To experience London the hip way, ditch the mainstream and say “no” to conventions and traditional musts. The real London is in the little shops, the alternative hotels and hidden food corners -that’s where everything happens. So don’t get stuck with the masses – snub the usual tourist tour around Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park. Instead, opt for something fresh, youthful and much more appealing.
First of all, make sure you stay in a boutique hotel while in the capital. Have a look at The Hoxton, which although may look like a strange option at first, it’s definitely worth your time. Best described as an urban lodge, this little hotel is affordable but also luxurious and comfortable as well as central. Not to mention, there are some great restaurants nearby, especially if you’re a fan of Indian cuisine, you’ll no doubt find staying here very appealing.
Slick and Stylish
You may also want to check out Hotel 55. This is a 25-room Edwardian house that has been converted into a slick and stylish hotel. It may not be as central as The Hoxton, but is has numerous underground stations nearby and it also features a modern and fun restaurant with a bar that serves striking cocktails all day. Very homely and chic, but also affordable, Hotel 55 is known to win hipsters over.
If you’re in the mood for a bit of nerd-fun, then visit Oxford for a geek-chic weekend and enjoy a long stroll around the university area. If you choose to stick to London Town, have your geeky fun at Artwords Bookshop. Located on Broadway Market, this is definitely where nerdy hipsters hang out. A different indie bookstore, focusing on art books and international magazines, Artwords is famous for attracting all the cool London kids.
Old Time Fun
Also, pay Vintage Heaven a visit. Shopping here feels like a treasure hunt, which is why all hipsters love it. Anything retro and eccentric -from china tea sets to coat hangers and hats; you will find it here. However, the real appeal of Vintage Heaven lies in the fact that it features an extraordinarily hidden café, where all hip shoppers get to mingle and enjoy a range of delicious cakes.
Finally, rate your hipster potential by eating in the right places. Abracadabra in Westminster is a unique combination-restaurant that is not to be missed. Waitresses in nurse uniforms and a highly psychedelic atmosphere attract people who want a bit of a show alongside their dinner. Also, vegan hipsters, have a look at the Rootmaster Bustaurant. Located on Elys Yard, this is a Mediterranean restaurant with deep focus on Greek cuisine and incredible dishes of feta cheese, tomatoes and olives. On a mild day, book a table out in the restaurant’s garden -where the atmosphere reminds us of an old Italian movie.
If you want to see the capital from the inside, then have a look at the hipsters guide to London. Turn your back to anything established and try something entirely different for a change. Its guaranteed hip fun at affordable prices and without the crowds.
- License: Creative Commons image source
- Rootmaster Bustaurant from Flickr
- Hotel 55 from Flickr
- Artswords bookstore from Flickr
Cal McToldridge is a London native who’s always on the lookout for quirky experiences.