The Natural History Museum rightly commands an international reputation as both a world-class visitor attraction and a leading scientific research centre. There’s over 80 million species in the Natural History Museum’s archive but one will stick in your head when you leave, Dippy the 100-year old Diplodocus fossil standing in the Central Hall.
Good museums interact with their visitors, almost invite them into the exhibitions, and no museum does that as well as The Science Museum. Alongside historic collections you’ll find a world of hands-on experiments that brings science alive. Located in the museum district of South Kensington, The Science Museum is a little over a ten minute walk from The Harrington.
With 150 galleries over seven floors, London’s Victoria and Albert Museum is home to one of the finest applied arts collections anywhere in the world. An awe inspiring ensemble of Italian Renaissance sculpture and the seven Raphael Cartoons (tapestry designs for the Sistine Chapel) sit alongside an ever-changing calendar of classic and contemporary exhibitions. Visit the website for a calendar of events during your stay.
Located in a quiet corner of Hyde Park, just west of the stretch of water by the same name, the modest Serpentine Gallery makes for a pleasant visit experience for any culture vulture. Its contemporary exhibitions, rotating every two months, enthrall and entertain as does the summertime pavillion, designed and built by a new artist every year. The Serpentine Gallery will satisfy your appetite for art after you’ve picnicked in the park.
The Royal College of Art is at the leading edge of art and design. It is one of the world’s most revered teaching establishments for art and design and is the only one that is entirely postgraduate. You would think that you could only visit its exhibitions, talks and events within the hallowed halls if you were studying there. In fact, many of these events are open to the public and it is a fantastic way of learning about new trends and styles in art and design. We think it is well worth keeping an eye on their events.
The Saatchi Gallery is one of the foremost exhibitors of contemporary art in London. Founded in 1985 and opened at its current Chelsea location in 2008, the gallery has displayed just about every modern artist of the late 20th and 21st century. Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst have all had wall space dedicated to them at the Saatchi Gallery. As a long-time champion of subversive artists, there is always something groundbreaking to enjoy here. Jump in a taxi and the Saatchi Gallery is just a seven minutes away from your Harrington apartment.
Millbank, London. SW1P 4RG
Tate Britain on the north bank of the River Thames at Millbank near Westminster is the oldest gallery in the Tate network, having opened in 1897. It houses a substantial collection of the art of the United Kingdom since Tudor times, and in particular has large holdings of the works of J. M. W. Turner, who bequeathed all his own collection to the nation.
London. SW1A 1AA
Buckingham Palace is the London residence of HM Queen Elizabeth II and is one of the most famous landmarks in London. Each summer the Queen opens the State Rooms to members of the public. If you are staying at The Harrington Residences during the summer then this really is a must-see. The grandeur and opulence of the State Rooms are breathtaking and an experience that is truly unforgettable.
Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London
Everyone knows what the Houses of Parliament look like, especially Big Ben (well the tower that holds the bell). This is the place where all our MP’s and Lords sit to debate new and current legislation as well as carry out their work. But this is also one of London’s hidden gems as even many Londoners have never been inside.
20 Dean’s Yard, Westminster, London. SW1P 3PA
Kings, queens, statesmen and soldiers; poets, priests, heroes and villains – the Abbey is a must-see living pageant of British history. With 700 years of history and gorgeous Gothic architecture this is not a must-see attraction, it is a wonderful place to gain an understanding through culture and history of what it is to be British. We would also highly recommend visiting for their regular religious services as the choir and its organ are certainly one of the best in London. Also while you are visiting do take in one of their guided tours in one of 12 languages.
Overlooking Trafalgar Square, The National Gallery is London’s premier destination for international art lovers visiting the capital. Home to over 2,000 pieces, including masterpieces from almost every European school, The National Gallery’s collection across both permanent and temporary exhibitions is the envy of the rest of the world’s art exhibitors. One of Monet’s water lily paintings and an item from Van Gogh’s sunflower collection are waiting for you to enjoy at The National Gallery.
The Royal College of Art is a working, living, breathing university specialising in the research of art and design. As well as continuing to produce the best and brightest in the art world, David Hockney, Tracey Emin and Henry Moore are just three notable alumni, the Royal College of Art also has an impressive rolling calendar of exhibitions and shows featuring work by their students and other artists. The RCA is one of only a few places you’ll get to experience the most exciting emerging artistic talent.
Christopher Wren’s masterpiece is the jewel in London’s architectural crown and having undergone a £40m restoration, St. Paul’s Cathedral as never looked better. Inside the magnificent Victorian structure are memorials to Great British historic figures Wellington, T.E. Lawrence, William Blake and Alexander Fleming. The Harrington recommends the special tour of the Triforium for an exclusive look at Wren’s original model of the cathedral.
Marylebone Road, Baker Street, London. NW1 5LR
One of the most famous attractions in London, known the world over, has been popular for over 200 years. Everyone has a famous person they look up to, whether it is a celebrity, royalty or famous scientist. Madame Tussauds give you the chance to have your photo taken next to your ideal even if they are long dead.
Bankside, Southwark, London. SE1 9TG
On the southern bank of the Thames, next to Shakespeare’s Globe theatre is Bankside power station. This iconic building is home to Tate Modern, considered by many to be Britain’s national gallery of international modern art. With the massive turbine hall and other smaller galleries, Tate Modern not only has a remarkable permanent collection but has played host to many leading modern artists, some of whom regularly court controversy. If you love modern art, then this is the first place you should visit when in London.