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Somerset House

Art, Galleries Aldwych Free
4 out of 5 stars
 (Ed Marshall / Time Out)
Ed Marshall / Time Out
 (Courtyard fountains - © Simon Leigh / Time Out)
Courtyard fountains - © Simon Leigh / Time Out
 (Fernandez and Wells Cafe © Tricia De Courcy Ling)
Fernandez and Wells Cafe © Tricia De Courcy Ling
 (© Ed Marshall)
© Ed Marshall
 (Jonathan Perugia / Time Out)
Jonathan Perugia / Time Out
 (Kings Barge House © Jonathan Perugia / Time Out)
Kings Barge House © Jonathan Perugia / Time Out
 (© Jonathan Perugia / Time Out)
© Jonathan Perugia / Time Out
 (© Jonathan Perugia / Time Out)
© Jonathan Perugia / Time Out

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Friendly warning! We're working hard to be accurate. But these are unusual times, so please check that venues remain open.

The original Somerset House was a Tudor palace commissioned by the Duke of Somerset. In 1775 it was demolished to make way for an entirely new building, effectively the first purpose-built office block in the world. Today it houses a formidable art gallery (the wonderful Courtauld), a beautiful fountain court, a terraced café and a classy restaurant. Having replaced the Hermitage Rooms and Gilbert Collection on the river side of the building in April 2008, the new Embankment Galleries explore connections between art, architecture and design with a series of temporary exhibitions; downstairs a ceremonial Thames barge illustrates the venue’s history. In summer, children never tire of running through the choreographed fountains. Family workshops take place at weekends and holidays, and in recent years Somerset House has hosted an outdoor film screen in summer and a wonderfully atmospheric ice-rink in winter.



Address: Strand
Transport: Tube: Temple/Charing Cross/Covent Garden
Opening hours: Daily 8am-11pm
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