I’ve lived all over London and my favourite pub has always been the local one. When I lived in Notting Hill, I’d go to The Windsor Castle, which is also probably my favourite place for a Sunday roast.
My favourite restaurant is L’Entrecote. When I moved to London in 2012, this was one of the first places I went to. Now I can go months without going, then something will trigger the urge. It is the best place for steak in London – even during lockdown I was first in the queue for its take-away baguettes stuffed with steak, fries and secret sauce.
My favourite neighbourhood in London is Portobello. It’s where I spent most of my weekends. It’s crazy busy on Saturdays, so I’d go more often on Sundays and slowly walk through the market, popping into a few shops or grabbing a coffee. For lunch I always end up at Pizza East – if you’re lucky enough to get a seat outside on the corner, it’s great for people watching.
I’m not really a going-out for brunch kind of guy but nothing beats a breakfast at home on a lazy Sunday morning. I prefer going out to get a few ingredients and make a nice brunch at home. My go-tos are bagels with cream cheese and smoked salmon or a full fry up with all the trimmings. When I do go out, I love Granger & Co.
Hagen on the King’s Road has the best coffee I have ever had. It is just down the road from work and pre-lockdown I was going every day. Unfortunately, I have a love-hate relationship with coffee. I absolutely love the taste and feeling I get from that first sip in the morning, but I don’t think I’m very good at metabolising it. After a few weeks of having it every morning, I wake up dead with huge dark circles under my eyes, so I have to go cold turkey every now and again.
I love the American Bar at the Beaumont. I’m not one for rowdy bars when I just want to enjoy a drink with my girlfriend or a few friends. I find hotel bars are great for a couple of quiet ones and some nice bar snacks. The old fashioned at the Beaumont is one of my favourite drinks.
Choosing my go-to drink is difficult as it all depends when and where I’m drinking. As a West Country lad, I love a cider in summer or a traditional ale in winter. On holiday I like a glass of dry rosé or a G&T. When it’s cocktails, I will either go negroni or old fashioned.
I discovered a hidden gem last year when I was training a lot of clients: a little corner in the north west of Battersea Park. There’s the beautiful Old English Garden. Between clients I would go and read, surrounded by charming roses.
My favourite way to get around London is by bus. I’m usually in a rush so I jump on the tube most days, but when I have a bit of time I like to hop on the top deck of a bus. I will always try and get one of the front seats – I really think it’s one of the best ways to see London.
My go-to barber is Fay at George Northwood. She’s the best. She has been cutting my hair for years and is the only one I really trust. I once went on a photoshoot where they cut my hair and it looked great for the shoot, but after a few days something wasn’t right. I went to see Fay the next week and her first response was, ‘What the f*ck happened here?’ They made a right mess of it supposedly – only she could sort it out.
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For an outdoor workout I always train my clients in Battersea Park. I like to train in the middle of the park by the fountains, where there is a tree with a perfect branch to attach my TRX. During the first lockdown I used to go a few times a week and had an unspoken competition with another trainer to get to the tree first.
For date night you can’t beat the theatre. Not the best for a first date, but you can make a great occasion of going to the theatre or ballet. Dinner, theatre, a few drinks after – something about going to see a performance makes you want to dress up and make an effort. In London we are spoiled for choice. Pre-coronavirus, my girlfriend and I went to Sadler’s Wells to see Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes, it was brilliant.
For a culture hit I love the Royal Academy. It’s always got an interesting exhibition on. Last year I went to the Picasso show. He’s one of my favourite artists, so whenever his work is being shown somewhere in London, I make sure I go.
For gifts there is no better place than Liberty. It’s the first place I go for Christmas or birthday presents. I love that they have always supported new and British designers. Also, it’s home department is the best.
I’m not a huge online shopper for clothes because I’m 6ft 4. I have to return more than I keep. Mr Porter has one of the best menswear selections and an easy returns system, which is why I use it more than any other website.
My favourite suit is by Richard James on Savile Row. His designs are very contemporary. The fabrics, patterns and colours he uses are unique to him. For a more classic style, I don’t think you can compete with Huntsman.
The best staycation destination is Devon and Cornwall. Devon is my home and whenever I go back for a few days I feel completely rejuvenated. I love Hotel Endsleigh which is a couple of miles from my parents. In Cornwall, The Pig at Harlyn Bay is in a gorgeous setting. North Cornwall is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful places on earth.
Last summer I stayed at Hôtel Crillon le Brave in Provence for a long weekend. The setting is incredible. At breakfast you have a stunning view of Mont Ventoux and the surrounding area. We rented a vintage VW Beetle for a few days and had the best drives of my life around the winding roads and hills.
Paris is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. And it’s so easy to get there with the Eurostar – there is really no excuse not to go if you live in London. It’s the city I’ve visited the most outside of the UK.
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