Close to ME
Shopping • Markets
London Editor's Tips
1. CASUAL DINING
For restaurants that don’t take reservations go either early (lunch at 12PM and dinner at 5PM) or late, and if you are two, bar dining is always a great option. If there’s a Street Feast on, it’s a great way to check out some of London’s latest vendors.
2. UPMARKET RESTAURANTS
Reservations at hot spots go quickly, but if you can’t secure a table online, call. There are always cancellations, waitlists, and many restaurants allocate a few tables for walk-ins: always ask. Every night in London is busy, so always book.
London has it all, but you need to get organised, especially if it’s a weekend or you’re with a group. If you can book a table then do. If there’s a guestlist, get on it. Failing that, arrive early or make sure you pre-book tickets. Do like a local and avoid the West End crowds and hit a neighbourhood haunt at the weekend. If you want to know what’s on in the music/clubbing front, check out Resident Advisor for listings.
Some of the best designers in the world are homegrown, so buy local. As for shops, sure, there are the big four (Selfridges, Liberty, Harrods, Harvey Nicks), but make sure to hit the smaller boutiques too for interesting finds. For world-class vintage, head to Notting Hill, and for fun second-hand wares, it’s Camden. As for bargains, make sure to download the app Asample for all the best designer sample sales happening in the capital.
There are museums and galleries aplenty, but don’t be afraid to go off-piste. From graffiti in Shoreditch to historical buildings in Hampstead, culture is everywhere – just look up.
Recent years have seen London go through a health-volution, with juice bars on every corner and an explosion of gyms and healthy eateries. Case in point: check out Selfridges’ newly launched third floor Body Studio for all the above, including a Hemsley + Hemsley café and designer gym kit area. Make sure to hit some of London’s parks, too. #UJloves the rowboats at Hyde Park.
7. CLOSE TO THE HOTEL
10 minutes from ME London is the ever-buzzing Covent Garden. Go off the tourist path of the piazza and explore the cobbled streets (#UJloves Paul Smith Floral Street),including colourful Neal’s Yard and nearby Chinatown.
London’s different hoods are worlds apart in look and feel, from the well-heeled west to hipster east. They’re also spread out – London is huge – so make sure to give yourself time to get around, especially if you’re in a car, as traffic can be very heavy.
9. ME FAVES
The RADIO bar at ME is one of London’s top lookout points. Get there early and settle in with cocktails, tapas and tunes.
Black cabs may be a London institution, but Uber is definitely our pick for how to get around. It’s also extremely competitive in price to public transport, especially if you’re with a group.