Simone Rocha, daughter of Hong Kong-born designer John Rocha, is famed for her forward-thinking, feminine collections. She shares her perfect weekend in the city
ondon is my favourite city. I moved there six years ago and it really has become my home. My studio is in Dalston, a very youthful and creative area, and my flagship store opened on Mount Street in Mayfair last year. Not only is my work here, but also my family and friends are close by. It’s a really creative place and incredibly international. There is always something to inspire me in the city— whether it’s a show, a meal or a walk.
My favourite day is Sunday. I try not to go into the studio on a Sunday. An ideal day would be spent relaxing in the East End, where I live. I would wake up and go to Violet Cakes on Wilton Way for coffee and breakfast. Then I’d walk to the flower market on Columbia Road to get some blooms for the house. It’s always lovely to drop in to see friends who live in the neighbourhood or perhaps meet for lunch at Brawn, a Mediterranean restaurant also on Columbia Road.
I love to spend time shopping for books in Mayfair and Soho. Peter Harrington Rare Books is my favourite in Mayfair. It’s on Dover Street. Also Claire de Rouen Books has some really great finds. For fashion, I always go to Dover Street Market. I think it’s the most creative and inspiring place to shop. For groceries, the food hall in Fortnum & Mason is truly beautiful and fantastically old-fashioned.
London has so many wonderful galleries and museums. The Tate Modern always has a great show on and the building is amazing. I’ve shown twice there, so it has a very special place in my heart. Hauser & Wirth in Mayfair is a beautiful gallery and has some of my favourite artists, including Louise Bourgeois. There is also an amazing Hauser & Wirth in Somerset if you want to escape to the countryside.
In the evening there are so many wonderful restaurants to try in London. I love La Petite Maison for dinner with my family. I usually have a birthday supper there. Claridge’s tea room is so pretty and traditional, and I always feel so welcome. Claridge’s Fumoir bar is one of my favourite places for a drink. When eating out with friends, I love the British old-school vibe of A Little of What You Fancy in Dalston, and Koya Bar in Soho is great for Japanese udon.
If I fancy a little culture after dinner, Sadler’s Wells Theatre always has the most amazing dance performances. I often go there to see productions by Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch. I recently saw the wonderful choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker dance there. In the evening I really like to go to the cinema. The Rio in Dalston is my local cinema but if I’m in Mayfair I love to go to the Curzon.
The nicest way to end my day is to meet a friend for supper at the Clove Club in Shoreditch, or Tonkotsu East for a ramen and a whisky. Then stroll home and get an early night.