be nice to get a little something back too? Perth businesses really do appreciate your support and they’ve come up with the perfect way to say thank you.

Simply register on the Mi Rewards Perth platform, link your payment cards and whenever you shop in the participating Perth indie businesses you will be able to benefit from ‘Mi Rewards Perth’.

 

What’s different about Mi Rewards Perth?

You’ve probably already signed up to a host of loyalty programmes. It’s likely you have so many cards that you need a separate wallet just to keep track. Mi Rewards isn’t like that. It isn’t a reward card (there is no extra thing to carry around with you at all). Mi Rewards Perth is a ‘thank you’. Simply register and link your existing debit/credit cards and every time you spend a pound in a participating business using these cards you get one ‘Mi Point’. Once you have enough Mi Points you can hit convert and we will send you a free Perth Gift Card! The amazing thing about Mi Rewards is that membership also makes you an instant ‘Perth VIP’. Being a member gets you entry into competitions, exclusive access to VIP-only discounts and offers, plus you may find yourself on the receiving end of an occasional ‘random act of kindness’ courtesy of the businesses you know and love.

Tune In With The Kilted Coaches To Find Out Your Exclusive Perks & Prizes!

We will regularly be broadcasting LIVE (usually a Friday) from the Perth City Centre Facebook Page with the help of social media sensations, The KIlted Coaches, who are Stephen Clarke and Rab Shields. These Personal Trainers from Perth, Scotland have spent the last 13 years getting clients fitter, stronger and leaner.

Observing within the industry extreme dieting, unrealistic training regimes and unusually high depression rates they realised that so many people were missing the ‘Health’ in Health & Fitness. The Kilted Coaches mission is simple. To bring back HEALTH AND HAPPINESS to as many people as possible across the globe.

Don’t Miss Out – REGISTER TODAY!

Simply register your account, link your payment cards (to ensure you earn points as you spend) and stay tuned for regular Facebook LIVE events where the Kilted Coaches will be visiting Mi Rewards Perth businesses to announce details of  EXCLUSIVE PERKS OR PRIZES, ONLY AVAILABLE TO THOSE REGISTERED ON THE PLATFORM!

Perth Festival of the Arts : All the Arts. Ten Days. One Amazing Festival.

Perth Festival of the Arts : All the Arts. Ten Days. One Amazing Festival.

Perth is set to welcome some big names from the world of music, arts and culture this May for the 47th annual Perth Festival of the Arts. Taking place from the 17th – 26th May at venues across the city centre, this year’s line-up is one of the most diverse in the festival’s long history and has something which will appeal to people of all tastes.

Taking place over ten days at Perth Concert Hall, Perth Theatre and St. John’s Kirk, Perth Festival of the Arts has no less than 26 different events in this year’s programme, ranging from opera and big musical performances to contemporary art exhibitions and fun, thought-provoking stage shows.

Highlights of this year’s festival include Jools Holland – who first appeared at Perth Festival of the Arts in 1998 – returning to the stage once again, bringing with him Soft Cell star Marc Almond as his special guest.  60-year-old Jools is a world-famous pianist, bandleader, singer, composer, television presenter and multiplatinum recording artist, and will perform songs that span his entire musical career accompanied by the sound of Jools’ unforgettable Rhythm & Blues Orchestra.

 

Also on this year’s line-up is Grimethorpe Colliery Band – a Yorkshire-based brass band stars of the hit film “Brassed Off” – and the stunning Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Michael Sanderling and including violinist Jennifer Pike, who is a world-renowned talent who became the youngest ever winner of the prestigious BBC Young Musician of the Year award.

Among the names appearing in the festival’s stage shows over the ten days is crime-writer Val McDermid, who will be interviewed on stage at Perth Theatre by comedian and broadcaster, Fred MacAulay. Kirkcaldy’s McDermid has sold over 14 million copies of her books worldwide and had her work translated into 30 different languages.

Ruby Wax will also bring her one-woman show ‘Frazzled’ to Perth Theatre as part Perth Festival of the Arts programme, based on her best-seller ‘A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled’. The US-born comedy actress will give the audience an insight into mental health and the show is not recommended for those under the age of fourteen.

For fans of Scottish bands the triple bill of The Elephant Sessions, Siobhan Miller and Fara in Perth Concert Hall will certainly be a highlight. The Elephant Sessions won Album of the Year and Siobhan won Scots Singer of the Year at the 2017 year’s Trad Awards.

English Touring Opera return to the Festival with a stunning production of The Marriage of Figaro and a night of Rossini Arias. Scottish Opera will also be in town with their trailer converted into an opera house with free shows beside the Concert Hall.

Festival Chairman, Peter Rutterford, said of this year’s festival programme: “We’re delighted to announce this year’s Perth Festival of the Arts line-up and this year the focus has been to put together a programme that is diverse and will appeal to people of different interests.”

“It’s great to welcome Jools Holland back to Perth once again and this year as well as his world-famous Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, he will be bringing along Marc Almond as his guest which I’m sure will excite music fans not just here in Perth but right across the country.

“We have some terrific classical and operatic performances to look forward to, as well as the fantastic arTay exhibitions curated by local art gallery Frames. We’ll also be welcoming big names such as Val McDermid, Ruby Wax, Richard Coles, Eric and Ern for stage shows at the newly refurbished Perth Theatre, a venue we are delighted to have back open and available for the festival this year.”

He added: “Perth is attracting some of the best names in the arts and music industry, and that can only be a good thing for the city and for Perth Festival of the Arts. We believe our programme caters for people with lots of different tastes, and hope that audiences will come along and enjoy our annual arts festival and the other great music, arts and cultural events taking place in Perth.”

The Festival has commissioned a new design this year. Local artist Jill Calder has redesigned our Festival brochure and colourful street banners. Jill is based in Cellardyke and will be running an illustration workshop for children during the Festival.

 

The stunning ArTay marquee will return too with its top drawer showcase of contemporary Scottish art.

Tickets go on general sale from 10am on Monday 26th March. Friends of the Festival can purchase tickets one week early, from 10am on Monday 19th March.
For the full festival line-up including dates, times and ticket information visit the Perth Festival of the Arts website at https://www.perthfestival.co.uk/event/. For further information about the festival, please contact the programme organisers at info@perthfestival.co.uk.

Perth Purple Flag – City Centre Community Perception Study

Perth Purple Flag – City Centre Community Perception Study

Purple Flag is a prestigious town and city centre award – similar to Blue Flag awards which are presented to outstanding beaches.  Through the Purple Flag scheme the ATCM (Association of Town and City Management) aims to recognise and highlight those towns and cities that are committed to raising standards around the safety and wellbeing of visitors and residents.

In 2016 Perth was awarded Purple Flag status from ATCM in recognition of its Evening Night Time Economy.

We would be grateful if you could take a few minutes to answer this short survey.  Your answers will help us get a better understanding of how people use and view Perth. Just fill in the survey linked below for a chance to win a Perth Gift card worth £50!

The 12 Days of Christmas (The Perth Gift Card version)

The 12 Days of Christmas (The Perth Gift Card version)

You’ve probably heard a lot about the Perth Gift Card in the two years since it launched, but did you realise just how many Christmas-present-buying dilemmas it could solve?

With all the people you have to buy for, Christmas shopping can be busy and complicated. But the Perth Gift Card is ideal for so many different people, as it’s easy to spend and extremely versatile!

Let us show you what we mean, with our fun ’n’ festive singalong – The 12 Days of Christmas (The Perth Gift Card version):

1. On the first day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your Secret Santa gift!

Oh no, it’s the dreaded Secret Santa gift purchase! What will you get Sandra from Accounts? A novelty Christmas keyring? A set of “exotic liqueurs”? OR how about a £10 Perth Gift Card that she can spend in over 80 places in Perth? You know which one makes sense…

2. On the second day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your other half

If you have a partner or spouse who’s tricky to buy for, and who prefers to choose their own treats, the Perth Gift Card is ideal! Simply load a card with any amount from £10 to £500 and they can choose whatever they want in the New Year – a Perth Concert Hall gig, a theatre show, a lovely meal or some fantastic purchases from Perth’s many independent stores.

3. On the third day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your retired relatives

Whether it’s your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents, they probably have everything they need, so why not give them a gift that lets them choose from loads of brilliant experiences? Give them a Perth Gift Card and they could enjoy trips to the cinema, afternoon tea with a friend, swimming sessions, a boat trip on the Tay, art classes and much more.

4. On the fourth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..the kids (your own or other people’s)

Children often get a lot of gifts on Christmas Day, and it can be a bit overwhelming to be surrounded by all that “stuff”. If kids, especially older kids and teenagers, get a Perth Gift Card or two, they can enjoy choosing their own things, going for a meal or having a cinema trip in the New Year when the festivities have calmed down!

5. On the fifth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your kids’ pals

If your kids want to buy gifts for their classmates, you know you’ll probably end up doing the gift-buying for them! So you can’t go wrong with the Perth Gift Card. You can buy all the cards in the same place (see Where to buy the Perth Gift Card, below), saving you time and energy. And their friends can spend them on whatever they like, including cinema tickets, meals, clothing, styling products or accessories

6. On the sixth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your best friend

They’ve always been there for you through the ups and downs of life. What better way to tell your best friend how much they mean to you than by giving them a Perth Gift Card for a bit of pampering? They could get a massage, manicure, haircut or personal trainer session – or the two of you could go out for drinks or dinner with it. After all, sharing is caring!

7. On the seventh day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your colleague who’s leaving

They’ve always been there for you through the ups and downs of life. What better way to tell your best friend how much they mean to you than by giving them a Perth Gift Card for a bit of pampering? They could get a massage, manicure, haircut or personal trainer session – or the two of you could go out for drinks or dinner with it. After all, sharing is caring!

8. On the eighth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..a brilliant teacher

Want to show your appreciation to the inspirational teacher who’s guided your child (or you, if you’re an adult learner!) through the year? A Perth Gift Card is a great way to do it – you could either buy one by yourself, or club together with some other parents or students and give them a really special gift.

9. On the ninth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your loved ones who live in Perthshire  

If your friends and family live in Perthshire, but you don’t, you might often shop online and get Christmas gifts delivered directly to them. But what if you also like to support local businesses and keep the high street thriving? Well, with the Perth Gift Card, you can do both! Simply order a Perth Gift Card online and get it delivered to the recipient. Easy purchase for you, and a win for local Perth businesses!

10. On the tenth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..your friends who are getting married

Instead of having a wedding list at just one store, your friends could make the whole of Perth their wedding list! They could buy homewares and accessories, fine wines, a piece of art, concert tickets or some fabulous jewellery. (And if they want to check what balance they have left on their Perth Gift Card, they can just visit our website!)

11. On the eleventh day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..someone you want to thank

If you’re lucky enough to have someone who’s always there when you need them, who always helps out at the drop of a hat without expecting anything back, you could give them a lovely surprise with a Perth Gift Card to say thank you. And they’ll have a whole year to think about what they’d like to spend it on!

12. On the twelfth day of Christmas, you could buy a Perth Gift Card for…..someone who’s visiting Perth soon

Do you know someone who’s coming to Perth for a visit – a holiday, a short stay, a college exchange visit, a work assignment, or even a hen night or stag night? Or they might be moving house to Perth for the first time. What a brilliant treat it would be if you gave them a Perth Gift Card to spend. It’d help them get to know the city, too, discovering many of the 70-plus businesses they can spend it in!

So there you have it – 12 ways in which the Perth Gift Card can solve your gift-buying dilemmas. We hope we’ve given you some great ideas and helped you with your Christmas shopping. And we hope all those lucky recipients enjoy spending their cards in our beautiful city!

 Where to buy the Perth Gift Card

You can buy the Perth Gift Card at the following Perth businesses:

Byers and Co jeweller, George Street

McCash’s Country Store, Feus Road

Fun Junction toy shop, High Street

Tayberry Gallery, Princes Street

Or buy online and get it delivered directly to the recipient!

Where to spend the Perth Gift Card

You can spend the Perth Gift Card in over 70 different locations, from cafés to concert venues, jewellers to clothes and gift shops, galleries to great days out.

Check out the list of businesses accepting the Perth Gift Card

Get social with Perth City Centre

Make sure you follow Perth City Centre on Facebook and Twitter for the latest news, events, days out and activities in Perth and the surrounding area. There’s a lot happening this winter!

Zuppa – The Great Perthshire Soup Competition

Zuppa – The Great Perthshire Soup Competition

Do you make awesome soup?

 Would you like the chance of winning a £250 Perth Gift Card?

Giraffe Trading, the organisers of the Great Perthshire Picnic, is pleased to announce the launch of The Great Perthshire Soup Competition, Zuppa

Winter is coming and we all turn to a lovely, warm bowl of soup to sort ourselves out on these cold, dark days.  Be it a traditional Scotch Broth, a fix-all chicken soup or spicy Vietnamese Pho, we all have a go-to soupy comfort blanket.

The beauty of soup is that it allows us all to add a bit of our own personality, cooking skills and favourite ingredients together in a big pot.

Here in Perthshire, not only are we blessed with beautiful scenery and lovely people, but we also have a fantastic larder on our doorstep that can be harvested and/or used to create these lovely soups.  From beef to beer, game to berries and vegetables to whisky, there is a wealth of tastiness.

Last year, there was a fantastic response with eventual winner being Charmaine Assenti, who wowed the crowds with her Iasg brot (Gaelic for fish soup).

Here’s what Charmaine had to say about her recipe – “Perth is well known for its Salmon filled waters and people come from far and wide to taste and fish for Salmon, so, I thought that it should feature in a local soup. I added potatoes from the area which many people have memories of picking as a child. Rapeseed oil was also something that I wanted to include because it’s produced and grown locally. Everyone knows Cullen Skink and this tasty soup recipe is my Perthshire version; hearty and nutritious with super easy to source ingredients, everyone can make this and enjoy.”

To Enter:

  • Devise and write your soup recipe complete with name
  • Make sure there is plenty of Perthshire produce in it!
  • Visit perthshirezuppa.co.uk
  • Fill in all the boxes and click submit
  • Make sure you get it in before the closing date on 12th November 2017

 

Eight soups will be taken through to the final that will take place on November 19th on St John’s Street in Perth as part of the Winter Festival activities. The public will be given tasters and asked to vote for their favourite soup.  Terms and conditions can be found at perthshirezuppa.co.uk

Review of Breizh Restaurant, Perth

Review of Breizh Restaurant, Perth

Breizh Restaurant is a popular and lively restaurant that’s been a bit of an institution on Perth’s High Street for many years serving delicious, unfussy food with a Breton influence, such as galettes (buckwheat crepes). It’s now under new management and the interior has been given a fresh new look by owner Vinod Mathew, with changes to the menu coming soon too. So Perth City Centre asked me to pop in and check out the changes. As my husband’s birthday was fast approaching, what better time to sample its cuisine and wine list (and get brownie points into the bargain)?

We book a table for the Saturday of the annual Perth show, so the city is busy with locals and visitors. After a quick aperitif at The Venue just round the corner (well, it is his birthday!), we pop round to Breizh. It’s busy and lively, too, but with a relaxed atmosphere.

A friendly waiter greets us at the door and shows us to our table by the large picture window (which has a great view up George Street to Perth Museum & Art Gallery). The décor has been revitalised in a fresh and contemporary grey-and-white palette, with pops of red on the seats and upholstery. The new monochrome logo is in honour of the colours of the Breton flag.

Drinks

While we’re browsing the menu, I order a gin and tonic and Mr C opts for the delicious Breton cider, which always arrives in a striped china cup. For wine with dinner we order a bottle of 2015 Fleurie, a light silky red packed with berry flavours.

Starters

Being a French-influenced restaurant, there is a fine choice of seafood including mussels, a smoked-/cured salmon duo, pan-fried scallops and a seafood soup. There are also escargots (snails with garlic butter), a chicken liver parfait or a poached egg with smoked pancetta and baby onion jus.

Mr C opts for the seafood soup, a rich, ochre-coloured bisque packed full of tender white fish and served with croutons and alioli (a creamy garlic sauce).

I’m vegetarian, which can occasionally be a bad word in French dining, but I spot the Superfood Salad which sounds intriguing. It’s sliced avocado on salad leaves, surrounded by fresh red chilli pieces, toasted seeds and flaked almonds, pomegranate seeds, creamy dots of feta cheese, quinoa and wild rice. It must be the healthiest starter I’ve ever ordered and it’s very tasty.

Mains

To follow, although I’m tempted by one of the pizzas I can’t miss the chance to check whether the galettes are still as delicious as always, so I order the Chèvre, a savoury crepe which is tucked round a sauce of sunblushed tomatoes and marinated artichokes and topped with grilled goat’s cheese and peppery rocket. I’m happy to report that this galette is just as good as before.

Mr C chooses from the Boeuf (beef) section of the menu a Faux-Filet de Boeuf, which is a sirloin steak from Highland cattle. It’s well-prepared, tender and succulent, and served with peppercorn sauce, a flatcap mushroom, creamed potatoes and grilled tomatoes on the vine.

Desserts

We’re pretty full after our starters and mains, but there’s always room for pudding, isn’t there? We both love a crème brûlée so we order the Pistachio version as we finish our wine.

While it’s being prepared we have a chat with owner Vinod, who tells us he took over the restaurant in December 2016, having previously worked in hospitality in Edinburgh and St Andrews. When he arrived at Breizh he got straight to work devising a fresh new look and taking on more staff. A firm supporter of local suppliers, Vinod sources from producers such as George Campbell & Sons and tells us that a new menu is on the way in the next 2-3 weeks. The wine list will also be refreshed, with a special and unique range of wines.

 

Vinod then goes to get our dessert and presents it with a flourish – and we see that the chefs have prepared it on a board with a raspberry coulis and “Happy birthday – all the best” piped in chocolate! It’s a lovely surprise, and a fitting way to end our evening.

 

 

Your visit

If you’d like to try some fantastic French hospitality and cuisine, Breizh also serves breakfast, coffees, teas and lunches as well as dinner. They’re open from 9am on Monday to Saturday and 11am on Sunday. Pre-theatre is available from 5pm – 6.30pm. Follow them on Facebook to keep up to date with new developments, and follow Perth City Centre on Facebook and Twitter to be first in the know about everything happening in Perth and Perthshire.

Perth’s History and Heritage Pass

Perth’s History and Heritage Pass

Perth’s History and Heritage Pass

 

The Black Watch Castle and Museum and Scone Palace have launched a joint ticket – Perth’s History and Heritage Pass.

 

It is great value for visitors giving a combined 20% discount on admission and includes access to The Black Watch Story Tour.

 

Tickets can be bought at either Scone Palace or The Black Watch Castle and Museum. We would be delighted if you can share with your customers who are looking to sample some of Perth’s heritage.

 

http://www.theblackwatch.co.uk/

https://scone-palace.co.uk/

Linda Hill Can’t Wait To Experience Her Next Perth Gift Card!

Linda Hill Can’t Wait To Experience Her Next Perth Gift Card!

Perth Pie-oneer and Murrays Bakers owner, Linda Hill

She’s the owner and mastermind behind the Perth success story that is Murrays Bakers (and Murrays Pies!)

Linda Hill knows how important it is for Perth’s independent businesses to flourish and feels that any local initiatives which help Perth’s retailers need to be embraced by both businesses and Perth folk alike.

We got in touch with the ever-busy Linda as she was enjoying a well-deserved break (sorry Linda!) We wanted to find out exactly how much she knew about the Perth Gift Card as well as setting her a pleasant wee task!

How would she like to experience the best that Perth’s indie businesses have to offer courtesy of The Perth Gift Card?

Linda takes up the story from here.

“OK, so I was on holiday in Spain and I got a nice message on Facebook from Richy at The Perth Gift Card asking if, when I got back, I would like to spend £50 in Perth’s indie businesses?

Oh, for sure… Yes please… Fabulous!

I’m very much an advocate of Shop Local and feel that it’s so important that Perth’s independent retailers are doing as well as possible. Every now and then if I do get a few spare hours (which doesn’t happen very often!) I’ll say, right, I’m going to visit all the little shops that I’ve not had time to visit for a while. A £50 Perth Gift Card was the perfect excuse to make me do this.

I’d bought a few cards before for family as gifts and I had recommended it to my Mum to buy for gifts because I knew that it was for independent shops in Perth. It’s basically all about spending in Perth. Personally I knew you could buy the cards in Fun Junction (Old High Street) and Alba Plus (formerly Scottish Seasons, St John Street) and I think it would be great if there were more places you could buy the cards which would make the cards more accessible to people in Perth.

It was nice to be given the card and that’s exactly how it should feel. It’s always nice to get a present, especially one which gives you so much choice.

I had a rough idea of some of the businesses who were involved but when I got my card and a leaflet with website details I did a bit more research. The list of different businesses was impressive and really easy to find and the website came up when I Googled it. It was on the first page when I searched and once on the website it was great to see just how many businesses accept the card.  I decided that I was going to use the Perth Gift Card as a reason to make a day of it and so I decided to get down to the business of planning out where I was going to visit.

That day was all about only visiting the businesses on The Perth Gift Card and everywhere I went was because of the card.

Because it feels like free money, I visited different businesses I hadn’t been to before, but it also worked the other way in that it made me return to the businesses I REALLY love.

Linda visiting Provender Brown, George Street, Perth

Provender Brown (George Street)

 

So first up in my Perth Gift Card experience was a favourite of mine in Provender Brown (George Street)

This really is a fantastic businesses with extremely friendly staff who are always knowledgeable and helpful.

I bought a lovely fruity Cairn O’ Mhor Cider and some tablet for my sweet tooth! I loved the fact that both these items were locally produced and feel this is so important when choosing what to buy.

The lovely member of staff even suggested that as my day of exploring Perth’s businesses would involve a lot of individual visits to different businesses that I write down how much I had spent so that I’d know how much was left on the card… A great handy hint!

Byers & Co (George Street)

 

I popped across the road to another of my favourite George Street Indies to visit Linda of Byers & Co fame.

She’s so bubbly as well as talented, and a great businesses to have on the Perth Card network. She can remodel old jewellery, melt gold down and redesign it for men or women. She’s so talented and can even do unique kilt pins.

Linda had been fixing a pair of earrings for me which I’d arranged to happen before this, so I was able to go in and use my Perth Card towards the bill for this. She didn’t have a traditional terminal but she used the PayPal App, swiped it through and it went through in seconds.

There’s no end to Linda’s talents and in the past she’s done so much beautiful work. Not only has she done some amazing pieces for me but she’s even made rings for my family as well.

Next up, another great George Street indie and a visit to Byers & Co
The treasure trove that is Precious Sparkle, Charlotte Street

Precious Sparkle (Charlotte Street)

 

With Charlotte Street being just round the corner I couldn’t possibly resist the wonderful and ever-tempting shop that is Precious Sparkle.

I really think this is one of Perth’s hidden gems, but once you do manage to discover it you always tend to go back.

It really is a little treasure trove of a shop with so much on offer.

A friend of mine was soon to be celebrating her birthday and I spied an unusual greetings card which would be perfect for her. As well as that, I noticed a beautifully patterned dish. It probably caught my eye so quickly because it was my favourite colour of turquoise.

How could I resist?

 

Kisa’s (Mill Street)

 

At Murrays Bakers the whole team work so hard to make us a multi-award-winning bakery, and with that in mind I’m allowed to treat myself when I’m out and about. With that in mind it was on to Kisa’s Perth by Perth Concert Hall.

Since opening in 2015 Kisa’s have gone from strength to strength and have quickly become one of the most popular and sought out venues for delicious food.

I’ve always felt that the service is as important as the product and I can safely say that I’ve found Kisa’s nothing short of excellent each and every time I visit.

The visit was helped however as I totally indulged with an Americano and a delicious melted white chocolate and berry scone and homemade jam… AMAZING!

White Chocolate and berry scone from Kisa's, Mill Street
With food on my mind it was time to pop in to D.G Lindsay & Son Butchers to sort out family tea!

D.G Lindsay & Son Butchers (North Methven Street)

 

Now you may think that The Perth Gift Card is all very well and good if you’re looking to treat yourself to a tasty treat in one of Perth’s fine eateries or something new and sparkly for a special occasion. Bear in mind though that it can even be handy when looking for something for your evening tea!

With food on my mind I visited D.G Lindsay & Son Butchers on North Methven Street and sorted out tea with their wonderful Caribbean Stir Fry.

I love the delicious ingredients you can find here and I always enjoy a chat with Beaton and Louise. We love Lindsay’s butchers and Murrays the Bakers actually use their butchery meat and are a family business just like us!

They knew exactly what to do to process my Perth Gift Card (they’ve had lots used there before) and I was soon on my way again.

Bliss Salon (Hospital Street)

 

All this retail therapy was starting to take its toll and at this point I felt like I was beginning to flag a little.

I needed to put down my ever-growing armful of shopping bags and rest my weary legs at the relaxing oasis that is Bliss Salon.

The lovely Kirsty threaded my eyebrows for me and straight away I began to relax.

This really is a place I love and it lives up to its name and is a real sanctuary from the hustle and bustle. All the girls are wonderful here.

I’ve been going to see Rachel for over 12 years before she was in this salon and continued to follow her. Both her and Kirsty really are experts at relaxation.

Bliss Salon is exactly that. Bliss!
Eva Lucia are my go-to shop for an outfit for any occasion!

 Eva Lucia (Scott Street)

 

One of my favourite local restaurants, the fabulous Cafe Tabou were hosting a fundraiser the following Thursday and so with this in mind I headed off to Eva Lucia for some inspiration as to an outfit. I love this shop and always find something here to wear. Whether it’s for a formal occasion or a more casual affair Lori always seems to know exactly what suits you which is an amazing skill to have.

It wasn’t long before I spotted a gorgeous turquoise (yep, there’s that colour again!) and quicker than you can say “The Perth Gift Card” it was added to my growing list of purchases.

Eva Lucia were last but not least on my Perth Gift Card experience and I knew I had roughly £10 left after my previous purchases. I used the last £10 on the card towards the cost of the blouse and paid the extra with my own card because it had felt like “free money”.

So How Did My Perth Gift Card Experience Go?

As you can probably tell from the above, I had a ball visiting all these great Perth indie businesses. To me it’s an ideal gift for anyone that you would buy a voucher for. I now would personally prefer to buy a Perth Gift Card for somebody rather than a voucher for a single place.

Although this was my first Perth Gift Card experience as someone on the receiving end, last Christmas I gave my best friends a £50 Perth Card. That way if they wanted to go to a specific place that they liked to go then they could. If they wanted to go to Café Tabou for a meal… They could do that! If they wanted to go to Craigdon Mountain Sports for a Winter coat… They could do that!

I feel it gives people more options rather than buying a voucher for a single shop which is actually restrictive.

What I did was show that you could go to lots of different businesses: Provender Brown, Byers & Co, Precious Sparkle, Café Kisas, D.G Lindsay & Sons Butchers and Eva Lucia. Being honest I’d limited my spending accordingly to be able to spend the £50 Perth Card in as many businesses as possible. The great thing though is that because it’s a gift it feels like ‘Free Money’… So guess what… I overspent!

An impressive haul after my Perth Gift Card experience!

The Perth Gift Card is brilliant for Perth as it’s a great way to encourage Perth folk to support local businesses and Shop Local. The Perth Gift Card’s not really for the big High Street shops yet but it’s more about supporting the independents and making sure that they stay open and survive.

This helps them by bringing spend through their door.

If you need to buy a gift for someone I’d totally recommend you buy them The Perth Gift Card!

… And then after all that.. Time for tea (courtesy of Lindsays Butchers and The Perth Gift Card)

And then time for tea, courtesy of D.G Lindsay & Sons Butchers And The Perth Gift Card!

About The Perth Gift Card:

The Perth Gift Card is the UK’s first city-wide gift card programme for independent businesses across a whole town or city. It’s the perfect present for friends, family and work colleagues and the recipient can spend it on a delicious meal, the latest blockbuster movie, some great new clothes, a fabulous new haircut and much, much more. The Perth Gift Card is accepted in over 75 Perth businesses including Perth Concert Hall, Simon Howies, Perth Playhouse Cinema, Charlie Taylor Hair and Beauty, Tabla, Perth Leisure Pool, Kisa’s Perth, Craigdon Mountain Sports, Santé and many more! 

Buy a card online here: http://theperthcard.co.uk/product/the-perth-card/, over the counter at Fun Junction The Toy Stop (Old High Street Perth) or Alba Plus (St John Street Perth)

A Fair-y Good Day Out in the Fair City

A Fair-y Good Day Out in the Fair City

An Easter day out in Perth by Ruth Bickerton visiting Perth Gift Card Businesses and Brick City at Perth Museum

It’s not every day you’re asked to go shopping and spend someone else’s money. When the lovely folks at Perth City Centre offered me a Perth Gift Card with carte blanche to spend it on whatever I like and then blog about it, there wasn’t much any arm-twisting needed. As mum of two noisy and growing young boys, it is very rare for my shopping to involve anything except food, food and more food, with perhaps some Barcelona football kit thrown in. So it was a super treat to be pretty much ordered to go shopping and buy something grown up and just for me!

I decided I couldn’t make any Important Shopping Decisions without the input of my sister, Kate, who just so happened to be coming to visit with her three children for the Easter holidays. We managed to find some kind (misguided) people with several footballs and a plentiful supply of patience who offered to have our four boys. Kate, my niece, Grace, and I happily skipped out of their door and straight into the Tayberry Gallery.

Tayberry

Tayberry Gallery had an array of beautiful gifts – all sorts from tartan doorstops, to scarves, jewellery, and prints of one of my favourite artists, Ron Lawson. I mused for a while over buying a dino print for my boys’ bedroom, but selfishly decided The Perth Gift Card was for me, all me, just me, and I was going to enjoy it!

It seemed like an ideal time for a quick break and Willows was calling us. Grace spent an inordinate amount of time hanging over the cake counter, musing between the scones, croissants, coffee cake and tray bakes before finally settling on rocky road – wait! – no, actually a cherry bake – hang on! – shortbread. Yes shortbread. And hot chocolate. Delicious! The fact I could treat my niece using my Perth Gift Card was lovely. (Please do not tell the boys.)

We then headed for a browse along St. John’s Street where there is a cluster of shops and eateries that accept The Perth Gift Card and form a nice stretch for a stroll and perusal. John Gillespie’s, the Highlands Health Store and Alba Plus (Formerly Scottish Seasons) all had inviting window displays. We popped into Alba Plus for a quick chat with Douglas, who also sells The Perth Gift Card in the shop.

He had a wide variety of all kinds of Scottish goodies, and I was particularly taken with some glass paintings and the Scottish children’s books. Next, we had a quick perusal of the Rose House, which combines a florists and gift shop with a café. The selection of cakes looked exceptionally appealing, and we definitely, absolutely, positively, categorically, unquestionably did NOT buy any more cake ‘for later’.

Our last port of call was up at Bridge Lane – and a shop I was keen not to miss as the beautiful goodies well live up to the name of the shop. Pretty Things is up by Perth Museum and Gallery (who also accept the card) and is close to some of the other Perth Gift Card shops like the Teddy Station, Revival and Byers & Co. I could happily have spent my gift card ten times over, but eventually settled on a puffin scarf, which I couldn’t resist, and some hoop earrings, both of which I was planning to wear on an upcoming girls’ night out.

I was sorry to miss visiting Provender Brown and Silver Linings but most definitely will be back to spend the Perth Gift Card I will now start petitioning for my birthday from my husband, children, friends, family, pets, neighbours, colleagues and anyone else who asks. Hint hint.

After collecting the boys and having a quick lunch, we headed to Brick City at Perth Museum and Gallery. Excitement levels were high! The exhibition was Lego models of famous landmarks around the world, followed by a room brimming over with boxes of Lego and table space for the Freemakers of Perth to make and display their own masterpieces.

The kind lady on reception gave all the children a sheet which had pictures of the real-life landmarks which the children had to match to the Lego models. Give that lady a medal!  Instead of haring into the exhibition and just rushing about to see who could see them all first, the children actually studied the models and occasionally – shock horror! – even read some of the information about the landmarks to check they had found the right ones. The models are all contained in one room, which was handy for keeping an eye on five children all heading in different directions

The children were particularly struck by the impressive model of St. Pancras Station which takes pride of place in the exhibition. “Mummy, that’s from Harry Potter!!! Let’s find Hagrid!!” They were also well inspired by some of the simpler pieces around the exhibition to create their own landmarks when they got to the free style make-your-own-model section. It was nice to see how the children studied the models to see how to build the different styles.

They happily played with the many other children also visiting the gallery, and by some miracle (perhaps the fact the good people of Lego had provided so many pieces) I didn’t hear a single ‘THAT’S MY PIECE!!!!” The make-your-own room also contained more cases of models, models made by people who had previously visited, and information boards about Lego and its history. I have to admit the children didn’t take much notice of these, but it was something for the adults to look at whilst the children got on with the much more Important Business of creating genius.

After the Lego exhibition we had a stroll and run about along the North Inch back. Five exhausted children for two exhausted Mums seemed like a good result for Week Two of the Easter holidays, and the early bed was the final treat on what was an excellent day out in Perth.

The Perth Gift Card is the perfect present for friends, family and colleagues. The recipient can spend it on a delicious meal, the latest blockbuster movie, some great new clothes, a fabulous new haircut and much, much more. The Perth Gift Card is accepted in over 70 Perth businesses including Perth Concert Hall, Simon Howies, Perth Playhouse, Charlie Taylor Hair and Beauty, Tabla, Perth Leisure Pool, Kisa’s Perth, Craigdon Mountain Sports, Santé and many more!