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Rhys Thomas

Rhys Thomas

Articles (149)

The 17 best hotels in Palm Springs

The 17 best hotels in Palm Springs

Palm Springs hotels have gone from strength to strength in the last decade or so. You can now find something to suit any style, from cozy rustic spots to quiet boutique properties. Want to book an opulent five-star villa kitted out with every possible amenity plus a dope restaurant? Well, Palm Springs has plenty of that, too. One thing that hasn’t changed is the entrancing “desert modernism” aesthetic and discreet vibe; you’re just as likely to catch a crew of European retirees scouting the famous Architecture and Design Center as a Hollywood A-lister lounging by the pool. And speaking of pools, every hotel on our list has one – a Palm Springs hotel with no pool is like a dirty martini without an olive, after all. Spending time poolside is practically a required thing to do in Palm Springs for travelers in this spirited town. So, whether you’re making the trip to Coachella or just looking for a fun getaway, take a scroll through the options below and make sure you pack shorts and sunscreen – it’s gonna be a scorcher. Regardless of when you decide to visit, read on for our recommendations of the best Palm Springs hotels to check out. This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here. RECOMMENDED: The ultimate guide to California RECOMMENDED: The best Palm Springs Airbnbs

The best Airbnbs in the Scottish Highlands

The best Airbnbs in the Scottish Highlands

Nothing says a getaway quite like a trip to the Scottish Highlands. A place where you're sure to escape the hustle and bustle of the city scene. Hike mountains, dip your toes in the loch, and watch the sunset over the gorgeous landscape. Doesn't that sound perfect?  And of course, a place that idyllic needs to be enjoyed with a stay at one of the many unique airbnbs in the area. Cosy and comfy cottages with wood-burning stoves (you'll need it with the cold weather), glamping pods, and even castles; how could you ever choose? We've picked out the best of the best to help you decide. You're welcome.  RECOMMENDED: The best Airbnbs in the UK This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here

The 72 best hotels in Lisbon

The 72 best hotels in Lisbon

Whether you're looking for a quick stay or an extended vacation; a romantic getaway or a family trip; a solo excursion or a weekend with your mates – Lisbon offers some of the best places to stay while you're there. And no matter your budget, you'll find something to suit you in our comprehensive list of the best hotels in Lisbon. From brilliantly cheap and cheerful hotels to those stays where luxury and top-notch service come as standard, we've rounded up everything you need to make your Lisbon stay exactly as you want it.  Recommended: The best things to do in Lisbon.Recommended: The best Airbnbs in Lisbon.

The best Airbnbs in Lisbon

The best Airbnbs in Lisbon

Lisbon has risen in popularity in recent years, and it's not surprising really. The Portuguese capital is cool, timeless, and beautiful, plus it's packed with plenty of stuff to see and do. From castles and churches to art galleries and beaches, it's no wonder people flock from all over to get a taste of the city's culture. And of course, the characterful bars and scrummy restaurants make the trip special, too.  To keep up with the city's vibrant vibes, it makes sense to stay at one of the many Airbnbs in the city to complete the experience. From gorgeous apartment lofts with skyline terraces to designer flats, there's a huge choice of Airbnbs for all sorts of personalities, budgets, and needs. We've picked our favourite Lisbon Airbnbs for you to take a peek at.   Recommended: 🛏 The best hotels in LisbonđŸŽș The best jazz bars in Lisbon This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.  

The best Airbnbs in the UK with pools

The best Airbnbs in the UK with pools

It's hard to believe swimming pools exist outside of town leisure centres in the UK, but despite the wet and unpredictable weather, there are actually Airbnbs with pools, right here on home soil. Who would have thought? If you're after a trip somewhere in the UK, an Airbnb is a great alternative to one of the many old and new hotels cropping up across the country. Some even come with your very own pool, so you can have the vibes of a sunny, tropical holiday, but in 7°c weather. From Cornish beach houses to Welsh barns, these UK Airbnbs come with pools and are ready to amaze. Fingers crossed the weather stays onside
 This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.RECOMMENDED:🏊 The best outdoor swimming pools in the UK 🚗 The best road trips in the UK đŸ–ïžÂ The most stunning hidden beaches in the UK đŸȘ” Cabins and cottages to book now for autumn 🌳 Amazing treehouses in the UK you can actually stay in

The most amazing treehouse rentals worth the drive from L.A.

The most amazing treehouse rentals worth the drive from L.A.

Itching to get out of town? Ready to brave the elements while glamping? We're kidding, this is California – the only elements are the sun and heat. In lieu of a mundane hotel with its corridors and carpet, why not try an Instagram-worthy wood-paneled treehouse on Airbnb? Live out your childhood dream and reconnect with nature. Go on, slick some mud across your cheeks, and swing from the tire swing - it's good for you.  Don't get us wrong, the beach is great. Warm sand between your toes, the sea waves gently lapping at the shore. But it's nice to breathe in some fresh air and embrace the forest-y side of nature. If you share our dream of treehouse living, check out our list of some of the best Airbnb rentals worth the drive from L.A. that will surely make your friends jealous. Happy adventuring! This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

The best Airbnbs in Los Angeles

The best Airbnbs in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is one of the most known cities in the world. Hollywood films, gorgeous beaches, A-Listers, it's a place of luxury, sunshine, and some of the best restaurants in the country. It makes sense why the place is so popular.  So if you're visiting for the first time, or you live just outside of the city and want a weekend break, consider renting a unique Airbnb in Los Angeles instead of your standard run-of-the-mill hotel. Choose from stylish homes in West Hollywood to architectural townhouses in Venice, you'll find something no matter what vibe you're looking for. These superb Airbnbs in Los Angeles might just convince you to become a full-time Angeleno, if you're not one already.    RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best hotels in Los AngelesRECOMMENDED: The best beachfront hotels in L.A.RECOMMENDED: The best Airbnbs in Malibu for a coastal escape RECOMMENDED: The best desert Airbnbs near L.A. RECOMMENDED: The best Airbnbs in Santa MonicaRECOMMENDED: The most unique Airbnbs in Los Angeles This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

The most unique Airbnbs that you can rent in Los Angeles

The most unique Airbnbs that you can rent in Los Angeles

L.A. The place of Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and all those snazzy jazzy places. Why would you settle for anything less than a super cool and unique Airbnb? From boho hideaways in the mountains to bright and colorful hilltop villas giving you Old Hollywood star vibes, there are plenty of quirky places to stay compared to your standard (even luxury) hotels.  Los Angeles is an architectural playground, with gorgeous homes nestled in the canyons, steps from the ocean, or in the heart of the action. Below, you'll find a selection of our favorite unique Airbnbs for your next trip, whether they're just crazy quirky, stunning, or impossibly located, there's something you'll love here.  This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

The best Airbnbs in Paris

The best Airbnbs in Paris

The City of Light is often the first choice for a dreamy getaway. From the diverse neighbourhoods and huge selection of stuff to see and do, it's truly a place that keeps on giving. While it's considered one of the essential cultural hotspots, booking a hotel for your trip can be a bit spenny, so that's why Airbnbs are a great alternative. Whether it's a charming flat in the centre of the city with views of the Eiffel Tower, or somewhere a little more quirky and unusual, Airbnbs are a fab way to experience the city in its rawness.  We’ve done the hard part for you and selected some of the finest Paris Airbnbs to suit anyone and any kind of trip. These fantastic stays will give you the chance to live like a true Parisian. Voila! This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

The best Airbnbs in the UK

The best Airbnbs in the UK

Dust off your suitcase, set up your out-of-office, and find those swimming trunks shoved in the back of the wardrobe (or your scarf and wooly hat ), there is nothing better than a well-deserved break right on home soil. Yeah, you could fly to some tropical paradise or European city, but the UK has some incredible hidden gems worthy of a staycation.  We're all about celebrating the bits that make the UK great. Diverse climates, lush environments, gorgeous coastlines, and good ol' pub grub. With a wealth of countryside, forests and secluded sandy beaches there are endless opportunities to explore the country. That’s why we’ve rounded up some of the best Airbnbs in the UK for you to take a look at. Happy reading. Anyone making a cuppa? 🏊 Dreamy UK holiday cottages with swimming pools💕 The best romantic weekend getaways in the UKđŸȘ” Amazing cabins and cottages in the UKđŸ›ïž Incredible UK buildings where you can stay the night🧘 The best wellbeing breaks and yoga retreats in the UK This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

The coolest Airbnb treehouse rentals near NYC

The coolest Airbnb treehouse rentals near NYC

The sound of swaying trees, the chirps of birds in the morning, and the sun peeking through the tree branches into your window. Doesn't that sound like heaven? Luckily, it's an experience you can totally live, by reliving your youth in a treehouse Airbnb.  From low-fi elevated cabins to more luxurious options with hot tubs and extensive vinyl selections to play at your leisure, there's a treehouse for everyone. These Airbnbs help you recharge and rewind, whether you're looking for a complete off-grid, digital-detox trip or something between urban and rural living. De-stress and banish all your woes. Even though these Airbnbs are a step up from camping near NYC, be sure to pack your hiking boots and essentials because some of these are quite off-the-grid. Hotels, frankly, could never.  RECOMMENDED: Cozy cabins near NYC that you can rent on Airbnb This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

The best Airbnbs with hot tubs in New York

The best Airbnbs with hot tubs in New York

Forget the best luxury hotels in NYC. You can experience the culture and uniqueness of NYC in one of these super cool Airbnbs, all with hot tubs. Hold for screams and applause. While hotels can be fancy-pants and offer high-end luxe toiletries, and maybe even carry your bags to the room, it's just not the same as a homely, cozy Airbnb, acting like your home away from home. Plus, there are plenty of Airbnbs out there that are just as sleek and chic, if not more, than the city's hotels.  With these Airbnbs, you can pretend that you actually live in one of the coolest houses in New York City for a few days, and have a hot tub at your pad. That's what we call luxury living.  Some are in those brownstone houses, and some are way up in the sky, but all are great. Are you sure we can’t move in permanently? For more, check out these NYC hotels with hot tubs in rooms and on roofs. RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best hotels in NYC RECOMMENDED: The best Airbnbs in New York CityRECOMMENDED: The coolest Airbnbs in NYC This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

Listings and reviews (8)

Spooky Spurs Stadium Tours

Spooky Spurs Stadium Tours

Few things in life are scarier than taking a penalty, but this spooky tour of Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium might be. From freaky face-painting to ghoulish games, there’ll be all sorts of Halloween-inspired activities for future Harry Kanes to get stuck into, culminating in a Halloween adventure around the stadium where they can search for all the hidden tricks and treats. There’ll even be a prize for the best spooky costumes (no Arsenal kits though, they’re far too scary!)  

Edgar Wright's London After Dark

Edgar Wright's London After Dark

Film fans are going to absolutely love this one. The director Edgar Wright is hosting a big old takeover at the BFI Southbank called ‘London After Dark’. Across October and November this year Wright’s takeover series will be a load of film screenings he's curated. But that's not all. They're not just a pick n mix of moving images. Oh no. This list of screenings is the exact list that has inspired his latest film ‘Last Night in Soho’. The idea being, you can sit there after dark in the lovely BFI Southbank and soak up all those films that have influenced Wright’s recent hit There are 17 screenings in total, with choices like ‘The Small World of Sammy Lee’, ‘Frenzy’, ‘Peeping Tom’, and more.

Brent Cross Winter Festival

Brent Cross Winter Festival

It's back! For just the second time ever, there's going to be a Brent Cross Winter Festival this year. Following on from the very well received 2019 winter festival, this year's instalment will be a great welcome back for the North-West Christmas festivities.  Despite being young, there's no shortage of attractions and activities to enjoy at the wonderland. From bars to bus rides, light displays to a giant observation wheel – the shopping center truly becomes a spot for all things Christmas cheer and quality time. Some of the main features you'll want to check out include the massive ice rink. We're talking one of the largest in London. Plus, and here's the good bit, it's indoors. So you can be sure the surface isn't getting washed out with that Dickensian winter rain. With the help of Santa’s little elves, you'll also find Santa Claus's Magical Grotto where children will be able to share their Christmas wishes with Santa. He's not flown over from the North Pole empty handed though, oh no. He's brought presents!  So come along, enjoy the festive season!   

The Halloween Ball at Electric Brixton

The Halloween Ball at Electric Brixton

If you're looking for one of the buzziest, largest and most guaranteed to sell out Halloween events in the capital, then congratulations – you just found it. It's sold out three years running, holds 1800 people across two floors and is packed with DJs, performers, ace visuals, a trick or treat station and a whole lot more. Obviously, you need to dress up to get in. It'll be more than worth it. When has Electric Brixton been anything other than a treat, hey?     

Klub Kids: The Disney Villain Ball

Klub Kids: The Disney Villain Ball

Feeling villainous? Well then, this Halloween there's only one place to head to get all of your tricks (or treats). That place is Klub Kids: The Disney Villain Ball at Clapham Grand. In addition to what will be a drag-tastic production full of incredible portrayals of Disney's finest villains. Your Ursulas, Captain Hooks and more are all in attendance, brought to life by the likes of Tayce and Miz Cracker. This event is open to those aged 14 and over, but if you're younger than 18 you'll need to be accompanied by an adult – after all, things could get spooky! 

Pumpkin Quiz Trail

Pumpkin Quiz Trail

For a slightly spookier edge to your half-term trips, why not take part in the Pumpkin Quiz Trail at Battersea Park Children’s Zoo? Don't worry, quizzes aren't as scary as they sound! In fact, this promises to be a treat not a trick. Upon entering the park, you'll be able to grab a copy of the quiz and you can answer your way through the questions – why would you do this, you may ask? Well, if you do, you'll realise the answers should help you discover which of the zoo's animals have begun their Halloween celebration! From there, you get to marvel at the creatures and their lovely pumpkins and other festive touches. A lovely little Halloween-y day out! You'll get a little prize if you're lucky too. 

Festival of the Dead – Halloween Returns

Festival of the Dead – Halloween Returns

After a two year break, the capital will be able to welcome back the spookiest night out of the year. East London venue Troxy will host Europe’s biggest touring Halloween show from off-beat party pioneers Festival of the Dead. Halloween Returns will blend a variety of music with magical scenery and stunning performances to bring you a wild and exhilarating way to celebrate scary szn, or whatever you're calling it. 

Winterfest

Winterfest

Following the success of Winterfest in 2019, and a postponed event in 2020, Wembley Park’ will once again host Winterfest. On Thursday 25th November 2021, the festive (uh...) festival, will begin.  An official switch-on of London’s tallest LED tree at Wembley Park Boulevard will mark the start of the event, which contains a host of attractions and events (all visually focussed) which will run until January 4. The super-lit tree will also be the canvas for a series of brand-new digital artworks by Brent-based artist Yoni Alter. ‘City Lights’, will be made up of 100,000 kinetic lights which pulse to different rhythms and evoke the vibrancy and pace of a cityscape. That's a lot of light. Other attractions include ‘Reunion’, a unique light installation from Kumquat Lab, which will be unveiled in Market Square as a world exclusive. The idea of 'Reunion' is to celebrate us being able to interact after the pandemic. With this installation, light will become an interactive experience.  There will be other light installations and a photograph exhibition at Winterfest also. Plenty to see! 

News (58)

A guide to London’s ten most affordable neighbourhoods

A guide to London’s ten most affordable neighbourhoods

Let’s be honest: there’s nowhere in London where it's properly cheap to rent a room, but it turns out there are neighbourhoods where you can still get a space for less than £600. Want to get to know what they are, where they are and what they’re like? Look no further. Here are the key details to know – from parks and pubs to big supermarkets and transport connections.  10. Palmers Green, N13 Average room rent £598.What’s it like? A suburban area beyond Tottenham. Broomfield Park is nice. River Lee isn’t far away. Best places to eat and drink Cypriot cuisine rules these quarters, the food at Nissi is a prime example. Big supermarkets nearby There’s a Waitrose in a weirdly fancy building, a Sainsbury’s and a big Morrisons. Transport connections Arnos Grove is just outside the postcode. Otherwise, buses run to central, and Palmers Green station has Great Northern and Thameslink trains. 9. Upper Edmonton, N18 Average room rent £595.What’s it like? A bustling, diverse area with a big Ikea and ‹an even bigger park (Pymmes).Best places to eat and drink Lincoln’s Patisserie is a gem. Hilal Restaurant does great Turkish food. And try Enfield Brewery for pints. Big supermarkets nearby A huge Lidl, with a car park and all the rest. Transport connections There’s Edmonton Green Overground, a couple of buses and national rail from Meridian Water to Stratford every half an hour. 8. Wanstead and Leytonstone, E11 Average room rent £592.What’s it like? A slice of east London, further out than

Adele invited Grenfell survivors and firefighters to her London concert

Adele invited Grenfell survivors and firefighters to her London concert

Adele is without doubt, one of the best celebrity Londoners to have ever existed. Born in Tottenham, raised in Brixton and West Norwood (after a brief spell down in Brighton) she's up there with chicken shops, the Southbank skaters and railway arches with fun things in them when it comes to our city’s finest achievements.  Community has clearly been on Adele's mind too. Last night, to mark the release of her new album ‘30’, the singer hosted an episode of ITV's ‘An Audience With’. It was by all accounts, an A-List event. Dame Emma Thompson, Stormzy, Emma Watson and plenty more were in the audience. Mainly ambivalent about my Britishness until I watch something like Adele in London Palladium with Emma Thompson tryna get everyone up on their feet and Stormzy being all shy asking a question and then I'm like oi oi saveloy — Bolu Babalola (@BeeBabs) November 21, 2021 More importantly, Adele also invited plenty of Londoners who lived through the 2017 Grenfell Tower tragedy, including firefighters who were at the scene, and NHS staff. They were all treated to performances by Adele from her new album alongside some of her most popular tracks from the previous three records. She even gave them a special shout out ("Grenfell oi oi") during the show.  The emotional surprises were also gifted to Adele herself, who was prompted by Emma Thompson to speak about one of her inspirations from childhood, an old teacher called Miss McDonald. Was Miss McDonald in the audience? Yo

Nine Elms will turn into a giant advent calendar on December 1

Nine Elms will turn into a giant advent calendar on December 1

Yup, it’s that time of the year once more! Sure, there are already mince pies in the supermarkets and mulled wine at the pub, but for many people the festive season truly begins when December arrives and we can start on our advent calendars. And for south-west Londoners that tradition has become larger than life. For the third year, Nine Elms is transforming into a massive neighbourhood advent calendar.    The area will be hosting a huge, sprawling art trail, organised by Nine Elms Art Ministry. Twenty-four venues will each host an art installation – so there will be literally 24 doors to open. This year the theme is Peace on Earth. The artists involved have responded to that with all manner of creative and innovative installations, including a giant vintage collage, a floating barge and a living forest (you’ll find that in New Covent Garden Market). Artists include Saskia Jiggens, Adalberto Lonardi and Michael Wallner – all of who were part of the event last year – and many others based in the borough and beyond.  You can visit the trail on foot, using a special map to navigate your way around all of the installations – and you can check out the two new tube stations in the area while you’re at it. The trail is also available online, should you not fancy the cold: Nine Elms Arts Ministry’s social media channels will highlight one venue, and its artist and installation, each day. The event will start on December 1 (duh) and the work will be up until January 5, but the online

The Union Chapel needs your help to raise funds

The Union Chapel needs your help to raise funds

Islington’s Union Chapel is a true cornerstone of its community. The late nineteenth-century Gothic-revival building has a place in the lives of many: worshippers go there for services (it is still a working church), audiences enjoy live entertainment there and homeless people use its drop-in centre. Times are tough, though. The chapel has, like so many other venues, lost a huge amount of its live-events income as a result of the pandemic and lockdown restrictions. With Covid cases still high across London, there’s still an uncertainty in the air when it comes to planning for its future. This isn’t stopping the Union Chapel from persisting with the expansion of its charity programmes, though. London’s most vulnerable need our help more than ever. Please join @frankturner @hornesection @TheMaeMartin @stephenkb in supporting our crowdfunder. Please watch. Watch donate. Please share.https://t.co/D9M1CKF71b — Union Chapel London (@UnionChapelUK) November 20, 2021 The issue is that 80 percent of the chapel’s charity income was earned through its events, so now it will need help from the generous public (that’s you!) to achieve its goal of accumulating £120,000 over the next 30 days. The campaign has already raised more than £5,000, with support from the likes of Frank Turner and Deborah Frances-White. The funds will go towards supporting the Union Chapel’s community work for the rest of 2021 and rebuilding the Grade II-listed Sunday school hall, turning it in

Eggslut has dropped its first Christmas Sandwich

Eggslut has dropped its first Christmas Sandwich

Christmas menus are great, aren't they? What says ‘oh my goodness I get some time off work soon’ better than a limited-edition lunch number from the lunch spot ten-yards away from your office? Nothing. Exactly. If you’re a little done with the usual supermarket/superchain fare though, Eggslut might offer something a little different this year. They've just announced their new seasonal items.  Let’s get deep into what they're cooking for a second. The Eggslut Christmas Sandwich is a brand-new creation. The heart of it is a turkey and sage patty with a 'Christmas spiced' butter, and the toppings are cranberry sauce, rocket, plus a quality fried egg (Clarence Court Burford Brown, for the egg heads among you) on top. All of which is slotted between two slices of a brioche bun from Bread Ahead. Nice. It comes in at £9.95. They’re also bringing back their non-alcoholic Eggnog drink (which is a fiver).  You can pick up the festive goods at their stores across London (there’s one in Portobello, Fitzrovia and Shoreditch) from December 2 (that's day two of the Advent Calendar!) and on Deliveroo. Customers who order via Deliveroo or click and collect on the eggslut app can redeem a free Salted Chocolate Chip Cookie with any sandwich and drink (when ordered together) also, for a bit of an extra treat. If you're thinking ahead to morning munching on the big day itself, the Fitzrovia branch will be open from 8am - 5pm on actual Christmas Day. Pretty ideal if you're the type to accidentally

The West End’s Christmas lights switch-on was the largest in the world

The West End’s Christmas lights switch-on was the largest in the world

Oxford Street usually unveils its Christmas lights first, but this year 20 streets across the West End, including Regent Street, Bond Street and areas in Mayfair and Piccadilly, all lit up in sync last week for what was the biggest switch-on in the world. Between them, they’re using more than a million LEDs. The Oxford Street display is brand new for this year, consisting mainly of nice calming stars, which make a lovely impact in the night sky. Pretty magical looking, really. As per, Bond Street’s installation is pretty stunning too, making use of opulent peacock motifs.  Instagrammers have been loving the lights too, with dozens of snaps already being uploaded to the grids. Here’s a little look at the photos people have taken. The lights should be on until early January. Best off seeing them at night-time, naturally.  View this post on Instagram A post shared by London UK 🇬🇧 (@its_so_london)   View this post on Instagram A post shared by م (@mmn.inldn) View this post on Instagram A post shared by 珍橼 (@jennie_zznnnn) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Wellington AraĂșjo (@wellington_anaju) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Magdalena Skorupa (@magdalena_skorupa_) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Delia (@youmenthesea)

That little ticket Kiosk near Leicester Square is up for sale

That little ticket Kiosk near Leicester Square is up for sale

Ever walked past that tiny kiosk near the Garrick Theatre? The little round one tucked under a lamp-post, that used to be a bit of haven for cheap, last-minute tickets to theatre and music shows across the city? Well if you have, and enjoyed it, you might be pleased to know it's up for grabs. How much? Oh just 3.3 million great British pounds, plus VAT. That's right, for more than three million pounds the kiosk could be yours. Tourist Island, it's known as. From the surface you might be scratching your head as to the price tag, as it's a mere 250 square foot on ground level, which is roughly the same size as a small (maybe very small) studio apartment. However, there's also a basement which is a much more spacious 1448 square feet (nearly six times the size), according to Metro. On the for sale sign it’s described as a freehold with 1700Sq ft of space, so the numbers add up. This also means you're paying around £1943 per square foot.  It's actually been on the market for eight months or so. Prompted by the freehold ending, TKTS presumably decided to pass the building onto another business, having taken their ticket sales online. They first used the space for ticket selling in 2011, and stopped operations in Spring 2021. The spot has recently been brought to attention as a result of good bants on the Facebook Group Londonist Urban Oddities, where people have speculated what the new function of ‘Iconic Island’ should be, and whether it'll end up on Grand Designs. While the top-

London’s David Bowie pop-up shop has opened

London’s David Bowie pop-up shop has opened

If you're looking for new things to do in London, here's an idea that'll help you ch-ch-change up your itinerary. A David Bowie pop-up shop has opened in near Soho.  Running from October 25 through to late January 2022, the ‘retail experience’ will have a load of drops, including signed memorabilia and other rare and unique merchandise. It's intended to be a place to celebrate the life of David Bowie, exploring his super-prolific and influential career across music, fashion and art.   At the store, fans are able to watch and listen to Bowie content for the first time, using immersive audio. There’s also hour upon hour of unseen behind-the-scenes footage and clips to enjoy. If that wasn’t enough, there’s an extensive gallery of photography and installations offering new insight into Bowie's career, so you’ll be wanting to visit time and time again.  Should you want to swing by, the shop is at 14 Heddon Street, not too far from Piccadilly Circus. Bit of trivia for you: This is a couple of doors away from where Bowie (well, Ziggy Stardust if we're being specific) posed for that moody late-night shot that became the album cover of ‘The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars’. If you're on the other side of the ocean, no worries, a sister shop is opening on 150 Wooster Street in downtown Manhattan. This spot is also significant, being near the house Bowie lived in while creating the final album he released during his lifetime, ‘Blackstar’.  The store is

Sadiq Khan launches ÂŁ25,000 grants to change street names in London

Sadiq Khan launches ÂŁ25,000 grants to change street names in London

Back in June 2020, in the wake of the George Floyd protests, Mayor Sadiq Khan announced The Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm. The initiative was founded to review and improve diversity and representation in public spaces across the capital, including statues and landmarks.  A little over a year on, a study (the first diligent one of its kind) has found that London has more statues of animals than it does of named women. The study also found that around 1 per cent of sculptures are dedicated to named people of colour, with just 0.2 per cent being named women of colour, as the Guardian has noted.  These (less than good) findings have prompted the mayor’s office to announce a £1m fund to help kick-start actual change across the city where representation in public spaces is concerned for "Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, women, LGBTQ+ communities and disabled people" a statement says. The initiative also extends to reviewing current landmarks, statues and street names across London, in a bid to decolonise the city we all live in together. As part of these efforts, grants of up to £25,000 are being made available for community-led groups that wish to remove and replace street names, building names, and memorials in their area that reference figures responsible for slavery and other events of oppression and colonialism.  The first round of Untold Stories grant applications opened on October 21 and will close on January 12, 2022. The applications are open t

Camley Street Natural Park has reopened

Camley Street Natural Park has reopened

Did you know that quite literally right next to Coal Drops Yard in King’s Cross, there’s a unique urban nature reserve? Well, there is! It’s called Camley Street Natural Park. It isn’t massive (clocking in at around a hectare) but it boasts a huge variety of habitats and wildlife that you can spend the day discovering and getting lost in.  Get ready, the canalside park includes: woodland, grassland and wetland habitats, such as meadow, ponds, marshy areas and reed beds. These diverse environments attract insects, amphibians, birds, mammals and hundreds of plant species. Quite the line-up!  The reserve has been a park since 1985, but its history dates back to the eighteenth century, when it was an industrial area. Until the 1960s the spot was used as a coal drop for the railways but it became derelict. Then it was colonised by nature, so the London Wildlife Trust campaigned to save the site from redevelopment, and succeeded. In December 2017 the park closed for reconstruction and reopened in September 2021. The makeover includes a new Visitor and Learning Centre featuring a cafĂ©. Other improvements include better accessibility and interpretation, and there has also been ‘habitat enhancement’ work taking place.  Camley Street is also creating a butterfly and invertebrate bank, which is being worked on in collaboration with the park’s volunteers. So you might notice some differences there from one month to the next. Nice to have a new spot to walk to in central, isn't it?  Visit

Over a hundred of London’s private flood defences are rated ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ by the Environment Agency

Over a hundred of London’s private flood defences are rated ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ by the Environment Agency

In data recently obtained under the freedom of information act, Unearthed, the investigative arm of Greenpeace UK, has found that more than a thousand privately owned flood defences in vulnerable parts of England were in a poor condition last year.  Among the extensive data sets is information on how the Environment Agency (EA) rated privately maintained flood defences across the capital for its 2019/2020 audit. It does this on a scale of one to five, with one being ‘very good’ and five being ‘very poor’. All the data refers to what the EA describes as ‘high consequence’ locations. This means the flood defences are protecting areas ‘where the consequence on people and property’ is high, should a defence fail. So, like, there’s proper real-life impact stuff to worry about for people if there’s a bad storm and/or the long-term effects of rising sea levels. Unearthed kindly shared the London bits of its data with Time Out, so we can reveal that more than a hundred of London’s privately owned flood defences were rated as either ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ by the EA during its 2019/2020 report. With roughly 10 percent of the entire country’s poorly rated flood defences in London, that’s real cause for concern.  Thanks to the information provided, we have been able to look at just where these less-than-adequate defences are located in the city. Tower Hamlets has the most badly rated defences, with 16 of them being ranked ‘poor’ and another ‘very poor’. Second-worst-off was Greenwich, wi

Ever wondered which trees are best at tackling London’s pollution?

Ever wondered which trees are best at tackling London’s pollution?

Trees are nice, aren’t they? Big, fluffy, spiky, leafy, green things (sometimes orange and pink) that stick out against London’s moody old grey backdrop of concrete, steel and glass. Nature’s pop of colour, if you will. They’re a good time. Though they do always look a bit outnumbered by buildings in the city, London does surprisingly well when it comes to greenery.  Just over a fifth of London is covered in trees, apparently. This makes London technically a forest, going on a definition from the UN. However, there’s a lot more the city needs to do if it wants to clean up the air and make a better living environment for animals, plants and us humans. The aim is to get tree coverage up to 30 percent by 2050, according to Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London.  So the question is, what trees do we wanna plant? The pretty ones? No! Well, maybe. But only if they’re gonna be as useful as possible. You see, all trees are made differently. Some filter the air better than others, for example. So what’s the best type of tree for London? Well, it might be conifers.  If you don’t know your horse chestnut from your hornbeam, conifers are a group of cone-bearing seed plants. They’re usually spiky and triangular: think Christmas trees. Within this category, pine trees, oak trees and common yew are among the most effective at cleaning the air, according to Prashant Kumar, the founding director of the Global Centre for Clean Air Research at the University of Surrey. He spoke to the BBC about the subje

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