SW1X7LA Travel Guide
She's still keeping tight-lipped about all those Ashton Kutcher rumors swirling around the internet, but one thing we know for sure: RiRi found a nice place to call home in London during a recent press trip to promote her first-ever movie, Battleship.
The bleach blond singer-actress was photographed in a simmering olive green dress earlier in the day, posing with co-stars Brooklyn Decker and Taylor Kitsch. Then later, when paparazzi caught up with her in Knightsbridge, she looked like she was in a hurry to get back to her room inside the hotel—we're assuming it was to make sure she hadn't left the sinks running inside her room. Thankfully, all signs point to no.
For some reason, the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park's brand new open-air fine dining spot, The Park Terrace, makes sweet, sunny Lily Allen songs pop into our heads.
The restaurant - described as an "English country garden" sort of setting - allows diners to overlook Hyde Park and, in the mornings, "marvel at the quintessentially English spectacle of the Household Cavalry riding past on their way to the changing of the guard."
Chef Chris Tombling serves up all sorts of summery dishes for you to munch on in the sunshine all day long (breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner), like an asparagus, pea and bean salad or a baked tomato tart with goat cheese.
Of course, if you're more into Amy Winehouse's boozey jams than Lily Allen's sunny little tunes, there is a pretty impressive summer cocktail menu at the Park Terrace as well. We're totally craving a drink called the Vanilla Mule: vanilla-infused rum and apple juice, topped with ginger beer and lime juice. Yum!
More info and a full menu can be found here.
London's Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park must be in a very giving Holiday mood or else they are desperate for some Americans to visit, despite how bad the dollar is doing in Europe. We happen to think it's the latter.
The hotel has a few deals going on to celebrate the holiday season. Particularly good value is their Christmas "Festive Choices" package over the holidays. For accommodation between December 16 and January 6, 2008, the Festive Choices package for ₤239 (US$495) includes a night in a deluxe King bedded room plus breakfast for two (something like this room-service one, pictured).
There's also a service for shoppers where the porters will collect your purchases from nearby boutiques, making it a great package either pre-Christmas for gifts or in the post-Christmas sales.
If you're in England over Christmas, the Mandarin Oriental also has some great celebrations in their restaurant, both on Christmas Eve and for Christmas Lunch. The great bonus is that during the Christmas Lunch, they'll interrupt your meal especially to broadcast the Queen's annual Christmas message. Father Christmas will make an appearance too. Really.
· Hotels in London [HotelChatter]
· London Travel Stories [Jaunted]