7 WAYS TO EXPERIENCE LONDON AS A LOCAL

7 WAYS TO EXPERIENCE LONDON AS A LOCAL

Whether it’s your first time in London or your tenth, once you’ve ticked off the big hitters, how else can you see the city without repeating yourself? From catching a bus to seeing the sights to enjoying a traditional pint in a pub, these are the best ways to experience London as a local.

TAKE THE BUS

The most authentic way to experience London as a local and to see as many landmarks as possible is by taking one of the city’s famous red Routemaster buses. The historical sites of political power Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and the House of Commons, are all on the 24 bus route, as is Trafalgar Square, with its Fourth Plinth artwork, and the neon lights of Leicester Square.

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Travelling through the neighbourhoods of Belgravia and Mayfair, you’re only a short walk from The Thomas Cubitt, when you need a break. Stop by for a drink and a bar snack, lunch or dinner.

For those seeking culture, green spaces and shopping, the number 9 bus will take you past the Royal Albert Hall, Hyde Park and Knightsbridge, where you can jump off to shop at the world-famous department stores, Harrods and Harvey Nichols, before heading to The Builders Arms, tucked behind the King’s Road, a Chelsea neighbourhood gem.

For something a bit different, there’s also the Thames Clipper, a high-speed boat service. Jump on the RB1 route at Battersea Power Station and sail east towards Greenwich, looking out for the Southbank, London Eye, Westminster, London Bridge and Tower Bridge along the way. 

VISIT LOCAL MARKETS AT THE WEEKEND

Eschew the well-trodden path of tourist shopping streets and make for one of London’s local markets instead. Pick through the vintage and antique stalls at Portobello Road Market in Notting Hill. Afterwards, wander down to Golborne Road for a spot of people-watching from a local cafe or pop into The Princess Royal to rest those feet on one of our seriously comfortable bar stools

To the east of the city, you will find the bustling artisan food stalls of Broadway Market, home to over 70 sellers, with the world-famous Columbia Road Flower Market a short walk away — it’s only open on Sundays though, and you will need to arrive early to get the best-cut flowers and avoid the crowds. Foodies should head for Borough Market near London Bridge to experience one of the largest and oldest food markets in the capital — it’s the perfect place to try local street food or pick up fresh bread, deli meats, cheese, fruit and sweet treats for a picnic along the nearby River Thames. For a more off-the-beaten-track alternative, try Maltby Street Market, located further south in Bermondsey.

ENJOY A PINT IN A LOCAL PUB

Pubs have been at the heart of British culture for centuries as a place where the local community can gather to swap stories over a pint (or two). 

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Sinking a pint is a must-do local experience while visiting the capital, with a whole host of ales, pale ales, stouts, bitters, pilsners and lagers to sample. There’s even so-called ‘real ale’, unfiltered and served from the cask, which you can try at the Cubitt House pubs.

For beginners, our Cubitt Haus beer, served across all the pubs, is a very drinkable 4% pils. Feeling more adventurous? The Deya, Steady Rolling Man is a 5.2% pale ale, available at The Coach Makers Arms, The Alfred Tennyson and The Barley Mow, or there’s always a ‘pint of black’ — that’s a Guinness to the uninitiated, a hearty yet creamy stout. For peak Britishness, you’ll also need a bar snack or two. There’s nothing like a pint with a scotch egg or sausage roll. 

EXPLORE LOCAL NEIGHBOURHOODS

As a sprawling capital city that slowly absorbed multiple villages throughout its history, it’s no surprise that every London neighbourhood has a different feel. Notting Hill, immortalised in the Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts film of the same name, is famous for its bohemian market stalls, top-end boutiques and eclectic restaurants. 

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The Princess Royal, is a restored Victorian boozer and now a comfortable pub with a variety of seating areas including a conservatory and terrace garden. 

Belgravia, meanwhile, is known for its Georgian and Regency crescents and squares, with The Thomas Cubitt named after one of its best-known architects. A stroll through Mayfair is like stepping back in time, revealing historic shopping arcades, traditional artisans and high-end restaurants, while Chelsea, home to The Builders Arms, boasts the forever stylish King’s Road and Sloane Square. Then there’s Marylebone, which still feels very much like a village, with its independent shops, bakeries and delis, not to mention The Grazing Goat (a restaurant and hotel) and The Coach Makers Arms, a proper classic British pub.

EXPERIENCE TRADITIONAL BRITISH FOOD

One of the easiest ways to experience London as a local is to eat traditional British food. Ask any Brit what their favourite meal is, and they will no doubt say a Sunday roast. 

The Orange in Pimlico offers a pretty special version of the traditional meal, allowing you to choose from leg of lamb, Angus beef rump, spatchcock chicken or Middle White porchetta, all served with the essential  ‘trimmings’, such as beef-fat roast potatoes, carrots and parsnips with honey mustard butter, spring greens, Yorkshire pudding and lashings of gravy.

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Another must-try is the Full English breakfast, with the Cubitt House version featuring Middle White sausage, bacon, two Cacklebean eggs, hash brown, sourdough toast, white pudding, house baked beans, mushrooms, beef-fat tomato and homemade brown sauce — an upgrade from your so-called ‘Greasy Spoon’ cafe. 

You can’t get more British than fish and chips wrapped in newspaper, or The Grazing Goat has the classic pub version served with mushy peas and tartare sauce. Meanwhile, The Barley Mow has a selection of signature pub snacks, including Haggis Scotch egg, sausage roll and scampi, which we recommend washing down with a pint of local ale.

Finally, we are fiercely proud of our pies in Blighty, from steak and ale to cheese and onion. Why not try the chicken, leek and mushroom pie at The Alfred Tennyson for something a little different? Cubitt House pubs often have a pie on the specials board too. Pie, mash and gravy, you can’t get more British than that.

GO TO A LOCAL EVENT

The summertime in London sees the city come alive with a busy schedule of outdoor concerts, screenings, festivals and other events. The Notting Hill Carnival, a celebration of the Caribbean communities of London, takes place every August bank holiday weekend and sees the streets come alive with colourful floats and loud music. 

Sports aficionados should consider joining ‘The Queue’ at Wimbledon for day tickets to see the lawn tennis championships, or heading to Lords Cricket Ground for the Ashes or T20 matches — both make for excellent days out, with plenty of eating and drinking to accompany the action. 

Catch a live concert at Hyde Park, where Guns ‘n’ Roses, Bruce Springsteen and Take That are all scheduled to play this year, or see a film al fresco on the cobblestones at Somerset House, as part of its annual Summer Series

For a dose of culture, the Rossettis at the Tate Britain is this season’s hot ticket, and don’t forget that Buckingham Palace opens its gilded gates for a sneak peek behind-the-scenes for a handful of weeks every summer.

TAKE A WALK IN THE PARK

When the mercury rises, Londoners head to the capital’s beautiful green spaces to sunbathe, exercise or simply enjoy a Mr Whippy from one of the many traditional ice cream vans. 

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Hyde Park is the biggest and most famous: here you can swim in the Serpentine Lido, visit the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain and Garden, and even ride horses from the Hyde Park Stables. Many Cubitt House pubs sit on the fringes of Hyde Park. There’s The Alfred Tennyson, The Grazing Goat and The Barley Mow. Also The Princess Royal to the West — all the great places to rest a while and soak up the atmosphere in some of London’s finest pubs.

Further north you will find Regent’s Park, home of ZSL London Zoo, as well as Primrose Hill and Hampstead Heath, where you can see across the London skyline and go celebrity-spotting. 

In west London, there’s Richmond Park, home to wild deer, as well as Kew Gardens, the iconic botanical paradise that houses hundreds of flora and fauna. For keen walkers, there’s also the Capital Ring Walk, a 78-mile circuit across London.


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For the main bar area at The Orange, @georgie_pearman chose the colour ‘Clove’ created by interior designer Edward Bulmer. A spicy warm beige packed full of natural pigments to heat it up and really wrap the colour around the space.
This complex and grounding neutral perfectly complements the convivial atmosphere of the pub’s central space.

Visit @theorangepublichouse the next time you’re in Belgravia and step into the ambience of Clove #CubittHouse #LondonPubs
This month's #DishWithTish is a delicious Summer salad of roasted peach, pistachio, mint, dill, watercress and salted sheep’s cheese.

Inspired by the Eastern Mediterranean with contrasting flavours and textures. Roasting peaches this way intensifies their natural sweetness and flavour (it’s also good with ice-cream!)

Chef Director, @ben.tish says - ‘I like to layer this on a platter as opposed to a bowl for a visually beautiful presentation- a centrepiece even. Excellent with grilled pork or lamb'

Head to our website for the full recipe #CH #CubittHouse
Take a peek behind the design of The Orange with Edward Bulmer of @edwardbulmerpaint.
 
As Founder and Director of Edward Bulmer Natural Paint, Edward is an expert at mixing beautiful and sustainable paint colours with natural pigments. With his London shop located just across the road from The Orange, it was only fitting that we invited him to collaborate on our recent refresh.
 
Stay tuned over the next week to learn more about the creative vision behind the exclusive colour palette Edward designed to reflect the pub’s warm interiors #CubittHouse

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