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Showing posts from September, 2017

London: Sport

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London: Sport Source: Sean McEntree What better way to round your trip off in London than with a bit of live sport? London has plenty of choice with sporting arenas dedicated to football, tennis, rugby and cricket, as well as multi-use venues. The best place to get tickets for any sport is to check online at the official stadium websites, which will link to authorised sellers. Not using the official sales channels, and visiting ticket resellers, may either mean paying too much, getting fake tickets, or both. Many locations also sell tickets directly at the box office on-site. For tours of the locations featured below you can either pre-purchase tickets online, or buy them on the day of your visit. Tickets will generally be cheaper in advance, and you can avoid the disappointment of turning up and finding that tours are all sold out. Stadium tours selling out is common, particularly during summer months and school holidays. We cover the following sporting locations: Wem

London: Nightlife - Best Bars, Clubs and Pubs

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London: Nightlife - Best Bars, Clubs and Pubs London does indeed have a nightlife scene – and a roaring one! From relaxing bars, to pubs to spend a few hours, to the pounding music from the club nights, London’s character changes after the sun sets, and the partying goes on into the early hours of the morning in many locations. Bars Photo: Evening Standard 1. Opium Nearest Statio n: Leicester Square Address : 16 Gerrard Street, London, W1D 6JE Phone : 0207 734 7276 Website : www.opiumchinatown.com Pop in for the best dim sum in town, and creative cocktails with Asian-inspired ingredients. Expect to pay £11 to £15 for a cocktail here and £5 to £6 for a beer. 2. Vista at The Trafalgar Nearest Station : Charing Cross Address : 2 Spring Gardens, Trafalgar Square, London, SW1A 2TS Phone : 0207 870 2900 Website : www.thetrafalgar.com/vista-homepage/ The name says it all here: Vista. It is the view you come for when visiting this rooftop bar overlo

London: Live Music and Arts

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London: Live Music and Arts 1. The O2 Arena Nearest Station : North Greenwich Address : Peninsula Square, London, SE10 0DX Phone : 0208 463 2000 Website : www.theo2.co.uk   Book : Book tickets in advance  here . Initially called the Millennium Dome at opening – and home to a major exhibition – The O2 is now a dining venue with a cinema, and crucially an arena with a seating capacity of 20,000. It is one of the main music venues in London, and has the second highest capacity in the UK, after The Manchester Arena. It is the world’s busiest arena by a large margin, with 1.8 million ticket sales in 2014. The easiest way to reach the venue is by tube (North Greenwich station) on the Jubilee Line, with a travel time of only 15 minutes from Central London. Another popular transportation option is the Thames Clippers River Express from major piers in Central London every 20 minutes. 2. SSE Wembley Arena Nearest Station : Wembley Park Address : Arena Square, Enginee

London: Dance, Opera and Other Performances

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London: Dance, Opera and Other Performances 1. Shakespeare Globe Theatre Nearest Stations : London Bridge and Southwark Address : 21 New Globe Walk, Bankside, London SE1 9DT Phone : 0207 902 1400 Website : www.shakespearesglobe.com Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre is a recreation of the magnificent, original Globe Theatre.  The current building stands around 230 metres from the original structure. Ever since it was reopened in 1997, the Shakespeare Globe Theatre has staged plays every summer. Tours of the building are also available. 2. London Coliseum (English National Opera) Nearest Station : Leicester Square Address : St Martin's Lane, London, WC2N 4ES Phone : 020 7836 0111 Website : www.eno.org The London Coliseum is a theatre situated at St. Martin’s Lane in Central London. It was constructed as one of the most luxurious and largest variety theatres in London, and opened in December 1904. Today it is primarily used for opera, as well as being the

London: Plays and Dramas

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London: Plays and Drama 1. Harry Potter and The Cursed Child Playing at : Palace Theatre, Shaftesbury Ave, London, W1D 5AY Run time : Part 1 is 2h 45m, Part 2 is 2h 35m - shown as separate performances. Website :  www.harrypottertheplay.com     The most difficult play to get tickets to - this is a masterpiece, with great acting, a fantastic storyline, incredible sets and magical special effects, Potter fans should not miss out on the opportunity of a lifetime to see what happened to ‘The Boy Who Lived’ after the films. The story is split into 2 separate performances. Tickets are mostly sold out except very premium seats. 2. The Woman in Black Playing at : Fortune Theatre, Russell Street, London, WC2B 5HH Run time : 2 hours with one intermission Website : www.thewomaninblack.com The Woman in Black is a horror stage play performed by only two actors. The play follows the story of a lawyer obsessed with a curse that he believes has been cast over him and his fam

London: Musicals

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London: Musicals This is not a comprehensive list of all London's musicals and simply includes some of our favourites in no particular order. There are over 41, 600 seats to fill each evening across the West End's 38 theatres. 1. The Phantom of the Opera Playing at : Her Majesty's Theatre, 57 Haymarket, London, SW1Y 4QL Run time: 2 hours 30 minutes with a 15-minute intermission Website : www.thephantomoftheopera.com/london Book:  Get your tickets here . An Andrew Lloyd Webber production that tells the tale of a fascinating love story, unlike anything you have ever seen before. With incredible scriptwriting, memorable songs and incredible set changes, it is no wonder that this show has now been performing for over 30 years at Her Majesty’s Theatre. 2. Book of Mormon  Playing at : Prince of Wales Theatre, Coventry Street, London, W1D 6AS Run time : 2 hours 30 minutes with a 15-minute intermission Website : www.bookofmormonlondon.com Book

London: Music, Theatre and Arts

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London: Music, Theatre and Arts As well as shopping and museums, culture buffs have no shortage of things to do in London either. The West End is the heart of the theatre district with musicals, comedies and dramas galore. If live music is more your scene, that is catered for too. The following sections are being added progressively. Musicals Musicals have been a staple in London for years and there is a wide array to choose from. See our coverage of musicals here , including: Phantom of the Opera, Book of Mormon, Les Miserables, Aladdin, Matilda: The Musical, Stomp, Thriller Live!, Mamma Mia!, The Lion King, Wicked and Hamilton (Coming soon) Plays - Drama London’s theatre scene isn’t all singing and dancing… See of coverage of plays including comedies and dramas here , including: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Woman in Black, The Mousetrap and The Play that Goes Wrong. Dance, Opera and Other Performances Whether you fancy a bit of ball

London: Bicester Village Outlet (Shopping)

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London: Bicester Village Outlet (Shopping) Opening Hours : Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 19:00. Saturday from 9:00 to 20:00. Sunday from 10:00 to 19:00, with select shops open from 12:00 to 18:00 only due to Sunday Trading Laws. Nearest Station : Bicester Village (National Rail) This shopping outlet is actually located in Oxfordshire, outside of London. Access can be obtained by taking a train from London Marylebone station to Bicester Village station. The journey takes 46 minutes on the train, with return train tickets priced at £25. Bicester Village (pronounced “bister”) houses 131 stores including several of the world’s leading fashion brands like Bally, DKNY, Diane Von Furstenberg, Salvatore Ferragamo, Mathew Williamson, Smythson, Anya Hindmarch, Hugo Boss, Church’s and many other brands. There are also dining establishments to take a break between all the shopping.  This is a popular destination and hosts over 6 million shoppers every year. The outlets are op

London: Brick Lane (Shopping and Dining)

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London: Brick Lane (Shopping and Dining) Opening Hours : Shops open daily from 9:00 to 19:00. The main market takes place on Sundays from 10:00 to 17:00. Nearest Station : Shoreditch High Street (Overground) and Aldgate East (Underground) Brick Lane is a fashionable, up-and-coming destination in Central-East London, and the heart of the British Bangladeshi community. Many people call it Banglatown, and it is widely known for its curry houses. The street was formerly known as Whitechapel Lane, however it got its new name - Brick Lane - from the manufacturing of brick and tile during the 15th century. Brick Lane is filled with fashionable shops which are open daily, as well as an incredible amount of street art including works from Banksy and D*Face. It is also well-known for its nightlife scene. The area around Brick Lane also houses many religious institutions, including Christ Church and Brick Lane’s Great Mosque. Brick Lane Market is a popular destination on Sundays a

London: Notting Hill and Portobello Road (Shopping)

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London: Notting Hill and Portobello Road (Shopping) Opening Hours : Daily from 9:00 to 17:00. The main market is on Saturdays.  Nearest Stations : Ladbroke Grove, Westbourne Park and Notting Hill Gate Situated in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Notting Hill is a mostly residential district in London. It is well known for hosting the annual Notting Hill Carnival, and the weekly Portobello Road Market. It is one of London’s most affluent areas. Notting Hill is now globally known as an attractive area with restaurants, large Victorian townhouses and high-end shopping. This was not the case before the early 1980s, when rents in the area were relatively cheap. Notting Hill is home to Portobello Market (on Portobello Road), a street market which is divided up into sections.  You will find antiques, fruit and veg, new goods, clothes and fashion, and second hand items sold at the market. The antiques are undoubtedly what the market is most famous for. 

London: Piccadilly and Fortnum and Mason (Shopping)

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London: Piccadilly and Fortnum and Mason (Shopping) Photo: DesignBridge.com Opening Hours : Monday to Friday from 10:00 to 20:00, Saturday from 9:00 to 20:00, Sunday from 12:00 to 18:00. Closest Station : Green Park and Piccadilly Circus Piccadilly gets its name from the white frilly collars that were once sold in the area – the Piccadills. Today, Piccadilly is still a commerce street with many small, unique shops in the heart of the West End, and links to Regent Street via Piccadilly Circus  in the West End , as well as Bond Street. Many of the shops in the area hold Royal Warrants; these are seals of approval from senior members of the Royal Family who shop there. Notable shops along the road include: Fortnum and Mason, established in 1707, with very lavish, classic British interiors it sells luxury goods and has its own tea room. Burlington Arcade with its small boutique shops is beautiful. The Piccadilly Arcade across the road is similar, yet more simple, in styl

London: Covent Garden (Shopping)

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London: Covent Garden (Shopping) Opening Hours : Monday to Friday from 10:00 to 20:00, Saturday from 9:00 to 20:00, Sunday from 12:00 to 18:00. Nearest Station : Covent Garden Covent Garden is a popular visitor destination, with shopping in every direction you look and pedestrianised areas. The area is in the heart of Theatreland, and ideal for post- or pre-theatre shopping and dining. Covent Garden started life in 1654 as an open vegetable and fruit market in the southern part of the square. The square is still the heart of the area but shops are now on all the surrounding streets too. Under the square’s central roof, you will find a split-level set of shops with many small boutiques present. Big international brands are also on the square, such as the likes of Apple, Barbour and Chanel. We love the ambiance of Covent Garden. The times listed are general opening times and individual shop hours vary. Read more about the other things to see and do in Covent Garden here .

London: Harrods and Knightsbridge (Shopping)

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London: Harrods and Knightsbridge Opening Hours : Monday to Saturday from 10:00 to 21:00. Sunday from 11:30 to 18:00. Hours are for Harrods. Individual shops’ hours vary. Nearest Stations : Knightsbridge Knightsbridge is known as a luxury shopping and residential district. It is mostly located in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. With Hyde Park on one side, and Belgravia to the other, Knightsbridge is perfectly placed in the lap of luxury. Notable brands in the area include Ferrari, Harvey Nichols, Rolex, Aquascutum and Porsche Design. The most well-known store in the area is Harrods. Founded in 1834, this luxury department store is the de facto destination for the rich. It is the biggest department store in Europe, with 330 departments and retail space of 1 million ft2 (90,000 m2). It is worth exploring to see the incredible variety of things on offer, and the beautiful food court has to be seen to be believed.

London: Westfield – London (White City) & Stratford City (Shopping)

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London: Westfield – London (White City) & Stratford City (Shopping) Photo: Wikimedia Opening Hours : London White City location – Monday to Saturday from 10:00 to 22:00. Sunday from 12:00 to 18:00. Stratford City location – Monday to Friday from 10:00 to 21:00. Saturday from 9:00 to 21:00. Sunday from 12:00 to 18:00. Nearest Stations : Shepherd’s Bush, Wood Lane and Stratford. Looking at the previous listings in this shopping section, you would be forgiven for thinking that Londoners are bigger fans of shopping streets than shopping centres. However, the prospect of air-conditioned, indoor shopping where everything is in one place has become more and more appealing. Today, Westfield owns two large shopping centres, on the eastern and western ends of central London. Both are excellent choices for shopping and feature national and international brands. The differentiation between the two shopping centres is minimal. The London (White City) location features 372 stores o

London: Regent Street and Hamley's (Shopping)

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London: Regent Street and Hamley's (Shopping) Opening Hours : Monday to Saturday 9:00 to 20:00, Sunday 12:00 to 18:00. Some shops open later daily. Nearest Stations : Oxford Circus and Piccadilly Circus. Regent Street is yet another popular shopping road in central London. It links to Oxford Street at Oxford Circus. Generally speaking, this location features more of a mix of pricing styles than Oxford Street – here there are more affordable stores stood next to the likes of Burberry and Swarovski. It is by no means, a luxury shopping destination in the same way that New Bond Street and Old Bond Street are. Regent Street was the world’s first shopping street, having been built in the 1820s and rebuilt 100 years later. The facades of all the buildings are lined in Portland Stone, with few exceptions. Today, the street is managed by The Crown Estate, and it was originally designed for the Prince Regent (who later became George IV). Notable locations on the street includ

London: Oxford Street and Selfridge's (Shopping)

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London: Oxford Street and Selfridge's (Shopping) Opening Hours : Monday to Saturday 9:00 to 20:00, Sunday 12:00 to 18:00. Some shops open later. Nearest Stations : Marble Arch, Bond Street, Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road. Oxford Street is Europe’s busiest shopping street (with over half a million visitors daily), and is home to over 300 different stores. Oxford Street contains all sizes of shop, including many large flagship department stores such as John Lewis, House of Fraser, and Marks and Spencer.  Oxford Street is perhaps most notable for Selfridge’s, located to the Western end of the road. Selfridge’s, founded in 1909, is the second largest department store in London, after Harrods in Knightsbridge . It was founded by Harry Gordon Selfridge, an American who coined the phrase ‘the customer is always right’. Also on Oxford Street, you will find brands ranging from United Colors of Benetton to Nike Town and Primark. Unique to Oxford Street, is the f

London: Borough Market (Shopping)

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London: Borough Market (Shopping) Opening Hours : Lunch market only – Monday and Tuesday from 10:00 to 17:00. Full market – Wednesday and Thursday from 10:00 to 17:00. Friday from 10:00 to 18:00. Saturday from 8:00 to 17:00. Closed on Sunday. Nearest Stations : London Bridge and Southwark Nestled just a minute’s walk from London Bridge station, Borough Market is definitely worth a visit for foodies. The Central London food market is known as one of the oldest and largest markets in London. It is stocked with food sourced from all the continents of the world. Borough is steeped in history. It has been the site of food markets for over 1000 years, but the market on the current site has been present since the 18th century.

London: Camden Market (Shopping)

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London: Camden Market (Shopping) Opening Hours : Daily from 10:00 to 18:00. Nearest Station : Camden Town Camden Market is one experience that visitors to London cannot miss.  From small market stalls to bigger permanent stores, those looking to grab something unique to taste or to take home must make a stop in Camden. If you are a fan of vintage, however, you will get even more joy from your visit! There are, in fact, six different areas to the market, each with its own character. Explore Inverness Street Market, Stables Market, Camden Lock Market, Buck Street Market, Camden Lock Village and the Electric Ballroom. There are a mix of both indoor and outdoor areas. The market is most active on Sundays, although trading is also done on Saturdays. A more limited amount of trading takes place on weekdays. Weekends are definitely the time to visit, however, and the market attracts around 100,000 visitors each and every weekend.  If you are coming for food, you ca

London: Shopping

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London: Shopping Photo: Antoine K London is a shopping capital, and British brands sell well on all four corners of the globe. As you can imagine, no matter where you turn in London, you will find somewhere to spend your money.  Whether you are looking for luxury items in Knightsbridge or Mayfair, or high street shopping on Oxford Street, you are sure to find something that will suit your taste. Learn more about each location: Camden Market Borough Market Oxford Street and Selfridge's Regent Street and Hamley's Westfield - London (White City) and Stratford City Knightsbridge and Harrods Covent Garden Piccadilly and Fortnum and Mason Notting Hill and Portobello Road Brick Lane Bicester Village Shopping Outlet

London: Good Hotels in Marylebone, Bloomsbury and Camden

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London: Good Hotels in Marylebone, Bloomsbury and Camden 1. St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel Nearest Station : King’s Cross St. Pancras Address : Euston Road, London, NW1 2AR Telephone : 0207 841 3540 Website : www.stpancraslondon.com   Book : Book this hotel at Hotels.com , Expedia , Ebookers or Booking.com This stunning building has only recently come out of a lengthy refurbishment, now cementing it is a one of London’s top 5-star luxury hotels. This Marriott hotel describes itself perfectly: combining “Victorian splendour with contemporary style and impeccable service”. The building has so much history that it even offers tours by Blue Badge guides at an extra charge. As far as dining, you are spoilt for choice: with a bar and restaurant, a lounge, a terrace overlooking the train station, and an upscale dining establishment. An in-house spa adds to the amenities on offer. Rooms are relatively large, starting at 25 square metres (270 square feet) on the smalles

London: Good Hotels in Notting Hill, Marble Arch and Bayswater

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London: Good Hotels in Notting Hill, Marble Arch and Bayswater 1. Park Grand London Paddington Source: Montcalm Nearest Station : Paddington, Lancaster Gate and Bayswater Address : 1-2 Queen's Gardens, London, W2 3BA Telephone : 0207 298 9800 Website : www.parkgrandlondon.co.uk   Book : Book this hotel at Hotels.com , Expedia , Ebookers or Booking.com This 4-star hotel boasts surprisingly modern interiors and, in our opinion, is great value, with a good location, modern interiors and an attractive price. The hotel boasts an on-site restaurant and bar location, which is very affordable priced. Most rates include complimentary breakfast and Wi-Fi. Tube stations are an 8-minute walk. Rooms from £88 per night. Book Park Grand London Paddington at Hotels.com , Expedia , Ebookers or Booking.com - check all these websites for the best price. 2. Four Seasons Hotel Park Lane Nearest Station : Hyde Park Corner and Green Park Address : Hamilton Place,

London: Good Restaurants in Notting Hill, Marble Arch and Bayswater

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London: Good Restaurants in Notting Hill, Marble Arch and Bayswater 1. Locanda Locatelli Source: Locanda Locatelli Nearest Station : Marble Arch and Bond Street Address : 8 Seymour Street, London, W1H 7JZ Opening Hours : Lunch – Monday to Sunday from 12:00 to 15:00. Dinner – Monday to Thursday from 18:00 to 23:00, Friday and Saturday from 18:00 to 23:30, and Sunday from 18:00 to 22:15. Phone : 0207 935 9088 Website : www.locandalocatelli.com Amazing tasting Italian food is the name of the game here. The ambience is great, the food is delicious and the service is very attentive. Our only qualm is the pricing, which we feel is rather high.  Pasta mains run from £18.50 to £22.50, whereas fish or meat dishes are £25 to £33.  With a dessert, a drink and tip added in (not to mention a starter), you can easily be looking at £50 per person here.  Reservations are accepted and recommended for this establishment. 2. Roti Chai Nearest Station : Marble Arch A

London: Good Hotels in the London Bridge/Southwark/Borough area

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London: Good Hotels in the London Bridge/Borough area 1. Shangri La Hotel at The Shard Source: Shangri La Nearest Station : London Bridge Address : 31 St. Thomas Street, London, SE1 9QU Telephone : 0207 234 8000 Website : www.shangri-la.com/london/shangrila Book : Book this hotel at Hotels.com , Expedia , Ebookers or Booking.com For a room with a view, look no further than the 5-star Shangri La Hotel inside The Shard. Spanning 19 floors, the 202 guest rooms provide unique views of London’s skyline and access to the hotel’s amenities. An infinity pool, a fitness suite and valet parking are some of the services on offer. There are three excellent restaurants and bars within the hotel – LANG, TING, and GONG – the highest bar in London on the 52nd floor. Rooms start at £351 per night. Book the luxurious Shangri-La Hotel at The Shard at Hotels.com , Expedia , Ebookers or Booking.com - check all these for the best price. 2. London Bridge Hotel Nearest Station : Lond

London: Good Restaurants in the London Bridge/Southwark/Borough area

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London: Good Restaurants in the London Bridge/Borough area 1. Vapiano Source: Better Bankside Nearest Stations : Southwark and London Bridge  Address : 90b Southwark Street, London, SE1 0FD Opening Hours : Monday to Saturday from 11:00 to 23:00, Sunday from 11:00 to 22:00. Phone : 0207 593 2010 Website : http://uk.vapiano.com Vapiano is probably our favourite ‘budget eat’ in central London.  Choose your seat wherever you want. Then, go to one of the stations to order your food. You can choose from pizza, pasta or salads – your food will be prepared fresh in front of you, to your specification in minutes, and you take it away there and then. For pizzas you are given a pager for when your food is ready. This place is part fresh fast food, part canteen, but with a restaurant-like quality and atmosphere. It might not be for everyone, but we love it. Portions are large, the meals are tasty, and prices are fair – the perfect combination. Pastas, risotto and pizza