What does a real Londoness like to do in the world’s greatest city? Discover what it’s like to really live and love London: from magical walks and secret gardens, to food markets, theatre, museums, afternoon tea, local restaurants and bars…come and enjoy a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious day with the Real Ladies of London!
Real Ladies of London – Tiffany Riaz
A perfect day in London starts with a meander along the Southbank, from Waterloo to Borough Market. I wander past the skateboarders and secondhand book stalls and towards the Millennium Bridge, the Tate Modern, Shakespeare’s Globe theatre and Southwark Cathedral. I land in Borough Market and head towards the queue that leads to Padella, the best pasta restaurant in town.
I also love to sit in the front seat of my personal red taxi, the no 22 bus from Putney Common. It crosses the river to the King’s Road, towards Knightsbridge and on to Piccadilly before settling near Somerset House. Quality people watching and window shopping along the route are guaranteed!
Tiffany grows her own yummy produce in her west London garden, and she’s recently published an indispensable cookbook for students. You can follow her culinary journeys here: Tiffs Top Tips
Real Ladies of London – Lyndel Harrison
My favourite thing of all in London is the Thames…and for an Aussie girl from Sydney, that is saying something! I love to walk or run along the towpath at sunrise, at sunset, and even sometimes when it’s bleak and grey. I love its tides and its moods, and the sense that it connects London with the countryside and with the sea beyond.
The photo above was taken when we walked with Barclays Bank to raise money for the Lyric’s life-changing programmes for young people. I am joined by colleague Lucy (left) and wonderful Mel Giedroyc (centre). It was a day of pure joy, walking along the Thames with wonderful friends for a worthy cause – we ended up raising over 10k!
Lyndel is Director of Development for The Lyric Hammersmith which offers training and support for children and young people. You can make a donation here: Lyric Hammersmith
Real Ladies of London – Marion Hulbert
My perfect day in London starts with a shop in Harrods. I like to get lost in the Food Hall with its beautiful salad bar and yummy pastries, then go up and down the Egyptian escalator, dreaming about one of the trendy new bags I’ve just seen in the shop’s breathtaking windows.
I also love to stroll around Chelsea with its pretty cherry blossom trees and big white stucco-fronted houses. It’s so peaceful and quiet.
I usually brunch at the Ivy Chelsea Garden on Sundays, and weather permitting, I like to sit on their terrace, soaking in some much-needed sun. The pancakes are delicious! Another weekend favourite is afternoon tea at Peggy Porschen’s: their cupcakes are so pretty and they taste even better with a cup of jasmine tea.
You can follow Marion on her French style blog: Simply In
Real Ladies of London – Saloni Badiani
I’m blessed to have one of London’s prettiest private gardens on my doorstep. At Halloween, the garden comes alive with Jack-o-Lanterns and trick-or-treaters, and on Bonfire Night, we literally toast poor Guy Fawkes to ashes and watch fireworks sparkle in the sky. And in the summer, we have magical jazz parties and an outdoor cinema. London’s private gardens are the secret, hidden gems of our busy, buzzy city. They’re open to the public once a year, and I highly recommend you visit them – if you haven’t already!
You can visit 230 of London’s private gardens from the 17th-18th June: Open Squares
Real Ladies of London – Lucy Camilla
If I had to choose one view of London which always takes my breath away, it would have to be the one which looks down from the Royal Observatory in Greenwich towards the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Naval College and Queen’s House and onto Canary Wharf beyond. And my favourite walk would have to be the stroll from St Paul’s tube station to Shakespeare’s Globe theatre. It takes you past the exquisite St Paul’s Cathedral and then across the Millennium footbridge to the southside of the River Thames. The Globe theatre is often bawdy and riotously funny, as actors unfold the Bard’s stories on a breathtaking outdoor stage. I leave this experience giddy with delight at ‘our London.’
Soho is one area of London that still retains elements of timelessness. A habitual and favourite haunt of mine is the Groucho Club; my husband and I have been members since it opened 30 years ago and even now, the Groucho never fails to weave its magic. We have rubbed shoulders with illustrious and (occasionally badly-behaved) actors, artists, popstars, comedians and movers and shakers, whilst enjoying phenomenally good food and cocktails.
You can follow Lucy and her Instagram diaries on: Lucy Camillas
Real Ladies of London – Clarissa Lenherr
London isn’t just about the buzz – there are plenty of quiet corners where I like to recharge my batteries. On Saturdays, I like to wander into Hampstead and take a peek inside the Catto Gallery for some serious art envy. My mother, aka Londoness, and I take a walk in Hampstead Heath with her dogs, and we might head over to Manna for some vegetable tempura or the Caribbean platter. It’s the perfect London day! On Sunday mornings, I like to start with the papers and an almond milk latte kick in the Chamomile Cafe, in the heart of Belsize Park. I follow with some restorative yoga at Triyoga in Camden or over to Fierce Grace if I need to break a sweat. By Sunday evening, I’m ready for another crazy week at work!
You can follow Clarissa’s nutritional tips here on: Newtriciously You
Real Ladies of London – Tijan Serena
My perfect day in London would include an autumn or spring walk in Holland Park, followed by a plate of chargrilled squid and roast potatoes at Osteria Basilico, and then maybe an evening film snuggled up at the Electric Cinema on Portobello Road.
Real Ladies of London – Louise Riis
Think of London and you can’t help thinking of afternoon tea. Before moving here from Denmark, I thought it was basically just a cup of tea in the afternoon! But boy oh boy was I wrong! A traditional afternoon tea is the ultimate indulgence! I have eaten a lot of yummy scones, delicious finger sandwiches and beautiful cakes and pastries in order to find London’s very best spots. This picture is from my visit to Ting at The Shard. It has probably one of the best views of London, and you can also enjoy gorgeous food and bubbles.
You can follow Louise and more afternoon tea adventures on her blog: Louise Loves London
Real Ladies of London – Zoe Jarchevska
I love to spend summery days on the rooftop of my members’ club, Shoreditch House. Their open-air pool is nestled away from the busy world beneath, and it’s the perfect escape from London life. It’s a mini break, without having to jump on a plane!
Zoe is a nutritional health consultant (in training) and you can follow her here: Isla Wellbeing
Real Ladies of London – Gabrielle Grubanovich
London has so many extraordinary offerings that it’s difficult to choose a personal favourite, but one thing is for sure: we have some of the best theatre in the world. From Shakespeare classics to West End musicals, one-man shows and stand-up comedies – London has it all, and in abundance. And if that’s not reason enough to get you out of the ‘burbs and into the city, then surely the vibrant restaurant scene will entice you. The restaurant-theatre-bar combo is arguably the best night out in London.
Most recently, I went to see the Gershwin classic, An American in Paris. It was the best musical I have seen in years (and oh so relevant to our very own Londoness, who was herself an American in Paris!) Prior to the show, we ventured underground to the decadent chinoiserie-inspired slice of heaven that is Hakkasan (designed by world-famous French designer Christian Liagre) and had a few dim sum and a Kowloon Cooler. Post show, we had a nightcap at the wonderful Crazy Bear, another oriental underground venture that serves London’s best Pornstar Martini!
I could go on and on but world-class theatre, entertainment and fabulous food is MY London.
Gaby designs beautiful homes in both France and in the UK: Fine Interiors