Looking for London’s hippest new address? Try Bloomsbury
PUBLISHED: 15:19 08 May 2018 | UPDATED: 15:19 08 May 2018
Within London’s ever-changing zeitgeist, different neighbourhoods take turns to define the city’s cultural landscape. And there is no doubt that, right now, there is no more richly rewarding area in which to immerse oneself than the reinvigorated area of Bloomsbury
Moments from Theatreland, the boutiques of Covent Garden and the lively bars of Soho, this enclave is also home to the historical treasures of the world-renowned British Museum, and a wealth of antiquarian galleries and bookshops. And with a host of new developments marking the final link in the chain between the City and the West End, a fresh, new vibe is taking shape, just in time for summer.
As a result, visitors to WC1 are spoilt for choice when it comes to diversions. An entire weekend – and more – could be whiled away at British Museum, with its four million objects drawn from across human civilization. As well as the permanent collection, among this summer’s special exhibitions is an exploration of how French sculptor Rodin took inspiration from the renowned Parthenon Marbles when he himself visited the museum in 1881. Nearly 140 years later, visitors will be able to view his work side by side with the original sculptures, and see how it shaped modern art.
If popular theatre is your thing, the West End, with its array of productions, including rollicking musicals, is close at hand. Check out the West End’s first bilingual play, Molière’s thrilling comedy Tartuffe, recast in Trump-era America at Theatre Royal Haymarket, one of several grand, historic playhouses.
You can explore a more contemporary form of architecture at a new exhibition at the beguiling Sir John Soane’s Museum. Home to countless artefacts and curiosities from across the ages, among its summer attractions is the exhibition Postmodernism in British Architecture. Meanwhile, the quirky, life-affirming Wellcome Collection is a hidden treasure; its major spring exhibition, Somewhere in Between, explores how four collaborations between artists and scientists impacted health, life and our place in the world.
Then there’s the retail therapy mecca of Lamb’s Conduit Street. Made fashionable when Charles Dickens was a local is one of London’s most historic streets, with old-world pubs, independent boutiques and stores and a wealth of quirky bookshops, restaurants and food shops.
Such creativity sits comfortably within Bloomsbury’s artistic heritage. Known as London’s literary heartland, this area was home to the Bloomsbury Set, a group of itinerant writers, thinkers, artists and intellectuals, famous as much for their unorthodox lifestyles as their professional output. The likes of Virginia Woolf, E.M.Forster and John Maynard Keynes lent the area a raffish, lofty air that continues to pervade today.
This convivial spirit is certainly alive and well at The Bloomsbury – a hotel steeped in heritage and now at the forefront of its own vibrant transformation.
The bold new look of this Grade II-listed, Edwin Lutyen’s property is encapsulated by the dynamism of the Coral Room – London’s latest hotspot - a grand salon bar offering all-day dining and late-night partying. Or for a spot of people watching, the ever-popular Dalloway Terrace makes a perfect backdrop for an al fresco dining experience with its seasonally changing decorations and indoor-outdoor design.
Meanwhile, the hotel’s discreet, intimate Bloomsbury Club Bar celebrates the golden age of cocktails while drawing on the notoriously liberated lifestyles of the original Bloomsbury Set. A Duncan Grant (Courvoisier VSOP, Perrier-Jouët and Angostura Bitters), anyone? Or perhaps the libation named after Grant’s fellow painter (and some-time lover) Vanessa Bell – No.3 London Dry, Cocchi Americano, Belsazar Dry, Pink Grapefruit Shrub and Rosebud)?
Either way, guests will find that at The Bloomsbury, character abounds – both in the hotel’s environs and on the streets of the neighbourhood with which it shares its name.
Have a look at how you can enjoy a stylish weekend in London at The Bloomsbury here or call the hotel team at 020 7347 1000.