Can.I.Rock.it?

Beating the Post-Holiday Blues in London

In I tried... on June 28, 2010 at 10:16 pm

What is point in going on holiday if you’re going to come back and feel even more miserable than you were before you left?

Go climb a tree…

Dutiful designated driver on our recent visit to ‘La Isla Blanca’, IndianaJones is a bit of a ‘get up and go’ kind-a guy. The day after flying in from paradise Ibiza, while I would ordinarily have suggested a piña colada day for the group, we wound up in Hyde Park watching him climb to the top of his favourite tree (that’s him waving ecstatically in the picture above). Admittedly, it was fun. Go in the evening when the crowds have gone, I couldn’t name the type of tree it is but it looks like something out of Avatar. Take the entrance into the park on Knightsbridge opposite the The Sheraton hotel, it’s on the left once you’ve crossed the horse track.

While the air in the city is noticeably different to the air on holiday, retreat into the park for refuge and forget about where you aren’t.

***

Swimming at Altitude

The Berkeley Hotel Rooftop pool

Correct me if I’m wrong but I believe the only two outdoor rooftop pools in London are at the Berkeley Hotel and Shoreditch House. If I’m going to spend on either pricey options, I want the one that gives me more for my buck.

Whereas the Shoreditch House is guaranteed fun and by far the more lively option, the Berkeley rooftop spa is certainly more like being transported to another country. It’s luxurious, quiet and you get everything you ask for. Various guest packages start from £96. If your pockets are empty this month, come and join me at the Kensington & Chelsea town hall’s newly renovated indoor pool where I have a delightful swim for £3 a pop.

***

Eat Like You Live by the Sea

Halepi is a shabby chic Greek taverna that’s been holding it’s ground as London’s best since the sixties.

Jumbo prawns the size of giant crabs, pick of the market white fish, creamy mediterranean dips– the checklist is there.

Halepi fresh stuffed peppers

The waiters are loud and funny, the tablecloths haven’t changed in 44 years and while there may not be anywhere to sit outside here, it’s virtually impossible to feel down at the Halepi taverna.
www.halepi.co.uk

***

“Redecorate!” says JustMarried over blackberry chat. Having returned from a dream wedding on the beach and a honeymoon driving through Spain, my friend since adolescence is now nesting decorating her apartment that she shares with hubby. It’s something all of us could do once in a while. Pick up a few fresh objects for the house, especially with the summer season here. It might change your outlook on being at home a little if you have things around you that make you smile and think of your holidays past. Or you could go all out and re-do an entire room like a favourite mediterranean island or a Barcelona super loft (JustMarried is going for the latter). If I can find a minute, I’m going to try to make my bedroom a little more beachy with cool tones and seaside memories.

Click to shop: Hammock Chair, £123 at Graham and Green; Bubble Jug, £75 at the Conran Shop; Taffeta Striped cushion, £32; Coromandel Cushion cover, £34; Calypso blue & white tray, £38; Miller Harris Candle, £31; Espadrilles, £15; OMG photo album, £15; Long John’s Lamp, £125.

***

Have some Ice Cream!

The Parlour

Well why ever not? It’s summer after all. One place in particular comes to mind and that is the 1930s art deco ice-cream spot, The Parlour on Piccadilly. Through the lavish doors of Fortnum & Mason you will find this delightful restaurant, designed by David Collins (Nobu Berkeley), perfect for a post  shopping lunch. Go easy on the yummy open sandwiches and hold out for the out-of-this-world ice cream. Have a siciliano pistachio sundae with caramel, coffee, praline and roasted flaked almonds. Get that happy hour feeling with cocktail sundae, ‘The Jamaican’*– British navy rum & raisin, vanilla bean and smooth banana ice cream, toffee sauce, sliced banana, whipped cream and sugar crystals topped with rum. Oh and mind the Viennise Corner, laden with cakes with names like ‘Black Forest*’ and ‘Esterhazy Cake’.

*Most certainly contains alcohol.

If all else fails, my wise cracking compadre, Al Moda says, “the only way to get over post-vacation blues is to book another damn vacation!”

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