Hadrian’s Tipi is back in the Toon for the 2017 Christmas season! If you visited the festive Tipi on the Central Station site in Newcastle in 2016 then you’re in for a real treat this time round, it’s back on a brand new site and it’s bigger than ever!
I visited with Plankton for the official launch night and let me tell you, it’s nothing like last year! Hadrian’s Tipi can be found on the infamous old Odeon site at the bottom end of Northumberland Street, right in front of Commercial Union House. This year it comes with a whole Street Food village attached to it all lit up with festive fairy lights.
First up, access for the time being is a funny one, part of the site is still a working demolition zone so to access the tipi we had to walk down Pilgrim Street on one side and then back up the other. Plankton has been psyched about visiting the tipi for days, he’s called it the tutu and the pipi which has made things a little confusing but needless to say, when he saw it all lit up in the dark, I think he almost cried.
We were greeted on arrival with hot cider and mulled wine and before we’d taken two steps Plankton spotted a German bratwurst street food stall and his eyes lit up. We stopped to eat at a long picnic bench where the people either side were in great spirits and chatted to Plankton about his night, he told them he’d only just arrived but was planning on getting very drunk. Yes, he seriously said that. The bratwurst was good, at £5.50 it’s on the expensive side for a hotdog but in line with what you’d expect to pay for festive street food and he ate every last scrap of it so definitely worth it.
The tipi is marketed as child and pet friendly and we saw a few other families taking advantage of the large outside seated area at the back, and in the tipi itself watching the live music, as well as lots of people with dogs. We spotted my lovely pal Imogen from Newcastle fashion label Fash1 so Plankton took the opportunity to pet her adorable pet dogs by the open fire. The majority of people there were there for a night out but don’t let that put you off taking kids, we still had a great time during our visit and I’m biased of course, but the people in Newcastle are the friendliest people you’ll meet.
Launch night at Hadrian’s Tipi was busy. I took Plankton along not really knowing what to expect but the atmosphere there was great, and very festive. From the fir tree garlands inside the tipi to the decorated tipi poles, every effort has been made to ensure that it feels like Holiday season whilst you’re in there. There’s different live music on inside the tipi daily and there are wooden benches and crates to sit on and barrel table tops, if you manage to get in there early enough then be sure to grab a seat by the open fire pit to stay toasty and to create the perfect Instagram capture.
Plankton and I wandered instead of staying static, and enjoyed trying out different foods from the street food sellers, we loved the white hot chocolate from R Place coffee and the American burgers from Fat Hippo and we’ll definitely back for more during the tipi’s 2017 stint. The new location makes it easier for families using the tipi on a weekend too, in fact it’s perfectly positioned for a hot chocolate after viewing the brand new Fenwick Christmas Window.
In or around Newcastle between now and Christmas? Then it’s definitely worth a visit if you want to amp up your festive-ness! Want to know Plankton’s views? His official review: “I thought it was going to be crap but it was actually awesome and I loved it!” Yeah, he’s got a real way with words this one…