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Kayu, Travel |

Exploring: London

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Recently a friend of mine from high school got married in London. My husband and I jumped at the chance to go to the wedding – not only do we have family in the area but its also one of our favorite cities.

Our aunt lives in Holland Park so naturally we spent a lot of time in the neighborhood. It’s one of the most picturesque parts of London. Leafy, serene and with the type of buildings you only see in films about American movie stars falling in love with English bookstore owners.

SLEEP

The Portobello Hotel | 22 Stanley Gardens 

Located on a quiet street in Notting hill, The Portobello Hotel was converted from two neoclassical mansions and has only twenty one rooms. Each room is individually designed and outfitted in four poster beds and clawfoot tubs.  Rumor has it that Johnny Depp and Kate Moss had a champagne bath in Room 16.

EAT

Daylesford

(photo courtesy of Daylesford Organic)

Daylesford Organic | 208-212 Westbourne Grove

Start the day off right with brunch at Daylesford Organic. The  produce comes directly from their farms in Staffordshire and the Cotswolds and is served in a beautiful rustic setting. Pop into their shop in the basement to pick up fun aprons, gorgeous candles and unique kitchenware.

Ottolenghi | 63 Ledbury Road 

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(photo courtesy of Ottolenghi)

Otam Ottolenghi is famous for his bold and exciting Middle Eastern cuisine. His store in Nottinghill was his first and was started with the aim to serve the best take away food in London. Pick up a salad and quiche for a picnic in neighboring Holland Park.

If you have time check out Nopi – his sit down restaurant in Soho. We had a lovely time there – delicious food, excellent service and beautiful people. Don’t forget to check out the extravagant mirrored bathrooms.

Malabar  |  27 Uxbridge Street

Some would argue that the Indian food in London is even better than the Indian food in India. I’ve never been to India so can’t compare, but do know that the meal I had at Malabar was damn good. The lamb saag was one of the best I’ve ever had.

The Castle  |  100 Holland Park Avenue

You can’t go to London and not grab a beer at a pub. The Castle features velvet interiors, an endless drinks list and a great burger.  Pop in on Sundays for their Sunday roasts.

SHOP

Penelope Chilvers  |  48 – 50 Ledbury Road

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Fun espadrilles in a variety of prints and colors. I picked up a pair with blue velvet ribbons which are unbelievably comfortable.

Heidi Klein |  174 Westbourne Grove

Your one stop shop for resort wear. Bikinis, caftans and sandals – they have it all here.

Bonpoint  |  197 Westbourne Grove

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The most beautiful childrens clothes I’ve ever seen in the prettiest setting.

Petit Bateau  |  73 Ledbury Rd

Good quality, affordable and timeless. I love their striped tees and wool sailor sweaters for my son.

SEE

Holland Park

Spread across 54 acres, this park boasts cricket and tennis facilities, a playground and a beautiful Japanese garden. It is also a haven for wildlife and houses a plethora of birds.

Portobello Market

If you’re around on a Saturday try to fit in a stroll down Portobello road. The road is closed to traffic and packed with vendors selling all types of bric-brac, antiques and vintage fashion. Grab a snack from one of the many food stalls and be prepared to haggle!

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