Worth getting out of bed for
Examine the artifacts at the British Museum (www.britishmuseum.org), just a 10-minute walk from the hotel. Book tickets for a matinee – there are plenty of playhouses on your doorstep. Go shopping on Carnaby Street and Oxford Street and stop for afternoon tea at Liberty’s (www.liberty.co.uk).
Feast on French food at Soho House’s sister restaurant, Café Boheme, where dishes are as tasty as they are good value – pork belly with choucroute (£12) or duck confit with Lyonnaise potatoes (£14), for example. Sweet tooths should save room for the pear tarte tatin or plum clafoutis. It’s close by, at 13 Old Compton Street (+44 (0)20 7734 0623) and it’s open until 2.45am, should you be of a nocturnal bent. Chew on chorizo at Barrafina, a popular tapas bar with a hunger-halting list of light plates, including chickpeas, spinach and bacon, a range of tortillas and Iberian ham with quails’ eggs. You’ll find the restaurant on foodie-magnet, Frith Street, at number 54 (+44 (0)20 7813 8016).
Kettner’s is worth a visit for its array of desserts alone, but it also has a fabulous champagne bar and an impressive restaurant. Equally suited to a celebration dinner or an indulgent tea-break, it’s a mere ramble away, at 29 Romilly Street (+44 (0)20 7734 6112).
Late March Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race from Putney to Mortlake (www.theboatrace.org). Mid April The London Marathon: a 26‑mile race for athletes, fundraisers and mentalists in diving suits (www.london‑marathon.co.uk). Late May Chelsea Flower Show brings marvellous blooms to SW3 (www.rhs.org.uk/chelsea). Late June The Wimbledon Championships sends the capital tennis mad for a fortnight (www.wimbledon.org). July–September The BBC Proms concerts (www.bbc.co.uk/proms). August Bank Holiday weekend Notting Hill Carnival, a float‑filled, bass‑thumping weekend of musical mayhem. September Open House Weekend sees 600 buildings, old and new, open to the public, free of charge (www.londonopenhouse.org). Mid October–early November London Film Festival (www.lff.org.uk). 5 November On Guy Fawkes’ Night, there are fireworks displays in parks all over town; book an eighth-floor table at the Oxo Tower (+44 (0)20 7803 3888) for a premium view of the Lord Mayor’s fireworks on the river. London Jazz Festival – nice (www.serious.org.uk).
Join us – it's free!
Sign up now for exclusive hotel offers, money back on every booking, and Smith extras (like the one below) whenever you book with us. more
Smith extra at Dean Street Townhouse
A Cowshed beauty product