La Jolla, California Travel Agent
Everywhere I have ever gone has been my favorite place. That said, London is a city that I return to again and again and I have a picture of Big Ben in my office. I am not a big city person. What I love about London is that it is a city of small neighborhoods. Each has its own mini-culture and feeling, so a ten-minute walk can take you into a different world.
Every time I go, I visit Borough Market. It is huge, with fresh produce, cheeses and other goods from the countryside, and everything looks magnificent. You can sample your way through the market, and it is in an old part of the city, so it feels timeless.
Just a short walk from here is Shakespeare’s Globe Theater. There are great pubs around it, and experiencing a play here is a must. Like much of London, it feels very familiar and is an important part of our shared history.
I especially love that you can visit Buckingham Palace, which is literally the Queen’s quarters. Walking through the Palace, you see iconic pictures of the family and rooms that are the backdrops we see in the news. It feels very intimate; it’s almost as though you are walking through a close friend’s home, and the art is amazing. The Palace grounds are also astounding. For me, thinking about the many important Royal Family members and powerful people who have walked in these gardens and halls creates a very personal connection with history.
Just as each neighborhood has its own uniquely alluring character, so do the hotels. Corinthia Hotel London offers super-gilded luxury on the Thames waterfront. When you walk in and see the crystal chandelier centered on a giant ruby, you are captivated. Its penthouse suites have spectacular views, and the décor, which is themed to actors, musicians, and other notables, adds an element of fun. Another favorite of mine is the Savoy. Dating back to 1889, it too is super posh, but the Savoy has a more quiet and traditional elegance.
One of the nice things for families who visit London is that children are acknowledged in a very respectful way from the moment they check in. They are personally greeted in the same way as adult guests while being catered to with kid-friendly menu items, and often, special teatime treats that make them feel comfortable. In addition, London has lovely parks in every neighborhood.
Best of all, throughout the city, I have found Londoners to be warm, friendly, and welcoming with great senses of humor. It feels like a second home to me, and it is one of many favorite places that I love to share with our agency’s clients.