Live it up like the locals - London Guide

When traveling somewhere new, some of us want to do what the locals do and go where the locals go to get the most authentic experience. This is why we’ve asked an out-and-about Londoner what her favourites in London are.


Melissa Berry (31)

Occupation: Personal assistant

What's your favourite area of London and why? I love Westbourne Grove in West London, it's super trendy, fabulous eateries and great shopping for designer pieces in cute boutiques. It's great starting off with breakfast at Daylesford or Granger & Co, both get very busy. Also I quite like going to Hampstead for brunch on the weekends as it has that cosy village feeling.

What’s your perfect spot for a London date?  If I was planning to take my significant other to London for a romantic trip, I’d maybe look into booking something classy, like brunch at the Chiltern Firehouse perhaps (but make sure to book in advance). Or maybe a romantic dinner at Gaucho in Hampstead followed by a stroll around the narrow, idyllic streets before finishing off with a cocktail at one of the cute bars and pubs in the area. It all depends on what you’re into though, as the small and simple things can be just as romantic.

Just taking a walk in the small parks and gardens throughout the city and being spontaneous with all London has to offer can be as good a plan as any for some romance! If you’re the sporty type, take your better half rollerblading in Hyde Park in the summer, or in winter go see Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park around Christmas, where you can rent ice skates and get mulled wine and absorb the ambiance. Fun!

Where do you shop? I work right behind Selfridges on Oxford Street and it just happens to be my favourite department store in the city, I mainly buy my makeup there and I love that they stock Tom Ford. If I'm looking for something quick Zara is always a good go-to opposite Selfridges. Liberty is great to find unusual brands and they stock Frame jeans which I love (the staff are fabulous too!) They also stock unusual jewellery brands there. Another great little find is Marylebone market on Saturday's, one stand sells designer pieces which are sold for less than half the retail price as they have been used once on photo shoots. I also love buying online at Net-a-Porter and TheOutnet.

What bars do you go to? In the summer The Waterway in Maida Vale is a must on the canal, Mews of Mayfair in the West End is great for after work drinks on a Friday, really buzzy and a great atmosphere! I also sometimes go to Hush Mayfair which is a great little find with amazing drinks, so really nice to sit outside in the courtyard in the summer and just soak up the vibe.

We hope these insider tips can be useful for your next London adventure! If in need of central accommodation we recommend our Radisson Blu Portman Hotel near Marylebone. Here you can start your day off with a nice and relaxed breakfast before heading out for the day.

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