Friday, 20 July 2012

#IWasThere

London is where it's happening this Summer, and as part of the 2012 Olympics, London's two Westfield's are going head to head. I live right in the middle of Westfield London (West London) and Westfield Stratford City (East London) and have been asked to represent either East or West London as part of the I Was There Campaign. The Campaign encourages Lodoners to pledge allegiance to one of the two areas and then share why via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

While a few months ago, I would have rooted for West London, in the last few months East London has earned a place in my heart - mainly it was because I discovered the Overground train, that makes it so easy to get there from North London. I've been spending more and more time there (especially since I spent a few weeks interning there) and have discovered a lot of little gems in the area.

Shopping

BoxPark is definitely one of my favourite places in the area. Located right in Shoreditch, it is a truly unique shopping experience and I've spent many an afternoon there. Basically, it's a 'pop up mall', that has cool stores - such as Nike and Vans - located in shipping containers. It's two floors and each store has its own shipping container as a store. The layout really is remarkable and worth going to check out. The upstairs also has a few cool little restaurants (again, out of shipping containers) including a CyberCandy!

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Westfield Stratford has to be in my picks. It's the largest shopping centre in Europe (a fashion bloggers heaven). It has every store you could ever need under one roof, from the likes of Forever 21, The Kooples, Mulberry and Kurt Geiger, amongst 100's of others. There are also tons of pop up stores right now for the Olympics (which are taking place literally around the corner). Not to mention the massive food courts (yes plural) with food from a lot of different varieties, and there's even a cinema. So the perfect place to spend a day or so.

Brick Lane has to be mentioned too. It's full of amazing independent and Vintage stores, such as Rokit and Beyond Retro. The whole are is absolutely buzzing and there's always something unique and fun going on. It's right next to Spitalfields Market, where there are a lot of unique market sellers that sell everything from food to clothes and bags. This part of London is definitely worth a visit if you're ever in the City.

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Food and Drink


Alongside all the shopping and entertainment, there's also plenty of cool restaurants and bars to keep you going.

The Diner Shoreditch is every blogger's favourite place to eat and I couldn't contain my happiness when I realised there was one in East London, I couldn't contain my glee. They do amazing 50's style American food, such as burgers and different types of fries, and also have a great selection of milkshakes and choices for All Day Breakfast (yes, I've been there at 9pm and had pancakes)

My first experience of The Drunken Monkey wasn't a very positive one, but the more I've been there, the more I've fallen in love. It's an amazing bar that does amazing drinks, with a cool Dim Sum restaurant, with great food.

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The XOYO is also a really cool venue located in Shoreditch. I went to a gig there last week (Don Broco/Futures) and will definitely keep an eye open for more bands playing there. I love my gig venues really small and this one is perfect.

So Londoners, tell me your favourite places in London; Are you Team East or Team West? Don't forget to share via the #IWasThere Twitter hashtag too. And everyone else share the little hidden gems in your cities too!

Sherin xx

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