We arrived at the Doubletree Hotel behind Victoria Station. The view from our first room (2nd floor) was horrendous, but we were moved due to poor wifi signal. The view from our second room was much better. It was on the 8th floor and rather than looking at the back of Victoria Station and the rubbish bins (you are supposed to be reading this with a British accent), we were on the other side of the hotel with a view of the outskirts of London. This ended up being a great location-Victoria Station has a small grocery store, a Boots store (fabulous skincare and cosmetics), a Next clothing store and a few fast food places. It was an easy 10 minute walk to a laundry place (next door to Fresh! Hostel at White Ferry). I loved the Next store. For Bed and Breakfast lovers, there were many along Belgrave and Hugh Streets. The walk to the laundry was an entertaining stroll through a neighborhood. Alex collected pictures of unusual door knockers and I took photos of several eye-catching window boxes. The laundry just happened to be next to a pub, so I pursued my quest of finding the best pint of hard cider. The kids enjoyed legally ordering their own drinks.
But, the BEST part about our location was the proximity to the charity shops at Pimlico! It has been fun shopping with Alex and Kaitlyn. They didn’t shop at the touristy places that had the Union Jack plastered on everything from shot glasses to under britches and stamped with ‘made in China’. They scoured the 2nd hand shops and found some unique and truly British items. The shops welcome patrons because the proceeds go to a variety of worthy causes. So, what did we find? I got a book about Dickens and Kaitlyn found a leather bound copy of Oliver Twist as well as clothes and a really stylish pair of shoes that look like a cross between spectator pumps and Oxfords. Alex found some clothes, a fedora and a tie, among other things.
We didn’t spend any time at the typical tourist spots in London, but I think we got a great feel for the city.
Kaitlyn also found a stunning dress for their night out at some hot London Dubstep club. Alex bought the tickets weeks ago for the club FabricLive. It was a pretty awesome day in London.
*Update: The kids had a fabulous time at the club and Alex was able to buy some CDs that are ony available at the club (or by overseas shipping). They were able to avoid the huge line and walk right in with their tickets. I was told that the club is called Fabric and the Friday night event is FabricLive. It must have been fun, because they got back around 3 am!