An Escape to London

The minute after finals ended, instead of following the massive herd to the bars to have a celebratory/post-stress drink at 11am, a few of us ran back to our apartments, packed our bags and headed for the airport. Nothing says “I survived my first week of b-school finals” like a fabulous trip to London!

48 hours in London is not a lot, but when it came down to it it was exactly the kind of quick mental break from school that we needed. And it was equally exciting since two people in our group had never been! Even in NYC (after I finished rolling my eyes when my friends wanted to go to the top of the ESB) it is always interesting to relearn about a city from the eyes of a first timer. Not to mention, it has been a while since I’ve last been in London too so I also enjoyed running around town again.

Things I Loved About London:

The Stores!

TopShop, Selfridges, Liberty… just to name a few. And I’m not even including all my fav stores that are back in NYC that I can’t find in Milano (even though I am sad to say that unfortunately Urban’s grungy British sister store does not exactly go with my style.)

The Buildings

I had forgotten how darn cute the flats are in London! I love the old-style Milanese buildings, but I also enjoyed checking out the architecture everywhere around London town. And oh yes, Jen and I have already decided that we’re on a mission to find internships in London so we can split a cute flat together. Done and done!

The Nightlife

I am not a club person. Sure, I enjoy dancing (if you’ve met me, you know my tagline when I’m out is ‘I LOVE THIS SONG.’ This is not news. But honestly, even back in NYC I’d much prefer going to a lounge or even a dive bar instead of dealing with the hassle of bottle service and doormen. I have to admit that I loved the chill London bar scene.

Starbucks

I’m so going to get yelled at for saying this, but I really missed Starbucks. And it was the start of the holiday red cup season too! I couldn’t resist.

Things I Didn’t Exactly Rave About in London:

The Prices!

Woh Woh, the other side to the fantastic selection of stores: the dastardly exchange rate for the pound. Whyyy Topshop must you be so beautiful yet so unattainable. You’re right, it only makes you more wanted. ::shakes fist::

The Girls’ Nightlife Fashion

WHAT. IS. SHE. WEARING. Oh dear…. I have no words for this. Which is such a shame because during the day I saw such cute styles too. C’mon now, ladies, get it together!

The Unofficial Official 11PM Bar Rule:

Our friend told us to make sure to get into the bars before 11pm if we didn’t want to deal with any hassles… yeahhh, we should have listened. By the time we were ready to enjoy a cocktail or two the rest of the town was already 5 drinks in and nice and toasty (and then last call hit by 1:30.) Woops, lesson learned, next time we’ll start at happy hour.

Suggestions:

If going with a small group of friends, ditch the hotel room and split a flat instead! We got a cute flat by Paddington and loved “coming home” to it after sightseeing, shopping or bar-hopping.

On that note, try to stay somewhere as central as possible. Definitely by a tube, but preferably in an area you want to be at a lot – I was surprised by just how spread out the underground stations are and how long it took us to go “cross-town.”

Uhh… pack an umbrella? You knew this.

“I think when our parents told us to look both ways before crossing the street, they were preparing us for these types of international experiences.” – Jen

And, of course, remember that minor left side of the road rule!



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