DESTINATIONS / EUROPE / UK / LONDON
The UK capital is one of the world’s great cities. A sprawling metropolis with seemingly endless energy, its offerings are plentiful and diverse. In the City and Canary Wharf, its status as a global financial center is writ large, and shiny high rises, sleek suits and talk of stocks, shares and bonds abounds. But in other city neighborhoods, its creative side muscles its way to the front, with edgy art spaces, one-of-a-kind boutiques, compelling museums, art house cinemas and theater venues. Add in a healthy chunk of well-kept parkland and dynamic dining and nightlife scenes, and you’ll start to understand the London’s breadth and appeal. Getting around is easy too with an extensive public transport network keeping the urban masses on the move.
Housed in a former Victorian warehouse in the heart of hip Shoreditch, Boundary is a place where the fashion-conscious set congregate to eat in the restaurant, drink in the rooftop bar and sleep in its tasteful hotel rooms. It’s the pet project of renowned English designer Sir Terence Conran and his impeccable design touch is evident in the stylish rooms and suites – each of which takes inspiration from other designers and design movements, from Eames to Eileen Gray, Bauhaus to Shaker. Its rooftop bar has Instagram-worthy views of the City skyline and is great for a pre or post-dinner drink.
|In a city as multicultural as London, it makes sense that many of its best dining destinations serve up far-flung flavors. In the case of the Palomar in London’s trendy Soho district, the food is loosely defined as Israeli, with influences from the Mediterranean, North Africa and the Middle East all evident on the plate. Dishes – including the likes of agnolotti and veal sweetbread, and aubergine and feta bourekas – are made for sharing and have had critics raving, as has the good-time atmosphere. The dining room is small, so reservations can be difficult to get, but the bar overlooking the kitchen is reserved for walk-ups so arrive early to nab a seat there.|
|London’s museums have a reputation for the quality and quantity of their collections and the Victoria and Albert (the V&A) museum of decorative arts is definitely one of the best. And in this 24-hour city, cultural pursuits aren’t restricted to regular daytime visiting hours. Not only is the V&A open after-hours on Fridays, but it also hosts a series of special late-night events. Friday Late is held on the last Friday of every month and features themed talks, debates, live performances, installations, special displays and guest DJs, as well as food and drinks.|
|Shoreditch is almost always preceded by the epithet trendy. It’s not without good reason either. This East London district is a hotbed of creativity, with thriving arts, fashion, tech and culture scenes. For those looking to tap into the area’s cool credentials, the Boxpark pop-up shopping mall is a must. Shoppers will find various indie outlets, stylish fashion and interior labels and brand-name offshoots – all housed in a shipping container complex.|