Our flat is a bright apartment on floor 6, in a modern block in Clerkenwell. There are two lifts, both super fast. You can walk everywhere: You’re near a myriad restaurants, including St John (Michelin starred, one of the world’s best) on St John Street. You’re also close to the charming week-day street-food market of Whitecross Street and Exmouth Market (so pretty and bustling with excellent restaurants). Additionally, we’re only 5minutes by foot from “Silicon roundabout”, where the tech start-ups reside.
Inside the flat, there’s a decent-sized open plan kitchen and living area. It has windows with views over London. From the living room’s right-hand window, you can just see the top spire of St Paul’s Cathedral, as well as a glimpse of the big wheel at Waterloo. The kitchen will have everything you need in it such as all the basic condiments, and as an added extra we make sure that there is also always plenty of tea, coffee and sugar so that you can make yourself a traditional British cuppa in the morning! There are also all the mod-cons such as toaster, microwave and kettle that you might expect. We really want to ensure that you have a comfortable stay here in London.
Look over our living room balcony and you will spot our communal garden below. There’s a little playground for children; it’s relaxing to take a stroll there, or read a book when sunny.
The flat is recently refurbished and has new double beds. The two double bedrooms come with fresh bed linen, pillows and fresh towels, all washed to hotel standards. The sofa in the living room also makes a third double bed.
The bathroom is a polite nod to the pretty Moroccan riads you find in Marrakech. Although brand new and modern, the bathroom walls are made from tadelakt, the delicate Moroccan plaster, which adds a cosyness. The built-into-the-ceiling, “rain” shower is powerful.
This flat is typical of the area. The exterior is 1950s social housing (there are three blocks together - see architecture info below); the interior is arty, colourful and breezy.
The apartment is your own. Cleaned professionally, it's prepared for each new visitor.
It includes:★ Living room with brand new double sofa bed, bought Oct, 2016
★ Two brand new double beds in each bedroom
★ High speed wifi
★ Desk for working on
★ Newly refurbished bathroom & rain shower
★ Fresh towels & hairdryer
★ Retro 1950's kitchen with mod cons; washing machine, kettle, toaster
★ Ironing board & iron
★ Baby travel cot
★ A balcony to read or drink coffee on
★ Private communal garden for use downstairs
Interaction with guests
Hostmaker are looking after my home as we now live near my elderly parents, a while away. I trust them to give you a warm welcome (they're a lovely crew) and they'll look after you. If you have any questions about your stay, do get in touch
Clerkenwell is home to world famous architects, designers, artists and creative agencies. There are funky cocktail bars, real ale pubs (the Jerusalem is ace), top restaurants, markets, and little independent cafes. It's nestled between Old Street, London's tech city and Holborn and the Square Mile. It's also a 30 minute walk into town, Tottenham Court Road and Soho. Tate Modern makes a great stroll. Bank is also a close 15 minute walk.
★ BEST LOCAL WALK FROM OUR FLATGo down Great Sutton St onto St John St, down to Smithfield Market, past the 11th century church St Bartholomew (worth popping into). Weave up the alleyway to St Paul's Cathedral then straight over the Millennium Bridge and the Thames, ending in Tate Modern.
★SHORTER WALKS1. From our flat, try charming Exmouth Market for cafes and good food (all twinkly at Christmas). The best walk is through "ye olde" Clerkenwell - via Dallington St, past Waitrose, up Woodbridge St, via the sweet Spa Fields Park.
2. Or see the former Victorian cattle market, Smithfields (now a majestic meat market) that is featured in both Great Expectations and Oliver Twist. Go under St John's Gate, the creaking ruins of ancient London, dating to 1504, to get there.
3. Just down the road, Great Sutton Street and Clerkenwell Green have cool pubs. Also the Green is post-card picturesque. See below for its history.
4. For brutalist fans, a must-visit local trip is 2mins walk to see the Barbican Centre and its lofty pathways. Inside, it's a liberal enterprise. It often has free jazz music and there's the excellent immersive Curve gallery (free), as well as the best music and theatre from across the world. It's a Marmite place. Outside, check out the waterfalls and 60s concrete, architectural utopia.
5. On the other side of Old St, Columbia Road Flower Market is a riot of Cockney flower sellers offering their wares on Sundays. Next is Brick Lane market. Completing the circuit is Redchurch St's bijou galleries, cafes and boutique shops, before heading back along Leonard St to the flat. This all makes one nice Sunday morning meander.
★FACTS ABOUT THE NEIGHBOURHOOD1.The etymology of Clerkenwell is from the Clerks' Well in Farringdon Lane (clerken was the Middle English, 11th century to 15th century, for literate person)
2.During the Elizabethan era Clerkenwell contained a notorious brothel quarter. In Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 2, Falstaff complains about Shallow boasting of 'the wildness of his youth, and the feats he has done about Turnbull Street'. This is Turnmill St, by Farringdon Station.
3.It became fashionable in the 17th century. Oliver Cromwell owned a house here.
4.Charles Dickens knew the streets of Clerkenwell intimately and often his vivid descriptions of London scenes found in books like Oliver Twist, were inspired from this area. Field Lane is the location of Fagan's lair for example.
5.Lenin wrote many of his communist scriptures in his hidden home on Clerkenwell Green. It's now called the Karl Marx Memorial library. Throughout history, Clerkenwell has served as a refuge for dissidents of all political persuasions.
We’re a 20 minute bus ride to Oxford Circus. Get the no 55, just outside the flat on Old St/Clerkenwell Road. Or jump on the no 243 by our flat for Holborn & Covent Garden.
★ Walking distance to: Shoreditch (10mins), St Paul’s Cathedral (10-12mins), Tate Modern (20mins), Waterloo/South bank (30mins), Soho & Covent Garden (30mins), Tottenham Court Road/British Museum (30mins)
★ Barbican tube station - 5mins
★ Old Street tube station - 7mins
★ Farringdon tube station - 8mins
★ Angel, Islington tube station - 10-12mins
★ Cycle hire on Central Street - 3mins
Other things to note
For architecture and history aficionados!Our apartment is in one of three buildings on the Stafford Cripps Estate built 1951 to 1954. They were created by a famous architect, Joseph Emberton. He designed them in a pioneering Y shape to maximise sunlight in every room. Emberton believed the dwellings should have privacy so all the balconies face outward and don't look onto one another.
They were built after the Second World War and are named after Sir Richard Stafford Cripps, (24 April 1889 – 21 April 1952) a British Labour politician, who is celebrated for his advocacy of social housing.