Elena Bowes

New York-London design & culture writer of a certain vintage looking for meaning and wholeness in life

Bloomin’ Bloomsbury

April 22nd, 2015
Bloomsbury, London

Bloomsbury is blossoming, and not just on a sunny day – although that doesn’t hurt. Start with the just renovated Curzon Bloomsbury – once the much-revered art-house icon Renoir that had fallen on hard times. Not anymore.

The new Curzon Bloomsbury is perfect date-night material. With its gold bar, sleek lounges, minimalist look, “The Canyon” curving corridor, documentary bar, your date will be impressed. Trust me. And don’t miss the gleaming white loos with their seductive pink lit cubicles.



A short stroll away is The School of Life on Marchmont Street with its life-enhancing lectures.


Better yet are its one-liners. Buy a box for that witty someone. I have a friend’s birthday this week (no, not the Queen of England, just the Queen of Chelsea), and think this box of aphorisms will really strike a chord.


Yes Melanie, I like having that special place in your heart.

Then, there’s the Gavin Turk & Project Beard. Tomorrow sees the opening of The Other Art Fair on Southampton Row where oddball selfie king and celebrated YBA artist Turk poses as Rodin, Morris, Cezanne, Matisse, Man Ray and Dali. Talk about a man with a split personality.


An edition of 250 posters of the selfie master will be exclusively available for £50 each at


Other must Bloomsbury-sees are charming Lamb’s Conduit and neighbouring Rugby Streets.


I love this playground pavilion across the road.


Shopping opportunities abound. I didn’t walk into Maggie Owen’s fun faux accessories shop with these ear rings. But I did leave with them. (Could double as nifty Christmas tree ornaments)


I was tempted some more by these Murano glass statement pieces but held back.



Next door is equally tempting…



Or next door again at…


 Can’t have too many aprons…


Craft lovers take note: Its Open Studio weekend May 8-10. Cockpit Arts (just around the corner) will be showcasing lots of textiles, jewellery, ceramics  from 170 talented makers as part of London Craft Week.

April, 2015