Last night i went to a cocktail reception at the new Speakeasy Bar located in Shooters Entertainment centre in Kiev http://shooters.kiev.ua/en/ for sponsors of Burns Night previous and this year on 19th March at the Hilton Hotel the 21st Year of Burns Night in Kyiv.

I had only seen these fantastic photographs before taken my friend Nickolay the only google certified photographer in Ukraine here is the new Speakeasy Bar,


However as great as the photography undoubted is the experience in walking down the stairs to the bar and going through the entrance was a great and pleasant surprise.2016-01-29 22.08.38

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the Speakeasy Bar and Cocktail Bartender  very charming lady

Inviting, intimate and like many of the original speakeasy bars no windows so total cosy atmosphere and you could be anywhere, there is plenty of space but arranged in such a way that is a very personal place feels like it was just for you.

The  long bar had a mirror backed showcase of some very special whiskies of course being part of the Robert McNeil , Stuart McKenzie complex then you would expect nothing less. The pianist is a delight to listen to playing speakeasy music that everyone would enjoy, and not loud enough to spoil your enjoyment and atmosphere of this special bar.2016-01-29 21.14.53

Of course again as you would rightly expect the waitresses are dressed in their beguiling kilts never did kilts look this good,

Speakeasy mini burgers

The food was excellent I had the three small burgers, chicken, pork and beef, well they said they were small but infact they were substantial and very tasty.

On looking at my watch I saw that it was close to 0200, you see the atmosphere is so good and since you can’t see outside then time has no bearing and enjoyment continues.

This can be a romantic evening for two, or a party with your friends.

Well done Stuart and Robert you have created a very special rendezvous that I for one shall look forward to my next visit.



I have made another two visits to Opera Hotel since the last time I wrote about my fabulous stays at this very warm and friendly hotel.

I do feel that’s it a home away from home so much so that they put me in the same room when I stay.

I am always receive a very friendly greeting on my arrival;It takes around 5 minutes from the car to the room. I first get the feeling I am at home when the doorman followed by the bellboy, the concierge and reception all saying welcome back Mr. Finn. My reservation is ready to sign always.

The welcome is always warm and sincere and due to an excellent management team who believe in a friendly, warm yet professional approach to their guests.

I was in Kyiv on this occasions to attend the Lions Club Presidents Dinner,   a most prestigious dinner the Lions Club also run a Burns Night in Kyiv which is the biggest outside of Edinburgh, this year will be its 21st year, so if you’re in Kyiv and are staying at the Opera Hotel and want a very special evening in the best Scottish Traditions the evening is on 19th March. Look up Burns Night online.  Opera Hotel has always supported Burns Night.

This is an exceptional hotel with a truly exceptional restaurant the Teatro uniquely named for the Opera Hotel is within walking distance to the Opera House, St. Sophia Cathedral and the main shopping streets of Kyiv.

Hotels usually these days have a variety of restaurants to choose from, the Opera Hotel is no exception; they have a very talented newly promoted executive Chef Eric Testa, Eric and his team of chefs have created brilliant new dishes and desserts.

The Teatro Restaurant has to be one of the finest in Kiev; there is the main dining room and the attached cozy, intimate, and warm balcony with the great service you would expect from a 5 star hotel. Teatro restaurant is a soft inviting environment, combining elegance, comfort, with superb service added to the delights of the fresh produce used in its famed preparations

The Breakfast is really everthing that you would expect from a quality hotel of this class.

Cold dishes, juices, cereals, salads, hot dishes with a full English breakfast choices and not to mention the egg menu would be a mistake eggs any way you want them cooked to perfection, Eggs Benedict to die for. EGG MENUthe egg menu

BREAKFAST COLD DISHESBreakfast cold dishes


Hot Dish Breakfast1


Hot dish breakfast 2

The Teatro also does a business lunch fantastic value with choice of three courses with salad bar a selection of cold meats and cheeses

Whilst I was in the Opera Hotel I was fortunate enough to be invited with Stuart McKenzie a prominent local business man from Helensburgh in Scotland who has run Burns night here for 21 years this year, Joe Cuddy a longtime friend that was one of the elite cabin crew directors on Concorde to a master class of cookery with Eric Testa the Executive Chef, such a fantastic couple of hours,

Stuart McKenzie Joe Cuddy Master Chef Eric Testa and Fred Finn

Stuart McKenzie, Joe Cuddy, Master Chef Eric Testa and Fred Finn

The Hotel does run Cooking master classes that guests for a small fee can be made very welcome they usually have a class of 8 to 12 people and this is held in the Teatro restaurant not in the kitchen a space does not permit

The dishes we prepared were


Tuna Light grilled yellow fin tuna fillet with new potatoes & asparagus sautéed in duck fact and served with lemon oil & onion chutney.


Salmon Gilled fillet of salmon with marinated beetroot, quail eggs, salmon roe & a cannel of potato with Mediterranean vegetables tartar served with a cream of salmon roe and broccoli caramel.

Calamari Carbonara was the third dish

The things we learnt were amazing, how to clean plates with a touch of vinegar, how to cook on greaseproof paper on the grill were among a couple of things, yes our dishes under the watchful eye of Chef Eric were to be commended for the quality, maybe I could have a second career as a chef.it was a thoroughly enjoyable and just shows what you can learn even as a guest of such an hotel.



In the cozy friendly lobby always bedecked with fresh flowers ,  a great selections’ of cakes are on display to try while also enjoying the great lobby atmosphere and menu which is the same as Bellini’s bar. Try delicious cakes you can buy to take away, choose from Chocolate Noire cake, Cheese cake, Exotic cake, Bourbon vanilla cake, Tiger orange cake or ask them to make one of your own recipe.

I am glad that the Opera Hotel has again won the prestigious trip advisor Travelers’ Choice® 2015 Winner

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photos of the fabulous Arabic Suit

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The rooms here are all individual, stylish, and have the warm ambience that is prevalent throughout the Opera Hotel.DSC07229 (Medium)

There is plenty of work space in the rooms with a super-fast and free Wi-Fi, or fixed LAN connection.

Bathrooms are beautifully equipped and complimented with Molton Brown English amenities , bathrobes and one  very welcome 5 star courtesy not normally found in many hotels is the basket for your shoes to be cleaned, simply call  the concierge desk and they will  bright and shining by the time you request in the morning.

In the cozy friendly lobby always bedecked with fresh flowers ,  a great selections’ of cakes are on display to try while also enjoying the great lobby atmosphere and menu which is the same as Bellini’s bar. Try delicious cakes you can buy to take away, choose from Chocolate Noire cake, Cheese cake, Exotic cake, Bourbon vanilla cake, Tiger orange cake or ask them to make one of your own recipe.

I am glad that the Opera Hotel has again won the prestigious trip advisor Travelers’ Choice® 2015 Winner

An full of character, established impressive boutique hotel, for the best in comfort and service for the guests

If your travels bring you to the most beautiful City of Kyiv stay at the Opera Hotel you won’t go wrong its fabulous brilliant place to stay you won’t tell me I am wrong.








I had really good feelings on going back again to the Impressa hotel, and to suite 101 in particular, on the ground floor right behind reception

Beautiful bedroom great and comfortable king size bed

Attractive well-appointed furnishings in spacious bedroom

Sitting room really great to be here in such stylish surrounds

Sitting room such a comfortable room brilliantly appointed

Fine natural wooden doors to entrance hall of 101

A beautiful suite with great décor and a king size bed full of character and charm. I enclose photos of this room. However all rooms are delightfully individual and to a high standard but, this room has to be my favourite.

The reception staff are always helpful, smiling and anxious to please.

I like the small personal and friendly ambiance of the Impressa Hotel with its Scottish heritage displayed very nicely in the hotel reception, also in the Shooters Restaurants, including the Limoncello Restaurant in Shooter Entertainment Centre/ Night club, now with new speakeasy bar in the centre together with the best disco well, for me anyway.

Impressa Hotel has a new Georgian restaurant located with adjoining door to the reception and it’s here that breakfast is served, I was there when it had just opened and staff were and restaurant all new so, not fair to pass any comment, although breakfast was great.

The Impressa has so much to offer its clients, high speed connected or Wi-Fi internet, excellent reception, concierge and porterage services.

It’s about 6 months since I last stayed here,

It’s a great place to stay small and intimate if you prefer it to the hustle and bustle of the much larger hotels

It’s a 2-minute walk from the Poshtova Ploshcha subway station and the funicular to St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery, and a pleasant walk down Andriivs’kyi descent with great souvenirs and many bargains to be had.