Tag: London Travel

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Reel Clever: Pop-Up Movie Nights Taking Over London Parks

July 10, 2015 at 11:45 AM | by | ()

Drive-in movie theaters are (nearly) a thing of the past. But lucky Londoners should keep an eye out this summer for The Nomad, a pop-up screening series that stages food- and fun-filled movie nights in especially awesome outdoor settings. (Ever wanted to watch "Donnie Darko" in the middle of a historic cemetery? We didn't either, but it totally sounds amazing, now that you mention it.)

Head here to check out the summer-long lineup of flicks, which kicked off this week and includes Generation Buzzfeed classics like "Napoleon Dynamite," "The Lost Boys," "Labyrinth," and "Romeo + Juliet" (the 90s-Peak-Leo version). The picnic-style screenings are held at locations all around London, from Grosvenor Square and Hyde Park to the historic Brompton Cemetery. And because concessions are a must, you'll typically find the flicks accompanied by a bevy of street food vendors slinging hot dogs, grilled cheese sandwiches, ice cream and more. (18+? Throw a few extra pounds toward a "Magic Carpet Upgrade" for your ticket, and alcohol is included.) Plus, proceeds benefit The Sustainability Institute in South Africa - a charity tackling inequality, social and environmental problems.

Certain nights include live music and other bells and whistles — but the promise of a summer breeze, some tasty noshes, and a cool flick should be enough to lure out most of London. See you at the movies.

[Image courtesy of The Nomad]

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Check Out The New UNESCO World Heritage Sites (and Other News)

July 7, 2015 at 1:50 PM | by | ()

These Travel News Briefs were compiled by Conde Nast Traveler.

Here’s a closer look at each of two-dozen new UNESCO World Heritage Sites added to the list over the weekend. (Condé Nast Traveler)

The Telegraph compiles 150 facts about the London Tube, which will stop running at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday for a 24-hour strike. (The Telegraph)

While many trains in Europe are making trips faster and easier, long-haul sleeper service remains popular—and “a new breed of long-distance commuter services has brought business class to the rails.” (The Telegraph)

Most of the people renting a car in the U.S. in 2014 were on a leisure rather than business trip, according to data from the Department of Commerce. Seven out of ten rentals was used on vacation, while only 12 percent of those vehicles were used for business. (Skift)

How to get the most enjoyment out of your travels? “It’s best not to see a vacation simply as a discrete period of time,” Jesse Singal writes, “but rather as something that you will talk and think about a lot both beforehand and, hopefully, for years after the fact.” (NYM)

That probably explains, at least in part, the fact that “a number of camplike experiences being embraced by adults who want to spend their precious time off learning new skills or mastering ones they already have,” as Alyson Krueger reports. (NYT)

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Bathing in Bath: Check Out These Amazing Options at Thermae Bath Spa

Where: Hot Bath Street, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1SJ
May 21, 2015 at 4:00 PM | by | ()

We’re open to a debate about this, but we think most people trek to Bath to see the (admittedly impressive) Roman Baths. But if you’re one who prefers to take the waters instead of merely see the waters, Thermae Bath Spa might be for you.

The Spa is actually not one big building but a combination of five restored buildings and one new build that uses the façade of a listed townhouse clad in Bath stone. This main building – the newbie – is the New Royal Bath and it is all glass and LED lighting, full of curves and cubes that complement the architecture of the original buildings. This is the spot where you’ll primarily check in, change, soak and sweat. There’s also a laid-back café here.

New Royal Bath Minerva Pool

After you’ve changed and psyched yourself up to be seen in public roaming around in a bathing suit, you have a decision to face: Do you head first to the Minerva Pool – a large temperate-temperature swimming pool with whirlpools and a lazy river feature; the four kitted-out Aroma Steam Rooms in varying degrees of degrees and with a huge fiber-optic-lit rainfall shower that mists and then storms; or the open-air Rooftop Pool (pictured at page top) that looks out over Bath whether it’s day or dusk? Tough call.

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Flight Review: Across The Pond on Delta But Back on Virgin Atlantic

May 1, 2015 at 10:35 AM | by | ()

The other week we told you about a very cool in-flight message that popped up on our screen during a Virgin Atlantic flight from London to Los Angeles that made us fall in love with Virgin and long-haul travel all over again. Now we're here to tell you all about this airline meet-cute that we had.

See, we didn't intentionally book a Virgin Atlantic flight. This editor actually cashed in American Express points and Delta Skymiles to fly Delta business class over to London. But through a code share agreement, I was put on a Virgin Atlantic flight for the return trip. Which I felt "Meh" about. I had flown Upper Class back in 2010 and definitely liked it, but I fell in love with Delta business class on a flight to Chile last summer. The lie-flat seats truly impressed me. So I was slightly bummed I wouldn't have that experience on the way home. But now, I'm glad I didn't.

Here's my breakdown between the two airlines for the approximately 11-hour flight from Los Angeles to London and back.

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What to Eat on Charlotte Street in London

Where: Charlotte Street, London, United Kingdom
April 16, 2015 at 1:30 PM | by | ()

This week's Jaunted Field Trip will be coming from London and Liverpool. Got a question about either of these cities? Let us know and we'll answer it for you. Don't forget to check HotelChatter's latest news from London and Liverpool too.

Like any bustling metropolis, there is no shortage of good places to eat in London. But Charlotte Street in the city's Fitzrovia nabe has some of the trendiest restaurants and bars all within a few blocks of each other. And since the street is conveniently located near the Goodge tube stop, it's a cinch to get to.

Here's a shortlist of where to pop into when visiting Charlotte Street:

· Charlotte Street Hotel: Located across from the famous Fitzroy Tavern, which inspired the neighborhood's name, the Charlotte Street Hotel has the Oscar Bar & Restaurant is open all day serving meals, snacks, afternoon tea and cocktails. Grab a chair on the slim patio at the entrance and indulge in some casual people-watching. (And yes, Oscar is named after Oscar Wilde who frequented the Fitzroy Tavern.)

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Who's Playing The Piano at Heathrow Airport? No One, Actually

April 13, 2015 at 3:30 PM | by | ()

This week's Jaunted Field Trip will be coming from London and Liverpool. Got a question about either of these cities? Let us know and we'll answer it for you. Don't forget to check HotelChatter's latest news from London and Liverpool too.

When landing at Heathrow International Airport in London after a long-haul flight, you're probably focused on two things--one, staying awake and two, making it to customs before a mad rush of people fill up the queue. But if you can take a moment to look around, you might just be entertained by a "ghost-playing" piano like this one we saw at Terminal 3 arrivals.

The pianos were placed around Heathrow to welcome guests for the 2012 Summer Olympics but at that time, anyone was free to play them. Now, Heathrow has roped a few of the pianos off and hired machines to tinkle the ivories. (There's another piano once you get through customs.)

But while we admired this piano for exactly 15 seconds, we were quick to make our way to the notoriously long customs lines.

MORE TIPS ON HEATHROW AIRPORT (and a bonus London one)
· Take a Whiff of London-Heathrow's Smelly New Attraction
· London Breaks Up Airport Monotony with Pop-up Parks
· Hot Tip: Pre-Order Your Pre-Flight Sushi at London's Heathrow Airport
· What Not to Do in London: The Top Five Tourist Mistakes

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Snap a Selfie Onboard a Virgin Atlantic 787, Then Facebook It for Free

April 8, 2015 at 3:34 PM | by | ()

Selfie sticks may be increasingly banned at destinations, but the original handheld selfie is still very much alive, even in the air. Beginning this month, Virgin Atlantic is offering "#SkyhighSelfie spots" onboard the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Virgin Atlantic teased the #SkyhighSelfie spot as early as October 2014, when their 787 made its inaugural flight from London to Boston. Now, finally, the spots are up and available, which look to be located on walls near the galleys.

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Whoo Wants to Go to The Owl Pop-Up In London?

March 3, 2015 at 9:57 AM | by | ()

If you’re in London later this month, there’s a secret owl pop-up event taking place in the Soho neighborhood. Yes, you read that correctly: A SECRET OWL POP-UP! Consider this your rare chance to learn about these birds of prey and support owl sanctuaries.

From March 19-25 from 8:30 p.m. to 2:00 a.m., people can meet Annie the Owl and her parliament (look it up, bird nerds), Darwin, Ruby, Cinders, Winston and Hootie. Although these are owls are used to mingling with the public – they’ve attended TV shows, weddings and county fairs – they’ll be escorted and protected by professional falconers.

Originally, event organizers planned to serve cocktails at the pop-up, but animal welfare groups raised a stink about pairing birds and booze. So in the spirit of animal safety, smoothies will instead be served.

So far, 64,000 people have applied for tickets for the highly sought-after chance to sip smoothies in the company of live owls. Tickets cost 20£ each and include entry, one smoothie and two hours of quality owl time. All proceeds from the event will be donated to a local organization dedicated to the conservation of owls in the UK.

[Photo: Annie The Owl]

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London Announces Plans to Expand the Tube's Service to 24-Hours

February 23, 2015 at 1:40 PM | by | ()

On the heels of its plan to add bicycle superhighways to its streets, London has announced that it will expand many Tube rail services throughout the city to run 24-hours.

The move comes as part of a government plan to boost the economy and live up to its 24-hour vibe. It's also good news for travelers, who will be able to avoid costly taxis when enjoying the city's nightlife.

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London is Adding Bicycle 'Superhighways' In and Around The City

February 17, 2015 at 1:52 PM | by | ()

Bike sharing systems are nothing new, but now the powers that be in London are taking things to the next level as they are busy approving and installing superhighways meant just for bicycles.

Just the other day the city and the Board of Transport just gave the okay to spend around $240 million on new spiffy bike lanes that are intended for bikes and only bikes—like no cars allowed. Much of the spending will be focused on two new routes—these are those superhighways—that will run both up and down and across central London.

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How to Do London Fashion Week Without Being a Fashion Week Crasher

Where: Strand, London, United Kingdom, WC2R 1LA
January 27, 2015 at 5:57 PM | by | ()

You may fancy yourself a fashion maven but perhaps the bigwigs running London’s Fashion Week didn’t get that memo. If you’re not a fashion industry insider but still want to hang out with your fellow fashionistas, here’s an alternative for you: London’s Fashion Weekend.

Held at the close of Fashion Week at Somerset House (virtually next door to The Savoy hotel), this is your chance to take in the catwalk shows, shop at plenty of pop-ups, get makeup and hair consults and ponder the trends of the season while sipping on a glass of bubbly.

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Complaints May Send the Highway Near Stonehenge Subterranean

December 10, 2014 at 10:21 AM | by | ()

Visitors to Stonehenge might have a better experience in just a few years, as it sounds like the British government is thinking about routing traffic elsewhere to reduce the noise pollution and traffic in and around the prehistoric monument.

The initial plans call for the highway to be buried underground near the ancient sites, as the A303 highway will disappear into a tunnel and reappear once safely away from any potential congestion. There are three proposals kicking around, and of course there’s already some serious debate regarding if this will even happen—or if it’s even a good idea.

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