London is forever a city of magic to me, whether it’s a sunshine filled South Bank trip or the central line at rush hour. Last week I headed down for a long weekend and, whilst I usually end up sticking to my favourite old haunts (despite my best intentions), this time we visited a handful of new places, and so I thought I’d share a few of them here – a bookshop, a brunch spot and a bar (the three B’s of any decent city-break).
Persephone Books – Holborn.
Persephone Books is somewhere I’ve been wanting to visit for ages – a dream of a shop, stacked with hundreds of beautiful grey-jacketed books, a scattering of pretty flowers and the loveliest staff. They specialise in reprinting/publishing a variety of out-of-print texts, from diaries to short stories, with a focus on women writers. They also have the loveliest tote bags, which seem to be the second weakness of everyone who spends all their money on books… A copy of their first book of short stories seemed like a good place to start my collection and I’m already anticipating a shelf of my bookcase ending up being entirely devoted to grey spines.
Megan’s – Kings Road.
Brunch is my favourite meal (after a Sunday roast…) and I’m constantly trying somewhere new and then declaring it the best brunch I’ve ever had. But Megan’s really was. Really. Aside from being in a dreamy restaurant, filled with pretty lights and flowers (which is admittedly enough to lure me in), the staff were all very friendly and helpful and the food was incredible. We all ordered a full english (with added hash browns, obvs) and everything was just delicious – including a smoothie which left me feeling slightly less guilty about all the unhealthy food I’d eaten all weekend, without tasting like I was drinking a glass of liquid grass…
Bar Elba – Waterloo.
After climbing up a seemingly endless flight of stairs, complete with lots of colourful walls and Napoleon quotes, we arrived at Bar Elba. A rooftop bar on a rainy day – except with lots of heaters and a covered roof to keep us warm. The cocktails were all amazing- and also, especially for London, affordable if you took full advantage of the happy hour deal (which we definitely did). I always imagine London roof bars to be overly busy places where you spend most of your time in an endless wait to be served, but Elba was a lovely place to go for a few drinks and not too busy. The summery cocktails, sheltered roof and view of a rainy London skyline made for a surprisingly cosy afternoon before a tipsy tube journey home…