Soon to make our annual pilgramage to London. It is our favorite city, (after New York of course, we are New Yorkers). Its history, culture, parks and museums, even the food is good these days. The bookstores for books not yet published in the US, are great for a brutal reader like myself. The array of shops and arcades for the traditional and modern are wonderful to explore. The design shop windows filled with the precious antique or whimsical chandelier. One can walk in and purchase a few yards of fabric or do a whole house.
Then there are the gorgeous houses with sky high ceilings and windows to match, beautifully dressed of course. We always stay in one of these Victorian townhouses in South Kensington which has become our “neighborhood” over the years. Welcoming drawing rooms for guests to enjoy and bedrooms beautifully and cosily done in various themes. Like Americans the Brits embrace color but nothing looks too studied or perfect. They embrace the patina of age and imperfection and mixing the old with the new and the dash of whimsy.
Having done the sights untold times we look forward to going to our favorites places, a walk to Victoria and Albert Museum to see their latest exhibit and lovely gift shop. Further on Old Brompton to the hallowed halls of Harrods, especially the Food Halls. We go to Conrans Shop for the new and inspirational in modern decor and wonderful accessories. Stop in Bibendum their restaurant for a light lunch. The local pharmacies a must with their wonderful French soaps and beauty products. And a walk to Kings Road and all the shops along the way to Sloane Square. We also meander along finding new neighborhoods or the Christiopher Wren church never happened on before.
I always have a new museum or gallery on my list and this year it is the Serpentine Gallery right in Kensington Gardens, another walk from our hotel. Each year a well known architect is asked to build an outdoor pavillion that stands until Oct. 31. A new Gallery has been added to the site by architect Zaha Hadid. Inside is the Magazine Restaurant. Can’t wait to see. Will report back.