London is ready for spring. On the back of London Fashion Week, the city is bustling with new openings across theater productions, art exhibitions, restaurant openings and wellness treatments.
A new survey from consultancy firm Resonance revealed that London is the world’s best city — at least according to those surveyed. Just don’t tell Paris, New York, Tokyo or any other metropolis.
Here, a roundup of some of the new spots to hit and things to do in the British capital.
What to watch
“Standing at the Sky’s Edge”
The National Theatre charts six decades of British life from the 1960s to modern day set to the songs of singer-songwriter Richard Hawley. The show centers around the city of Sheffield and the lives of three different sets of people living in an estate.
The Royal Opera House’s new opera is a Slavic folk tale about a water spirit who leaves her family and home in the forest lakes to follow the prince she falls in love with. Similarly to “The Little Mermaid,” she sacrifices her voice.
The Greek myth of Medea at Soho Place is all about rage and revenge as she goes on an odyssey with Jason, leader of the Argonauts, the Golden Fleece and her father, King Aeëtes of Colchis. Academy Award nominee Sophie Okonedo takes on the role of Medea.
What to see
Take in the London skyline with a 360-degree view from Lift 109, which goes up to the top of the northwest chimney of the newly opened Battersea Power Station. Architects WilkinsonEyre worked for nearly a decade on reviving the site that now is the location of new homes, offices and shops.
“Spain and the Hispanic World”
The Royal Academy’s new exhibition is all about Spain as it tracks the history of Hispanic art and culture through more than 150 pieces, from El Greco, Zurbarán, Velázquez and Goya to ceramics, silverwork, jewelry and more. On display is also the World Map of 1526 by Giovanni Vespucci.
“Mike Nelson: Extinction Beckons”
The world of Mike Nelson is made up of items found from salvage yards, junk shops, auctions and flea markets that he in turn has created into strong installations that reference history, politics and alternative ways of living and thinking. This show at the Southbank Centre is the British artist’s first major survey.
Where to eat
Bar des Prés
French chef Cyril Lignac’s Mayfair restaurant has undergone a sleek refurbishment with its leathery interiors and mood lighting. On the menu there’s marinated scallops, yellowtail carpaccio, and miso caramelized aubergine to go hand-in-hand with the cocktails named after London landmarks such as Number 10, Plum Royal and Old Square.
Jasper Delamothe launched a natural wine company in lockdown — the next logical step for him was to take it to real life. Oranj is a pub-like wine bar in the heart of Shoreditch. There’s more than meets the bottle at Oranj as it also serves cocktails and small snacks.
Harneet Baweja and Devina Seth opened Gunpowder in 2015 as a means of presenting home-style Indian cooking through a kitchen that uses responsibly sourced ingredients. The menu references the food the founders grew up with, from Kashmiri lamb chops, spicy venison and vermicelli doughnut to Karwari soft shell crabs. The Michelin Bib Gourmand awarded restaurant has three locations around London, including Soho, Tower Bridge and Spitalfields.
Where to treat yourself
Debbie Thomas is the facialist to the stars in London including Arizona Muse, Dua Lipa and Jourdan Dunn. She has a team of more than six therapists in her Chelsea clinic where they provide services such as HydraFacial, DNA NanoBio Revive and Slimyonik Air Bodystyler, an oxygen infused body contouring treatment.
Loewe x Howl’s Moving Castle at Selfridges
Selfridges Corner Shop has a month-long installation of Loewe x Howl’s Moving Castle that riffs off the Japanese fantasy epic “Howl’s Moving Castle,” about a bewitched young girl’s triumphant battle against the evils of sorcery. The capsule includes accessories and clothing inspired by the walking castle and the lead characters Sophie, Howl and Calcifer, a fire demon that fuels Howl’s walking castle.
111Skin at The Berkeley
111Skin is collaborating with The Berkeley on a six-month residence of their treatment range and spa menu at the luxury hotel. The treatments will include the 60-minute Signature Harley Street Facial, to calm and soothe damaged, inflamed and irritated skin; the Celestial Black Diamond Non-Surgical Lift Facial and the Cryo De-Puffing facial with CRYO globes for brightening skin. Facials start from 180 pounds.