East Vs West London Whose Side Are You On?

This post is sponsored by Westfield

Olympic Opening Ceremony? Were you there?

Even though I profess to loving all parts of London, the Olympics has brought home  just how much East London is dear to my heart. The East maybe slightly grimy, a little rough around the edges but with Stratford hosting the Olympics, people from around the world are seeing why East London is vibrant, edgy and cool. Of course having grown up here I may be a little biased :). With the Olympics in full swing it is in the spirit of competition that Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City  go head to head.

What do you think?

Westfield in London is giving everyone their own ‘I was there’ story which will live on as part of the legacy of London 2012. From the landmarks to the people, East and West London each have their own unique energy and flair which make up London. This summer, a competition between ‘Team East’ and ‘Team West’ will generate a healthy rivalry between the two sides of London while showcasing the best of the city.

Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City are going head to head in a battle of East vs West. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, show your allegiance and share your story by signing up to Team East or Team West.

By signing up you become part of a team which represents your side of London. Your pictures, tweets, videos tagged #IWASTHERE become part of a hub of content representing East or West London. This is your chance to show why your side is the BEST!

Westfield is offering some great prizes for participating and sharing your content: More than £25,000 worth of Visa prepaid cards to spend at Westfield is up for grabs as well as London 2012 and Team GB merchandise.

Sign up  and start racking up those points and who knows you may even come home with gold!

It’s All Fun and Games in London – Fun things to do

Today’s Guest post comes from Jade O’Donoghue, a web and social media editor of Hotcourses. Though initially dreading the disruption of the Olympics in London, she’s now very excited about everything going on in the next few weeks!


As a Londoner who travels around the city on a daily basis, it has not escaped my notice that there’s a fairly big event happening in the capital right now. The Olympics have arrived and many of us will be flocking to the big smoke to watch a variety of sports from football to fencing over the next few weeks.

I’ve heard there’s plenty to keep sport enthusiasts busy in the Olympic Park, but what is there to do when you’re not watching Team GB battle it out against the competition? For locals and tourists alike, I’ve found some exciting things to keep us occupied in London over the next month or so while the Games are on…

Be creative

For the arty types among us who like trying new things, there’s a fascinator experience day happening on the last day of the Olympics, Sunday the 12th of August, where London milliner, Katty Janneh is on hand to help you craft the perfect headwear. Or, if you’re heading up to London with a group, there are flower arranging parties to be booked on Saturdays throughout August. They sound like such a fun way to get together with friends and all materials including refreshments are provided.

See London

There’s no denying London has some stunning sights to see, and the city looks beyond spectacular when it’s all lit up at night. Since the sporting events don’t run round the clock, I found an original way to make memories of the capital in the form of a night time photography tour, taking in the London Eye and Big Ben under the cover of darkness. For those that would rather tour London with their taste buds though, there are wine tasting tours running in the West End across August. We’re promised the chance to sample delicious wines, meet new people and continue the night at the party afterwards where we’ll all be toasting Team GB of course!

Up your fitness levels

It’s hard not to be inspired by the athletes’ impressive sporting abilities and we’d all be lying if we said we didn’t feel the pressure to get fit! There’s loads going on at the moment to encourage people to get into sport but and some more unusual than others. I found a climbing course starting on the 6th of August for adventurous types but if you’re feel really daring there are also pole dancing lessons beginning on the same day!

Relax and unwind

There’s nothing more relaxing than listening to some chilled out guitar tunes and after all the cheering we’re going to need some down time! I discovered there are acoustic music production sessions running on most days that the Games are on, so now I’m desperate to mix my own sounds to unwind to. What’s great is that they’re open to all ages, so the whole family can join in. Then there’s meditation to really calm your body and mind after all the excitement. Chi Kung meditation has been around in China for thousands of years and this course on Saturday the 11th of August promises to de-stress our lives with 7 steps. I’m off to find my Zen!

All the fun things mentioned here can be found on Hotcourses where there are also reviews and articles to help you choose what to do.



Dates For Your Diary – Get a taste of Denmark in London Imagination Festival

With the Noma Popup coming to London all eyes are on Danish cuisine this summer.

IMAGINATION is a fantastic, free 17 day showcase celebrating the best of Danish culture, lifestyle, food and design. From the 27th July until  12 August 2012VisitDenmark will be welcoming visitors to discover the very best of Denmark at St Katherine’s Dock in London. As London transforms into a sports hub, visitors will be able to take part in free Nordic fun, games, watch music and Danish sports stars live the big screen.

The festival kicks off  with 3 food themed days to show off why Denmark is home to the world’s best restaurant for the 3rd year in a row and the world’s best chef in 2011. Nordic cuisine is spreading like rings in the water and Denmark is the gastronomic epicentre of this movement. The Food Organisation of Denmark will be bringing over   9 chefs from Danish top restaurant Michelin awarded Restaurant Geranium. These top chefs will be showing visitors how to make the best sausages from Copenhagen’s meat packing district, Danish smørrebrød (open sandwiches) and other delightful samples from the Nordic kitchen. This event is sure to be fantastic and shouldn’t be missed!

For more information please visit http://www.visitdenmark.com/en-gb/imagination

Wandering in London, a visit to Covent Garden, Piccadilly, Soho and Chelsea

Gorgeous strawberries from Bills Restaurant

One of the best things about living in London is the abundance of events that are going on around town all the time. Today was no exception. The day started with meeting my friend Miss Pinglish (Polish-English hehe) for brunch at Rushes in Soho. At the moment Rushes Short Film Festival is taking place in Central London, if you are a big film buff take a look at their site to watch innovative and exciting emerging shorts from British film talent. Afterwards we were still feeling hungry so we  headed to Moolis.

Moolis Pork and Pomegrante Roti – Hmm Yummy!

Moolis is a fun and cute little restaurant on Frith Street which sell delicious and spicy roti rolls. My favourite is the pork and pomegranate mooli. One of these bad boys and I am in food heaven! If you find yourself in Soho do pay them a visit!

St Martins Courtyard

Feeling nicely sated, we wandered off towards Covent Garden to the St Martins Courtyard Food Festival. We had much fun looking at all the gorgeous food on show from restaurants such as Suda Thai, Bill’s and Cantina Laredo. Afterwards we decided to go for a stroll around Covent Garden during which we made a few great discoveries. Miss Pinglish and I are both stationery and art fanatics and we simultaneously discovered The London Graphic Centre on Shelton Street. This shop is must visit for any art lover looking for art and craft materials, they have an extensive collection and prices are reasonable. We then found ourselves back on Shaftesbury Avenue when I saw a piece by Stik one of my favourite graffiti artists in the distance.

intricate carved fruit from Suda Thai

St Martin Courtyard Festival

A piece by street artist Stik

It was following this trail that lead us to what I can only describe as a secret garden! The Phoenix Garden is behind Shaftesbury Avenue and was so wonderful that we just had to have a look. I love that there were secluded areas for sitting and i’m sure it will be a great place for a date when the weather is better. If the weather wasn’t so bad we would have stuck around a bit longer but the rain hastened our speed to leave!

Phoenix Gardens St Giles

Next…Having heard on Facebook that Ricard was hosting a Petanque Garden Party in Chelsea Physic Garden we jumped on the 19 bus down to Sloane Square. Now I have a tip, if you’re a visitor coming to London and you want to see some of London’s highlights for a minimal cost the no. 19 is a great bus route. You will pass on the way Tottenham Court RoadPiccadilly, St James, Hyde Park Corner, Knightsbridge and Sloane Square.

Our route towards the Chelsea Physic Garden took us past many gorgeous haunts, that I will be sure to revisit. Chelsea Pensioners fields, Gordon Ramsay – Royal Hospital Road and The National Army Museum. We arrived at the event slightly wet but in good spirits. Despite the rain there was a good turnout at the Ricard event and we were greeted with a lovely Ricard Panama hat. Entertainment was a vintage 30s singing troupe, and petanque games were going on all over the garden despite the rain. We had a lovely time wandering around and looking at all the different herb and fruit varieties. I look forward to returning once the weather is nice! Also in attendance and enjoying the festivities was London IT girl and Vivenne Westwood muse Tolula Adeyemi and former Eastender’s actress Preeya Kalidas.

Ricard Petanques Garden Party – Bastille Day

To end the day we walked back to the Kings Road and finished with a strawberry tart and a hot chocolate at my favourite patisserie chain Patisserie Valerie.

Mastercard Priceless London At The Science Museum

Mastercard Priceless London at The Science Museum

Now if you read this blog then you will know that I am an advocate of MasterCard Priceless London events, after all who doesn’t like a free night out. Last week I was again lucky enough to be invited down to attend a MasterCard Priceless London event at the Science Museum in South Kensington. Being a bit of a geek at heart the Science Museum is one of my favourite museums in London. Although the last time I visited was when I was around 7 years old! In the back of my mind I was a little worried I wouldn’t still be in awe 20 years later. I must say that the night did not disappoint! We arrived at around 7 and were greeted with a glass of fruity prosecco (yes darlings..), given coloured wristbands and were promptly divided into groups.

Champs on tap!

The first 40 mins of the evening we were treated to an open bar with champagne and funky flavoured cocktails on tap. Delicious! Then the real fun was about to begin, we were told that tonight there would be a competition and each of the teams would have to undergo some tasks for which they would be given points. The team with most points would win a prize. Okay..I know what your thinking so “primary school” but actually it really was a lot of fun! To start with our friendly guide took us to the Science Museum’s Imax screen which I have to say was AWESOME! Apparently the screen is big as four double decker buses and I must admit nothing beats watching a film on a screen that size. We watched a spectacular documentary on natural disasters and the scientists of the world whose job is to predict when they will strike next. A very moving and educational experience. Then came quiz time! My team (white) didn’t do too badly at this point and it seemed like we had a chance of winning!

The next part of the evening it was time to get fed! We were seated in the Science Museum’s cafe to enjoy small bowls of the most tastiest food. We were able to feast on poached salmon and Coq au vin and a yummy chocolate moose as well as enjoying more free cocktails. After dinner we were treated to a demo of how rockets work by one of the museum’s presenters which had us in fits of tears.

Demonstration of how a rocket works at the Science Museum

Lastly it was time to hit the Launchpad, now if you have kids I really recommend that you take them there. The Launchpad is the Science Museum’s most popular hands-on gallery. Key themes explored are Light, Materials, Energy Transfer, Forces and Motion, Electricity and Magnetism and Sound. We worked together to do activities such as turning on a tv by pumping water FAST! I have to say that our team wasnt that great but we gave it a go and we ended up having a good giggle. The night culminated in a prize giving for the best team. Our team came 4th boohoo…

All in all I really enjoyed the MasterCard Priceless London night at the Science Museum, it was a nostalgic and interesting experience. I will definitely recommend it to other MasterCard cardholders and the best part of the night was getting home knowing it was all FREE!

For more information on MasterCard Priceless London Experiences please visit http://www.mastercard.co.uk/priceless-cities/london/

Weird! Giant Bird Creature Pictured On Canary Wharf

Occasionally very strange things happen in London. Today this came to my attention on twitter. Apparently nobody knows what exactly it is. It could be a hoax of course, some weird advertising scheme or a picture taken from a very strange angle. What do you guys think? Tweet me your answers https://twitter.com/arigato23

Is it a bird? Seriously WTF???



Date For Your Diary – St Martin’s Courtyard Global Food Festival – Saturday 14th July

Cantina Laredo guacamole demonstration

This weekend  St Martin’s Courtyard in Covent Garden, London will pay tribute to the cultural diversity of London with a free Global Food Festival on Saturday 14th July 12-5pm.

Each of the six restaurants from St Martin’s Courtyard will be representing their country with food, drink and entertainment in the open air courtyard.

Taste your way around the world as part of this celebration of food, drink and culture.  All six restaurants; Bill’s, Cantina Laredo, Dishoom, Dalla Terra, Jamie’s Italian and Suda, will be hosting tastings, demonstrations and activities, transforming St Martin’s Courtyard into a vibrant open air street food market in the heart of London.

Highlights include a pop-up tequila cocktail bar, a hog roast, Thai street food, a big brass band, Italian wine tasting, cream teas and a Mexican mariachi band. 


This is a great event for food lovers everywhere and definitely shouldn’t  be missed!

For more information please visit www.stmartinscourtyard.co.uk

A tour Of Gangster East London With Britmovietours

A couple of weeks ago Lanky Girl was lucky enough to be invited along by Britmovietours on a gangster walking tour of East London. The Gangster London tour took two hours during which we got to learn about the lives and loves of the notourious Kray brothers, film locations used Lock stock and two smoking barrels and other notable gangster films. Our tour guide was actor Stephen Marcus best known for his role as Nick the Greek in gangster film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. During the tour we benefited from Stephen’s phenomenal knowledge about the East End criminal underworld. The beginning of the tour began in the Blind Beggar Pub in Mile End where George Cornell was shot by Ronnie Kray, before stopping at number of locations including the Krays house they grew up in and their local boxing club. At the end of the tour we were able to enjoy a bit of a rest and Q&A session with Stephen.  I don’t want to spoil it for you but below are some of the places that you can expect to visit and learn more about if you take the tour. I thoroughly enjoyed myself and it has definitely piqued my interest to learn more about East End’s history.

The Blind Beggar pub is where Ronnie Kray walked in and shot George Cornell in 1966

Royal Oak in Columbia Road, is where scenes from The Kray film in 1990 was filmed, (Royal Oak is also the pub in Goodnight Sweetheart

The Carpenters’ Arms was owned by the violent gansters, Reggie and Ronnie Kray who bought it in 1967 for their mother Violet.

St Matthew’s Church, Bethnal Green where the last rites where heard for Ronnie Kray

For more information on the Gangster London tour visit http://britmovietours.com/