Somerset House on the Strand
Located less than a ten-minute walk from Covent Garden, Somerset House still manages to be off the beaten track. The site has tremendous historical significance, having served as a residence for Princess Elizabeth (later Queen Elizabeth I), and the current structure—which dates to the late 18th century—is an neoclassical masterpiece, featuring numerous artistic exhibitions & events throughout the year, as well as an ice rink in the central courtyard during the winter months.
By Bryan Kitch, AFAR Contributor
Best lunch break ever!
Somerset House is a wonderful exhibition space in that the actual buildings are beautiful and historical and the exhibitions exciting- i had just seen my favourite fashion photographer Tim Walker's first solo exhibition and famished contemplated where i could get some lunch. The restaurant/coffee shop in the square at Somerset house is wonderful! i had possibly the best sandwhich ever: Homebaked bread, stilton cheese and wild mushrooms with sage and homemade lemonade followed by a soya milk hot chocolate. Fresh, organic and plentiful it truly is a hidden (ish, the place was packed) gem after an exhibition.
Somerset House on the Sly
Tucked away on the Strand, Somerset House feels slightly off-the-beaten path of other London destinations. Supermodels, Instagrammers, and all fashion lovers in between may know it as the background of London Fashion Week, and other creative-types may be aware of its rarely-crowded exhibits. Get to know Somerset House as you please. The cobblestone courtyard at the entrance is a quiet alternative to the traffic outside the gates, and in the summer, children play in splash-friendly fountains. If you want to come for lunch, an upscale dining area and bar overlooks the Thames. Go for the mac and cheese.
By Kelly Dawson
Strand, London WC2R 1LA, UK
+44 20 7845 4600
Sun - Sat 8am - 11pm