The London Perspective – A London Lifestyle Blog about food, fashion, art,..
The London Perspective is my take on life living in London and the things I am most passionate about. London's hidden gems, the best places to eat and drink, unique places to stay, art openings, and places to visit outside the capital.
The weather finally seems like its looking up, which means it’s time to get out and see the city! Looking for things to do this weekend in London? Here are my top five.
Share, like or comment if you enjoy what you read.
Nosey around private gardens and spaces at Open Garden Squares Weekend.
Open Garden Squares only happens once a year so it’s worth checking out. If you’re a keen gardener or you just enjoy looking at pretty flowers like me this is your chance to get access to green spaces that are usually closed to the public. The spaces vary from sky-high rooftop gardens to community spaces. I’ll be going to take a sneak peek around those beautifully manicured squares in Chelsea and Belgravia. For those participating there will be workshops, food tours, cycle rides and talks to keep you entertained.
If you have a passion for fashion then this event will be right up your street… Jermyn Street that it is. Known to those who have sartorial flair, Jermyn Street is famous for its amazing tailors like Ozwald Boateng and Richard James. This is a rare opportunity to see a free catwalk showcase of over 30 menswear brands as well as enjoying live music and street food.
Be inspired by The Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition
Another annual event that should not be missed is the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition. It’s the world biggest open submission of art and every year from the thousands of submissions they receive 1500 are chosen to display. It’s a great chance to see emerging artists as well as spot the more well-known artists work like Banksy, Michael Craig Martin and more.
See the best Africa has to offer at the Wish Africa Expo
INTRODUCING THE WISH AFRICA EXPO, LONDON 2019 - YouTube
Africa is making great strides in fashion, food and commerce so it was only a matter of time before an event like the Wish Africa Expo came to about. The conference will represent the four corners of the continent with events and talks from Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Morocco. Highlights include a talk by British-Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare and an insight into ‘Wakanda Architecture’ by design magazine Deezeen.
Eat yourself silly at The Soho Food Feast 2019 – Sat 8th & Sun 9th June
In its ninth year, The Soho Food Feast is a unique event where many of Soho’s best restaurants come together to raise money for the Soho Parish School. It takes place this year on Saturday 8th & Sunday 9th June 2019, in St Anne’s Church Garden on Wardour Street. A selection of the area’s best restaurants create special dishes for the event and set up stalls to dish them out.
Customers buy £2 dinner tickets – a bit like at school – and one ticket gets you one dish. So can eat food from such amazing chefs & restaurants as Calum Franklin at Holborn Dining Room, Xu, Ceviche, Blacklock, HIX, and Kricket for just £2.
It’s a wonderful day out and costs just £15 to get in (or £30 for the weekend if you do both days – the restaurants are different on each day) and it’s a fantastic cause.
When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.
Did I give up blogging? Have I given up blogging? Yes and no.. The problem with being a multi-hobbyist 30 something year old is time. Living in London can be exhausting and I guess last year I was suffering severe burnout trying to get my business off the ground whilst juggling a full time job. It became impossible to keep the blog up to date. So in this post I am going to do a quick summary of all the things I should’ve told you about and then we can start afresh.
January: The London Art Fair
If I were summarise 2018, I could it in three words: art, food and travel. I lived and breathed these three things like my life depended on it. I started the year mingling with other art lovers at The London Art Fair. The fair focuses mostly on contemporary art and is a great place to discover emerging artists as well as see what is trending in the World. The next London Art Fair begins on the 14th January.
Basquiat: Boom For Real
I snagged one of the last available tickets to see a retrospective of Basquiat’s work and it was amazing. People have a mixed opinion of his work, some dismiss it as mindless scribbles but seeing his work up close and learning about his background made me fall in love with his work and perspective on life.
I took up Spinning at 1Rebel
One of my resolutions last year was to get fit. I’m not sure that I succeeded as such but I did find myself enjoying a once a week Ride class at 1Rebel studios. I joined via Classpass which I would recommend to anyone who wants to try a few different classes to find something they enjoy. My weekly class was with Saul and involved fast and furious peddling to grime beats.
A somewhat quiet month, the main highlight was seeing Black Panther “Wakanda Forever!” and going to see the Pre-Raphalites exhibition at The National Gallery.
March: Bada Art Fair
In March I attended the Bada Art Fair, a fair held in Chelsea by the British antiques association of dealers. The Fair features more than 5,000 objects from 100 of the world’s leading specialists and offers. It is an unrivalled celebration of excellence in the fields of fine art, design and antiques, with works on display spanning ancient antiquity to modern and contemporary.
The next fair will happen on the 20 – 26 March 2019
April: East London Food Tour and Julian Opie Private View
I was lucky to be invited by Strawberry tours for a food tour of Brick Lane and surrounding areas, now this is something I wish I had written up properly. We started off going to the legend that is Beigel Bake where enjoyed a smoked salmon and cream beigel. Next was a history tour of the area followed by a trip to the best handmade chocolate shop in East London Dark Sugars. We ended the day donut decorating at Magna donuts.
I’ve been a fan of Julian’s work ever since Blur used his artwork for their album cover. I love the simplicity of his style and his use of colour. People always ask how do I get invites to Private Views? well it is pretty easy you can look for them on sites like Artrabbit or by joining the mailing list of galleries you are interested in.
I can’t believe we are in mid February already, before any more of the year disappears I better give you an update. If you’re anything like me you spent most of January in hibernation avoiding spending money like the plague. 2017 was a quieter year for me due to illness and bereavement but I still did manage to tick off lots from my things to do in London list.
Here are a few highlights that I hope will inspire your year planning.
Marguerite Salon at the Tate Lates
Last year the Tate had lots of really great after hours events. I attended the one put on by Marguerite London an organisation which aims to promote women’s art. The salon featured some really inspiring women like blogger Freddie Harrell, and introduced me to the work of photographer Juno Calypso whose work I love!
In March I discovered that I could eat like a queen if I went at the right time. Galvin La Chapelle is a two star Michelin restaurant in the city. What isn’t well known is that they have a set menu at 35 pounds between the hours of 6-7pm. So if you’re prepared to eat slightly earlier you can save yourself a few pennies. We had a beautiful two course meal and a glass of champagne that would have easily of cost double.
Black and Blue Restaurant
I have my sister to thank for introducing me to Black and Blue, they are a steakhouse with a branch in Waterloo and they are good for a fuss free dinner after the work. If you do give them a visit I thoroughly recommend their salt, pepper and lime chicken. I’ll definitely be heading back this year for a second sample.
Since the the new Cafe Royale Hotel opened up in Piccadilly I have been wanting to visit the patisserie to sample some of their delectable cakes. On a spontaneous date I found myself there sampling the most delicious salted caramel desert with warm white chocolate and cinnamon. If you want to treat yourself after a shopping trip go there!
A friend and I found ourselves in Mayfair after work and stumbled upon Chutney Mary an old school and very posh restaurant. After looking at the dinner menu (expensive) we decided to opt for bar snacks and non-alcoholic cocktails.
Chutney Mary really has charm and the staff made us feel just as welcome as those dining. Okay…at 18 pounds for bar snacks and mocktails its not cheap but its a great spot for discrete date.
Rumpus Room At Sea Containers
Erm what can I say about this place without going on a rant. After walking past The Sea Container Hotel many times I was pretty excited when one of my friends suggested we go there after work. Unfortunately my excitement soon died when I saw the prices they were charging. I am not averse to treating myself when the time is right however I hate feeling like a mug. When we arrived there where no free tables but we found a couple of stools to perch. Due to medication I still wasn’t drinking and we had to queue up for a long time to reach the bar. When I got to the front I asked if they did mocktails. The barman said he would do something special for me. I watched him pour pineapple juice and and a bit of coconut juice and shake it and add some ice. When I got the bill I was like WTF! 10 pounds plus service charge for fruit juice… piss take. Why do bars insist on adding bar service if they make your serve yourself. Another..
The Last WordFestival: Festival of spoken word at the Roundhouse (13th June – 4th July) headlined by legendary American poet, musician and rapper Saul Williams (30th June), with other festival highlights including
Comedian Deborah Frances-White records a live episode of her acclaimed podcast The Guilty Feminist (29th June)
Suitman Jungle: Live jungle music & spoken word combine in this production about city life and the rave music that gets Suitman through his 9-5 (27th June)
Dedicated to…: As part of the outdoor Greenwich+Docklands International Festival, two members of Candoco Dance Company perform a piece celebrating the enduring strength of female love and friendship (Columbus Courtyard, Canary Wharf, 30th June)
Sh*t-faced Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet: From sozzled star-crossed lovers to a tipsy Tybalt, Sh*t-faced Shakespeare give Romeo and Juliet their signature sh*t-faced twist as the cast attempt to navigate the bard’s fated love story with one drunk performer (Leicester Square Theatre, 20th June – 1st September)
For King and Country: Young men executed for desertion in World War One remembered in this 1964 courtroom drama in the centenary year of the end of hostilities(Southwark Playhouse, 28th June – 21stJuly)
The Great Yorkshire Fringe Launch Gala: Headlined by Reginald D Hunter – Don your flat cap, grab your whippet and disguise your Lancashire accent to toast the launch of this year’s festival with a showcase of top comic talent (Leicester Square Theatre, 3rd July)
Hive City Legacy: Hot Brown Honey’s Busty Beatz and Lisa Fa’alafi with the Roundhouse and hip hop artist Yami ‘Rowdy’ Lofvenber have scouted a new league of femmes of colour in a showcase of circus, beatboxing, spoken word, cabaret, dance and everything in between (Roundhouse, 10th – 21st July)
Kicking off today is Mayfair Art Weekend. Ever wanted to visit some of those galleries in Mayfair? Well here is your chance. With over forty participating galleries and three days of events Mayfair Art weekend shouldn’t missed.
Gallery Hop! Explore the expansive offering of art across Mayfair & St James’s at the Mayfair Art Weekend taking place today 29 June, 6-8pm. Participating galleries throw open their doors and welcome you to enjoy a summer’s evening of art, hopping from gallery to gallery with Sipsmith Gin in hand.
This year marks a number of important milestones for the area’s art community. The Royal Academy of Arts (RA) celebrates its 250th anniversary. The Redfern Gallery, one of the longest-established dealers in Modern British, has been on Cork Street for 95 years. And Russian Constructivism, Bauhaus and De Stijl specialists, Annely Juda Fine Art was founded 50 years ago.
Other highlights of the weekend programme are:
An artist-led exhibition walkthrough this Friday evening 29 June (18.30), with Kehinde Wiley, Thomas J. Price, Irvin Pascal, Larry Achiampong & Hew Locke.
Join artist Alex Hartley this Saturday at 1pm for an informal tour of his exhibition, The Houses, at Victoria Miro Gallery Mayfair.
See FOCUS: Yves Klein & James Turrell exhibition at the Levy Gorvy gallery.
On Saturday The Royal Academy’s Annenberg Courtyard will have artist-led tours, creative workshops and food stalls.
On Sunday join The Long Artists’ Lunch, an afternoon of delicious food, art and lively conversation along the temporarily pedestrianised street of Burlington Gardens.