How to Experience London without Ever Stepping on a Plane
NYC’s best British gems make for the perfect afternoon. In collaboration with Ted Baker.
I’ll never forget the very first time I visited London as a wide-eyed, fashion-hungry teen. Everyone looked so polished and chic, with their saddle handbags and mod boots and the classic double-breasted coats on men and women alike. It all felt miles away from the small American town where I grew up and left me searching for ways to recreate that enviable British style for myself.
Fast-forward a decade, and I’m finally living in the kind of bustling metropolis I’d always dreamed of as a kid. Sure, New York doesn’t have the exact same *feel* as our friends across the pond, but there are a handful of quintessentially British spots around the city for when I’m feeling nostalgic. If you had told me when I first moved here that I could experience the best of the UK without ever even purchasing a plane ticket, I wouldn’t have believed you.
As for the wardrobe? Ted Baker has always been at the top of my must-have shopping list, since the label never fails to mix the best of classic design with modern tailoring and pops of color in its clothing, bags, shoes, and accessories. I’m finally able to deck out my closet with my favorite Brit pieces so that when I spend a day browsing through a record store looking for that first-edition David Bowie LP, or indulging in a plate of greasy fish and chips, I genuinely look the part, too.
Check out my plan for transforming New York City into a London getaway, all in one afternoon.
1. Enjoy a cup of traditional English tea
I’ll admit that I’m not ready to give up my American love for coffee, but lately I’ve found myself craving tea in the middle of the day. Perhaps it’s an attempt to curb my caffeine addiction, or maybe it’s my obsession with Ted Baker’s gorgeous floral-patterned china. Either way, taking a break from the busy streets of
London New York is essential. But to pass as a Brit, don’t forget to keep that pinky down.
2. Dig for records at A1 Record Shop in the East Village
Music is at the heart of British culture, from the Beatles to Bowie, and there’s nothing better than combing through the racks at legendary A1 Record Shop to find my new favorite artist. I’ll often find myself here hunting for the perfect gift, especially around the holidays, and I even admit to waiting until the last minute and showing up in a velvety cocktail dress (Ted Baker, of course) before a friend’s party. Ever heard of being fashionably late?
3. Tuck into some delicious fish and chips at Oscar’s Place
As a New Yorker, I’m always down to try the latest culinary fad, but when I’m channeling my inner Londoner, all I crave is a hot plate of fish and chips. It really is good for the soul. To taste the absolute best in the city, you can’t go wrong with charming Oscar’s Place in the West Village. After an afternoon wandering through the secret gardens of Manhattan (a popular British pastime!) or a night out dancing with my friends in a little faux fur, I challenge you to find a tastier spot. And remember to ask for Neil—he’ll hook you up.