This guide was a long time coming, and I’m sorry I drew it out longer than the War of the Roses!
Dedicated readers know all too well that I’m an anglophile, something I haven’t been able to shake since living in London for an entire year (granted I had an obsession with all things British long before then!). Living in LA for the past few years while longing to be back across the pond, I am tirelessly on a quest to quench my U.K. nostalgia, from the food, to the scenery, to the literature.
If you too have the London calling, here are the places in (and around LA) that have become my British havens.
1. Ye Olde King’s Head:
You are not a true Londoner if you don’t grab a pint after work with your friends or enjoy a Sunday Roast at the pub. Ye Olde King’s Head is honestly a three-in-one British stop, because it has the pub complete with English delicacies like Shepherd’s Pie, Bangers and Mash and Fish and Chips. The Santa Monica destination has a gorgeous scarlet salon for afternoon tea and a British imports store that has English goodies I miss dearly like Jaffa Cakes, Hobnobs and clotted cream! The head nods to the queen, the portrait of Winston Churchill by the fire and the British accents floating in the air (most of the people that work there are from various parts of the U.K.) will have you feeling like you’re back in Britain without the 10-hour flight.
2. Burlington Arcade
Almost identical to its London namesake, the Burlington Arcade in Pasadena is one of SoCal’s best kept secrets. Stepping through the walkway you’ll find concept stores, salons, a suit tailor outpost and crimson phone booths! I highly recommend grabbing an iced latte from Float and enjoying it while sitting on a window seat overlooking the arcade.
3. The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens
Located not too far from LA in serene San Marino rests the estate turned museum, The Huntington Library. With masterpieces from all over the world, you can be transported anywhere internationally, but there are of course enough English motifs for the anglophile’s senses. The museum’s vast manuscript collection makes me reminisce over rare collections from the British Library in London. The afternoon tearoom overlooks a colorful rose garden with delightful fragrances of citrus and rose. And the European art rooms with 18th century tapestries, rococo wallpaper and British portraits are like those of London’s Wallace Collection.
4. The Ivy, Beverly Hills
Floral crockery to match rose arrangements and flora and fauna drapery will have you feeling like you’re taking refuge in a cottage along the English countryside. But rather than rolling hills, you’re in Beverly Hills and maybe you wouldn’t get complimentary champagne in a cottage.
5. The Library Bar
This evening venue is also on my “bookish things to do in LA” guide, but I felt the need to share here to because it just oozes England. From a bust of Shakespeare flanked by a literature-filled bookshelf to a cocktail menu with bookish references like “The Lion the Whiskey and the Wardrobe” and “Phantom of the Aperol,” you’re sure to feel that British buzz.
6. The Stalking Horse
Another English-evoking pub, specifically a head-nod to Cornwall. I fell in love with this watering hole upon first sight of its all-black exterior decorated with hanging flower plants because it prompted Churchill Arms nostalgia. Pubs like this are gems, way superior (and classier) than bars if you ask me. This one located on Pico is coated in green Tartan wallpaper, a pastoral wall mural and Union Jack Flag. Plus, The Stalking Horse horse has some of the best hard ciders on tap in SoCal to go with a delicious plate of Fish n’ Chips.
Do you like guides like this? If so, what other guides would you like to see on my blog?
All photos were taken at Burlington Arcade and The Huntington Library by Mari Makatsaria.
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