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Marylebone area guide

Explore the indie shops on Marylebone High Street, or discover a lovely restaurant in the heart of the city

© Paul Raeside
Marylebone has been an incredibly fashionable area in London since at least the seventeenth century  - as the catalogue of famous residents (past and present) attests. With Oxford Street as its southern border, Marylebone is of course a world-famous shopping destination, but a quick look around the side streets reveal specialist shops and boutiques that sell everything from Stradivarius violins to plastic buttons.
 
Like the shops, the best restaurants and cafés in Marylebone provide a range of products at a range of prices, and everything from a cup of tea to haute cuisine is executed with the same passion and expertise. Not to be outdone, the Marylebone bars and pubs are stylish places to relax with superb cocktails and outstanding ales after a long day.
 
What are your favourite Marylebone haunts? Let us know in the comments box.

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The Providores & Tapa Room
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.  

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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The Marylebone
Bars and pubs

The Marylebone

The Marylebone does something that no one else in London does - at least as far as we're aware. Rather than just making a few infusions and using them in cocktails, it makes dozens of the things - and serves them on their own as well as mixing them into drinks. A selection from what they make includes cherry rum, mango vodka and clementine gin. You can order 5 for £15 or 8 for £20, and they're served on tasting boards. The cocktail list is brief but inventive and, at £7.95 across the board, extremely well priced for a place in W1. Food is minimal: sharing platters with a Middle Eastern bias. But with advance notice they will arrange for other food to be brought in from nearby restaurants.    

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Amanzi Tea

Just off Marylebone High Street, this new tea shop has a little of something for everyone. As well as a handful of black, green, white and oolong teas, there are flavoured ones, bubble teas and all manner of frappes and iced varieties. A large (and we mean really large) cup of silver needle white tea was just as it should be - light and sweet with floral notes. To nibble there are pastries from Cocomaya such as cinnamon buns or mini croissants laced with the Middle Eastern herb and spice blend za’atar. There’s also a limited range of savouries on offer like goat’s cheese tarts and egg sandwiches on caraway spiced, sweetened rye bread. Both tasty, but rather small considering the price (egg sandwich: £4.70).  

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Daunt Books - Marylebone
Shopping

Daunt Books - Marylebone

Though not strictly a travel bookshop, this beautiful Edwardian store will always be seen first and foremost as a travel specialist thanks to its elegant three-level back room complete with oak balconies, viridian-green walls, conservatory ceiling and stained-glass window – home to row upon row of guide books, maps, language reference, history, politics, travelogue and related fiction organised by country. France, Britain, Italy and the United States are particularly well represented; go downstairs to find more far-flung destinations. Travel aside, Daunt is also a first-rate stop for literary fiction, biography, gardening and much more. James Daunt’s commitment to providing proper careers for his workers ensures an informed and keen team of staff. Branches: Cheapside, Chelsea, Hampstead, Holland Park. Daunt Books is number 45 in our list of the 100 best shops in London.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Fashion Space Gallery
Art

Fashion Space Gallery

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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See the full results of this year's Love London Awards

Things to do in Marylebone

Sherlock Holmes Museum
Museums

Sherlock Holmes Museum

The Sherlock Holmes Museum – founded in 1989 on a site approximating that described by Conan Doyle, though actually standing at number 239 – fought long and hard for the right to claim the address 221B Baker Street as its own. When you visit you are likely to be greeted by an august person wearing a bowler hat and whiskers; this, you will deduce, is Doctor Watson. 

Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Madame Tussauds
Attractions Buy tickets

Madame Tussauds

Streams of humanity jostle excitedly here for the chance to take pictures of each other planting a smacker on the waxen visage of fame and fortune. Madame Tussaud brought her show to London in 1802, 32 years after it was founded in Paris, and it’s been expanding ever since, on these very premises since 1884. 

Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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