Stephanie’s Favourite London Places

Cafe – Pellicci’s, Bethnal Green E2

Serving the community for 100 years

Pellicci’s Cafe – A Bethnal Green Institution
Photo © Simon Collison (CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Pellicci’s is so nice; it’s a real family place, still run by the Pellicci family. They are always so friendly and animated, mama Pellicci is the cook and her sons and daughter wait the tables. They even know me by name, it’s so nice to walk in and be greeted that warmly. The décor is really cool 50s vintage style; apparently it’s a listed building now as well.

 ——————————————————————————————————————-

Bar / Pub – Loungelover, Tower Hamlets E1

I love cocktails and Loungelover does some of my faves. It’s not really a place to go dancing so it is rarely packed with loud revellers, you can always find an intimate table and the service is great too. It always feels really special when I go there. I’ve never eaten there but the cocktails are fabulous. I like one called a ‘Harajuku’ with Vanilla and Passion fruit, also their signature Champagne cocktail with fig liquor is great.  My boyfriend always gets the ‘Hemmingway Daiquiri’ because he thinks it makes him sound urbane and sophisticated. (He isn’t!!)

——————————————————————————————————————–

Restaurant – Koba, Soho W1T

Cooking on the Skillet at Koba London

Cooking wild mushrooms on the table-top skillet at Koba
Photo © animalvegetable (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Korean Barbecue is amazing, Koba is my favourite. All the tables have a metal skillet in the middle where you cook parts of the meal while you eat. If you are feeling confident you can cook it yourself but if not the waiters are happy to help. The food is delicious and it’s a very different dining experience, totally fun. We go quite a lot but it’s always busy so I would recommend booking ahead.

Ed – Other Korean Barbecues in London worth a try:

Asadal in Holborn & Myungga in Soho

——————————————————————————————————————–

Venue – Somerset House, Westminster WC2

Outdoor movie screenings at Somerset House

Outdoor movie screenings at Somerset House
Photo © ianxn (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Somerset House has this amazing open courtyard which doubles as a venue for theatre, music and film. Last year we went to their film festival there and saw “Indiana Jones and the last Crusade.” They project it on a huge screen at one end of the courtyard and everyone sits on blankets and deckchairs to watch. You can take a picnic and have a glass of wine and the atmosphere is really fun with people cheering and booing along with the film. It was a great and different way to watch film. My friends saw Laura Marling there as well and said it was an amazing venue to watch live music.

——————————————————————————————————————–

For A Rainy Day – Spitalfields Market  E1

The Foodhall @ Spitalfields London
Photo © HerryLawford (CC-BY 2.0)

 Spitalfields is just down the road from me so I use it often, the food part is like one massive deli counter, it’s all so good. There is also a really cool antiques market there and a big vintage clothing market, you can find some amazing one off pieces which you just never see anywhere else. I’m sure the hipsters of East London must do a lot of their shopping here. It’s just a really vibrant place and there is more than enough to warrant spending a nice sunny day there (or a sunny one!)

——————————————————————————————————————–

For A Sunny Day – Boating at Hyde Park W2

Boating @ Hyde Park London

Rowing boats moored-up at the Serpentine London
Photo © Matt Lang (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Gotta be Hyde Park really. Take a picnic and sit near the Serpentine. Hire a boat  or a pedalo there and row around the lake. It’s wonderful on a hot day.

(Ed – Bluebird Boats hire rowing boats and pedalos on the Serpentine)

——————————————————————————————————————–

Cultural – Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, Soutwark SE1

Get up close to the actors at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

Get up close to the actors at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre
Photo © Paul Williams (CC BY-NC 2.0)

A lot of people think that The Globe is a bit of a tourist trap but I don’t think it is at all. The productions are always first rate and standing tickets are really cheap. It feels quite authentic and intimate because of how close you are to the actors. I can’t think of a better way to see some theatre than this.

——————————————————————————————————————–

Active – Dance Classes with Dancebuzz

A couple perform the Lindy Hop

A couple perform the Lindy Hop
Photo © Eric Esquivel (CC BY-NA-SA 2.0)

My Boyfriend took me to a salsa class for my birthday last year and we absolutely loved it. We’ve been going ever week since. Its such good fun and we have learnt quite a few dances now, like Swing and Lindy Hop. It’s surprisingly high energy and keeps us fit. We did it in one of ’Dancebuzz’s’ events but there are loads to choose from.  

——————————————————————————————————————–

Let us know what you think of Steph’s suggestions in the comments on the front page. If you have any of your own we would love to hear them too. We will be putting together a list of the best reader suggestions soon.