Earlier this week Britain experienced the hottest day ever on record, with a temperature of 37.4 degrees Celsius (99.3 degrees Fahrenheit) noted by the London Weather Centre. With no signs of cooling off anytime soon, here’s some refreshing ideas for visitors to London this summer.
- Stay at The Curtain Hotel: Just opened at the end of May, this new East London hotel features LIDO, a rooftop pool with a brasserie and bar. Only open to hotel guests and a limited local membership, we can’t think of a better place to stay cool in London than perching on one of the LIDO’s sun beds, sipping cocktails and enjoying the Shoreditch skyline. (And, yes, you can stay with kids and bring them to pool, too!)
- "Chillax" in Hyde Park at the Lady Diana Memorial Fountain: This large, circular fountain located in the southwest corner of Hyde Park, just south of the Serpentine lake, is like a mini-river, shallow enough to wade in and perfect for kids to splash about. For the grown-ups, it’s a great respite, with heavily shaded spots for picnics or relaxing. While you’re there, see the coolest art exhibit in London, Grayson Perry: The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever! at the nearby Serpentine Gallery. Perry is a celebrated English artist who uses art in varying forms: ceramic, sculpture and tapestry to make social and political commentary.
- Dine alfresco: Embrace the sun and just eat outdoors! Our three top picks: Dalloway Terrace at The Bloomsbury has a Hendrick's Gin pop-up this summer with specialty cocktails and alcoholic popsicles; the beautiful outdoor space is just a two-minute walk from the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street. Pomona’s in Notting Hill has a California vibe and outdoor seating for 50. The third option: the best Italian food and a riverside setting at the iconic River Cafe in Hammersmith.
If you truly can’t take the heat, head to the Blue Bar at The Berkeley, and sip your way through their new set of cocktails for summer amid celebs and other high-rollers. The bar was renovated last year with a new glass pavilion, cool blue decor and perhaps most importantly, excellent air-conditioning.