The UK’s decision to leave the EU has stunned the world, with the most immediate impact a steep decline in the pound. The exchange is currently hovering around $1.35, the lowest in 30 years. Other changes travelers need to think about? Nothing (!), all immigration and border crossings remain exactly the same for travelers. Nothing will change until Britain invokes Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which even then, allows two years to negotiate a settlement with the EU. So, with England on sale, here are my top tips on what to do in London this summer:
Bag a Bargain: Summer savings are on in Britain, nab designer goods at discounts prices, plus get VAT back, plus the amazing exchange and KA-CHING(!) you’re saving a bundle so go for the best luxury brands at Liberty, Selfridges, Harrods, Harvey Nichols and our favorite Dover Street Market. For more interesting local goods, two fab areas for shopping English brands Connaught Street (http://connaught-village.co.uk/shopping) in Marylebone and Redchurch Street in Shoreditch, six blocks of design heaven according to VOGUE, (http://www.vogue.com/13415116/london-guide-redchurch-street-interior-design-stores/). For easy access to everything from the trendy Topshop and Marks & Spencer to Gucci and Prada, head to the Westfield in W12 (https://uk.westfield.com/london).
Eat Well: Dine at London’s finest Michelin star eateries, the full list is here (http://travel.michelin.co.uk/ekmps/shops/michelin1/resources/Other/gbi-2016-award-summary.pdf.pdf) some of my favorites: The Ledbury, Le Gavroche, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, or River Cafe. Proper high tea is also a treat that normally does carry a hefty price, with the better hotels charging upwards of £45 per person. Our favorite at the moment is the Royal Afternoon Tea at The Langham in the Palm Court (£62 per person including a glass of champagne) with gorgeous and delicious pastries by chef Cherish Finden, also star judge on BBC Bake Off, (http://www.langhamhotels.com/en/the-langham/london/dining/palm-court/).
Enjoy the Culture: Summertime in England is the best; the sun doesn’t set until nearly 10 p.m., so pack the long days full of fun! Enjoy music festivals ranging from the eight-week long classical festival “Proms” at Royal Albert Hall, featuring the best orchestras and soloists from around the world. (http://www.royalalberthall.com/tickets/proms/proms-2016/) Or head to Hyde Park for modern hits, Stevie Wonder, Carole King, Mumford & Sons, and Take That are some of the headliners for British Summertime (http://www.bst-hydepark.com/), while in Hyde Park check out the stunning Serpentine Summer installation (http://www.serpentinegalleries.org/) and the lovely paintings by Alex Katz. Don't forget to go see the much anticipated addition to the new Tate Modern and the Georgia O’Keefe exhibit (http://www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern), and the Royal Academy for a new David Hockney exhibit and fantastic annual Summer Exhibition (https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/). Theater is also a great value, top shows in the West End with the current exchange would be about half-price of Broadway, new in Aladdin (http://www.aladdinthemusical.co.uk/), Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (http://www.harrypottertheplay.com/), or catch Swan Lake, Taming of the Shrew or Le Corsaire performed by the Bolshoi Ballet at the gorgeous Covent Garden.
Get booking, now is the best time for Americans to visit London!