Friday, 14 August 2015

How about a bike ride in London?

Wheely good days out


1. Route - Bermondsey to Angel (paradise for foodies)

Start out at Maltby Street Market
Pick up some breakfast or brunch along the Ropewalk. There is an option for every appetite but we would particularly recommend the excellent doughnuts from St John.

Head for The Gherkin
From the Tanner Street docking station cycle over London Bridge, past the Monument and into the City to take a selfie with London's favourite food-shaped building.

Next on to Whitechapel
Drop off your wheels at Fashion Street and walk north up Brick Lane, enjoying the delicious smells from its famous curry houses.

You are heading for Elys Yard
Grab some street food from the gaggle of vendors there. Mother Clucker's fried chicken is just the delicious protein hit you will be craving. Then on to Brick Lane Market docking station. 

Pedal over to Angel
Your final stop is Islington Green, where you can take your pick from the many cafes and restaurants on Upper Street. The tempting cake selection at Ottolenghi will be hard to resist.


2. Route - Hyde Park Corner to Chelsea (culture for vultures)

Pick up a bike at Hyde Park Corner
Make for the Serpentine Gallery to check out the 2015 Pavilion and Duane Hanson's disconcertingly realistic sculptures. 

Next, to the Natural History Museum
Dock at South Kensington tube to experience the museum's virtual-reality tour 'First Life', which takes you back 500 million years. Lovely David Attenborough provides the intro.

Nip into the Saatchi Gallery
Do not miss the extraordinary permanent installation by Richard Wilson, or Ethiopian artist Ephrem Solomon's works combining newsprint and woodcuts (until 6th of Sept).

Wind up at Chelsea Physic Garden
Dock your bike at Royal Avenue, SW3. Protective brick walls mean the ancient botanical garden has its own micro-climate and the Tangerine Dream Cafe is a serene spot for tea.




Monday, 20 July 2015

Beach action in London this summer



The Beach at Brent Cross Shopping Centre

100 hundred palm trees and 250 tonnes of golden sand have landed in Brent Cross (North London). What can you expect? Teacup rides with a rollercoaster and one of the last remaining traditional helter- skelters. Enjoy the fish and chips together with many summery drinks on offer and chill out in giant deckchairs next to a paddling area. Great idea after day of shopping!
What you need to know:  start from 10thof July – 2nd of September (12pm until 10pm), Tube Station – Brent Cross then 210 bus, Entry £3



Beach East at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

With 2,200 sq metres of sand to tempt weary workers to unwind with sandcastle building and balmy evening walks. A gigantic paddling pool and fairground rides will entertain the kids, and Pub Tropicana and Coconut Joe’s bar will keep adults suitable refreshed. Bring me sunshine...
What you need to know: start from 11th of July – 31st of August (10am until 10pm), Tube Station – Stratford, Free Entry



The Beach at JW3 in Jewish Community Centre

You will find all the best bits of summer including deckchairs, paddling pools, barbecues and plenty of sand. There is fun for all ages and free entry, although some events are charged and ticketed.
What you need to know: start from 5th of July – 31st of August, Tube Station – Finchley Road, Free Entry










Thursday, 25 June 2015

Possibilities are endless with Ocean London app

Possibilities are endless with Ocean London app

There is definitely such a thing as too much choice. Even deciding where to see a film on a roof could be a problem when you live in a city as large as London. We have seen a sharp rise of event planning apps recently which could recommend good nights out based on your personality. People behind this great app are two recently graduated University College London students. They are constantly on the lookout for interesting and unique places in the city so they can add them to the Ocean London app.  Then the users can search for anything they would like to do at that moment – ‘chillout’ or ‘extreme sports’ and Ocean shows the places they will suit them the best. It works for groups, too. Download the Ocean London app for free from the Apple App Store.




Best of the rest: Event planning apps

Culture Key – picture based app allows you to swipe through images of art, music, theatre, festivals and other events happening in London. Free for iPhone

Frugl – great app for people on budget, listings include events and offers in London under £10 or even free. Free for iPhone

YPlan – this app puts together all events for every spontaneous Londoner. Listings are vast and it has many collections to choose from and satisfy even the most fussy people. Free for iPhope and Android

Dice – you can book live music gigs directly through the app with no booking fees and no paper tickets, just show your phone to get in. Free for iPhone and Android


Monday, 8 June 2015

Wild places for outdoor swimming

The Serpentine
The best place to test the waters of outdoor swimming must be Hyde Park’s lake. It is open for swimming daily from 6.30am until 9pm. Until September the Serpentine welcomes all levels and is a great place to build up your confidence.



Hampstead Ponds
Hampstead Ponds offer swimming with a difference and you will definitely forget you are in the city of London. There is Kenwood Pond for the ladies, Highgate Pond for gents and Hampstead Pond for all. Absolutely addictive as long as you do not mind cold water.



King’s Cross Pond
Recently completed, King’s Cross Pond is the UK’s first man-made fresh water pond. Space is slightly limited with 40 people being able to use the lake at a time (book you place at www.kingscrosspond.club ). Facilities such as changing rooms, lockers and loos are on offer which makes swimming outdoor much more accessible.



Royal Victoria Dock
Docks used to be popular with ships supplying London in the past. Currently, they are a place for London’s aquatic events. The Great Newham London Swim is taking place here on 18th of July in aid of Macmillan Cancer Charity. The River Rat Race on 25th of July is the wettest 10 km event in London raising money for good cause.



The Thames
This is one for strong adventurous swimmers only. Come and test your skills at The Great River Swim on 11th of July starting from Chiswick Pier. Only apply if you can swim a mile in 40 minutes. If yes, you should be able to make until the end. 

Friday, 1 May 2015

Uncover

New app Uncover is a game changer

Many exclusive London’s restaurants are not only very pricey but booked up for months ahead. For ordinary person like me and you it is almost impossible to get in. Well, until now! This new app provides a way to eateries in the City by redistributing cancelled reservations. You also get a hand-picked list of London’s most desirable restaurants which suit your taste buds. Anybody with passion for great food and service will benefit from this app and it helps users to find and learn about all great places to eat all around the City. New mobile payments will be launch soon and it means diners could pay and split their bill through Uncover. And of course this app will be available in all the major foodie cities worldwide with the hottest restaurants listed. Free on iPhone

Best of the rest foodie apps: Bookatable, Urbanspoon, Vouchercloud, OpenTable and Deliverance. All of these apps are available on iPhone and Android for free.

Get it here


Friday, 27 March 2015

How do you like your coffee?


Hooked on your morning cup of coffee? Welcome in the club. Since you may feel a bit embarrassed to ask your local barista what those other coffees on the menu are, here is our quick guide to all sorts of coffees.

THE BLACK COFFEES
Ristretto - The first dribbles from a single shot - max strength, small and oily.  Take with a glass of water.  This will make your pupils spin!




Espresso - The full single shot dark black with a natural caramel 'crema' floating on top.




Americano - single shot of espresso topped with hot water... some put the water in first for better mixing - you decide. Often taken with cold milk. Sometimes also known as a longe not to be confused with a doppio which is of course a double shot espresso.




THE WHITE COFFEES
Macchiato - an Espresso with a blob of milk foam floating on top.




Flat white - a double shot espresso. The milk is prepared and knocked back to remove most of the air bubbles to create a smooth velvety texture and then slowly trickled into the espresso floating the crema to the top... good for artistic baristas.




Cappuccino - an espresso topped with the same volume of steamed milk and the same volume again of foamed milk froth.




Latte - as a cappuccino but the volume of steamed milk is greater and should have the velvety topping of a flat white rather than the froth of a cappuccino.





Tuesday, 24 March 2015

New restaurant openings in London


New restaurant openings in London


There are new exciting restaurant openings heading our direction next month. Here are just few of the best picks. The wait is on!


Dalston, opening on 17th April 2015

Chick 'n' Sours is a local fried chicken shop with an exciting menu of herb fed fried chicken along with interesting and delicious sides, sour cocktails and beers and a soft serve ice cream point.




Fulham, opening April 2015

The Maze Grill opens in April 2015. Inspired by the grill rooms of Manhattan, the vibrant new 60-cover restaurant will offer the concept's signature rare breed steaks, fish and poultry from the Montague grill, alongside a vast selection of sushi and sashimi from a raw bar.




Soho, opening April 2015

There is a new addition to the organic hot dog food scene in London.  Diners will be able to choose their 'dog' - from classic veal & pork, beef or chicken (with vegetarian options too) as well as a bun - a choice of three - with approximately 9 hotdog choices on the menu including a classic caramelised onion finish, a Chicago Dog, a Kimchi dog and even a pulled pork and apple slaw dog. The Top Dog team also promises ice cream milkshakes, rapeseed-cooked fries and hand-made relish.




Covent Garden, re-opening  May 2015

Following a significant redesign, London’s iconic restaurant, The Ivy, has announced that it will re-open its doors in May 2015. Art, as in the past, will be an important point at The Ivy, with major commissions being installed by renowned British artists, as well as a range of pieces created by emerging names from the British art scene. What can we expect? A new menu that comprises Ivy staples alongside modern dishes with international influences, with a particular nod to Southern Europe and Asia.