Sponsored post written by John Benson from Central London Apartments
A permanent resident of London, I decided to explore what was on my doorstep and have myself a mini London staycation (they’re all the rage now, I believe). We weren’t looking to do it especially cheaply, although we did decide to forego the opportunity to book into one of the copious luxury central London hotels around the city and instead stay in our respective victoria apartments and docklands apartments. We just had a look at what was on offer and, ever the diplomats, voted on the day’s itinerary.
My body clock well and truly trained to military standard, I started the day early. I got up at 6:30am (a whole half an hour lie-in) and was out of my flat by 7:30am to meet the girls. I hate calling them ‘the girls’, but for the purpose of this exercise, I’m afraid I’m going to have to bite the bullet and call them ‘the girls’.
For a light breakfast, we headed to Bill’s in Covent Garden. A favourite of ours when we were students in Brighton, we were delighted to find out it had finally branched out into the city to dutifully feed its now grown-up patrons. For me, it had to be the playful vegetarian version of the traditional fry-up, consisting of two poached eggs (the only way to do eggs), mushrooms, sweet chilli sauce, guacamole and toast, garnished playfully with a couple of lush green basil leaves. It was just what my stomach was growling for.
After a catch up and some light morning refreshment, we got the tube over to London Bridge and round the corner to the Floatworks on Thrale Street where we were booked in for an hour’s floatation session. All but one of us (not me) were floatation virgins, and we went on the strong recommendation that it was the most relaxing thing EVER. Warmed to body temperature (93.5 degrees, to be precise), the salty, salty water helps the body stay afloat; once you’re in there for a few minutes, it’s virtually impossible to feel the body-temperature water against your skin, which gives you the most wonderful sensation of floating in mid-air – well worth £45.
An hour’s worth of wonderful weightless bobbing under our belts, we bravely soldiered on to Wandsworth for elevenses. Although, by the time we sauntered at a leisurely pace along the Thames and through Battersea Park, it actually turned out to be more like quarter-past-oneses. We were heading for none other than French Master Patissier Eric Lanlard’s boutique cake shop, Cake Boy. And boy, does he do good cakes. I sampled his exquisite lemon meringue cupcakes accompanied by a deliciously creamy espresso pick-me-up. I was so engrossed in my own cake that I can’t for the life of me remember what the rest ate; I can, however, assure you that we were all suitably blown away by the standard of everything at this beautiful little Thames-side boutique.
After a couple of glasses of the good stuff (yep, we saw fit to crack open the bubbly in celebration of our day off), we found that we’d effortlessly whiled away a whole three hours, so it was time to move on. Another on-foot jaunt, this time across the river and up into the north side, took us to Charing Cross where we were to meet up with those poor unfortunates among us who couldn’t get the day off work.
Opened in 1890, Gordon’s Wine bar (right outside Charing Cross tube station), is the oldest wine bar in London, and has a wines-by-the-glass list that’s sure to make you dizzy (not least when you’ve had a few of them). With a devilishly dark décor, this candlelit cave of a tavern does its wine bar thing with matchless expertise, offering a whole host of delicious meats, cheeses and various other foodie titbits on the side to boot. It was the perfect end to a perfect day’s staycation in London, and it looks like Gordon’s has just acquired itself a few more loyal regulars.
This post was written by John Benson from Central London Apartments, the home of serviced London apartment rentals. We specialise in providing short-stay apartments for leisure and business travellers who want more from their stay in city apartments London. Our clients enjoy spacious, comfortable, well-managed accommodation in some of London’s finest central locations, at up to 30% less than hotel rooms of equivalent standard.