Newly opened

STAY: The Stock Exchange Hotel

Set within the former home of the Manchester Stock Exchange, every detail of the new Stock Exchange Hotel has been meticulously considered to create a five-star 40-room boutique hotel. Located on Norfolk Street, in the heart of central Manchester, the Edwardian Baroque building - with its original marble, brass and woodwork – has been carefully restored to breathe new life into one of the city’s most historically symbolic institutions. Opened on 15 November, the hotel includes an exciting new restaurant concept called The Bull & Bear, overseen by renowned British chef Tom Kerridge and located within the grand domed room which was previously the trading floor.

EAT: Chish and Fips

Previously the site of popular sushi restaurant Umezushi, it has now transitioned into a new Japanese fish and chip concept, Chish and Fips. The new venture specialises in tempura fish and chips - a first for Manchester - as well as chip alternatives such as aubergine or shiitake mushroom. The £10 fish boxes include a type of fish, seafood or fish alternative to choose from, and a variety of vegetables, toppings and sauces.

DRINK: The Edinburgh Castle

The Edinburgh Castle pub has stood since 1811 in Ancoats - Britain’s first industrial suburb now turned cool neighbourhood - and has recently re-opened its doors on Cutting Room Square. After undergoing refurbishment, The Edinburgh Castle now joins the likes of Mana, Trove, Rudy’s, The Jane Eyre, Elnecot and Seven Bro7hers who have created a fantastic dining and drinking scene in this constantly evolving part of the city centre. The pub offers great beers and a large whisky selection along with progressive and imaginative dishes with a wine list to match.

SHOP: Stall MCR at Kampus

An independent market for artists, makers and food producers, Stall MCR has popped up at Kampus for four weekends in the run up to Christmas. Conceived by the people behind GRUB, Stall MCR is the place to go for artisanal Christmas gifts from local traders. The pop-up will also offer food and drink and the chance to get a first look at Kampus, Manchester’s newest pubic garden space.

EVENT: Lightopia Festival

Europe’s biggest lantern and light festival has arrived in Manchester's Heaton Park. From November 21 until December 31 expect giant lanterns, lights, lasers, water screen shows, acrobats, musicians, family rides and street food at Lightopia in Manchester before it travels to London in the New Year.

EXHIBITION: Cosgrove Hall - Frame by Frame

Cosgrove Hall Films Archive takes you right back to the basics of animation by detailing the processes behind some of Britain's best loved children's animations. Located at Waterside Arts in Trafford, a new exhibition Cosgrove Hall Frame By Frame breaks down the most complex Cosgrove Hall series, such as The Wind in the Willows, looking at the finer details of stop motion production, with original puppets, costumes, production material and inside stories. The exhibition runs until 4 January 2020.

Coming soon

EVENT: Light Orchestra

Light Orchestra, an interactive sound and light installation, will have its European Premiere at Lightwaves Festival, Salford Quays, from Friday 6 December to Sunday 15 December. Visitors will be able to become conductors, directing a symphony of light and music with their arms - with increased movement the music becomes livelier and beams of light move more energetically, with slower movement, the music becomes soft and the light moves more gently. The installation aims to transform the public space into a concert hall.

EXHIBITION: Dippy the Dinosaur in Rochdale

The Natural History Museum’s superstar dinosaur, Dippy, is currently on a record-breaking UK tour and he lands in Rochdale in February 2020. Dippy’s star power has already drawn more than 1 million visitors to venues across the tour, and thousands more are expected to visit him in Number One Riverside, his only stop in the North West of England. Accompanying the dinosaur in Rochdale will be a major family-friendly exhibition at Touchstones Rochdale where children can explore all aspects of the natural world, from the dark swamplands of millions of years ago to our future planet and what it might look like. Dippy will be in Rochdale from 10 February to 28 June 2020.

EVENT: Chinese New Year

One of the first big events in Manchester’s annual calendar is Chinese New Year. From January 25 to 26, Manchester will be packed full of fun and fortune to celebrate the Year of the Rat – featuring the city’s famous red lanterns, a glittering golden dragon, live performances, the popular Dragon Parade and a street food and Chinese goods market throughout Chinatown.

EXHIBITION: Manchester Open Exhibition at HOME

Running from January until March 2020, HOME’s Manchester Open Exhibition – a major open-entry art show celebrating the creative talent of those across Greater Manchester – will be taking place for the first time. HOME’s gallery will be filled with work from 500+ Greater Manchester residents, selected by a panel consisting of art experts and community representatives. The exhibition is open to all, and will bring together artwork including paintings, prints, photography, sculpture, digital and mixed media, video and audio, spoken word, performance and more.

In case you missed it

PODCAST: In This Place: Gaychester

New to BBC Sounds is a new six-part podcast series looking at the LGBT+ history of Manchester – In This Place: Gaychester. By the 90s, the LGBT+ party scene in Manchester was famous enough to be known as Gaychester, and each episode in this series looks at different aspects of the city’s queer history. Presented by Nick Grimshaw, Annie Wallace, Cheddar Gorgeous, Rob Rinder, Dolly-Rose Campbell and Phil Lester, the podcasts cover episodes titled; History of Canal Street, Ballard of Harry Stokes, Manchester’s First Drag Ball?, Alan Turing’s Life in Manchester, Manchester and Section 28 and 30 Years of the Albert Kennedy Trust.

CULTURE: The Factory - new photos and video

The Factory is a landmark cultural venue for Manchester and has reached a major construction milestone ahead of its 2021 launch. New video assets include brand new drone footage from the construction site, a brand-new CGI film showing the construction build and the latest time-lapse film capturing the work on site from September-October 2019, which you can view here. One of the biggest developments of its kind in Europe, The Factory is being commissioned by Manchester City Council and will be the permanent home of Manchester International Festival.

CULTURE: Work starts on new special exhibitions gallery at Science and Industry Museum

Work has started at the Science and Industry Museum to create a new 725 square metre flexible gallery space, to open in October 2020. The project will reveal striking historic spaces previously not open to the public on the lower ground floor of the Grade II Listed New Warehouse. The New Warehouse was built in 1882 to provide storage for the Great Western Railway and designed to support the weight of steam trains entering the Warehouse and unloading the cargo through ceiling hatches. Used as museum stores until recently, the historic fabric of the lower ground floor will be revealed and restored, allowing visitors to the museum to experience the grandeur and scale of the original warehouse space while enjoying new exhibition experiences.

ROUTE: Juneyao Air from Shanghai

On 20 November Manchester Airport announced a landmark deal to connect the north of England with Shanghai, China’s biggest city and one of the world’s most important economic powerhouses, as Chinese carrier Juneyao Airlines chose the Northern hub for its first ever UK service, which will operate three times a week using the state-of-the-art Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. The news has been hailed as “a key step towards making the North one of the world’s most globally competitive regions” and is tipped to unlock hundreds of millions of pounds-worth of trade, investment and tourism benefits. It will be a boost for the 180,000 people and businesses within Manchester Airport’s catchment area who already travel to Shanghai, ranked as one of the top five Global Financial Centres, each year.

DRINK: Beatnikz Taproom reopens

Beatnikz Republic, a Manchester-based micro-brewery have re-opened the doors to their Red Bank taproom. The taproom closed in 2017 when the team opened their Northern Quarter bar but will now welcome guests again from 12pm-9pm every Saturday.