OCCUPATION: Founder of Lillingston, one of London’s leading events companies
MY STYLE: By day, I dress quite simply, but by night I become Queen of Caftans, which I collect on my travels. Our home in London (which was once Agatha Christie’s house) is bursting at the seams with semi-organized clutter. My husband loves antiques, books, and academic prints, while I cannot resist injecting lots of color and objects from our travels. I personally love the combination! This recently has been overtaken by Bertie’s fast-growing collection of toys!
I LOVE LONDON BECAUSE: It’s a great city for children, as it has so many parks, both public and private. In our area, there are also lots of playgroups and schools within walking distance, but since Bertie is still only 18 months old, we are currently spending a lot of time in Holland Park and Hyde Park, which are both just a short walk and have fun playgrounds. I also love the fact that we have access to various private gardens in the area where Bertie and his friends can play.
From this modest Pimlico Road storefront, interior designer Joanna Wood sells some of her favorite design objects, whether they’re the result of a far-flung global sourcing trip or something she’s found in the nearby countryside. We love stopping off to envision new directions for our living rooms or to pick up smaller gifts for friends.And her simple, stylish, and rich interior design aesthetic is available for large projects, like hotels, or for personal spaces and homes.
Top-ranking members of the British military guard defend Buckingham Palace and the royal family at all hours, every day. The ceremonial procession and parade signaling the transfer of duties takes place at 11:30 am daily in the summer and on alternate days in the winter. During the summer, both tourists and locals arrive early to snag a good vantage point for the ceremony. If you get there early, walk to the Wellington Barracks to watch the guards arrive to the beat of a marching band.
This massive 2,500-acre park is the largest of the Royal Parks and is both a Site of Scientific Interest and a National Nature Reserve. In addition to daily cyclers and footballers, there are several organized sports activities in the park, including fishing, rugby, power kiting, and outdoor fitness classes. From Henry the VIII’s Mound, the highest point in the park, visitors can have a fantastic view of St. Paul’s Cathedral and the London Eye.
At times the siren’s call of Malabar tandoor inspires us to venture to Notting Hill just to fulfill our craving. We’re not alone: Since 1983 this neighborhood staple has been on the minds of Londoners citywide, who head to the restaurant for samosas and tandoori wings, among other delicious offerings.
With a Michelin star under its belt and a gorgeous English countryside atmosphere, the Petersham Nurseries Café is worth a gander. The chef and cookbook-author Skye Gyngell, uses only grown-on-site ingredients, though the menu changes every week, the quality of the dishes remains constant. There are also activities to be found on the premises, including wine tastings, beekeeping classes, and a playhouse that produces intimate plays and dance performances in a turn-of-the-century ballroom.
Sally Clarke’s legendary market offers a stunning array of British and Irish goods (seasonal jams, freshly baked breads and pastries, granolas, chutneys, and Irish cheeses) alongside best-of Western European foodstuffs, including Italian and Provencal olive oils. We love stopping by for a unique, homey, and delicately presented hostess gift, or—let’s face it—simply to stock our pantry. Clarke also runs a nearby restaurant, which has won her a spot on the Queen’s Honour’s list.