Footy Fans and Royal Watchers Unite for London’s Fantastic Celebrations this May
For those out there who are keen royalists and football enthusiasts to boot (get the pun), you must think that all your Christmases have come at once!
The up and coming nuptials of our charming Prince Harry and his beloved ‘Suits’ actress Meghan Markle on May 19th, is reason enough to make your way to London this spring to celebrate. Added to this the FA cup final taking place on the same day, and you have a marriage made in heaven!
These must-see events will cast a frenzy of excitement over London and its suburbs during this splendid weekend, making it the place to be, ensure you book early to secure your perfectly located serviced apartment from which to enjoy the festivities.
The Royal Wedding
Certainly, everyone loves a wedding, especially a royal one, and especially one where the groom is perhaps the most popular young royal ever, with his rugged looks, roguish antics of the past and most sincere nature, like his mother, Princess Diana. It is therefore no surprise that we regard this wedding as a special event in our history. A wedding such as this, involving a senior member of the royal family, (Harry is currently 5th in line to the throne), is seen as an important occasion, and as such, will attract huge national and international attention and coverage. Although it’s likely to be on a smaller scale than the wedding of his brother Prince William to Kate Middleton in 2011, which took place in the vast expanse of Westminster Abbey, (capable of holding 2,000 guests), Harry and Meghan’s venue, in St George’s Chapel, will be far a far more intimate affair, holding only 800.
Expect still to see though, a wealth of royal guests, along with A-List celebrities. Anyone who is anyone will be angling for a royal wedding invitation right now. It is rumoured that Sir Elton John, a close friend of Princess Diana, has cancelled several of his Las Vegas gigs over that weekend, so it seems likely that he’ll be there, whilst no royal wedding would be complete without the Beckham’s, who are close friends of both William and Harry. Hopefully, if Sir David does attend, he won’t make the same faux pas as he did at William and Kate’s wedding, when he overlooked correct procedure, as he inadvertently wore his OBE medal, received for his services to British football back in 2003, on the wrong lapel! He was suitably embarrassed by his rusty etiquette and righted the oversight after being discreetly alerted by another honouree, much to the relief of Posh, I’m sure!
The couple’s choice of venue, the 14th C, awe inspiring, St George’s chapel, is more personal to Harry, as this was where he was baptised when just 3 months old, and is where his beloved Great Grandmother, The Queen Mother, rests. It is also a more convenient venue for Her Majesty the Queen, as Windsor is where she resides for the much of the year. Considered one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in England, the chapel has hosted many royal weddings in the past, including that of Edward V11th to Princess Alexandra and Prince Edward to Sophie Rhys Jones. Although Windsor Castle will obviously be closed to the public during the marriage festivities, it is one of London’s greatest tourist attractions throughout the year, attracting millions of visitors, and well worth a visit.
Excitement about royal weddings isn’t a new occurrence, and historical documents show that it’s not just the marriages of heirs to the throne that have been the focus of attention. Weddings of younger siblings, such as Prince Harry, have also been major events. So why not get yourself down to London this May and join the celebrations? Whether you do this by cheering the happy couple in the streets of Windsor, or within the historical, majestic sites of London itself, you will certainly have a stay to remember.
If you need help finding the right serviced apartment for you, checkout our personal apartment finder service.
The FA Cup Final
If you are out of the running for an invite to the wedding, then a great alternative, especially if you are an avid football fan, would be to get down to Wembley stadium to see a moment of English football history. This is the oldest and longest-running football competition in the world. Initially having only 15 entries from clubs, it was first held in 1871-72. Since that time, it has grown continually every year and now boasts hundreds of teams all entering the competition with hopes of getting to the elusive final. It is usually played at London's Wembley Stadium, although from 2001 to 2006, extensive renovations at Wembley meant that the final was held in Wales at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium. However, from 2007, the FA Cup returned to Wembley’s impressive, newly refurbished, stadium.
Not everyone is lucky enough, to obtain the prized cup final tickets, so to savour some of the build up to the final and experience all the excitement and frenzy associated with it, you could head off with your mates to watch the match live in one of London’s famous bars, soaking up the atmosphere as you support your favourite team.
The factor that really adds to the excitement is that this competition is a knockout tournament, involving teams from all levels of competition, which means that you have that David and Goliath situation….a small team could surprise everyone by knocking out one of the biggest and best teams in the Premier League! This therefore makes thrilling matches where nobody can really predict the outcome. So for sports enthusiasts, lover of underdogs and football fanatics alike, this event is one that is etched on the sporting world calendar and therefore not to be missed.
With some 89,000 fans in attendance at the 2017 final, this is one of the most attended football events in the world. Last year, the 136th FA cup final was played between Arsenal and Chelsea. Arsenal was victorious in celebrating a 2-1 victory, making them the record holders after winning this prestigious trophy 13 times. They are now the most successful club in FA Cup history.
As with Windsor Castle, the Stadium is open for tours throughout the year, although these may not be available on some holidays and event days, so check before booking. Wembley Stadium is an amazing place to savour footballing of the past and retrace your footballing hero’s footsteps.
With the wedding taking place in Windsor and the FA Cup in Wembley, it makes perfect sense to stay within easy reach of the many tube stations that can take you to both venues. Central London itself will also be buzzing, with, no doubt, giant TV screens to keep the crowds happy, along with a host of activities thrown into the mix. So, to experience all this excitement, why not make an extended stay from your visit to London this May?
Euracom have a wide range of luxurious, serviced apartments that can make your stay in the capital a memorable one. With easily accessible transport links to both Windsor and Wembley, our apartments will provide the best of both worlds; A great setting to stay, whilst having excellent travel links nearby, making your trip to witness these spectacular events easy and trouble free.
The following serviced apartments from Euracom are just 3 examples from our amazing portfolio of London serviced apartments.
1. Short stay apartments London E1 Canary Wharf, Trinity Tower
Situated within the prominent 'Tower' building of the Lanterns Court development, Trinity Tower provides luxury facilities ideal for leisure stays in London along with corporate clients who wish to work in London. With easy access to Canary Wharf with its numerous shops, bars and restaurants, these affordable, luxury apartments are also ideally situated if you want to venture a little further afield, due to the excellent transport links. For a nightly fee from just £163p/n, the apartments boast a bright, luxurious, fully furnished, open planned living area complete with fully equipped kitchen. Each apartment has floor to ceiling windows, a spacious hallway, and a bathroom for maximum comfort and convenience.
Other features include:
- Balcony / Terrace (on request)
- Bathroom/ Toiletries provided
- Dining table & chairs/Central heating
- Concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ Lifts/ Meet & greet arrival service/ Safe
- Fully equipped kitchen/ Dishwasher in some/ Iron / Ironing board/ Tea / coffee making facilities
- Hairdryer available/ DVD player
- Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
- Satellite TV/ Telephone/ Radio / Alarm clock/ Air conditioning/ Safe/Wi-fi
More about our short stay apartments London E1 Canary Wharf, Trinity Tower ›
2. Serviced apartments to rent in Covent Garden, London WC2
A slightly cheaper option, starting at £145p/n, is our St. Martins Court serviced apartments, near Leicester Square. Set in the heart of London’s theatre district near Covent Garden, these apartments are perfect for exploring all central London’s famous attractions. With a variety of restaurants, shops and theatres nearby, these stylish, modern apartments offer excellent short-stay accommodation for those looking to stay in London. The range of beautifully appointed studios/1-bedroom apartments feature everything you’ll need for a short/ mid-term leisure break. They offer space, privacy and independence for an experience of central London living that hotels simply can’t match. Close proximity to the London Tube gives these apartments the best of both worlds- excellent transport links to the rest of London, along with a prime, central location.
Other features include:
- Dining table & chairs
- Door entry phone/ Self check-in
- Fully equipped kitchen/ Dishwasher in some
- Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
- Radio / Alarm clock/ Telephone/ TV / Freeview/ DVD player/ Wi-Fi
More about our Covent Garden St Martins, London corporate serviced apartments WC2 ›
3. Corporate serviced apartment rental London Fleet Street, EC4
Located in a quiet courtyard, near to Fleet Street, these corporate apartments were once the home of the British press. They are within walking distance of many of London’s attractions, such as St Paul's Cathedral and The Globe Theatre. Reasonably priced from £133p/n, they are ideal for business stays, or short vacations. Offering easy access to many of London’s famous attractions, these comfortable apartments also offer excellent transport links to London’s suburbs and beyond- a perfect base from which to explore.
Other features include:
- Balcony / Terrace (upon request)
- Bathroom/ Hairdryer available
- Central heating
- Daily cleaning service
- Dining table & chairs
- Door entry phone/ Lifts/ Self check-in/ Welcome pack available
- DVD player/ Radio / Alarm clock/ Telephone/TV/ Wi-fi
- Fully equipped kitchen/ Dishwasher in some/ Iron / Ironing board/ Breakfast available
More about our Corporate serviced apartment rental London Fleet Street, EC4 ›
By Cristian Bortes (Windsor Castle - London) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By Flickr user: Cushdy https://www.flickr.com/photos/jackspics/ [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
at 1 Mar 2018
Everyone enjoys a great, refreshing vacation, where you get the chance to relax and unwind with friends and family. Allowing you to enjoy that well-earned, quality time, is certainly an important consideration when planning your holiday, as choosing the wrong accommodation can be a recipe for disaster! It can make you uncomfortable and stressed and can often ruin a trip, due to lack of space, comfort and price. So after you have selected where you want to visit, take a little time to select the accommodation that is just right for your needs and budget.
If your intended destination is a large city like London, then you may think that a hotel stay is the only option. Yet hotels are very impersonal with little or no atmosphere. Cramped rooms, especially if you have a family, can make you feel claustrophobic and stressed due to their lack of space. What’s more, hotels can also be incredibly expensive for what you get, which isn’t much! Somewhere to lay your head, yes, but little more!
As an alternative, many people are fast becoming aware of ‘serviced apartments’. These are now a very popular choice for both holidaymakers and business travellers alike. They make the ideal solution to your accommodation needs, especially if you want something far more than just a place to sleep.
So what is a serviced apartment?
They are fully furnished apartments which can be made available for both short/long-term stays. They’ll not only provide all the facilities that hotels do, but give you private, more comfortable surroundings with that ‘home from home’ feeling, which is so popular amongst travellers who intend to stay longer term. Typical apartments will include high quality soft furnishings and self-contained kitchens, along with services such as housekeeping, concierge, etc included in the rent.
If we haven’t yet whetted your appetite regarding serviced apartments as opposed to a hotel stay, then why not consider some of the other benefits listed below?
Probably the major difference between a hotel stay and that of a serviced apartment is price. Many people mistakenly believe that a serviced apartment is expensive compared to a hotel and therefore look no further, considering them to be for the elite! Yet did you know that most serviced apartments are at least 30% less expensive than an equivalent standard of hotel? You’ll get luxury accommodation at an affordable rate, so you’ll avoid that huge hotel bill. What’s more, you’ll also save because serviced apartments come equipped with fully fitted kitchens, allowing you to cut down on eating out, which can be expensive. This could make a huge difference to your holiday budget and for longer term tenants, will represent huge savings. Additionally, telephone, broadband, VAT and utility bills are often included within the cost. With all the conveniences of a hotel room yet with far less expense, renting a serviced apartment makes far more economic sense.
2. More Space
A typical city hotel room can often be particularly cramped, hardly ideal if you are holidaying with children who need space to play. Serviced apartments, on the other hand, are considerably larger, (bedrooms often being over 1/3rd bigger than a standard hotel room), with a spacious living area to rest, recuperate and unwind in your own comfortable, secure private surroundings, making them the ideal solution if you are travelling with others. They also include a kitchen, living room, along with the bedroom area, which can be part of a studio space or in a 1/2 bedroom apartment. So to avoid that ‘shoe box’ of a hotel room, where you can’t move without falling over somebody, opt for the roomier alternative of a serviced apartment.
3. All the comforts of home
Another important reason why people opt for a serviced apartment over a hotel stay is that they get that ‘home from home’ feeling. We all know there’s nothing like the comfort of your own home, although a stay in a luxurious serviced apartment comes very close! Instead of being greeted on your arrival with a cold, impersonal hotel room, with a serviced apartment you’ll be able to relax in a warm, inviting atmosphere, with all the comforts of home. Comfortable, luxurious furniture enables you to fully relax and unwind after a hard day sightseeing, whereas having all the facilities on hand in one stylish space, like a fully fitted kitchen, chic bathroom and high tech entertainment systems, means that your stay will be superb, instead of just the mediocre experience you’ll receive at a hotel. Added to this better security and far more privacy, and you have a win-win situation!
4. Family Friendly
If you intend to have a family holiday when visiting our glorious capital, then a serviced apartment will take much of the stress and hassle out of your stay. With ample space available, you’ll avoid that ‘cooped up’ feeling of hotel accommodation, allowing the kids to have their own space to chill out. As well as the entertainment systems mentioned earlier, you can also have the peace of mind that your children will be totally secure in your own self-contained space.
5. Central Locations
Many of London’s hotels are centrally located, although at a hefty price! Some of the cheaper hotel options, however, will result in you having to travel further to London’s central attractions. Yet obtaining affordable accommodation, close to the centre, can add great enjoyment to your London experience. Having all of the city’s most iconic landmarks on your doorstep, not only reduces travel expenses, but enables you to be in the hub of all the vibrancy of central London. Euracom’s well renowned serviced apartments are based in all of London’s true hotspots, giving you the flexibility to do whatever you desire. From shopping in the very best boutiques, to visiting museums and famous buildings, all our centrally located serviced apartments are very affordably priced- much less expensive than any central London hotel!
6. Excellent Services
Hotels will provide a daily cleaning service and ensure your beds are made/towels are changed, although that’s about it! Yet in a serviced apartment you’ll not only be able to stay in comfort and luxury whilst away from home, but you’ll also receive the added benefits of great housekeeping/concierge services. Cleaning, along with a daily linen and towel service is standard with serviced apartments, so you’ll want for nothing.
7. A Personalised Stay
Serviced apartments provide a stay that is tailored specifically to you. Whatever your needs a customised service makes your stay a truly memorable one. Such personalised service cannot be achieved in a hotel stay, unless you pay top dollar! From providing starter packs of groceries on your arrival to stocking some of your favourite snacks in the kitchen, serviced apartments are often accommodating to such requests.
8. Suitable for Business or Pleasure
Serviced apartments provide both convenience and practicality to travellers, whether you are a family who want that ultimate holiday, to business and corporate jetsetters who want an alternative to a lonely hotel room, which is cold and impersonal. Whilst hotels will simply provide the basics for business travellers, the amenities of a serviced apartment mean that all your needs are covered to enable you to do your work in comfort, with the facility to make conference calls and meetings online. What’s more, if your business means a longer stay, then the serviced apartment option can give you the option to stay for longer periods at a far better rate than a hotel stay.
So a serviced apartment is definitely an excellent choice for every discerning traveller… no wonder so many people, from families to corporates, are turning from hotel stays to these much more affordable options. Interest in these cost effective alternatives is therefore soaring for both short and certainly longer stays, albeit at the expense of the bog standard hotel! The benefits mentioned above are certainly worth bearing in mind, so why not give these Euracom serviced apartments detailed below a try in favour of a hotel? You won’t be sorry!
Luxury corporate serviced apartments London Bloomsbury Tavistock Place, WC1
These luxury five-star serviced apartments provide great accommodation in London, for both leisure & business travellers looking to rent for a longer stay. They provide the perfect central location to enjoy London’s many attractions and are only a stones-throw away from the City of London for our corporate clients. Situated in a beautiful Georgian building and furnished to an exceptionally high standard, with designer furniture, all apartments include, wi-fi access, DVD/ CD player and Freeview TV. Some feature a balcony or terrace area, whilst many have fully equipped kitchens & en-suite bathrooms. If you’re looking for luxury accommodation in London for a long-term stay, then these serviced apartments are for you.
- Baby cot / high chair (on request)
- Balcony / Terrace (upon request)
- Bathroom (En-suite bathroom in some)/ Toiletries provided
- Daily or weekly linen change /Daily cleaning service
- Dining table & chairs/ Central heating/ Welcome pack available
- Fully equipped kitchen(Dishwasher in some)/ Iron / Ironing board/ Tea / coffee making facilities
- Door entry phone/ Lifts/ Meet & greet arrival service/ Safe/ Self check-in
- DVD player /Radio / Alarm clock/ TV / Freeview /Wifi
More about our luxury Bloomsbury Tavistock Place serviced apartments London ›
Luxury serviced apartments London Buckingham Gate, SW1
These luxury serviced apartments are just minutes from many of London’s finest landmarks, including Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament. If you’re seeking a fully equipped, luxury serviced apartment near Buckingham Palace, then these are the apartments for you. Costing from £4914 p/w, each beautiful apartment overlooks a magnificent central tree lined courtyard. With luxurious decoration and furnished to an impeccable standard, these serviced apartments range in size from deluxe junior suites sleeping 2, to lavish superior 3 bedroom suites sleeping 6. These apartments also boast a fully equipped gym and a wonderful in house restaurant. They are close to a vast array of cafes, shops, restaurants and a wonderful roof garden.
- Central heating/ Secure storage facilities/ Welcome pack available
- Breakfast available/ Onsite restaurants / bars/ Room service available
- Concierge / security / reception/ Conference room available/ Lifts/ Lobby / waiting area
- Daily /weekly linen change/ Daily cleaning service/ Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
- Desk / workspace/ Dining table & chairs
- Kitchen( Dishwasher in some)/ Tea / coffee making facilities/ grocery starter packs available
- En-suite bathroom in some apartments/ Toiletries provided
- DVD player/ Satellite TV/ Telephone/ Wi-fi
- Spa / health club in building or nearby
If you are looking for luxury apartment rental in London, look no further, call us today to rent one of these luxury apartments.
More about our Luxury Buckingham Gate serviced apartments London ›
Corporate serviced apartments London Camden Road N7
For those on a tighter budget, (prices start from only £728p/w), these newly refurbished corporate serviced apartments are for you. Only one stop from Kings Cross, you’ll have easy access to all of London, great for the business traveller. Situated close to Camden Town, with its eclectic bohemian character and vibrant night life, these apartments are perfectly located, offering something for everyone. They are the ideal serviced apartments for those wanting to live/work in London on a reasonable budget. The Studio apartments provide accommodation for up to 2 people and have been built with pioneering modular technology, making them really energy efficient. There is a private garden for the resident’s use, along with fully equipped kitchens and newly fitted bathrooms. These would be ideal for those living/ working in London, or for those seeking a temporary stay.
- Fully equipped kitchen
- Daily cleaning service/ Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
- Door entry phone/ Lifts/ Self check-in
- DVD player/ Telephone/ TV / Freeview/ Wifi
More about our corporate serviced apartments Camden Road London ›
at 9 Feb 2018
Christmas and New Year Celebrations in London
London is an idyllic place to visit at all times of year, but especially during the run up to the festive season. At Christmas time things are truly special, with a plethora of wonderful events on offer. There are attractions galore, from great Christmas pudding races and festive markets, ice skating at some of the world’s most iconic landmarks, magnificent light displays to a range of shows and pantos, (oh no there isn’t!) All of which should combine to put you in the festive mood. So none of your ‘Bah Humbugging’…get your skates on, wrap up warm and brave the chilly London outdoors to saviour some of these unmissable delights.
This month we’ll give you a sample of a few, of what we consider to be, the best festive activities within our glorious capital. This is by no means exhaustive, but should help to whet your appetite and hopefully set you up for a fantastic Yuletide.
Christmas Light Displays
Christmas is a time when London overcomes those dark, dismal winter nights and gives its streets and department stores a festive makeover with the twinkle of millions of Christmas lights all over the city. You know Christmas is almost upon us when London’s greatest shopping area, Oxford Street, transforms itself with sparkly, glowing lights (750,000 lights this year alone) and 1778 decorations!
If you want to combine your ‘light seeing experience’,(get it?) with a market or two, along with a glass of mulled wine into the bargain, then there are a host of other areas to explore with more superb light displays.
The Carnaby Street Christmas Lights for instance, are an ostentatious example of Christmas glitz. This famous street often offers visitors a Christmas 20% discount in many of its unique shops. Or head off to Christmas at Kew Gardens, where you’ll be able to follow a mile long, twinkling path of over 1,000000 sparkling Christmas bulbs, lighting up ancient trees and buildings throughout these spectacular gardens. You’ll also experience giant baubles, a flickering Fire Garden, a kaleidoscopic laser display in the glorious palm house and even experience the trees singing! What more could you ask for? Oh yes! Your Christmas visit won’t be complete without meeting Santa and his elves at the North Pole village, whilst to warm yourself up after this fantastic experience, you could partake in a glass of hot chocolate or mulled wine or toast your toes and some marshmallows by the fire. For those more energetic at heart, you could take the Christmas Lights Bike Tour, which will guide you to some of the best locations to see London’s prettiest Xmas illuminations. On this 2 hour tour you’ll see some of London’s most iconic buildings lit up with thousands of lights and decorations, flickering unforgettably along your route. You’ll discover quieter streets that you’ve never encountered before, along with London’s glorious array of wonderful festive markets and some of the most mesmerising illuminations imaginable, such as the famous Hamleys toy store, whose gleaming array of lights will delight your every thought. During your journey, you’ll also hear hilarious tales of London’s history. Definitely a unique Christmas experience!
Christmas markets and fairs in London
If you’re on the lookout for Christmas gift inspiration, then London’s Christmas markets and fairs are the place to be. Here you’ll not only discover a wealth of hand crafted offerings and foodie gifts, but will also be in the midst of a plethora of festive events into the bargain. What’s more, whilst shopping ‘til you drop, you’ll be able to sample many of the capital’s street vendors, selling every conceivable type of fast food known to man, along with Christmas beverages. Why not try, for example, Covent Garden at Christmas? This London area is truly irresistible at this time of year, with its cobbled piazza, stylish stores and market buildings giving it an air of sheer nostalgia. With over 40 mistletoe chandeliers hanging elegantly above you, you can find that perfect gift, whilst savouring the beauty of Christmas. Combine this with a sumptuous meal in one of Covent Garden’s restaurants, whilst watching a street entertainer and you’ll be able to de-stress after all the hustle and bustle of buying that last minute piece of tinsel!
Great Christmas Pudding Race
If you’re in Covent Garden on the 2nd Dec, try not to miss 150 Christmas puddings tackle a festive obstacle course, in aid of Cancer Research UK. Last year raising over £26,000 for this worthy cause, 2017’s outing will be the 37th in its history. Teams don fancy dress and hurtle around obstacles including foam jets and flour-filled balloons, whilst trying to negotiate and balance Christmas puds on paper plates! You can register teams of 6 and compete, or simply support and have a fun day out. There’ll be entertainment and celebrity guest appearances throughout the day.
Southbank Centre Wintertime Market
If you’re looking for that special something, this market features over 50 wooden chalets brim full with festive food and drink and unique presents. Set alongside the Thames, street food is plentiful, with irresistible smells ranging from Asian cuisine to hot dogs and other traditional fayre. A glorious way to enter into that Christmas spirit, whilst savouring London’s wintertime sights and sounds is to try out the Bar under the Bridge, where you can indulge in your favourite tipple.
Greenwich Wintertime Festival
Located near the famous 19thC Cutty Sark, this venue combines our 17th C architectural legacy with an unforgettable wintertime festival experience. Situated in the stunning grounds of the world heritage listed Old Royal Naval College, this inviting, yet intimate market/festival still delivers a great experience which will appeal to everyone. You’ll taste London’s finest festive food/drink and be entertained by theatre, street performers, children shows and live music. You can find that last minute gift at the Winter Market and for the tots why not make their visit more magical by visiting Santa and his Greenwich launch pad, as he gets ready for his Christmas journey? With a mixture of contemporary and traditional activities, amidst over 500 Christmas trees, this festival is becoming a unique and distinctive Christmas destination. So try boogieing at the silent disco, or marvelling at the amazing ice skating performance from world class skaters, for this venue seems to have it all!
Ice Skating in the Capital
During the ‘Little Ice Age’ during the 17th C to the early19th C, it was common during some winters to ice skate on the River Thames. Alas, the river freezes over no longer, however London still boasts several venues where those energetic enough, can ice skate in enchanting surroundings to their hearts content.
Take, for example, the Natural History Museum Ice Rink. This famous museum is home to one such ice rink. With the elegant Waterhouse building as a backdrop you can skate, surrounded by the magical trees laced with fairy lights, weaving like Bambi or a real professional around the majestically adorned Christmas tree. There’s an indoor café, bar and viewing balcony overlooking the ice to enjoy all the falls and scrapes that will inevitably happen, whilst enjoying a restful drink or a toasted marshmallow!
Another grand setting for an ice rink is Somerset House, whose stunning 18thC courtyard is the setting for winter fun. This 900 sq m outdoor rink is the perfect venue for a real escapade. Ideal for families, you can combine your skating with winter dining at the renowned Fortnum Lodge, which offers champagne and mulled wine, or watch from the Skate Lounge. There is the Fortnum’s Christmas Arcade to peruse whilst new this year, are the ‘Skate Lates’, a range of programmed events throughout the winter period.
If you want something different this Christmas Day, you could celebrate like never before on a spectacular panoramic tour of London. You’ll experience all the amazing city landmarks including Westminster Abbey and Houses of Parliament during your festive tour and learn about London’s fascinating history whilst you soak up the festive atmosphere
Take in a panto or show
No Christmas visit to London would be complete without taking in one of the seasonal extravaganzas within the capital. Take the Magic Circle Christmas Show, for example, where you’ll experience The Magic Circle in all its glory. Featuring superb magic tricks, entry also gives access to The Magic Circle museum. Or go and see Peter Pan - Wembley Arena, to follow Peter Pan’s adventures in this interpretation of J.M. Barrie’s classic. Martin Kemp is the baddy Captain Hook and Matt Knight plays Peter Pan. This dazzling panto features a full size galleon along with a 7m long crocodile! Meanwhile Disney on Ice presents Passport to Adventure at the 02. You’ll enter magical world of many famous, yet timeless Disney characters like Simba from ‘The Lion King’, Elsa from ‘Frozen’ and Peter Pan. Toe tapping music abounds in this mesmerising ice-skating spectacular. Or head off to follow Dick Whittington’s adventures at the London Palladium. For ballet lovers, why not take in and be thoroughly enchanted by a lovely presentation of The Nutcracker (Royal Opera House).
Pay a visit to Santa
The magic of Christmas isn’t complete until you and your little terrors have visited Santa in one of his many gift-filled grottos around the capital. We know he’s ultra-busy at this time, yet Santa always makes time to visit some iconic places within the capital to hear if you’ve been naughty or nice! His grotto at London Zoo for example or his hideaway at the WWT London Wetland Centre, are 2 examples of where you can meet the big man himself. You could even set sail for a sightseeing tour on the Thames with Santa, when he’ll dish out all kinds of goodies to children on board. Adults can enjoy mulled wine and mince pies as you glide by many of London’s famous landmarks. Or head to Santa's Grotto at WWT London Wetland Centre to go on an exciting sleigh ride with huskies. In the forest you may find a hidden cabin in this winter paradise and if so you’ve discovered Father Christmas’ grotto!
Sing Christmas Carols
Often many people are so wrapped up in their Christmas preparations, they forget the true meaning of Christmas. So why not take part of traditional Christmas carols at the historic St Paul’s Cathedral, where there is also a Christmas day church service? Or join in at the Albert Hall with their Carols by Candlelight? There are many other such services throughout the capital, including the carols sung around Trafalgar Square’s enormous Christmas tree, where you’ll hear choirs performing carol concerts in the run up to the special day. Whichever iconic venue you choose, you’ll be sure to soak up the atmosphere and be able to reflect on what Christmas is really about.
Experience the Christmas of long ago.
If you want to experience a Christmas of yesteryear, then there’s nowhere better than an Elizabethan Christmas complete with live dance at Hampton Court Palace. Here they have a series of yuletide activities, ranging from an Elizabethan Christmas to singing carols in the courtyards. As well as a magnificent ice rink, the BBC Good Food’s Festive Feast will get the taste buds going with more than 50 food stalls within these historic courtyards. On specified dates, there will also be a themed ‘Elizabethan Christmas’, with Tudor-style courtyard entertainment along with live period music/ dance, epitomising what the Christmas of 1592 was like. Alternatively, try Christmas at Kensington Palace where you’ll experience what Christmas would have been like during Victorian times. There’ll be a host of 19thC activities to experience along with the 8m tall Victorian styled Christmas tree where there will be occasional workshops enabling you to make decorations to take home.
New Year Celebrations
After all the excesses of Christmas time, why not see the old year out by celebrating with family and friends at some of the wonderful New Year festivities on offer within the capital? Choices are endless, with fireworks, parties, dinner cruises and clubbing to name a few! Whatever your plans though, be sure to book in advance as it’s unlikely you can just turn up on the night!
Central London’s Firework Display
This event has become a dazzling spectacle of world class proportions over recent years. A ticketed event, this pyrotechnic display will dazzle and delight, although if you aren’t lucky enough to get a ticket, you can always see the spectacle on TV whilst enjoying a pint or two! There is a wealth of other activities also on offer to see out the old year. A dinner cruise aboard a vessel on the Thames is one such choice, as you’ll still enjoy the fireworks whilst enjoying a lovely meal in the warmth of the cabin. Champagne/live music are available on some of these cruises, allowing you to dance the night away. You could opt for an exhilarating speedboat ride, a traditional boat trip or welcome the New Year whilst overlooking London’s skyline on the London Eye. Or perhaps watch The Shard light up the sky with a special New Year's Eve light show.
For those who enjoy more cultural experiences, try being transported to 19th C Vienna to enjoy New Year's Eve’s music/dancing in ‘The Magic of Vienna concert’ (Barbican). Experience memorable music by Strauss, whose waltzes and polkas provided the entertainment to the Viennese of yesteryear.
Alternatively, join the Southbank Centre's Vintage New Year's Eve Party, which offers a quirky, yet stylish way to see in the New Year. With 5 pop-up ‘vintage’ nightclubs, the music ranges from the ‘20s to the ‘90s, incorporating swing, rock’n'roll, disco, soul and cabaret. There is walkabout entertainment, good dining options and a private river terrace to watch the London fireworks.
If you want something more modern then the Ministry of Sound Electric (Brixton) could be for you. This flagship all-night club attracts many followers of the global dance and house music brand.
New Year’s Day
So the New Year beckons, although January 1st is often overlooked by those with hangovers and those who didn’t get to bed until 5am! However, there are numerous things to do for those who can manage it.
New Year’s Day annual Parade
This spectacular parade, mixes entertainment and traditional pomp with dancers, marching bands, historical vehicles and more, all descending upon central London to enthral the crowd. This colourful celebration starts at Green Park Tube station at 12pm, finishing at Parliament Square at 3.30pm. Over 10,000 performers will feature, with colourful floats representing countries from around the world, whilst over 500,000 spectators will witness the glorious spectacle, with music and confetti wafting through the London streets.
New Year Sales
If you still have money to spend you could hit the sales in some of London’s top shopping hotspots and pick up bargains in the January sales.
Time for a stroll?
Why not walk off the excess pounds you’ve gained over Christmas with an amble around London’s beautiful parks? Beautiful any time of year, but on a crisp January day they can be even more stunning!
So get planning your wintery stay in London so that you don’t miss a thing. If you decide to extend your visit to our fabulous capital then Euracom can help! We provide a range of reasonably priced serviced apartments within London, making your stay in the capital a memorable one.
Why not try our Short stay studio apartments London, Bayswater Kensington Gardens W2?
These short stay apartments are situated in Bayswater, near to Hyde Park & Whiteley’s shopping centre. With the West End’s many shops, restaurants and theatres nearby, they’re an ideal base for exploring our lovely capital. Apartments range from £140p/n and each is decorated to a high standard, complete with air con, LCD TVs and fully equipped kitchens and bathrooms. They are also close to some of London’s beautiful parks, such as Hyde Park and its Winter Wonderland.
- Air conditioning
- Concierge / security / reception Daily cleaning service/ Lifts Nearby/ Secure storage facilities
- DVD player/ Telephone TV / Freeview Wifi
- Fully equipped kitchen/ Iron / Ironing board/ Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available Bayswater
More about our Bayswater Kensington Gardens Short Stay serviced apartments London ›
Alternatively, the Short stay apartments London, Earls Court Road, SW5 provide an excellent base and are close to Sloane Square and Harrods. These Edwardian styled serviced apartments are beautifully furnished boasting traditional, high ceilings & sizable rooms, ranging in size from studios, (£153p/n) to apartments which sleep 8 people. Their proximity to popular destinations like Knightsbridge, Kensington & Chelsea make them ideal for a spot of Christmas shopping. The famous Royal Albert Hall and Natural History Museum are nearby sights and landmarks worth visiting.
- Baby cot / high chair (upon request)
- Breakfast available/ Concierge / security / reception/ Daily cleaning service Desk
- Workspace Dining table & chairs
- Fully equipped kitchen/ Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available/Dishwasher in some apartments/ Tea / coffee making facilities
- Door entry phone/ Lifts/ Welcome pack available
- DVD player/ Telephone TV / Freeview/ Wi-fi
- En-suite Bathroom in some apartments
More about our Earls Court Road Short Stay serviced apartments London ›
For an even more spectacular, luxurious stay, with everything you could possibly need in the way of 5 star living, the Luxury serviced apartments Green Park, London W1 Mayfair, are for you.
Located off Piccadilly, these apartments are part of a 5 star hotel, so offer the same amenities you’d expect from a luxury London hotel, with all the added benefits of being self-contained, fully equipped luxury serviced apartments. More expensive than the last examples, (prices start from £765p/n for a 1 bed apartment) yet you get what you pay for, as these luxurious apartments are finished to the highest possible standard, featuring marble bathrooms, spacious lounge, dining area and fully fitted kitchen along with a gym, spa, room/ concierge service. You even have the option of a private garden or penthouse! With Oxford Street and all London’s shops and festive lights nearby, this apartment could be a real ‘dream come true’ of a holiday.
- Air conditioning
- Breakfast available/ Room service/ Radio / Business centre available/ Onsite restaurants / bars /
More about our Green Park luxury serviced apartments London ›
By Tony Hisgett from Birmingham, UK (Christmas Lights 2 Uploaded by tm) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
jeffwarder [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By Simeon87 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
at 28 Nov 2017
Most people visiting our wonderful capital city will probably take in London’s most famous sights. The London Eye, Buckingham Palace and The Tower of London are just 3 of the superb attractions on offer to the discerning tourist, enabling them to experience the very best of London. People visiting London for the first time may find it difficult to stray off the beaten track and will understandably stick to all these famous haunts.
Yet aside from the glorious crown jewels within The Tower, there is a vast array of less well known, hidden gems throughout the capital that will interest you just as much. These often beautiful places are sometimes off the main tourist paths, so you may have to discard the guide book and start exploring! From underground tours of London’s disused tube stations, to ancient, well hidden ‘Roman’ Baths; from a labyrinth of man-made caverns at Chislehurst Caves to a former Victorian toilet, now lovingly transformed into a unique eatery. These are just a few of the places which will thrill and delight you by their quirkiness!
Below, you'll discover some of the secret corners of London, often hidden-away amongst the side streets. They probably aren’t part of the traditional tourist agenda for the most famous London attractions, but they won’t stay relatively unknown for much longer, so visiting them now is a must, before they become too touristy! So to discover more of the capital, why not check out these fun things to do in London, and experience a different side to the city with our guide to the secret and hidden spots in London?
West London Hidden Gems
Scale an ice cliff
The Vertical Chill ice climbing wall, WC2E 7HA will thrill both beginners and the more advanced climber. Here you can brush up on your mountaineering skills and become a master climber, all in the centre of London. There are lessons for beginners, or you can just turn up on the day and climb your personal Matterhorn. Not quite as good as Everest, but as near as.
See the last remaining ‘fart-powered’ lamp, WC2R 0EU
Hidden behind the Savoy Hotel in Carting Lane, you’ll discover the last remaining Webb Patent Sewer Gas Lamp. These lamps were, during the 19th C, widespread throughout London, and provided low-cost street lighting. Also used as a means of clearing the noxious, unpleasant smells coming from London’s sewers, this replica takes you back to a bygone age.
Have lunch in a toilet - Attendant Fitzrovia, W1W 6DY
This quirky coffee bar, where you can rest for coffee, breakfast or a light lunch, is (wait for it), situated in in a restored Victorian public convenience. Built in 1890, this unique space has been lovingly transformed and restored from a gent’s toilet into one of the most unexpected gems of London. With urinals (clean, obviously), providing some of the seating, this compact eatery, has everything…good food, great atmosphere and the quirkiness that only Britain can offer. I’d go on to make a joke about the Attendant’s previous functions, but I think you may get ‘peed off’! (Get the pun?) Whilst on the subject of toilets, why not try the London Loo Tour? According to the website, the route ‘explores the potty politics of public loos. From stories of intrigue to practical tips, this tour is an investment in your bladder future! Never be caught short again!’ Sounds interesting huh!
Discover Ancient 'Roman Baths' WC2
Head off towards The Strand, and you could be taken in, as Victorian Londoners were, by the Ancient 'Roman’ Baths. Hard to find, they’re situated halfway along Surrey St, so keep your eyes peeled for an old National Trust sign above a gated archway. This leads into Surrey Steps, from which you emerge into Strand Lane. Turn right and then look for number 5. Interestingly, the baths are probably not Roman. In fact they probably date back to the 16th/17th C, but the gullible Victorians believed they were much older when ‘discovered’ in the 18th C, especially when the owner of a little-known plunge pool promoted it as being Roman in origin. Nearly everyone was duped, including respected writers, who soon claimed that it was “without doubt a veritable Roman structure”.
Certainly, the brickwork bears resemblance to Roman architecture, and although we’re now certain that the bath dates from the early 17th C, there was little evidence at the time to contradict the story of its ancient beginnings. These 'Roman Baths' were used by the Victorians for their health benefits and remained operating throughout the 19th C. This is a great piece of hidden London history, and well worth exploring.
Visit Kyoto Garden, W11 4UA
For a lovely, tranquil setting, this 55 acre paradise boasts an array of beautiful trees, stone lanterns, winding paths, trickling waterfalls, peaceful ponds with koi carp and splendid statues. This garden, situated within Holland Park, was a gift from Kyoto in 1991 and is hidden within busy Kensington. So why not experience a little piece of Japan and visit one of the most beautiful places in London? With free entry it’s a paradise at any time of year, but particularly in the Autumn, when the garden’s foliage is stunning.
Visit Stafford Terrace - A house stuck in a time warp, W8 7BH
If you’d like to visit a house which has been frozen in a time warp, then this is it! From the outside it looks pretty unremarkable, yet as you enter the house it’s like travelling back in time to the late Victorian period. Going into this freeze frame of Victorian middle class elegance, you’ll realise the house has been largely untouched since Punch cartoonist Edward Linley Sambourne lived there from 1875 with his family, until he died in 1910. The entire original decoration still exists, along with many of the family’s personal possessions and furniture. Original diaries, bills and papers make up a huge archive of daily life during the period. The house is open on various afternoons for guests to visit.
Take a trip to Venice! W9 2PF
For a peaceful walk or boat trip, away from the hustle and bustle of the Thames, try Little Venice. Situated where the Grand Union and Regent’s canals meet, this lovely area is where you’ll discover quirky waterside cafes, charming pubs and eateries and even puppet shows! This is London’s answer to Italy’s famous city. The area comes alive in the Summer, when people meander along the riverside to nearby Camden or Regent's Park. If you want atmosphere in a very gentle setting, then this is for you.
Where to stay in West London?
To get the most out of all the above attractions, Euracom have a range of serviced apartments within this area of London. One example is our Luxury serviced apartments Green Park, London W1.
Luxuriously furnished and finished to a high standard, these superb serviced apartments are located near to Piccadilly. They form part of a five-star hotel, offering all the amenities of a luxury London hotel whilst also providing all the benefits of having your own self-contained, fully equipped luxury serviced apartment. For a nightly fee of £765p/n , you’ll get an opulent marble bathroom, spacious lounge/dining area, and fully fitted kitchen. These apartments also have access to a gym and spa and also have the option of a private garden or penthouse! They are a perfect base to explore all London’s hidden gems, as well as the more famous ones.
- Bathroom/ central heating Concierge / security / reception/ Laundry / dry cleaning facilities available/ safe
- Daily or weekly linen change/ daily cleaning service/ room service available
- Dining table & chairs/ tea / coffee making facilities
- Fully equipped kitchen/ breakfast available/ dishwasher in some apartments
- Lifts / lobby / waiting area / telephone / satellite TV / Wi-fi / radio / alarm clock
- Onsite restaurants / bars/ spa / health club in building or nearby
More about our Green Park Luxury serviced apartments London ›
North London Hidden Gems
The Parkland Walk Finsbury Park N4 3EY
Stroll along the course of the old railway that once ran between Finsbury Park and Alexandra Palace. If you want a decent walk, in a serene setting and the chance to experience some greenery at the very centre of London, then this local nature reserve is for you. The walk boasts a huge variety of habitats and wildlife, with 200+ species of wild flowers. Here you’ll see orchids alongside dandelions, hedgehogs, foxes, butterflies and a plethora of bird species, along with muntjac deer, which can occasionally be seen.
Head to Chin Chin Labs’ Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream parlour, Cambden, NW1 8AF,
This ice cream parlour is a must for connoisseurs who like something more unusual than the Mr Whippy! Here you can indulge in original ice cream mixtures, thanks to the use of liquid nitrogen! You’ll watch the process unfold while waiting for service, savouring the mystical chemical clouds in the shop’s laboratory. Served in many different flavours, such as red velvet and water melon, Chin Chin Labs’ delicious creations are not to be missed.
Visit Camden Passage, Islington, N1 8EA
If antiques are your passion then a novel place to browse is hidden away from the bustling streets of Islington. Camden Passage hosts regular street antiques markets, selling curios and bric a brac, along with superb antique shops where you could bag a bargain. Unusual cafes abound, along with a range of other quaint shops.
Relax at London’s only bookshop barge, N1C 4LW
If you enjoy a relaxing read, whilst gently idling on the canal bank, then head to London’s only second-hand bookshop barge, Word on the Water. The barge moors at several sites and has a range of excellent novels to peruse. This welcoming venue boasts a wood-burning stove to toast those toes, live music and you may even get to cuddle the resident cat!
Platform 9¾ at King’s Cross, N1 9AP
Harry Potter fans will be overjoyed at this little gem. Situated at Kings Cross Station, you may not think this next feature could be included as a hidden gem. Yes, this station is a busy, bustling area, although many travellers aren’t aware of Platform 9¾. Thanks to the recently revamped railway station, it now boasts a new platform, nestled snugly between platforms 9 and 10. It’s easy to find, as there are always queues of muggles waiting for photo opportunities. Luckily, if you want to replenish your wizard supplies and wands, then there is also a wonderful souvenir shop!
Central London Hidden Gems
Churchill’s Secret Station and other Most of our Hidden London tours
If you’re uninspired by a visit to the London Eye or Buckingham Palace, there’s a new experience below the London streets that could appeal. The London Transport Museum has devised the very popular Hidden London tours, including a ‘secret station’ used by Churchill during the war, a World War II shelter, a disused underground station at Aldwych and a tour taking you along the disused rail lines. Tours are in great demand so often sell out quickly, but these are a rare opportunity to take an intimate peep into London’s hidden historical past, where the warren of tunnels were often used to save the lives of many during the Blitz.
East London Hidden Gems
Chislehurst Caves, BR7 5NL
Slightly further afield, but worth the effort, are Chislehurst Caves, a maze of man-made caverns, dating from the Druids, Romans and Saxons. They have had varied uses over the years, including serving as an air raid shelter during WW2, when people travelled daily from the bomb ravaged East End of London, to a safer place to sleep. For a brief time, they have also been a successful music venue, hosting artists like David Bowie and Jimi Hendrix.
Encounter a Soviet tank, Old Kent Road, SE1
Bringing Russia into London, a rather novel piece of social history can be seen. This materialised due to an argument between a prospective developer, Russel Gray, and Southwark Council. Denied planning permission for his house, the resident waged war on the council by buying a decommissioned T34 Soviet tank for his child and plonked it on the disputed plot! Prior to this act, this canny local had the forethought to apply for new planning permission, not for a building but for a 'tank'. The council granted this request, mistakenly thinking that it was for a storage container of some kind. The council’s error is to our benefit, as the tank is now a popular attraction for graffiti artists, who regularly change its facia. Legend has it that the tank’s turret is aimed towards the council offices! So should you fancy climbing over a part of cold war history, you can make a visit to this symbol of two great struggles, the first between communism and capitalism, and another between a local man and a council planning department.
St Dunstan in the East, EC3R 5DD
An excellent picnic spot, this area boasts a church dating from 1100. It has seen significant damage in past times, the first being inflicted during Great Fire of London in 1666, whilst more recently during the heavy bombing during the Blitz. Some parts survived though, in particular the steeple built by Christopher Wren. This is certainly an atmospheric place to have lunch.
Wilton’s Music Hall
If culture is what you crave, then look no further! Taking a trip to the oldest surviving music hall in the world, tucked within London’s East End is an experience you won’t forget. Wilton’s Music Hall hosts a wide range of theatrical and musical events is being gradually restored from its dilapidated state, whilst retaining its classic, original features.
Originally a traditional Victorian music hall, parts still lie crumbling, which add to its appeal. The ‘shabby chic’ effect also contributes to its character and intimacy, enabling you to either enjoy a drink in the Mahogany Bar, or take a tour around this great historic venue.
Enjoy lunch in a power station, E1W 3SG
For something which may give you a buzz, (another pun), you may fancy lunching in the unique and eccentric setting of Wapping Hydraulic Power Station. Situated in the old hydraulic power station and surrounded by original disused machinery, pumps and turbines, you can experience the quirkiness of this laid-back restaurant. After lunch remember to visit the impressive art gallery.
Where to stay in East London?
After a hard day’s sightseeing, you’ll want to rest your weary heads. We have a range of delightful serviced apartments within this area of London. One example is our superb, beautifully furnished apartments at Bishopsgate Liverpool Street, Corporate Serviced Apartments London, EC2
These corporate serviced apartments offer both studios and 1 or 2 bedroom apartments. Starting from £138p/n, these apartments feature modern furnishings and lovely solid oak flooring. They are equipped with the latest technology, including individual internet access, ISDN and digital telephones, making your stay more ‘home from home.’ They’ll provide the perfect spot for some peace and quiet from hectic city life.
- Baby cot / high chair (upon request)/ welcome pack available//daily cleaning service/
- Concierge / security / reception/ air conditioning/ door entry phone/lifts/lobby/waiting area/safe
- Fully equipped kitchen/breakfast available/laundry/dry cleaning facilities available
- Satellite TV/ telephone/ wi-fi
More about our Bishopsgate Liverpool Street corporate serviced apartments London ›
South London Hidden Gems
Fulham Palace, SW6 6EA
For a range of art, architecture and history, this beautiful palace is an unsung gem within London. With free entry, Fulham Palace has and a varied programme of events throughout the year. Paintings, archaeology and an array of artefacts trace the history of the Palace site from prehistoric times.
Mercato Metropolitano and Maltby Street
Two markets off the tourist trail that tend to appeal more to locals, yet are close to the bustling Borough Market, are those of the Mercato Metropolitano and Maltby Street. With their tantalising food selection, the Mercato Metropolitano food court specialises in dishes from Venezuela to Italian favourites. Within the 2 courtyards there are also regular cinema screenings. Alternatively Maltby Street lies under the railway arches in Bermondsey and is close to Tower Bridge. Here, street food is enjoyed by Londoners and visitors alike. With its ‘low-key’ atmosphere great food producers combine with craft brewers. So pick up a beer from The Southwark Brewing Co whilst dining. It’s a real treat.
Discover the House of Dreams, SE22 8RG
If you love discovering forgotten and previously unloved objects, then The House of Dreams is the place to go. This museum has been dedicated to those objects that would usually be thrown away. As you step over the threshold you’ll be treated to a home transformed into an extraordinary environment that is a shrine to….junk! Each surface, wall and ceiling is covered with every object imaginable, from such things as old Christmas crackers, china, broken toys and other odds and ends. There are intricate mosaics and life-sized sculptures of incredible characters which add to the amazing atmosphere of this wonderful place.
The King of Ladies Man, London, SW11 1HG
You’ll find this ‘speakeasy-style’ bar The King of Ladies Man, hidden at the back of a café behind a false wall in a launderette, believe it or not! Based on a 1970s bachelor pad, it is filled with golden light, pink flamingo wallpaper, gold lamé curtains and specialises in “beer, cheese and disco drinks”. The laundrette is a nod to the iconic 80’s advert for Levi Jeans and was transformed into a dining and drinking area. The proprietors will even allow you to perch on the washing machines! Then on sliding back the false wall, you’ll discover the hidden bar with its cocktail shaking staff in Hawaiian shirts!
Old Operating Theatre Museum, SE1 9RY
To see how our ancestors coped with 19th C surgery, and to recognise just how lucky we are to have today’s NHS, for all its faults, the 32 steps up an ancient, spiralling staircase are the stairway to an unmissable spectacle. This museum boasts a frightening array of implements for amputating body parts, reflecting the rather ruthless way that surgery was practiced during the 19th C. Each Saturday they even have a special demo of Victorian speed surgery at its best, a sight definitely to behold!
Where to stay in South London?
Should you decide to visit any of these great venues in South London then Euracom have a range of very affordable serviced apartments for both long and shorter stays.
The Luxury serviced apartments South Kensington Collingham London SW5 for example, have recently been stylishly refurbished as self-catering apartments for rent. Here there is space to relax, unwind and even entertain in luxurious accommodation. At £186p/n for a studio apartment, this Edwardian styled house will make you feel truly at home. They are perfect for families who are seeking all the comforts of home.
- Cot / high chair (upon request)
- Central heating/ concierge / security / reception/ lifts/ safe
- Daily or weekly linen change/ daily cleaning service
- Desk / workspace/ dining table & chairs
- DVD player/ telephone/ tv / freeview/wi-fi
- Fully equipped kitchen/ dishwasher in some/ iron / ironing board/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
More about our South Kensington Collingham luxury serviced apartments London ›
So there’s our pick of venues of secret London – a treasure trove of places that currently fly under the radar despite being really amazing. So why not try a few of these hidden gems for that ultimate day out? You won’t regret it.
For information on when & where to stay in London and which serviced apartment is right for you & your stay contact us today.
Kbthompson at English Wikipedia [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
Nigel Chadwick [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By Wiltonsfan (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
at 16 Oct 2017
Amongst the growing trend of latest technologies and ideas, there is certainly one that has escaped my attention, (and possibly yours)… that of the appropriately named, ‘listicle!’ ‘What on earth’, I hear you ask, ‘is that?’ Well, for the uninitiated, and those who haven't been on the internet for some time, ‘listicles’ have recently become popular with people who enjoy reading lists instead of a good novel! A "listicle," is generally defined as a phrase for any article which is presented in the form of a list. So this month we present the top ten things to do in London as a listicle…
Let’s look at what many people would consider to be the top 10 things to do in London our wonderful capital city, also discovering a few which are free.
Unusual facts that may surprise you about the top ten things to do in London as featured in this article!
- The London Eye
- The Tower of London
- The Shard
- Buckingham Palace
- The London Dungeon
- Madam Tussauds
- Take a walk
- Science or Natural History Museums
- Explore the Parks
- Stroll the Markets
1. The London Eye
This iconic, giant Ferris wheel is a masterpiece of engineering, located along the Thames. Officially known as the Coca-Cola London Eye, it is over 200 times larger than the average cycle wheel and is Europe’s tallest Ferris wheel, rising to 135 meters tall. There are 32 capsules, one for each of the London boroughs, each weighing 10 tonnes. Capsules are numbered 1 to 33, with interestingly no capsule 13, for superstitious reasons! The Eye can carry 800 passengers, (equivalent to 11 London double-decker buses), and welcomes over 3 ¾ million visitors annually.
Did you know?
It was once turned into a rotating nightclub, along with becoming a ‘pop up’ restaurant during the London Restaurant Festival! An unmissable venue!
2. The Tower of London
Despite once renowned as a place of torture and death, this 1000 year old, working monument has been a royal palace, jewel house, royal mint, fortress and armoury. Legend says that the ghost of Anne Boleyn walks the Tower accompanied by her head, placed, appropriately, under her arm. With over 2½ million visitors each year, this is an attraction not to be overlooked.
Did you know?
For 600 years it accommodated a range of wild creatures, making it the first London Zoo. Exotic animals, ranging from kangaroos to a polar bear, hunting for fish in the River Thames on a lead! All long gone now, although legend has it that if the Tower’s ravens leave, then this spells doom for Great Britain. So let’s hope they stay!
3. The Shard
This superb vantage point is twice as high as any other in the city. As Western Europe's tallest building, (309m), The Shard allows visitors to see up to 40 miles away. The impressive 95 storey
structure was designed as a vertical city, enabling people to work, relax and live. Its ‘Neo-futuristic’ design was based on the shape of a shard of glass, derived from the architect’s description during planning. Incredibly, 95% of the construction materials are recycled, and the 11,000 glass panels have a total area of 8 football pitches, around 56,000m2. It’s wiring amounts to 320km and would stretch from London to Paris, whilst the swimming pool on the 52nd floor is Europe’s highest swimming pool. An apartment in this fabulous space would set you back around £40 million, so best just to visit!
Did you know?
Near the end of construction, a fox, nicknamed Romeo, was found on the 72nd floor. Later released into the wild, it is thought it survived on food left by construction workers.
4. Buckingham Palace
This unmissable, working royal palace, gives you a glimpse into royal life. The superb state rooms boast palace treasures and masterpieces from fine artists like Rembrandt and Rubens. Originally named Buckingham House, and the Queen’s official London residence, the house comprises of 775 rooms, including 19 state rooms, 52 main suites, 188 staff bedrooms, 92 offices, and 78 bathrooms! There are also 760 windows and 1,514 doors, 350 clocks and watches, along with a post office, police station, doctor’s surgery, ATM, cinema and pool.
Did you know?
There is an exciting set of passageways running beneath the palace, connecting it to the outside world. Many royals, including HM Queen Mother and King George VI, enjoyed exploring these. On one occasion, they encountered ‘a very polite man from Newcastle,’ who was living down there.
5. The London Dungeon
This thrilling attraction transports you back to Britain’s gory past. The macabre setting lets your senses explore all the sights, smells and sounds of London’s horrifying crimes. Not for the faint hearted and with a surprise round every corner, you’ll encounter an array of frightening characters, from torturers, judges and infamous rogues and villains, played by fine actors. So stay alert for the shocks, special effects and rides and become entwined in the world of horror. Embark on this thrill-filled journey at your peril, through 1,000 years of London's dark past.
Did you know?
Figures like Sweeney Todd and his sidekick Mrs Lovett, are only fictional, as no public records exist which substantiate the existence of a barber named Todd. Yet stories of shocking criminal deeds were often embellished as they were told and were therefore asserted to be true.
6. Madam Tussauds
This fine museum, founded in 1835 by wax sculptor Anna Maria Tussaud, has been enthralling visitors for almost 200 years. Typical figures included in today’s displays range from historical to royalty, film stars to sporting legends and famous murderers. Originally holding around 400 exhibits, some of these were damaged irreparably during the war, although many have been remade using the original casts. Each sculpture takes four months to produce, costing £227,000. Accuracy is paramount, so 250 precise measurements, along with 180 photographs are taken to ensure this.
Did you know?
The singer Ozzy Osbourne once posed in the museum as himself and scared unsuspecting visitors. Mother Teresa decreed that her ‘work was more important than her physical being.’ She was therefore one of the only people to refuse to be sculpted.
Free Activities in the Top Ten
7. Take a walk
Head off to admire the lions in Trafalgar Square and take in the famous Nelson’s Column. Cast in bronze, the lions were designed by Edwin Landseer, who worked from real corpses and the cast of a lion statue. After this, head inside the nearby National Portrait Gallery to view some fabulous artwork and drawings from Leonardo to Rembrandt.
Did you know?
Although he strove for great accuracy, Landseer made a big error. In reality, lion’s backs are convex when laying down, not concave as he depicted them. Many thought they looked more like a sphinx!
8. Science or Natural History Museums
The NH museum boasts a huge collection relating to life and earth science specimens. It holds over 80 million items within five main collections, including; botany, entomology, mineralogy, palaeontology and zoology. It has excellent research facilities, specialising in identification, conservation and taxonomy. Many specimens have significant historical value as well as scientific, like those collected by Charles Darwin. The museum is particularly popular amongst younger children for its exhibition of dinosaur skeletons.
Alternatively, the incredible Science Museum is another of the city's major tourist attractions, attracting 3 million visitors annually. Major interactive exhibitions, such as ‘Exploring Space’, are always excitingly displayed and of great interest to young and old alike. The museum now holds a collection of over 300,000 items, including such famous items as Stephenson's Rocket and Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive)
9. Explore the Parks
Hyde Park is just one of eight Royal Parks and is well worth a visit to see such sights as the Serpentine, Speakers Corner and the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain. Start from Marble Arch tube and stroll around.
Did you know?
Each Christmas Day, a few mad bathers dive into the Serpentine, competing for the Peter Pan Cup. It’s aptly named, by the Peter Pan author, JM Barrie, who donated the cup. Worth noting though, that participation is for Serpentine Swimming Club members only, so maybe just focus on cooking the turkey!
10. Stroll the Markets
Why not feast on delicious food at the Borough Market, or watch the street performers whilst dining in Covent Garden? These are some of the oldest and most charming London areas, with superb cheese and bread stalls, along with a memento or two to take home.
Did you know?
The name of ‘Covent Garden’ was a spelling mistake. It was supposed to be CONVENT GARDEN, the market garden of the convent of Westminster Abbey!
So there you have it…a ‘listicle’ showing some strange facts about the top ten attractions in London. Whilst weighing up your choices why not consider staying a while longer to tick some others off your ‘bucket listicle!’ You’ll be glad you did!
Euracom has a range of serviced apartments to suit your every need, from budget studio flats to luxurious sprawling apartment suites.
Take, for example, the Luxury corporate serviced apartments in London E1, Bishopsgate, these stunningly spacious, recently converted, luxury serviced apartments are bright and well furnished. Perfect for business travellers and tourists alike, they give easy access to the City and its main attractions like Covent Garden, Spitalfields Market and the Museum of London. From £1034 pw, these apartments offer a range of luxurious services & facilities that cater for everyone.
Services & facilities include
- Baby cot / high chair (upon request)
- Bathroom/ toiletries provided
- Concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ lifts/ telephone/TV / freeview/wi-fi
- Daily or weekly linen change/ daily cleaning service/starter packs of groceries/ toiletries available
- DVD player/ radio / alarm clock
- Fully equipped kitchen/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available/ tea / coffee making facilities
- Gym in building or nearby
More about our luxury corporate serviced apartments in London E1, Bishopsgate ›
Slightly more expensive, at £1071pw, are the short stay apartments London, Earls Court Road, SW5. These lovely, Edwardian styled apartments, feature high imposing ceilings and comfortable, well- proportioned rooms. Close to Kensington Palace and the Natural History Museum, the four bedroom apartments can sleep up to 8 people, making them the perfect apartments to rent for a short stay in London.
Services & facilities include
- Baby cot / high chair (upon request)/ daily cleaning service
- Breakfast available/ dishwasher in some apartments/ welcome pack available
- Concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ Lifts
- En-suite bathroom in some apartments
- Desk / workspace/ dining table & chairs
- Ensuite bathroom in some apartments
- Fully equipped kitchen/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available/ tea / coffee making facilities
- Telephone/ TV / Freeview/ DVD player/Wifi
More about our short stay apartments London, Earls Court Road, SW5 ›
Alternatively, you could opt for our corporate serviced apartments, Holborn Lambs Conduit Street WC1, which are set in a quiet street in the heart of London's Holborn district. Close to Covent Garden, The British Museum and the City, these apartments make an ideal base for both holidaying and business. Each apartment has been individually designed and furnished to a high standard, featuring Italian furniture, king-sized beds and comfortable living and dining areas.
Services & facilities include;
- Baby cot / high chair (upon request)/ daily cleaning service/ welcome pack available
- Balcony / Terrace (upon request)
- Central heating/concierge / security / reception/ door entry phone/ lifts/ safe
- Dining table & chairs/ fully equipped kitchen/ dishwasher in some apartments
- DVD player/ hairdryer available
- Grocery store onsite / nearby
- Kitchen / kitchenette/ iron / ironing board/ laundry / dry cleaning facilities available
- Radio / Alarm clock/satellite TV/ telephone/TV / Freeview/ Wi-fi
More about our corporate serviced apartments London, Holborn Lambs Conduit Street WC1 ›
By Bob Collowân (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
at 4 Aug 2017