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Top Things to do this Halloween in London

Top Things to do this Halloween in London
by Nina Christopoulou

Halloween vibes have rapidly surrounded us in the form of ghoulish costumes, spooky food and pumpkins across all supermarkets! Halloween therefore translates into a weekend of endless fun, with tons of options when it comes to partying. We are here to give you a helping hand when it comes to choosing your Halloween weekend partying spots…

7. Nightmare on Inverness Street

Right in the heart of Camden, Duo will host a Halloween extravaganza on Saturday the 27th of October. Start times are multiple, so that’s something you need to double-check, but here’s what we can guarantee: it’s a spooktastic event filled with great music, zombie dancers and blood shots. The cherry on top? Tickets start from £10.

Credit: @Halloween

6. The Copycat

Full disclosure: this one is not exactly partying… It’s an immersive horror experience for the Halloween lovers out there! The COLAB Factory has set up the perfect hunt for a serial killer, that is bound to frighten you beyond expectation. This one already started on October 10th, so grab your tickets before they’re gone!

Credit: @Halloween

5. Even Stranger Things: The Halloween Experience

Any Stranger Things fans out there? Well this one is for you… E1 is one amazing venue, with a capacity of 2,000 which had one of the greatest Halloween ideas of all time: to split its areas up in 2 spaces giving us the thrilling Snow Ball Room and of course the Upside Down! If you would like to be on the lookout for Demogorgon attacks on Friday the 26th, this is the place to be!

Credit: @Stranger Things

4. The Crystal Maze Halloween Edition

The Blood Baron has arrived at the Crystal Maze to spruce things up a bit, and get you spooked out of your mind. The time vampire will be after you, trying to manipulate you and get you to turn on your team as your attempts to get out of the Crystal Maze become increasingly difficult. That’s a whole other level of Halloween fun!

Credit: @Halloween

3. Pumpkin Decorating Workshop

You know all those perfectly carved pumpkins that you see adorning the Halloween decorated areas of London? Well, now you can replicate them with this awesome workshop at the Horniman Museum in Forest Hill. Classes take place daily and are a mere £7, so definitely worth the money! What could be more Halloween-y than learning how to carve your very own spooky pumpkin?

Credit: @Halloween

2. A Buffy the Vampire Halloween

Well, this one is reserved for those that treasure a bit of nostalgia. Buffy the Vampire slayer is the ideal Halloween theme for a party filled with fear, Sunnydale cocktail specials and of course 90s (what else?) dance tunes to complete the nostalgic vibe. The Book Club in Shoreditch will be expecting you on Saturday the 27th to get you spooked and entertained all at once!

Credit: @The Eleanor Store

1. The Stay Club Halloween Party

There is no other event that seemed fitting to take the first spot of this list! The Stay Club has organised an amazing Halloween night on Saturday the 27th in all three of the residence’s lobbies, which are bound to entertain you endlessly! The spooktastic decorations have already been put up, but there’s more to come. Incredible music, a cool Halloween themed buffet for all to enjoy and of course, many awesome neighbours to enjoy Halloween with… What else could one ask for this Halloween weekend?

Credit: @THE STAY CLUB

Tips to Organise the Perfect City Break!

Tips to Organise the Perfect City Break!
by Nina Christopoulou

By now it feels like I justify every single post with the phrase “we all know how hectic student life can be”, or a paraphrase of the sentiment in some form. From my recent experience, I cannot argue with this point, however, what I can say is that it is also filled with opportunities which you should grab every step of the way. One of the major parts of student life is travelling, and it is undoubtedly one of the greatest periods of your life so it’s important to fit as much travelling as you possibly can in one go. We have the tips for you to do so in the best manner possible as a student in London!

1. Choose the Bus

If you want a weekend around any of the immensely beautiful British towns – and there are plenty of those – then perhaps coach may be the way to go! Oxford, Cambridge, Brighton and the list goes on and on; they are all cities massively worth the trip, and National Express Coaches will take you there easily and low-budget. The bus takes a little longer than your other travel options, yet the price highly makes up for the minor delay. What’s more you have Wi-Fi, plugs to charge your tech gear and comfy seats to snooze in!

Credit: @CAMBRIDGE LITTLE GEMS

2. Some things need a little extra preparation

The Eurostar option is quite popular among travellers, and in recent months has added Amsterdam to its list of destinations, making it a favourite among students in particular. The thing with Eurostar though is that it’s not ideal for that last minute getaway. Prices are quite steep if not booked early on, so we suggest you go ahead, have a look at potential destinations and book waaay in advance (and by that we mean asap!).

Credit: @Eurostar Official

3. Know where to look

Personally, before I came to London my only source of booking info was Skyscanner. Which, albeit user-friendly and to the point, is not the sole platform out there! The two that have passed our test are Kayak and TravelSupermarket. TravelSupermarket is worth a little clarification: this one offers the ease of letting you know what packages are available for your preferred destination and compares prices in one click. Lastminute.com is also ideal for Eurostar packages and of course any other last-minute options on a budget!

Credit: @TravelSupermarket

4. Discount Codes

Yes, you heard that one right. It’s not always fruitful, but you can never know until you’ve tried. Groupon has tons of frequently updated travel offers, while Voucher Codes and Voucher Cloud are places where (with a little bit of research) you can find deals for your upcoming travels. A little bit of research can go a long way when it comes to cashing in on a travel bargain!

Credit: @Commemorate Your Travels

5. Arrange the short trip!

A city break does not require going a long way from home. You can take a city break simply by organising a one-day trip to explore London a little more than usual. As you grow into the city gradually you will realise that all the things you aimed to do and see fade into the distance as routine and student life catches up with you. So arranging a visit to Kingston, the Greenwich observatory, the Richmond Park or even the Mayfield Lavender Fields (sadly closed for the time being but you can have them in mind for next year) is a simple, budget-friendly way to take that much deserved break and explore away. Never forget that it is all a matter of changing perspective, not necessarily changing the city you are exploring!

Credit: @Visit London

An account of 51 weeks… OR Let’s get Personal

An account of 51 weeks… OR Let’s get Personal

by Nina Christopoulou

“51 or 42 weeks? Or maybe less?” I thought to myself as I was trying to book what would be my safe haven for the upcoming year. When student life knocks on your door and tells you to leave your familiar surroundings, things can get a bit tricky. The house you will live in will play a major role in how your academic life unfolds, so it is important to feel that you have made the right choice. When I arrived at The Stay Club, exactly 52 weeks ago now, I didn’t know what to expect. The virtual tours of the rooms certainly helped, but that wasn’t what I was curious about. It was important to feel the ambiance of the place, see the expressions of the people (both residents and employees alike).

Credit: @THE STAY CLUB

In the mayhem of the check in day I could see the building was beautiful, but that was about all I could see. Admittedly, it wasn’t until the first couple of weeks passed, and my daze from the change in countries faded, that I started to realize the value of the place. Mainly, there is the correct balance between solitude and loudness. You can find your alone time whenever you want to, but in those occasions that you would rather not be locked up in your studio your options are endless. The easiest one is the lobby, but there are also classrooms packed with people who will be in the same stressed situation as you and of course the patio or the entrance.

Credit: @THE STAY CLUB

My personal experience dictates that I become somewhat of a weirdo when immerged in situations, people, or places that excite this unfamiliar feeling in me – it’s as if I lag functionality at that moment. Naturally, this creates a great amount of stress for a newcomer; and yet I soon realized it was not necessary for me to feel this way. The environment was somehow able to make the transition easier, and the unfamiliar feeling faded sooner than I thought.

Credit: @THE STAY CLUB

What surprised me most in my experience though, were the weeks leading up to my dissertation. The dissertation, as the pinnacle of student life’s stress, an accumulation of every little source of anxiety you have ever experienced all at once, is a challenging time. And during that challenging time, you need all the support you can get!

When I decided to finish the bigger part of the project while in London, I was not quite sure about my choice. In a surprising turn of events though, it was at that time that it became evident that The Stay Club was more than a student accommodation; rather, it was a community on its own merit. From the polite and always smiling café owners, to the reception team that will always make you laugh with one pawn or another, or the maintenance team that greets you every time despite rushing for one thing or the other, you can feel a part of this place in some way or another.

Personally, it was at that time when my 12 hour shifts at the lobby would be made bearable by the fact that I was in fact at that lobby, that I realised I had to pat myself in the back for choosing to stay here!

Top 7 Things to Do this September

Top 7 Things to Do this September

by Nina Christopoulou

September is the month that signifies the beginning of the year, in more ways than one. As Autumn officially arrives, London puts on its best show with innumerable events and activities to get you inspired and excited for the winter ahead!

7. London Brunch Fest

Foodies out there, rejoice! Your festival is here… Just when we thought London couldn’t get more of a foodie city, it proves us wrong. On the 1st and 2nd of September you will have the opportunity to visit Brick Lane for an amazing brunch experience. There are two ticket options, the basic one and of course the one for the VIB (Very Important Bruncher) depending on your relationship with brunch! For more check out the event’s dedicated website .

Credit: @London Brunch Fest

6. Tower of London Food Festival

The food is next level and the setting is one of a kind. On September 7th the historic Tower of London will open its doors and invite chefs, culinary experts, entertainment and live music acts to set the scene for an incredible weekend. What’s more? The entry to the Tower of London Food Festival is included in your ToL admission ticket. Quite the bargain wouldn’t you agree? You can always find out more or book here.

Credit: @My Way In London

5. OnBlackheath

This one has been up and running since 2014, and guarantees you will have the time of your life. A festival unlike any other, the music scene is set up by the likes of Paloma Faith, Billy Bragg and De La Soul, while the food village and family fun-filled activities compliment the music perfectly!

Credit: @ONBlackheath Festival

4. Videogames

One of the most fascinating expositions announced for the coming year, is coming to the V&A. The era of gaming unravels as this expo takes us through the artwork, animation and communities that defined gaming. Discover this one starting September 18th!

Credit: @Maxwell | Nintendólatra

3. London Design Festival

London goes out on a limb every year to prove it is the capital of design, and every year it does exactly that. We suggest you investigate your key destinations beforehand, because with eight “Design Districts” and five “Design Destinations” alongside the innumerable museums, you are going to have a tough time deciding where to go! Thankfully, the London Design Festival website has all the information you need to sort out your visits for the LDF (find out more here). Get ready to start exploring on September 16th…

Credit: @London Design Festival

2. Open house London

One of the highlights of the year would definitely have to be this great opportunity to roam through buildings normally closed to the public. The architectural wonders of London open their doors for free and invite guests to join tours, guided walks and activities! Be prepared though, this will last a mere two days (22-23). If you would like to find out more, have a look here.

Credit: @London’s Best

1. London Fashion Week Festival

This one attracts fashionistas from around the world, but it is quite an experience even for those that are not fashion crazed. From talks by industry experts to shows or shopping curated designer collections, LFW has it all! Even if attending is not in your calendar, passing by the venue means you will stumble upon some exciting street fashion – so save the date (September 20-24)! However, we suggest you have a look at their schedule as there are so many things worth your time!

Credit: @London Fashion Week Festival

5 Tips to get you through your Not-So-Happy Days

5 Tips to get you through your Not-So-Happy Days

by Nina Christopoulou

The stress of student life can get a little bit overwhelming, as you ease your way into adulthood. When you get that under-the-weather feeling, remember our tips and find the tip that works for you, to get you through your not-so-happy days!

1. Exercise

The beneficial effects of exercise have been widely researched, that’s very well known. What may be less known is the fact that even a 7-minute workout can do wonders for your mood! So whenever you feel a little blue, put your running shoes on or simply do a couple of jumping jacks!

Credit: @SPIN

2. Plan a trip

No, no, we don’t actually mean book it. But in that case when you catch yourself not-so-happy as per usual, a little daydreaming does the trick. Have a look into flights, think about your dream destination and let your imagination run free. That’s one little hack that is bound to put a smile on your face!

Credit: @MARIANN YIP | NYC BLOGGER 🇺🇸🇭🇰

3. Do a good deed

The feeling that you get when doing a good deed is definitely unbeatable. So that moment that your not-so-happy day comes knocking on your door, cook for two and take the warm meal to someone in need. Or roam through your closet and find a couple of t-shirts that even you forgot you had and give them away. Any little thing will really help you realise that it’s important to count your blessings.

Credit: @Random Acts of Kindness

4. Chocolate – the darker the better

Chocolate is a scientifically proven mood enhancer, and dark chocolate is even more so than your average milk chocolate bars. Treat yourself to a pretty low-cal dark chocolate bar and you will feel the difference!

Credit: @Amar Sirohi (Food & Lifestyle)

5. Do your very own dance party

Not sure you feel like getting out of bed? Put on that one childhood favourite party song (we all have one, let’s face it!) and do your very own dance party. You will feel energised instantly, and catch yourself smiling after the song is over!

Credit: @Dance Goals

9 Hacks for Surviving Student life

9 Hacks for Surviving Student life

by Nina Christopoulou

So… student life: easier said than done huh? Well, it’s no piece of cake that’s for sure, but we have some tips that are bound to make the experience a whole lot more enjoyable!

9. Make budgeting a priority!

Try to make it your mission to find the best way to keep yourself in check when it comes to money. There are so many ways to save money in London, from apps to brand discount schemes for students, but there’s also this: prepaid cards. You can’t go wrong with your budget if you are using a prepaid card; simply because when you run out, there’s no more where that came from! So try to find the way that works best for you, and make budgeting a priority.

Credit: @The Budget Mom by Kumiko Love

8. Familiarize yourself with the “speed read” concept.

Once you start uni, you realize soon enough that the core readings are overwhelming on their own. Then add on top of that essay readings, project research and you end up feeling like a day should have 28 hours for you to make-do. That’s where speed reads come in! Instead of going through every single word of texts that are mundane and not the focal point of your interests, try scanning them. You get a pretty good picture of what the lecture is about, without burdening yourself with a huge amount of information.

Credit: @Makenna Johnson 💛

7. Find your balance

Needless to say that student life is not all about studying. But once you get all settled in and enrolled in uni, you are going to focus on social life and perhaps it may take a little too much of your focus. Finding that golden line in between your essays and your outings from the get-go is important to get you through the next few years.

Credit: @Alice D. Holmes

6. Don’t leave your assignments to the last minute

That is to say, organize them early on, not necessarily don’t do the work last minute – although that would be good too! As much as one may love to procrastinate (let’s not kid ourselves), it’s another thing to not even know what you are supposed to do. Once the semester begins, get your assignments in line, pick a subject and do some exploratory research. This small hack is ideal especially if you are a last-minute type of person. This way, you will not run into unexpected issues last minute, plus you will be aware of what to pay special attention to during lectures and seminars!

Credit: @iSetups

5. Get to know your lecturers!

To make the most of student life is to become acquainted with the people that can immerse you in your academic work. This does not mean spending 24 hours a day at the library, but you did pick a field of studies because it peaked your interest. Therefore, it makes sense that getting to know the people that teach you means you get to unearth specific aspects of said study that may be perfect for you, but you wouldn’t come across them any other way!

Credit: @educationsnapshots.com

4. Master the 20-min nap…

Somewhere in between the lectures, the assignments, the presentations, hitting the gym and your social life, sleep normally takes a back seat. There’s this one little thing called a power-nap and it’s your key to success. 20 minutes is enough to reduce your sleep drive and you can wake up feeling energized and ready to conquer the world!

Credit: @Bedroom Goals! 🙌🏼

3. Remember your water…

Now, this hack maybe true for your everyday life, but we had something more specific in mind. When the party goes a little too far and you have a couple more drinks than usual you normally end up with a pumping head during your next-day’s morning lecture. Chug as much water as you can and those headaches will definitely not get the better of you!

Credit: @Baard Lunde

2. Find your studying spot!

In order to study, you need to get your creative juices flowing. So location matters, and as cool as your uni library may be, there are many other spots around the city that may work much better for you, and may even be closer to your place. The Royal Festival Hall, the British Library and the Barbican are all spots to keep in mind.

Credit: @British Library

1. Stay in the Loop

Surviving student life is all good and well, but our number 1 tip is about enjoying it too: there are many ways to keep in touch with London’s greatest events, all the way from Time Out to our very own The Stay Club Blog. We recommend you keep up with what’s current because let’s face it – London has so many events that it’s a shame to miss out on them!

Credit: @Duck & Waffle

Five Most Binge-Worthy Netflix Series

Five Most Binge-Worthy Netflix Series

by Nina Christopoulou

Netflix is a personal business for most people, with their choices being based mostly on their individual love for one genre or the other. And yet there are some series that are so undeniably good, that it ultimately doesn’t matter what your preference is when it comes to plots. All that matters, is finding enough time to binge-watch the entire series. That is why we have some suggestions below in case you were looking for a little something to go along with your snack-filled fridge this weekend!

5. Mindhunter

One of the moodiest series I’ve seen lately, I felt like closing it within the first five minutes. For some reason though, you resist the urge and the show rewards you along the way. The story of how the bureau’s first behavioural unit came to be is exhilarating to watch. Following Holden Ford and Bill Tench in their attempts of expanding people’s perception of serial killers, through giving a psychologically sustainable rationale for their actions, the series managed to gain an IMDB score of 8.6 on its own merit.

Credit: @

4. 13 Reasons Why

The cast may be teenagers for the most part, and yet the target audience cannot be reduced to teenagers. The show demonstrated from the get go its dedication to blunt portrayals of real life issues, mainly bullying in all its forms. When a girl commits suicide, she sends out tapes which tell her story from her own perspective, in an attempt to show how she ended up taking her own life. Seasons 1 and 2 have an entirely different build up, but remain true to their unapologetic character, captivating the audience in the process.

Credit: @13 Reasons Why

3. Jessica Jones

A tormented anti-hero stars in this Marvel Netflix Original series, which is exhilarating to watch. A woman with incredible strength, who drowns her sorrows in alcohol and despises of anyone calling her a hero is forced to step up. Jessica Jones’ storyline, other than the ability to lift cars and other sort-of-heavy objects with ease, also includes struggles with regret and the individual pursuit of happiness that are relatable. The series has gone on to its second season, and it is even better than we could have imagined.

Credit: @Radio Times

2. Dark

The first German original series produced for Netflix, Dark is centred around the disappearance of two young children in a small German town. I will spare you the details in an attempt to keep this blog post a spoiler free one, but let’s just say that we’ve got one plot twist after the other, as the pieces of the puzzle come together and you are left in utter shock with the revelations.

Credit: @DARK

1. Money Heist

Think of movies you have seen in the past with robberies. Now think of the most exciting robbery concepts in those movies. Double them by ten and you will start to understand why you should clear out your schedule for the next two to three days. The “Professor” has designed the biggest robbery in history, attempting to print money at the Royal Mint of Spain. For the purposes of this plan, he recruits 8 people that go into the Mint and take hostages. The plot evolves from there in the most intriguing way possible.

Credit: @La Casa de papel Fanpage

7 Things You Wish You Knew Before Starting University

7 Things You Wish You Knew Before Starting University

by Nina Christopoulou

Most students arrive in London and have left all their preparations to the last minute. Why that is? Largely because youth entails constantly being a rookie! So we decided to help and give you some pointers before you embark on your academic journey:

1. How to write essays

For those of you coming to study in London from abroad, be warned! UK universities expect you to be able to write essays, and pretty good ones. But essay writing is not as easy as it sounds – you need clear argumentation, attention to detail etc. While you can get some help with that at your uni, we would suggest looking into it a little earlier.

Credit: @#LTKhome

2. What coffee works for you

Although there are numerous places in London where you can find a lot of variations of coffee (Pret, Starbucks, Nero and the list goes on), if you are hooked on coffee like ourselves, you will need to do your own market research to find the ONE (… that wakes you up at 7 a.m. on a Monday morning for your 3 hour long lecture with that boring professor you hate to listen to).

Credit: @Leo Chan 🦁 陳國豪

3. When to work

Deadline periods are meant for you to finalise the work you did throughout the semester, not do the work you should have done earlier. Get a head start on those assignments and spare yourself the 5 sequenced all nighters!

Credit: @GoodNotes

4. Minding that budget

Student life can be a pain for your wallet, so try your best to adhere to some sort of financial schedule. Thankfully in London you have a lot of hacks at your disposal: 10% student discount at retailers, happy hour for more alcohol than usual, and bikes to save you the steep oyster charge!

Credit: @yuuka ❤︎❤︎

5. Making the most out of Freshers Week

Every beginning is tough, but if you show up to Freshers Week and get involved, you will find out that things will run smoother than expected. It is a great opportunity to find out stuff about your uni, extra activities and clubs and of course, socialise as much as you can!

Credit: @U.M.F Tîrgu Mureș

6. Getting to know your lecturers

Unlike school, uni was not imposed on you. So make the most of it by engaging with your lecturers – ask questions, get their advice, make them know your name. It will help you throughout your studies, in finding your interests and most importantly, it will help you when it is time to leave uni!

Credit: @QS Top MBA

7. You need to do you

Saved the best for last: stress is definitely going to take the best of you at some points. You need to find things that work for you – if you are not a morning person, don’t force yourself to study in the morning. If you have spent 8 hours in the library, no matter how much you have left, grab a drink with your friends and relax. Take care of yourself first and foremost!

Credit: @Unistore

London ranked top city in the world for students

London ranked top city in the world for students

by Nina Christopoulou

Credit: @@LONDON

The votes are in and London has the lead! The QS higher education group just published their review of the 30 top university cities to study.

A list produced by data analysis on a survey conducted among 50,000 students shows that London is their top pick. London is renowned for its selection of world-class institutions, with many great names such as Imperial, UCL, LSE and King’s College. But what other factors contributed to this choice, other than the number of top universities? The survey included questions on a student’s major worries: integration into the job market, diversity of culture and of course the quality of life.

The fact that London is a very international setting means that overseas students feel comfortable in their environment, and have the added benefit of a multi-cultural education. Regarding the job market, it is positively viewed as a place where connecting with future employers and finding professional opportunities is enabled.

Its benefits seem to outweigh the slightly elevated cost of life in student’s eyes, allowing for London to surpass cities such as Montreal and Paris which previously held the reigns! As for our role in making your student experience even better in the top city for students? The Stay Club’s vision is to provide students and young professionals with affordable, premium accommodation; always in great London locations!

Learn more about The Stay Club

Easy and Cheap Ways to Personalise your Home in London

Easy and Cheap Ways to Personalise your Home in London
by Nina Christopoulou

Your house during your student life is less a home and more like a haven, protecting you from the stress and worries of the outside world. Consequently, it is very important that you make it your own – but when walking in to an already furnished space that is kind of hard to do. That’s why we found the best means of personalising your home for you:

Lighting

London is a city with the bare minimum of sunlight, therefore lighting in your place is essential. From adding a couple of extra lamps to changing your lamp’s hat to a lighter colour, try to find your own lighting in order to feel comfortable and relaxed.

Credit: @Elsie + Emma A Beautiful Mess

Mirrors, mirrors, mirrors

Mirrors are not only useful for checking hairstyles and outfits prior to your big Saturday night – decorating your room with more mirrors opens up the space and adds shimmer. Also, it’s a cost-friendly alternative to works of art (especially if you make a trip to IKEA). Well, all that is except if you are living at the Stay Club, where mirrors are an essential part of the studio’s design!

Credit: @Alexander James Interiors

Hoorray for student friendly sites

There are tons of sites which offer a pretty convenient student discount and some amazing home decor options. From Asos to Urban Outfitters, their home section will blow your mind and you can get a 10% discount anytime. Then again, there is also Primark where student discounts are not available, but not needed either as their low-cost items are worth a look through.

Credit: @Caitie

Memories abound

Relocating is always a lonesome process at first. So make sure your greatest memories come along with you. Whether it is in the form of polaroids attached to your hanging twinkly lights, a collage for your wall or good old frames (see student friendly stores for some of the latter), your photographs of beloved friends, family and moments can help make your place your own in no time.

Credit: @L e a R u g o l e 🖤

Pillowfights, now

Cushions and blankets are rarely provided even if bedding is. So, why not get a few to spruce things up a bit? Ignore the boring monochrome ones and go for funky patterns that mix well with the space’s colours in order to put your personal touch. You can also use your own old t-shirts as a fabric, buying only the cheap fluffy fill for cushions.

Credit: @Julie Denby

Vision boards are a must

What better way of personalising your studio other than splurging your own thoughts and plans on the walls? From a poster board to a cork board or a small canvas there are many cheap alternatives you can use. All that is left then is to gather your inspirational bits and pieces and arrange them as you please.

Credit: @Anna Granberg Kalaritou