On Rebel’s recent visit to London, I was determined to show her a new side to London that she hadn’t experienced previously; The cool and historic East. Whilst Rebel and I prefer the manicured gardens and cultural landmarks of of West London (Kensington & Notting Hill), London is very diverse with different pockets that all have their own unique feel and atmosphere. London’s East used to feel very gritty, shabby and run down before it arose as one of London’s most expensive areas thanks to gentrification by creative industries and tech start-ups.
Shoreditch and neighbouring Brick Lane have an urban feel with their views to the high rise buildings of the City of London. mixed in with factories, lofts and industrial buildings. Home to celebrities such as Keira Knightly and London’s best restaurants and bars, this pocket feels like real London. Not tooo polished and established. You can dress and live without being judged and simply be accepted for who you are. No one will bat an eyelid when you wear Doc Martins and pink hair. Or a Bavarian dirndl. Or whatever you feel like! Make no mistake though, this is not Berlin Kreuzberg: Shoreditch is hugely popular and rents are out of control. If you bought a flat here 10 years ago, chances are you are a millionaire now. Expensive Italian designer labels have taken up commercial space in the hope that London’s East coolness will rub off on them.
What to do in Shoreditch:
- Stroll along Redchurch Church Street. Browse the designer shops and have a coffee and brownie from one of the many independent café’s
- Eat at Pizza East for arguably London’s best pizza, at Andina Restaurant for the best Peruvian food or gorge on Honest Burger, my favourite in London (forget Patty & Bun and Meat Liquor!)
- Don’t run into a hipster
- Check out the street art