London calling as we turn 6

We woke up in a ditch after our sixth birthday party – thankfully, this one was more hipster cereals and dirty burgers than damp mud and shame. Yes, for this year’s birthday celebrations we certainly didn’t slum it as we made ourselves at home in Shoreditch.

Our annual mystery birthday bash started on Friday morning when the team caught the train to London – with an obligatory glass of fizz. Off the train we made our way to the stunning, sprawling (and very difficult to navigate at night) Andaz hotel.

“I’ve got two layers on … and I’m tucked in!” Lisa wasn’t prepared for the sun.

After checking out our rooms we ventured out for some food at Pump Shoreditch – a street food haven. The selection of Argentinian steak sarnies, chicken burger wraps and falafel pitas caused some jealous eyeballing, but thankfully some team building fun was already planned at our next stop.

Split into teams, we tackled escape rooms at HintHunt London. Half of us found inner pieces of the puzzle in a Japanese zen room while the rest of us channelled the Coen brothers to make the private detective room look bloody simple.

“I’m keeping it real.” Bew on wearing a t-shirt for a night out

The reward for our escape was a few drinks in a sunny beer garden. And while enjoying the weather we got another reason to celebrate as we found out we’re nominated for two Chip Shop Awards.

After going back to the hotel for a quick change (and a quick drink) we went around the corner for some cocktails and posh nosh at the Hoxton Grill. After the meal we took full advantage of the photobooth and bagged some hilarious floating head photos.

“You fit right in with that hat and tash combo.” Sam was ready for Shoreditch

A few eyebrows were raised when Cazza told us she’d organised an after-dinner activity that involved a dimly-lit club, paddles and a lot of balls. She hadn’t mistaken Lonely Planet for lonely hearts – and our evening was more ping pong than ding dong as we tested out our skills at Bounce, the home of ping pong.

Some of the team (the wise ones) headed back, while the rest got our mojos working and made the dance floor at The Blues Kitchen our foot-stomping ground until the early hours.

The lights came on and all that was left to do was make it to the hotel – not an easy task with Bew leading the way. Seems our creative director struggles with directions after a few G&Ts.

“I don’t want to see that video of me drinking red wine in the street.” An undisclosed member of the team couldn’t wait until the next bar

Compared to last year’s late-night laundry basket antics, the end of the party was rather subdued. Cazza had some cheesy chips and Jamie got 20 chicken nuggets. Maybe we’re getting old.

Needless to say, we all had a great time and it was certainly a birthday to just about remember. And in case anyone’s memory is a little hazy, some kind soul took lots of pictures and put them on Facebook.