5 London experiences to give your loved ones
Finding an original Christmas gift can be quite the challenge – especially if your loved ones have outgrown Santa Claus. If you really want to wow them, why not treat them to an experience you can share together? Just a hop across the Channel, London brims with thrilling possibilities. Whether you’re after a festive afternoon tea, a date night in a museum or a concert in a legendary venue, all you need is your passport.
Looking for the perfect present?
Give the gift of London
A show at the Royal Albert HallKensington Gore, SW7 2AP
Queen Victoria inaugurated the Royal Albert Hall in 1871, in memory of her late husband. Its stage has seen the likes of Winston Churchill, Jimi Hendrix, and the Spice Girls. The magnificent concert hall has kept up with the times with an eclectic programme, from intimate concerts to tennis tournaments and world music. Not to mention Luzia, a Cirque du Soleil production well worth two balcony seats.
Tea with a twist at Lyaness20, Upper Ground, SE1 9PD
Part upscale drinks, part afternoon tea, this Southbank bar’s Fancy Tea takes its inspiration from the old-school nibbles of 1980s dinner parties. Miniature sausage rolls, pineapple scones and fine pastry are paired with daring cocktails created by the award-winning bartender Mr Lyan. A must for lovers of all things retro, with a stirring view of the Thames to boot.
An olfactory journey at Penhaligon's125 Regent Street, W1B 4HT
Granted a Royal Warrant, British perfumers Penhaligon’s artful scents are for everyone, whether you’re fond of striking floral notes or head-turning exoticism. Spoilt for choice? Book a free profiling session with their in-house experts. They’ll help you find your ideal fragrance in less than one hour – all from the cosseting comfort of their Regent Street boutique.
A concert at the RoundhouseChalk Farm Road, NW1 8EH
A former railway repair shed, Camden’s Roundhouse gained its fame as the spiritual home of the biggest names in rock ‘n’ roll. The golden age of the Clash and the Yardbirds may be long gone, but the venue has managed to hold on to its youthful energy and top-notch acoustics. Gigs here are unforgettable: treat someone to the soul stylings of English songstress Alice Russel, say, or the African Folk sounds of Fatoumata Diawara.
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Image credits: © SAM A HARRIS; © SAM A HARRIS; © Royal Albert Hall; © Harriet Claire; © SAM A HARRIS; © SAM A HARRIS; © Eurostar; © Petersham Nurseries; © SAM A HARRIS