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Fresh air, fresh fashion!

Seven compelling reasons to head to Bicester Village including up to 20 per cent off prices in April's renowned Private Sale and the Do-Good pop up boutique. Trust us, no-show is not an option.

Have you woken up today slightly dazed, blinking blankly into the daylight and wondered how we’re already nearly in flippin April? Literally I still have a Christmas wreath on my door (yup, I really need to take that down now). Seemingly overnight our winter calibration of chunky knits and bovver boots, cosy nights and casseroles have been replaced by a primal urge to shop for a new season (don’t worry, the snow will go by next week!).

Well I say, lean into that urge, lady – only make sure you do it right. There’s no shortage of places to buy those stylish new cargo pants, maxi dresses and reimagined trench coats but my advice is to head to luxury shopping destination Bicester Village to pick up your key spring pieces. Here’s why you might want to join me for an Oxfordshire jaunt.

1. DID ANYONE SAY ‘PRIVATE SALE’?

Too right I did! From tomorrow (1 April), Bicester Village’s hugely anticipated Private Sale swings into action, with a whole raft of brands offering up to 20 per cent off the village price. Brands to take part including The White Company, Sweaty Betty, Reiss, Manolo Blahnik, Clarins, Allsaints, BA&SH, Monika Vinader, Barbour, Belstaff, Emma Bridgwater, Etro, Bally, New Balance, Under Armour, Linda Farrow, Aquazzura and Hackett. To gain access to the Private Sale you need to sign up for Bicester Village membership – it’s free to join and takes seconds, plus you get early info on events and rewards so it’s a bit of no-brainer even if you can’t make the Private Sale this time round.

2. BOOK ONE OF THE NEW PRIVATE SHOPPING SUITES

OK, I’m very excited about this. These beautifully appointed personal shopping suites were launched in late 2021 but still no-one really seems to know about them yet. It’s such a bonus to have something like this onsite and it’s open to ALL guests – the only thing you need to do, obviously, is pre-book by making an appointment through the Personal Shopping team. They’ll then give you a bespoke, discreet personal shopping service to help find what you’re looking for – really useful if you’re trying to find something for a particular occasion. It’s a 12 strong team and, unsurprisingly given the brands at Bicester Village and the celebrity clientele, these guys really know their stuff.

3. SHOP NEW BRANDS

Shopping is a bit like a long-term relationship – you need to keep it fresh. Fortunately it turns out Bicester Village is a bit minxy, and likes to mix things up a bit! New brands regularly pop up here, and for Spring there are some gorgeous additions, including Bella Freud, This Works, Eleventy, Moose Knuckles. 7 For All Mankind, Soho Home, Elemis, Isabel Marant, Jil Sander, Celeste Starre that opened just this week, plus brand new DO GOOD pop-up charity boutique.

4. SHOP OUTDOORS

You’ll have seen the news. Covid is on the rise again and you know the drill on this one. Staying outdoors as much as possible is the safest way to shop, and that’s basically Bicester Village’s USP, with miles of fresh air walkways between the 160+ boutiques, along with at least half a dozen outdoor dining spots and a lovely natural playground for the kids near Café Wolseley.

5. SUSTENANCE = HAPPY SHOPPING

The Café Wolseley terrace

Shopping is not an endurance event – refuelling is important, right? My tip is to head to the newly refurbished farmshop restaurant and café (pictured) from Soho House – the spring menu has just launched (try the duck, pomegranate, orange, crispy shallot salad, it’s awesome) and there’s a really lovely large rooftop area for sunny days. Also worth your consideration are Italian restaurant La Tua Pasta, South Asian specialist Shan Shui and of course Café Wolseley, elegant little sister to the world-famous Wolseley in Mayfair.

6. GO VIRTUAL

Can’t make it to Bicester Village personally? Meh, relax! Just get a Bicester Village virtual assistant to do it for you. Contact the boutique you want to shop at to organise a private virtual appointment, and they’ll set it up for you to buy direct. You can have your goodies delivered to your home while you’re reclining on your chaise longue, stuffing grapes into your mouth.

7. WIN A £1000 DAY OUT AT BICESTER VILLAGE ON US!

I’m not saying Muddy’s amazing (um, much) but I have just snaffled one Muddy reader a VIP red carpet day out at Bicester Village. Head over to Reader Treats and go win yourself a £1000 gift card that includes a roll call of… lunch or dinner for two, access to the Apartment, a Personal Shopping appointment, hands-free shopping and reserved parking. Thank you, you’re welcome and I know!

Bicester Village, 50 Pingle Drive, Bicester, OX26 6WD. Tel: +44(0)1869 366266; enquiry@bicestervillage.com

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