While the Crown Jewels may be tucked away in the Tower of London, one of the city’s best hidden gems can be found just a few blocks from Leister Square station. Sandwiched between SOHO and Covent Gardens, Seven Dials is a hidden village of colliding streets, mixing cultures, and lots & lots of shopping.
With macaroons from Paris and cappuccinos from Rome, Seven Dials is the local hotspot for everything from a lunch out to a shopping marathon. Beginning, of course, with an authentic cappuccino, there is no place better than La Bottega. To pick up just a coffee and croissant or a fresh mozzarella and prosciutto sandwich, this Italian delicaffè brings Italy to the quaint streets of London. Just around the corner down Earlham Street, the Swedish chain Fabrique is also a one stop shop for everything from fresh baguettes and pretzels to delicious latte art coffees.
With coffee in hand, shopping can always begin with a stroll down Monmouth. Starting with Gudrun Sjödén, a Stockholm vintage shop for sweaters and trousers and then quickly to Orla Kiely to pick up a matching Irish designed retro print handbag, a stroll down this luxury brand heaven is any shopaholic’s paradise.
Before stopping for a mid afternoon macaroon snack from Pierre Hermé Paris, the number one place in Seven Dials to check out is the Monmouth Street Pop Boutique. One of the best vintage shops in London, Pop has an array of retro leather satchels, festive reindeer sweaters, and hundreds of old charm accessories all for 30 pounds or less.
With dozens of other shops like Fifi Wilson and Larsson & Jennings, an afternoon of shopping would never be complete with a visit to Neal’s Yard. This vibrant courtyard, offering an escape from London’s tourist hotspots, highlights everything from delicious breakfast nooks to handmade soap shops. First popping by Neal’s Yard Dairy for a sample of one of their 50 types of cheese, and then a stop into the Neal’s Yard Remedies for organic lavender oil, a day in Seven Dials is nearly complete.
For an area as simple and hidden as Seven Dials, the restaurant scene is anything but limited. Whether a classic homemade pizza from Rossodiera or a Moroccan adventure through North African cuisine at Souk Medina, choosing a post shopping dinner is almost as hard as deciding which fur vest to buy at Adolfo Dominguez. From Belgian originals like Belgo Centraal with over 50 craft beers, to Canela, London’s Portuguese culinary hotspot, Seven Dials is a local paradise of great food, delicious coffee and amazing shopping that is just waiting to be discovered.