In the last few weeks I have been manically busy travelling back and forth to Barcelona on family business, so when I returned to the UK last week I decided to spend the night in London and enjoy some of my favourite things. Although it was a brief stay, it was a successful trip with much achieved.
When residing in the Country I rarely indulge in any Retail Therapy as the shopping centres are either too far away or simply not worth visiting. For this reason, I mainly shop in London where there is an abundance of choice and limitless quality. Most of my favourite luxury goods such as colognes, shoes and hats only have stores in London meaning that I have to stock up when I am in town!
This trip was not all about retail therapy, however. I also took the opportunity to enjoy fine dining, art and theatre. As well as shopping I had one of my favourite Afternoon Tea's at Fortnum and Mason, watched a thrilling performance of Les Misérables and perused the exquisite collection of artworks at the Wallace Collection at Hertford House. Departing for home at Kings Cross I certainly felt a feeling of achievement at all I had managed to cram in.
On my way to the Hotel, I passed through Savile Row, famous for it's exceptional bespoke tailoring and menswear. The sun was gloriously shining and it was a wonderful sight to see gentleman pacing the street's in their finery; A sign of being back in London.
|Savile Row, the go to place for fine Gentleman's Tailoring|
My first choice of Hotel, The Lanesborough, is now closed for renovation so I decided this time to stay at The Ritz. There is not much difference in the style or quality of these Hotels I just feel that The Lanesborough is somewhat more exclusive as it lesser known than The Ritz and there are no tourists wandering through the Lobby. The Ritz is always full with people coming to enjoy the famous Afternoon Tea which only adds to the crowded public areas. I suppose this makes one seem rather a snob, in reality I just enjoy peace and quiet..even when I am in London.
|My little Shih Tzu, Sophie relaxing in our Suite at The Lanesborough last year before it closed for renovation.|
|My Suite at The Ritz.|
After checking in I decided to take a walk along Piccadilly to Fortnum and Mason for Afternoon Tea. I have to confess that the exquisite food distracted me and I did not take any pictures, however the picture below gives you an idea of a typical Tea at Fortnum and Mason. It was then on to my favourite bookstore just a few steps away, Hatchard's. For the book lover this traditional store is bliss. There are four floors filled with every book imaginable. I often order my books online so it was a real treat to return here and actually have the chance to look through each book before purchasing. After a lovely hour I left with a bag full of books and a big smile.
|A typical Tea at Fortnum's.|
|The front entrance to the Wallace Collection at Hertford House|
|The Front State Room with a portrait of Queen Victoria on the left side of the doors.|
|An exquisite hunting scene hanging handsomely in this State Room|
|More of the artworks and fine furniture in the Front State Room|
|In this part of the House, a collection of Canaletto paintings can be seen|
|An exquisite group of miniatures on display|
|An original painting of the infamous Madame de Pompadour|
|Works by Francis Boucher dominate the Oval Room|
|A fine 18th Century Mantel Clock sits regally against the Silk wall covering|
|The fireplace in the Front State Room|