I am finally able to post my London Travel guide. I got back from Europe in September and had a whirlwind of additional adventures that delayed this post. That being said, here are my top recommendations for London!
20 Lavington St, London SE1 0NZ, UK
My absolute favorite about the hotel was the bed. I know this sounds pretty mundane but if you've ever slept in a crappy hotel bed, you'll know what I mean. This giant XL King bed pushed all the way up against the window was by far the most comfortable I've ever been in making for the most peaceful nights. Can we also talk about the black out blinds? This was crucial for midday naps to escape the jetlag.
I highly recommend opting for the breakfast buffet in the lobby. You can people watch through the floor to ceiling windows and enjoy a full English breakfast with an assortment of house made jams. They also have a fridge in every room (that they restock!) where everything is FREE. FREE.
Finally, they do have more than 1 location in London if Bankside isn't your jam. Their Tower of London location has incredible views!
181 Piccadilly | Fortnum & Mason, London W1A 1ER, England
You can't go to London without experiencing high tea! So many people recommended Fortnum & Mason to me so I had to check it out. They are unique in that they offer a "refillable" aka "all you can eat" food service. You can choose between savory or sweet. If you go with another person, you can pick both savory and sweet and share with one another.
Be sure to make a reservation and allot time to check out their shopping area. We purchased most of our gifts from Fortnum as they offered a wide variety of teas, biscuits, and gift sets. If you're worried about luggage space, they also have an online store.
Be forewarned it's not cheap but totally worth the splurge to feel like royalty.
3. The Shard
32 London Bridge St, London SE1 9SG, UK
While the sometimes frugal Asian in me tends to stray away from sightseeing that costs money, I'm so glad Willy encouraged me to fork over the entry fee to the Shard. The Shard is a modern vertical building with incredible views of London.
8 Southwark St, London SE1 1TL, UK
Sadly, the food in London was a bit rough for me. Rough in the sense that most of it was in short, awful. The Borough Market however, was incredible. This huge outdoor market featured some of the best food I had in London. Located in the Bankside area, you can stop by before or after the Shard. They are walking distance from one another.
By far the best however, was the Pork Belly sandwich from Roast to Go. "A sandwich of pork belly and crackling with bramley apple sauce is the crowd-puller, but there’s much more besides: rib of beef with horseradish, roast chicken with sage and onion stuffing, rare breed bacon butties."
Westminster, London SW1A 1AA, UK
We got super lucky that we visited London during the time that Buckingham was open to the public for tours. It was incredible seeing such an iconic landmark in person, let alone to be able to tour inside. The audio visual guide was included with the tickets and made you feel like you were on a personal tour. You aren't allowed to take photos inside but it's just like you imagined a palace would be. The dates for 2018 are July 21 - September 30. If you happen to be there in the summer, definitely check it out!
I'm a huge fan of Indian food and up until Dishoom, I thought I'd definitely had the best Indian food in LA. I was clearly mistaken and Dishoom needs to come to LA. We got VERY lucky and happened to walk in and found ourselves first in line. From what I hear, the wait tends to be LONG. You can also make reservations which is highly recommended.
We went to the Covent Garden location and it's a two story restaurant and the tables are pretty small. Overall, rather snug but honestly worth the claustrophobia.
My absolute favorite item that we ordered, and according to Yelp, a crowd favorite. Chicken Ruby: A good and proper curry redolent with spice and flavour. Tender chicken in a rich silky ‘makhani’ sauce, best mopped up with a Roomali Roti.
20 Fenchurch St, London EC3M 8AF, UK
This beautiful indoor garden hosts 3 stories of restaurants, bars, and viewing terraces. If you're looking for something hip and cool, consider checking this one out. I went to Sketch and was sorely disappointed with the food and service. Price points are similar but Darwin Brasserie (make a res) in SkyGarden has amazing service and delicious cocktails. The food was good, not super memorable considering I don't remember what I ate. The best thing to do here is drinks and views. Possibly the only rival to the views at the Shard.