• Where to go

    Doesn't everyone want the 'lifted seat' and 'whittled waist' promised by barrecore founder Niki Rein? Well there's news for those who long to demi-plié in her ballet-based workout class; as Niki opens her fifth studio, in Kensington. 

    Bang on Kensington Church Street, the new space has two basement studio rooms, showers and all the paraphernalia you need for post-class freshen up. Also new is the barreASANA class; a yoga tinctured barre class taught by one of Niki's trainers. (Each trainer has to complete 200 hours of training before they're let loose in a studio.) Obviously for yoga-loving hardcore/barrecore girls this class is the dream; fast-paced, focusing on length through the muscle groups, freeing the spine, toning the limbs and tightening the core. All to spot-on upbeat/downbeat tunes according to the physical rhythm. "The playlist took me as long to create as the class," says Niki. 

    However… I'm not a yoga girl. Hard as I try, the flow thing just ain't happening. So the best thing about barreASANA from my awkward perspective, is the class is practiced in near darkness. And at the end, there's a lovely meditation with a middle-eye stroke from the teacher. So despite being down-dog while the rest of the class was up-dog, no one noticed. Which meant I left barrecore Kensington feeling yoga-calm with a waggy tail.


    barrecore offers all Vanity Fair A-List members the chance to win one private barrecore class and a 10-class pass at barrecore Kensington (total worth £320). Don't miss out on future offers, sign up to the A-List.

  • What to see

    Twenty-five years ago in London, one man was changing what it meant to be a chef.

    Marco Pierre White, a lad from Leeds, arrived in The Big Smoke aged 16 with just £7.36 in his pocket. He learnt his trade as a commis under Albert and Michel Roux at Le Gavroche and by the age of 33 was the youngest chef to earn 3 Michelin stars.

    Fag hanging out of his mouth, long curly hair, a face model-chiselled from the stress of working his kitchen, a fearsome reputation and never short of a beautiful girlfriend. As fellow chef and Kitchen Confidential author Anthony Bourdain explains, "Marco Pierre White was the original rock-star chef - the guy who all of us wanted to be… He made history."

    This historic moment was captured, thanks to the work by late photographer Bob Carlos Clarke, whose iconic images of Marco were published in Pierre White's cookbook White Heat. Next week, The Little Black Gallery in Chelsea opens an exhibition celebrating the book's 25th anniversary. Alongside the raw, punchy images of Marco, is an anniversary edition of the book that includes 64 new pages of material; recipes, behind the scenes reportage and contributions from some who worked in Marco's kitchens, including Jason Atherton, Mario Batali and Gordon Ramsay. All whippersnappers then, Titans now.


    White Heat 25 / Photographs of Marco Pierre White by Bob Carlos Clarke, supported by Olympus, is at The Little Black Gallery, 13A Park Walk, Chelsea, London SW10 0AJ from 10 February - 10 March.

    White Heat 25 is published by Mitchell Beazley in February.

    © The Estate of Bob Carlos Clarke

  • What to buy

    Saint Valentine can't have imagined that his legacy would be a mass of overpriced chocolates, oversized cards and overblown blooms. But rather than be a curmudgeon about the 14th February, make the most of potential gift receiving! (Or self-gifting). Herewith a few of my favourites:

    Handpicked ingredients including Tuberose, Amber crystals and sandalwood are the melange for Bella Freud's new candle. The red glass receptacle is inscribed with Bella's signature chainstitch. "Loving is the private doodle as you think of your Amour," she explains. A doodle most gratefully received.

    Loving candle, £38 at bellafreud.com

    Meanwhile, slogan queen Katharine Hamnett's LOVE t-shirt, is a multi-layered Valentines present. Five pounds from the sale of each tee goes to Kids Company, the charity providing support to inner-city children, whose development can be severely affected as a result of neglect, abuse and lack of love. At Kids Company, love is front and centre.

    T-shirt £30 katharinehamnett.com
    Kids Company, kidsco.org.uk

    Who didn't draw an arrow-pierced heart on homemade Valentine cards as a young'un? Happy first-love memories now worked-up into an adult version by LA-based KDIA Jewelry 18k rose gold set with hot pink and cool blue sapphires. Wear your heart on your finger, not on your sleeve.

    Ring £10,800   www.brownsfashion.com