Our flight was uneventful, which is always a relief. While The Mister is a seasoned business class traveler, I am an experienced coach class survivor. This was probably my first (and last) opportunity to enjoy the pleasures and luxuries hidden behind the business class curtain and I planned on making the most of it.
The Mister promptly passed up the offered champagne-before-take-off, so I enjoyed his as well as my own. He arranged his media, ate his meal and promptly fell asleep one hour after take-off. I ordered one of everything on the menu (delivered in courses, naturally) and stayed awake all night pressing the recline and footrest buttons on the magic seats and watching 15 minutes of every movie offered. I must have nodded off at some point though as I missed the promised ice cream sundae.
We landed and managed to get through Customs and Immigration quickly. Amazing, since Heathrow reported lines up to 3 or 4 hours long due to typical summer travel and upcoming Olympic events. We had tons of luggage <ahem> so a taxi/car was the best form of travel to our temp quarters near the City. All went well and we were happily unpacking in our flat within 2.5 hours of landing.
Our new, albeit temporary neighborhood, was adjacent to St. Paul’s Cathedral. We stayed in a lovely, 2 bedroom, 2 bath flat in The King’s Wardrobe Apartments. The street and flat are generally very quiet, although you can hear the Cathedral bells ringing every 15 minutes until midnight and every hour between midnight and 6. An excellent amenity if you are a punctual person (or not). My husband and I strategically chose the bedroom at the back of the flat and left the bedroom closest to the bells to the teenager. Ha!
The area is really lovely with St. Paul’s Cathedral dominating the skyline, the small coffee shops and wine bars encircling Paternoster Square. The best way to discover all that is good in a neighborhood is to walk. We discovered a great little place that serves excellent coffee at half the price of Giant Chain in the square. Try Grace on the corner of Creed Lane for coffee and crumpets if you are ever in the neighborhood.
Things to know
The King’s Wardrobe Apartments offer short and long term stays. You can find my review for the apartments here .
The closest tube line (Central/red) is about a 7 minute walk (St Paul’s tube stop).
You can pick up groceries at one of the two small markets located adjacent to St. Paul’s Cathedral.
The #23 bus runs past St. Pauls Cathedral and takes you past many of the popular sites in London.
Update to post:
Another option for a long term stay is the lux Cheval Three Quays. We stayed here for a week during our move to Switzerland and it was fabulous. Our two-bedroom flat at Cheval Three Quays overlooked the Tower of London and Tower Bridge. It was pretty spectacular watching the Beefeaters put the Tower to bed every night.
There are different flat configurations, but they all benefit from luxury hotel amenities, fully-equipped kitchens, in-room laundry facilities and great decor. They provide a “starter” breakfast basket along with coffee pods and light snacks.
Cheval Three Quays is right next to the Tower of London and within a 2 minute walk to Tube access.
Let me know if you have any questions!
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