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Elevated senses: Eat and drink at London’s best rooftop spaces

Yes, springtime formally sprung back in March – but only now is the season really coming into its full shirt-sleeved glory, awaking distant memories of venturing outdoors just for the sensation of breathing in that fresh, crisp air. Logically, the only thing that can surpass such a simple pleasure would be to share it with friends. And while you’re all out there, why not stir in a few cocktails and sweeping, lofty eyefuls of one of the world’s iconic cities? And this is why pure springtime logic leads us to our selection of London’s finest restaurants with outdoor drinking, rooftop destinations.

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Chelsea Flower Show 24th to 28th May

It’s been called a national treasure, a cultural institution, even the ‘greatest flower show on earth’: the RHS Chelsea Flower Show is back on the map this May and it feels like order has been restored. As British as Crufts or Wimbledon, never underestimate the ability of this massive display of roots, shoots and blooms to say something about our world.  

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Happy and Glorious: The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee 2022

It’s here at last – the Queen’s Jubilee takes centre stage this summer, and the best seat in the house has to be central London. There are two broad strands to these landmark celebrations: lots of parades and parties on the one hand, and an unmistakably green message on the other. Pomp, pageantry and fun are never far from any of the events.

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Parklife: How to Enjoy London’s Green Spaces

Discover few of the green places of interest that London has to offer. Pack up your picnic and paints and explore one of the most beautiful parks in London for an afternoon in the sunshine.

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A Cracking Easter Weekend in London

It’s time to get out and dive deep into all the eggy fun life has to offer. In other words, it’s time for an Easter weekend in London. We’re here with whole basket of events, activities and other fun things to do in London that will make Easter 2022 memorable.

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Drama Without Tears

London's best theatres are back! We’ve listed all the upcoming theatre shows this April, as well as West End shows that are extended after all the pandemic shutdowns. Any visit to a London theatre is topped and tailed with pre– or post–show drinks, or a meal so we also put together a list of handy bars and restaurant where you could eat, drink and have fun together with your friends.

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Spring

Bad backs, too much weight gain, stress? It’s been a testing two years. So what can London offer this March that will get you match fit? Or just a bit happier? Get out. There are lots of things to do in London, and walking is a big, endorphin–fuelled option. If you are prepared to do a bit of research, it can be free, too. Along with the landmarks and museums still available to the intrepid tourist, our London hotels make an excellent base for this kind of adventure.

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International Women’s Day and Mother’s Day

This month is book–ended by two dates, and both of them celebrate the female of the species: International Women’s Day on March 8th, and Mother’s Day (in the UK) on Sunday 27th March. As always, there are plenty of things to do in London, and with the arrival of Spring those London hotels are looking spruce, especially with the lengthening hours of daylight.

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Stirring, not shaken: London’s best cocktail bars

For those who have reached the finishing line of ‘dry-January,’ choose your afternoon or evening, corral a friend, acquaintance or loved one or two, and head to one of London’s finer cocktails bars. Amid the cool décor, the sophisticated atmosphere and flavours that can be as eye-opening as the conversation, you’re sure to find something to break your dry spell. To help you on your way, we’ve painstakingly researched eight that make a perfect mix for London this weekend.

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LGBTQ+ History Month

February is LGBTQ+ History Month and London has come up with a tempting spread of events to celebrate, entertain, educate and include. What’s really impressive is the contribution to our general enjoyment of life that springs from this quarter.

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February Half Term For All The Family

This year, Valentine’s Day is on Monday 14th February, which is also D Day for London’s half term break. This seriously reduces the risk of coping with disappointed offspring – ask any parent who has seen what can happen when heartache is added to the academic calendar. Luckily there is enough going on to distract most age groups and the city centre offers the best sight–seeing and entertainment, especially given the number of affordable luxury hotels in London, that can offer a great getaway deal for the family.

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Valentine’s Day in London

This is the year we prove that romance is not dead. That the heart is not so weary from the last couple of years that we can’t find memorable things to do on Valentine’s Day. So whether you’re looking for a place to pop the question, or a gift to mark the day, here are some suggestions from London.

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Inexpensive London: Discover London on a budget

For anyone who likes panoramic people–watching combined with historic buildings, the London bus offers a window on some of the best free activities in the capital – Westminster Abbey, Covent Garden, St Paul’s Cathedral, the museums, the shops.

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Veganuary: Top vegan spots in London

After the joyous overindulgence of Christmas and New Year’s, there’s no time like the present to shift into recovery mode with a regime of healthy eating. Hence ‘Veganuary’ – an invitation to non-vegans and committed vegans alike to explore the latest and most delicious organic plant-based food that vegan restaurants in London have to offer.

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Fleet Street: the longest and best road in the world

Susie Boniface has been a journalist on national and local newspapers, broadsheet and tabloid, dailies and Sundays, since leaving school. In 2009 she began blogging anonymously as Fleet Street Fox and published a novel, The Diaries of a Fleet Street Fox, after revealing her identity in the Times. In this piece for the Commuter Club, Susie takes us on a fascinating tour of Fleet Street through the centuries.

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Lighten Up with London’s West End

So what’s on show in today’s illuminated West End? Below are 50 things to do and see, taking in shops old and new, entertainments and sight-seeing, punctuated by some historic watering holes and intriguing cafes.

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Where to Unwind this Christmas

If you’ve felt like a castaway over the past two years, or your life has mimicked one long pile–up from Gran Turismo, the bustle of Christmas 2021 might send you in search of some TLC. Maybe you’re not in the mood for high octane partying (not yet, anyway) but you always deserve a reward. 

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Catch up with Christmas: the 2021 party season

Last year’s Christmas holidays were so bizarre, you’d be forgiven for hedging your bets and leaving your plans for 2021 a little later than usual. Happily London is very obliging when it comes to satisfying a last–minute get together – whether it’s with family, friends, work colleagues or even a corporate dinner. And it doesn’t have to be a traditional affair, either. So whether you favour big festive parties or private dining, here are some of the options on offer.

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Reconnective repasts: Where to go for a business lunch

The past several months have not been kind to the ‘personal touch’ that once oiled the gears of commerce. Take the classic business lunch as an example. It’s about meeting face-to-face outside the stifling trappings of the office, talking casually, relaxing and getting a PR-free ‘feel’ for your guests and the company they represent.

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ILLUMINATOR - Christmas in London

Last year Harvey Nichols summed up the mood of Christmas Past with its window display. The elegant lights of Knightsbridge glittered, silvery and cold: BAH HUMBUG.  It was a stroke of genius. This year’s Yuletide feels more upbeat, almost defiant. Alongside the annual switching–on of the city’s Christmas lights, the windows of Selfridges in Oxford Street, of Fortnum & Mason in Piccadilly, and a host of Central London shops, big and small, are a major triumph.

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A historical pub crawl

Fancy taking in some local history on your lunch break? Or perhaps an historical after-work drink? We caught up with Hatton Garden worker Annemarie Fearnley, who fills us in on the best local spots for drinks with a side of history.

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Tempting takeaways for lunch

Every day, millions of us do it: pressed for time or deprived of a table, or just from force of habit, we hungrily commit to a takeaway lunch. Something close by, something fast and filling. We set our expectations accordingly for the usual lunch snack of stale sandwich, wilting salad or ice-cold sausage roll…

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Seeing is believing: Top 10 exhibitions in London

There are some knock-out shows, both cultural and curious, in London this November. After months of lockdown and stop-start, London’s museums and galleries can’t wait to get out the door and strut their stuff, albeit in a tidy way. Even the free events have to be booked in advance, and are mostly masked.

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After Hours: City nights are here again

The nights are getting longer, and whatever the weather, London has something that perfectly suits your needs. Dare to be trivial? Or to opt for a spot of self-improvement? There is enough going on in the centre of town to keep you busy all Winter.

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Unusual Haunts: Things to do, places to go for Halloween in London

Hallowe’en. All Hallows’ Eve. October 31. Whatever you call it or spell it, it’s the one day of the year when fright is fun and everybody’s up for the thrill of the haunt. And given London’s centuries-long history of ghostly intrigue and mystery, is there a better place on earth to find the scares that suit you?

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Are We There Yet? Things to do with the kids over October half term in London

From the fact–based wonders of the Science Museum to the eye–popping stagecraft of The Ocean at the end of the Lane (Neil Gaiman’s children’s hit show), London has enough to make a lifetime of memories for every family, whatever the age range. Whether you want old favourites or the unexpected, here are some October 2021 half term activities with the kids.

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