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Frieze London and Frieze Masters: the guide

Frieze London and Frieze Masters take over Regent's Park in October 2016 and we've got everything you need to know about London's most important art fairs

Stephen Friedman Gallery, Frieze London 2015. Photo: Linda Nylind. Courtesy of Linda Nylind/Frieze.

The mighty Frieze London and Frieze Masters art fairs have reigned over the London art calendar for years. This October, both fairs are set up again in Regent's Park (October 5-8 2016). On one side is Frieze London with 160 galleries from over 25 different countries featuring contemporary art. Then across the other side of Regent's Park is Frieze Masters: a sister fair which joined the party a couple of years ago and bridges that gap between ancient and mid-century art. Combined, both events make the Frieze Fair phenomenon a force to be reckoned with – so here's eveything you need to guide you through one of the biggest art events of the year. 

Read: Frieze London and Frieze Masters 2015: The Condensed Highlights

Frieze London and Frieze Masters

Art

Frieze London: the details

All the information you need to know about the biggest contemporary art carnival...

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Art

Frieze Masters: the details

...and all you need to know about its sister fair, featuring art made from the ancient era to the end of the twentieth century

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Art

Our 2015 highlights of both fairs

The art works and exhibits that you really don't want to miss at London's two biggest art fairs

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Art

Discover more art fairs in London

Find more art fairs and events going on in London, for all the fun of the fair

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Frieze London and Frieze Masters: where to eat nearby

Restaurants

The Providores & Tapa Room

Peter Gordon is on a roll. His funky, relaxed fusion café and restaurant Kopapa has been going great guns, and summer 2013 saw him taking the famous Sugar Club kitchen back to his native New Zealand for a starry hotel launch. None of this has taken the shine off The Providores & Tapa Room, his flagship Marylebone project. On the ground floor is the Tapa Room, a casual, buzzy space heaving with well-dressed locals knocking back top-quality coffees, New Zealand wines and an all-day menu of small plates. Upstairs in the more formal but still intimate Providores restaurant, everything is ratcheted up a notch. You pick between two and five courses from the sonnet-like menu of small plates, sit back and wait to be blown away. But you’re not – not quite. Few, if any, menus like this can hit the high notes with every dish. We liked almost everything – though the scallops with a bright salad and beurre noisette hollandaise were all but ruined by a spicy ketchup-like bloody mary sauce; and dal-stuffed tempura was ill-conceived. Still, coconut laksa mined with a fish dumpling and quail’s eggs was deliciously memorable, and the meat dishes (pork, beef, duck) all inventive and well executed. For a good dinner out, however, we’re more tempted by the lower prices and expectations met at Kopapa.

Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Honey & Co

This modest Israeli-run café was one of the most welcome new openings of 2012, but to some extent has become a victim of its own success. The small tables and chairs are packed closely together, with little elbow room; finding a spare table at short notice is rarer than finding a burning bush in the desert. Prices are on the high side for what, after all, is only a café – even if it does serve wine and is now open in the evenings for dinner. But the cooking is still very appealing, even if it doesn’t quite measure up the hype (a cookbook has just come out, following much media reporting in 2013 over a six-figure fee for the publication rights). The reality is that this is very nice, but not especially unusual Middle Eastern cooking – Ottolenghi it ain’t. Own-made taramasalata was served with some very moreish lavoush crackers, but the egg roe itself was nothing extraordinary. Better was the falafel – crisp on the outside, herby and flavoursome within, with a slightly tart tahini sauce. A roasted aubergine main course seemed to have been garnished with more concern for how the dish looked than tasted: the copious handful of whole mint leaves and raw pomegranate arils was overpowering. The lamb meatballs were also served with a crudely-chopped salad; the shards of raw red onion wouldn’t pass muster in a most London Lebanese restaurants. For such high prices we had hoped for more care with the dishes; but in its favour, the service from the young waitresses was charming and ve

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Galvin Bistrot de Luxe

The first of the Galvin brothers’ restaurant empire, this polished, much-loved Marylebone bistro is classically French (veloutés, soufflés, purées) with the occasional nod to Italy (risottos, lasagnes, panna cottas). The dining room is an inviting place, with its dark chocolate wood panelling, globe lighting and big bunches of scarlet gladioli. Lunch, ordered from the à la carte and £19.50 prix-fixe menus, was high on comfort and mostly tip-top. A smooth, nicely fatty pork and duck rillette was presented on a rustic slab of wood with super-fresh leaves and toasted sourdough. A main course of calves’ liver came draped in bacon on a pool of gravy, accompanied by meltingly good potato purée. Salt-cod brandade was laced with olive oil and wonderfully creamy, though we were caught off-guard by the inclusion of a runny egg. Dessert didn’t quite deliver. A Valrhona chocolate ‘délice’, served on a rectangular white plate, arrived fridge-cold with a lump of rock-hard honeycomb. It looked snazzy with its painterly streaks of chocolate, but was nothing like as good as a simple chocolate fondant. Service can be a little relaxed at times, and our table at the back felt cramped, but the excellent coffee ended things on a high.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Attendant

Opened in January 2013, Attendant occupies London’s most original location for a coffee bar: a late-nineteenth-century gents’ toilet. The urinals provide seating with small tables, and there’s additional seating at a banquette at the back. Be warned: this place is tiny, and rammed at a weekday lunchtime. But that was the only problem apparent. Everyone in the young office-worker crowd looked very happy, and the food – cold sandwiches, hot sandwich of the day, various salads – looked great. Coffee-lovers will love Attendant. The barista, obsessively committed to his craft, apologised because the Caravan blend might have a little too much citrus flavour from sitting for just three days after roasting (he likes six). It was citrusy; but it was wonderful. He offered to brew a free cup of something else, so we could compare and contrast. All in all, this is a great place. The only difficulty is resisting making jokes about Attendant’s previous life. We could crack a million of them, but you’d only get pissed off. Looking for another caffeine fix? Find more coffee shops in the capital

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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EXPLORE THE AREA FURTHER

See what else is on during Frieze London and Frieze Masters

Art

Free art exhibitions in London

Looking at great art needn't cost the same as buying great art in London. With a shed-load of free art exhibitions in London, wandering through sculptures, being blinded by neon or admiring some of the best photography need not cost a penny.

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FIND OTHER RECOMMENDED ART IN LONDON

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