The Loveliness of London
“No, Sir. For when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life. For there is, in London, all that life can offer.”
Samuel Johnson’s quote may be clichéd – and over 200 years old – but his maxim still stacks up. If you know where to look, London is chockful of incredible people, places and performances. It’s all here for the taking. We’ve gathered 5 of London’s best secret spots.
The Seven Noses of Soho, W1
Once a collection of 35 originally installed around Soho, only 7 survive (although some say it’s 10). Find them all and you’ll be wealthy forever more. At least that’s how the myth goes.
BYOC (Bring Your Own Cocktail)
Meet the cocktail bars with a difference. The twist? They don’t sell alcohol. Instead, you take your own bottle of spirits and their expert mixologists do the rest. That’s our kind of bar. www.byoc.co.uk
Fake Number 10, Adam Street, Strand, WC2
The arched-window. The imposing door. The distinguishing number. You’d be forgiven for thinking you’ve pulled up at Downing Street. But this fake is far less protected and a perfect for selfies.
Kyoto Garden, Holland Park
Deep inside the Mary Poppins wonderland that is Holland Park lies a hidden haven straight out of Japan. As peacocks call from the bush, a tumbling waterfall cascades into a rock pool rippling with koi carp – a perfect antidote to London’s bustle.
Hold on Old Master, Tate Britain, Millbank, W1
Only the lucky (and very wealthy) few get to hold the paintings and sketches by the likes of Turner. But with a little bit of research and an appointment, you can unlock the key of Tate Britain Prints and Drawing Room to leaf through the sketchbooks and preparatory watercolours – a priceless experience.
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