There is something about London that brings out our inner tourist geek. Don't fight it; it's okay to give in.
Have a Drink at a Classic
- - London isn't know for chatty bartenders, but these gentleman can tell a story.
- - Make like James Bond and order the best martini this city has to offer.
- - Feeling grand? Put on airs over a glass of Champagne and a view of the park.
- - Live jazz and sizzling Terence Donovan photos. You might stay a while.
- - Want to disappear? This is the place to do it. Large, loud, and proud.
Eat Like a Global Nomad
- - Spanish/Middle Eastern fusion from a husband and wife team in the heart of funky Farringdon. One of the few places where dining at the bar is welcome, it's ideal for a party of one.
- - Want a classic pub without the ploughman's lunch special? Tuck into gorgeous meat at this Kensal Rise gem with a welcoming neigborhood crowd.
- - Scene and be seen in Knightsbridge, but it won't distract you from the divine Japanese/Asian menu. Reservations are impossible, but a party of one can easily get a seat at the sushi bar.
- - Chic and laid back Italian in residential Marylebone. Sit in the upstairs bar and order from the exquisite pizza menu or take a seat at the banquet downstairs and immerse yourself in a full menu of Italian classics.
- Barts - London's worst-kept secret. Make sure you find the capital's quirkiest speakeasy bar for a pot of Barts ''tea''.
- Maggie Jones: Shoulder pads and Wham are back in fashion at this 1980s themed club named after PM-turned-'80s icon, Maggie Thatcher.
Chill and Get Pampered
These are all excellent spas.
- at the Connaught.
- at Clarendon House or Shoreditch House.
- at Mandarin Oriental.
Fortified and Revitalized, Take in Some Culture
- - Check out what's on at Kevin Spacey's little theatre project.
- - Ballet, opera, and more. Last-minute tickets can be had for cheap.
- - Some of the best live music in Camden.
- - 18th-century art and objects in former family home off Oxford Street. (More info: FATHOM Postcard.)
- - Easy tickets at a discount for any theatre in London. But of you're alone, you could just as easily have your concierge call the box office for your show of choice, or stroll up yourself.
Observe that It's Really Old Around Here
You can feel the history on the streets, but what do you know about it?
- Talks and Lectures organized by the Royal Society, Asia House, The Benjamin Franklin House, and more.
- leads amazing historical walks with themes ranging from Jack The Ripper to the Royal Wedding. They also do bespoke tours.
Have a Touristy But Terrific Day
We have a one-day itinerary to power you through the major sites.
Special thanks to contributing editor Hilary Bass Rifkin for this itinerary.