Posts Tagged ‘Picadilly’

The tube, this unusual art gallery

The London tube asked, some time ago, a hundred artists to help them celebrate a hundred years of tube art -  hence 100 extra creations based on their logo.

You can still see them around -  quite a few @ Piccadilly Station. Surprising, funny, poetic – collect them!

Rose Finn

Doug Fishbone

Alex Frost

Clare Woods

James Ireland

David Blandy

The hut project

The 100 pieces are grouped here

About the tube:
- Charing Cross
- Tottenham Court rd
- Baker st
- Waterloo
- Stepney Green
- During the war

Post-it for the week-end Dec 24-26, 2010

Almost time to put the presents under the tree… Have you thought of getting one to yourself? And if you still have a little energy left after the turkey, chestnuts, Xmas pudding and mince pies… here are a few ideas to relax and make London your own again:

- No time for a big lunch? Get yourself a lobster sandwich to keep it festive…

- Explore the climate @ the Science Museum

- Don’t cook for Xmas

- Pose on Piccadilly Circus (or tweet your best wishes there)

- Would you splash in a lake on the 25th of December? They will!

- From Dec 24 to 26th, the Dickens Museum gets pretty festive with carols, treats, Victorian customs…

- Murder and hanted theatres? Well worth a guided walk on the 26th!

- Plan a Winston Churchill afternoon tea with British classics… (or go and see this clock special Churchill)

- A little dream of London

- What a treat: 100 drawings by Quentin Blake

- Get your dancing shoe for this tea dance special Agatha Christie on the 27th – it’s free!

- There is a medieval market @ the Tower of London on the 27th…

-And if it snows….

- Love London, final point!

Happy Tweeting on Piccadilly

Do Christmas cards bore you? Are you sighing at the thought of choosing, writing, addressing, stamping, posting them?

Well, here is an amazing way to surprise your friends this year: have a message light up on the famous Piccadilly screens. it will only take a minute – just tweet your message to @cokezone. You will be emailed 5mn before your wishes (or your love declaration, why not!) are played on the screen.

Can’t be there in time? Not to worry, just send them this link to the local webcam!

T’is the season to be tweeting, everyone!

Twitter: @cokezone
Gratuit Free

Try the extra-ordinary @ Haunch of Venison

Haunch of Venison is one of this weird and wonderful galleries who favour fantasy. Their shows always promise a travel through a new dimension, usually fun and colourful.

And this is so true right now. Have a look at this Portuguese artist’s work, Jana Vasconcelos. Inspired by Gloria Gaynor’s great hit I will survive, she present creatiosn that will really make you smile, like this chain of braids to guide the queues! Each sculpture alternates in identity, rainbow monsters with the softness of knitting and patchwork- kids will love those. But also object covered in laced crochet, you will find an elegant piano and an amazing bee along the way. My favourite remains this entirely dark room with a maze mad of fiberoptic flowers… As they are knee high, you feel as if you are being absorbed by the floor. Mesmerizing.

In paralel, do not miss Polly Morgan’s creations. I have been admiring her for years. This very skilled taxidermist knows how to erase the morbid side to create an almost Tim Burtonesque reality.

Haunch of venison
I will survive – Psychopomps
6 Burlington Gardens
London W1S 3ET
Until September 25, 2010

Shine in Burlington Arcade

A job we thought erased by modern times such as lamplighter, switchboard operators, flower girls…

The very elegant Burlington Arcade has its own shoe-shiner. Have you had a chance to see him? Try lunch time or the end of a working day to see him busy -  there will be plenty of expensive hand-made or Bond Street bought shoes them. The customer usually is half hidden by the wide pages of the Financial times… Some even have a wide knowledge of the subject (which got me to learn that British shoes need less water with the polish than Italian ones).  Strolling the web, I discover this shoe-shine culture is still very much present in New-York but also is takeing roots again in England – look here, @ the Ledenhall Market… Well, of course, this is a couple minutes away from the City, my dear…

Burlington Arcade
51 Burlington Arcade

For a detailed experience, click here… Have you seen shoe-shiners anywhere else in London?

Paxton and Whitfield: say cheese!

Ask any Froggie where his cheese heaven is in London, and he will answer Neal’sYard Dairy, La Fromagerie or la Cave a fromages.
Alternatively, the Borough Market is quite an experience (especially if like me, you do stop at every stall to taste).

For a more picturesque time, I love Paxton and Whitfield. They hold a quaint shop in the gentlemen’s quarters, Jermyn street. And trust me, it hides wonders. It used to only be a stall @ Aldwych market in 1742… Thanks to the partnership of Mr Paxton and Mr Whitfield, it could settle here in 1797. So chic royalty fell for it too -  Queen Victoria appointed them official cheesemongers in 1850. And they still have the honour of servir her Majesty the Queen and Prince Charles.

XXth century proved harder – competition of continental cheese, two world wars… Still they made it -  switching to grocery style, adding cream, eggs, milk, butter to their shelves. Even Winston churchill was a fan, swearing that A gentleman only buys his cheese at Paxton and Whitfield

Just step in and smell… How wonderful! You’ll find here the very best of French and British spcialties… The inside is adorable, the counter is covered with delights, here and there a touch of another time… The team is also so very friendly (even though you’re only taking pictures) and are happy to make you taste this or that novelty.

Fancy a different celebration / wedding? Try this, order a cheese – pyramid!

Sliding to modern times -  you can now order online.  Or join the cheese club for £35 a month and get a special delivery of 4 cheese by courrier…

Paxton and Whitfield
93 Jermyn St
St James

Memory Lane @ the National Geographic shop

It is always fascinating to discover another side of London – another era, long-gone jobs, view old advertisment, compare how neons and buildings have advanced…

The National Geographic shop proposes a travel through time with blacn and white pictures of the capital. Some are classical – London definitely defies time – others are extraordinary, like those ice-skaters on the Serpentine in 1940…

Entrance is free and it is really worth stopping by.

National Geographic Shop
83-97 Regent Street
W18 4EW

Until July 18, 2010 – free
Pssst: just around the corner, you’ll find Freggo - delicious Argentinian ice-creams. You’ll be hooked on the dulce in no time!

Have a posh cup of tea @ The Wolseley

Booking a gorgeous afternoon tea in on the 5* hotels in London can drive you close to tears – you’d better plan weeks (if not months for the top ones) in advance.

An alternative to cope with the frustration is to try the Wolseley, neighbour to the Ritz. Of course, the addess is well known and often full but I have always been lucky around 14.00-15.00.

The atmosphere takes me back to the cafes in Vienna. The attention to detail, the golden touches, the art deco style, the amber light… Do prefer the small room on the left to the entrance. Cosier and you can glimpse at the bigger room’s counter through the window and see the afternoon tea towers all ready to be served. Mouthwatering and so elegant…

In the center, a round table presents today’s cake, all sheltered under a glass bell, like pretty jewels… Raspberry tart (my favoury, pastry, a layer of raspberry coulis, thick vanilla cream, a crown of raspberries), battenberg, kougloff, apple and poppyseed cake… I’m amazed you cannot see a round circle IN the floor where customers have circled this again and again, unable to choose.

The list of teas is not extensive but is of premium quality. You’ll only find classics here: Earl Grey, Darjeeling, Ceylon, Assam, Jasmine, Green Tea… but the pleasure is in serving it. A huge silver teapot and silver milk jug, silver forks and spoons, silver tea strainer…

You can of course go for a cream tea (£9.75, fruit scone and tea), an afternoon tea (£19.75 – scones, sandwiches, pastry, tea), the champagne afternoon tea (£27.50, same as before but with a sparkling glass of Pommery champagne).

I prefer to come for breakfast. The pastries are deliciously French… croissants with butter, sugay bread wit Normandy butter, even my childhood pastry from Bordeaux, a cannele… Or go for a brunch! This is where I first tried haggis and I fell in love with their peppery version served with fried duck eggs. Alternatively, go crazy, ask for the caviar omelette (£55 though)!

However the Wolseley was never meant to be an trendy cafe/restaurant. In 1921, this beautiful marble on the floor, those decorated arches and pillars sheltered a car showroom for the Wolseley brand. They bankrupted quickly – 1926 – the sold the palace to the Barclays Bank who settled there till 1999. This sweet oasis only welcomed hungry customers in 2003. Good for us shall I add. Now, will you want a cloud of milk in that tea?

The Wolseley
160 Piccadilly
London W1J9EB

Count £10 for a tea (the teapot serves 3 cups) and a lovely slice of cake. But oh! The luxury and pleasure of the moment!
Would you rather go for chocolate heaven? Try La Maison du Chocolat, just opposite Fortnum and Mason, a 5mn walk from there.

Post it for the week-end: May 14-16, 2010

This week-end is planned to be rain-free – throw away your umbrellas!

- Museums will be open late this week-end – check the events here!

- Happy Birthday to the Tate, 10 years old! A fab program is planned for the coming days. The occasion to see their community garden too, generally closed to the public (a few pics here)

- Stop at Fortnum and Mason, skip the delicatessen part, head for the first floor and have a look at some calorie-free but appetizing works of art

- Chase a giant banana, it’s for a good cause… Or would you prefer a few steps of tango?

- Surely you will not resist a little shopping? The Spirit of Summer Fair will compensate for the missing sun…

- A little girl’s dream: the dollhouse festival. So cute!

- Why not a pop-quizz @ Selfridges? (And if you are hunting elephants, you’ll find one close to their official elephant shop)

- Finf out more about the Women’s library archives

You’ll find me… savouring tapas @ Casa Brinsida, discovering the newly re-opened Florence Nightingale museum, and -so not laugh!- at the cress festival to enjoy their farmers’ market. Your turn: what are your advice for the week-end?

Psssst… Froggies wanted!

Vous habitez Londres? Vous etes bloggeuse (ou pas), revez de partager votre vision de l’Angleterre, ou juste de passer un bon moment franglais avec d’autres Froggies ?

Fabienne organise le premier rendez-vous Apero sur Londres ce mercredi 12 mai a partir de 20h00.

J’y serai. Enceinte de 6 mois avec un enorme appareil photo, vous ne risquez pas de me rater. Venez donc trinquer avec ma pinte de limonade au gingembre!

Rendez-vous au:
Pub Captain’s Cabin
4 Norris Street

Un site web a ete cree pour l’occasion, qui j’espere, forte de son succes, deviendra reguliere!


This Week End in London

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