There’s nothing like Christmas in London. I popped over for a long weekend to spend time with my friend Steph, who is a hospitality expert and was there for work trying out hotels for her clients. It was a whirlwind but here’s what I got up to and recommend from my long weekend trip.
- Mayfair is in the heart of London and one of the best places to take in holiday decor. Iconic light displays on Regent Street and New Bond Street as well as displays at Claridges, Annabelle’s, Ralph Lauren, and Fortnum and Mason’s are all a short walk from each other.
- Convent Garden Market was really lovely at night.
- Harrods. Obviously.
- Lederhall Market (A short walk from the Ned if you’re staying there)
- Fortnum and Mason’s is best know for their incredible ground-floor grocery carrying lots of festive treats, but their upper floors house many heritage British brands worth a look.
- Liberty of London is always a favorite, specifically for their top floor featuring fabrics and decor. I bought a couple yards of a silk cotton print to make lampshades, and another patchwork print for pillows.
- I love shopping my favorite British brands when in London which include Smythson, Barbour, Emilia Wickstead, Erdem, Purdey and Sons, and Brora Cashmere.
- London has many pop-up outdoor Christmas Markets and I wandered through a few but was very underwhelmed. Most stalls seemed to be selling the same mass-produced, imported items (and I was hoping for unique, local handcrafted things!) If there’s an amazing Christmas Market I’d love to learn about it but generally would recommend skipping.
- Lunch at Gymkhana – My favorite restaurant in London, I always try to snag a reservation when I’m in town. (Full blog post here.) Gymkhana is modeled after the network of Indian clubs that were founded under the British Raj, but are still popular destinations for recreation and socializing in India today. I used to have lunch meetings at the Bangalore Club when I lived in India and this place brings back a happy nostalgia – not to mention the food is phenomenal.
- Evening cocktails/dinner at The Ned – With live music every night the Ned is a fabulous after-hours watering hole and restaurant scene. I’ve also enjoyed their festive afternoon tea at Millies on a previous trip which is not to be missed!
- The Ivy collection of restaurants are always delicious and go all-out on decor. The Ivy Chelsea Garden is my favorite location.
- We had dinner at Atrium while staying at The Nomad – If you’re staying here it’s a no-brainer to do dinner at their beautiful in-house restaurant, everything was fabulous.
- I loved grabbing a coffee at Ralph’s on New Bond street while taking in the lights. They set up a bunch of cafe tables on the plaza in front of their store which makes for fun people watching.
- Two other holiday favorites for over the top decor are breakfast or tea at Claridge’s, and dinner at the Churchill Arms. I didn’t make it to either on this trip but have been to both several times before and they live up to the hype.
Click here for more festive London recommendations.
Dolce Gabbana Pants (old, skirt version here!)
Manolo Blahnik Flats (on sale!)
J.Crew Relaxed Jeans (LOVE THEM and under $70!)
Missoni Sweater (sold out, dress version here!)
Brooks Brothers Coat (old, similar here)
J.Crew Corduroy Pants (perfect winter white pants!)