real life

Eight ways to catch up with your friends this summer that'll appeal to every member of your girl gang.

Thanks to our brand partner, Chambord

“We must catch up soon!” It’s the phrase all your girlfriends are shouting at you now the curtains are slowly but surely starting to close on 2016.

But between work, friends and family commitments, trying to set aside a couple of minutes – let alone hours – for some quality catch-ups is filed under Hard with a capital H.

Rather than simply giving up (which we all know usually involves burying one’s head in a bowl of Maltesers and sitting in a dark room watching Netflix) we urge you to prioritise time with your mates in the coming months.

No, we’re not talking five minute coffee catch-ups while you frantically skim through your emails then dash back to work. We’re talking fun, one-of-a-kind get-togethers that celebrate your friendship in the way it deserves – style. Give us one good reason why you shouldn’t? Good, that’s settled. Carry on.

1. Hold a cocktail night at home.

Forget fighting your way through a packed bar on a Friday night, invite your friends over and have your own cocktail night. Pick a versatile bottle of spirits, like delicious black raspberry flavoured Chambord, that can make a wide range of cocktails everyone will enjoy (Chambord French martini, anyone?).

Make some yummy nibbles, order some takeaway and enjoy a fancy schmancy affair while wearing trackie pants.

2. Take a fitness class together.

We know, we know. You probably prefer the other F word – (‘food’) – to ‘fitness’ any day, but hear us out. By the time New Year’s Eve rolls around, you’ll be well and truly over copious amounts of pudding, dinners and nibbles.

Connect with like-minded people. Image: iStock.

Heading to a class with your friends, be it yoga, Pilates, Body Balance or Body Attack, will get your endorphins going, have you all feeling proud you tried something new and will improve the bond you have. Yeah, yeah, we promise you can go for brunch and coffee afterwards.


3. Get your picnic on.

You can practically TASTE the sunshine at this time of year. A word of advice? Make like the Parisians do and get outdoors with your best friends and soak it up.

Meet in a pretty park and grab life's four necessities - friends, cheese, a crusty baguette, and wine for a simple yet tres elegant picnic. Make a Chambord Spritz by mixing a nip of Chambord (approximately 30mls) with 125ml of dry white wine topped with soda water (mmmm) and we promise you'll remain refreshed as you cheers your way into sunset.

"You can practically TASTE the sunshine at this time of year." Image: iStock.

4. Have a treat yo'self day.

The only thing better than enjoying the company of your friends is enjoying their company while you're also getting pampered. Book a time everyone's free and head to a day spa for massages, facials, manicures and pedicures.

If you're trying not to break the budget (which let's face it, is all of us at this time of year), aim to meet at a blow dry bar where you can kick back and relax while getting your hair tended too. Then you can all head out looking like Kate Middleton.

5. TV night.

Create your own real life version of Gogglebox with your closest friends by inviting them over on a weeknight to watch your favourite TV show together.

Ask everyone to contribute by bringing a platter you can share and reward their efforts with a chilled Chambord Royale (10ml of Chambord liqueur and sparkling wine in a champagne glass - because we're classy, obviously - and top with a raspberry) upon their arrival.


We guarantee you'll want to make it a weekly occurrence. Oh, and no judgement if you all manage to polish off 10 blocks of chocolate between you.

"Create your own real life version of Gogglebox with your closest friends." Image: iStock.

6. Head to a winery.

Head out into the great outdoors to take in the scenery. In particular, the grape vines... or maybe just the fermented grapes. Yeah, that'll do.

Heading on a wine tasting tour is a great way to spend the day adventuring, testing your palate and learning new words that make you sound intelligent, like "botrytis".

7. High tea.

How often do you get to whip on some sequins and be home before five pm? The answer is never, friends, never. Which is why you and your closest mates need to add a classy high tea onto your get-together bucket list.

Relax while sipping on tea poured into fine china the Queen herself would approve of, chuckle together while nibbling on cucumber sandwiches and eat in total silence as you scoff scones with jam and cream.

8. Staycation.

When it comes to booking a holiday with your mates you'll probably only find a week that suits everyone's calendars in 2021. Scrap that and decide on a staycation instead.

Pick one weekend where you rent a beach house or a plush hotel room in the city to share some laughs and quality time without dipping into your sacred annual leave.

How do you like to spend your time with your girlfriends?

This post was written thanks to our brand partner Chambord.