50 Reasons to Enjoy London

The Evening Standard (London, England), May 14, 2003 | Go to article overview

50 Reasons to Enjoy London


THERE HAS never been a better time to be in London. Dr Johnson's dictum that a man who is tired of London is tired of life is no longer sufficient. We believe that anyone who has not lived in or visited London in the early 21st century simply has not lived. So today, as the Mayor and London businesses begin the biggest-ever push to attract visitors this summer, we list 50 reasons why Totally London is totally irresistible.

* Nowhere on earth has hotter art - even New York has had to yield precedence to the South Bank's promenade of galleries.

* Stroll to Tate Modern, grand cathedral of contemporary art.

* Roam the Saatchi, a dazzling showcase of 1990s shockers in a 19th century city hall.

* Stop at the Eye, a graceful white-knuckle ride.

* The Millennium Bridge, forever to be known as the Wobbly, is an artwork in its own right.

* There's a huge theatrical renaissance on Shakespeare's riverbank, starting with the Globe.

* To the National for Henry V, with a black hero, or Jerry Springer - The Opera: quite the most obscene and blasphemous yet glorious parody ever to be played.

* What's at the Old Vic? Always something new.

* The NFT is so cool: the perfect antidote to multiplexes.

* Cross the new Hungerford Bridge, bold reinvention of an old landmark.

* Tate Britain, with its knack for reinvigorating the familiar.

* Into the 24-hour West End.

* Remember the Savoy Grill, the Conservative Party at trough? New chef, new seating, new buzz.

* Fifteen, Jamie Oliver's restaurant. Eat well while helping kids into a "pukka" career.

* And Hollywood itself - all over town. Madonna shopping in Notting Hill and Marylebone; Matthew Perry and Minnie Driver on stage in the West End.

* Our House, We Will Rock You: home-made musicals rock.

* Selfridges - a Canadian guy liked it so much he bought the store.

* At last, the London cabbie's son Alexander McQueen gets his own store, in Bond Street.

* A Gucci opening, with the Stella McCartney store round the corner, launching on Thursday with vegetarian shoes.

* Top Shop at Oxford Circus - for fashion lovers from all over the globe in need of a cheap fix. …

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