If you have been on your feet all day, then it’s time to treat them to some ten­der, lov­ing care at one of the cap­i­tal’s lead­ing spas. Ko­hi­noor Sa­hota rounds up the best in Lon­don

Where London - - Contents -

Put your best foot for­ward! If you have been on your feet all day, it’s time to give your toes some TLC. We show you where you can en­joy re­lax­ing foot mas­sages.

As a tourist, you will be on your feet all day rush­ing from one sight to another. It’s easy to for­get one of the most cru­cial parts of any hol­i­day: re­lax­ing.

Help is at hand, as there are plenty of spas ready to tend to your tired feet. It’s not just about pedi­cures, but en­sur­ing your feet are as healthy as they can be. It’s time to put your best foot for­ward!

If it’s good enough for the Queen, then it’s good enough for us. John Bell & Croy­den is a Royal War­rant Holder – an of­fi­cial mark of recog­ni­tion that proves a com­pany has sup­plied goods or ser­vices to the royal fam­ily for at least the past five years. The phar­ma­cist has been sell­ing medicines since 1798, and has been the Queen’s phar­ma­cist for years.

If you are in par­tic­u­lar pain with your feet, visit its Chi­ropody & Po­di­a­try Clinic, which spe­cialises in treat­ing con­di­tions in­clud­ing joint and lower limb is­sues, heel pain, arch pain, flat fleet, ver­ru­cas and cal­louses (50-54 Wig­more St, W1U 2U).

Shop­ping can be a tir­ing busi­ness. If you have spent the day in West­field Lon­don, in Shep­herd’s Bush, head to the nearby

K West Spa. Lux­u­ri­ous treat­ments in­clude a Red Car­pet Ready Pedi­cure (70 min; £60). Dry and dead skin is buffed away, nails and cu­ti­cles are ti­died and a mask is ap­plied to re­vi­talise the skin. After a mas­sage, which con­cen­trates on your re­flex points, you can then have your nails pol­ished, so that your feet are san­dal-ready.

While you’re there, take ad­van­tage of the foot baths, steam rooms, hy­drother­apy pool and ice-filled Snow Par­adise room – a one-of-a-kind space in Lon­don, which is chilled to -15 de­grees. To im­prove your cir­cu­la­tion, shift be­tween each room’s ex­treme tem­per­a­tures (Rich­mond Way, W14 0AX).

Prov­ing that it’s not just women who can en­joy glam­orous treat­ments for their feet, the Bam­ford Hay­barn Spa in The Berke­ley ho­tel of­fers treat­ments spe­cially for men. The Berke­ley Shape and Buff for Men (25 min; £35; p. 77) in­cludes a foot bath, which soft­ens rough skin, a mas­sage to re­lease ten­sion and im­prove cir­cu­la­tion, and the re­moval of dead skin. Feet are then mois­turised and cu­ti­cles ti­died and buffed for well-groomed toes.

When you have fin­ished, make sure you go to the rooftop pool for some land­mark spot­ting. On sun­nier days, the roof opens up to the el­e­ments. The pool has a spec­tac­u­lar view of Lon­don and will re­mind you that you are in the great­est city in the world.

TICKET IN­FOR­MA­TION Oys­ter cards & Trav­el­cards

An Oys­ter card is a pre-paid travel smart card. It’s a cheap way to pay for sin­gle jour­neys by bus, Tube, tram, DLR, Lon­don Over­ground and most Na­tional Rail train ser­vices in Lon­don.

You can buy a Vis­i­tor Oys­ter card be­fore you leave home for a £3 fee and pre-load it with credit at www.vis­i­tor­shop.tfl.gov.uk. The sys­tem has nine zones. Zone 1 is in cen­tral Lon­don.

Vis­i­tors can buy Oys­ter cards and Day Trav­el­cards from sta­tions, Vis­i­tor Cen­tres and any Oys­ter Ticket Shop. UK vis­i­tors can also pay for their travel with a UK-is­sued con­tact­less pay­ment card. See www.tfl.gov.uk/vis­it­in­glon­don.

An Oys­ter card also gives you a 25 per cent dis­count on Lon­don’s ca­ble car, the Emi­rates Air Line, and a 10 per cent dis­count on sin­gle jour­neys on most MBNA Thames Clip­pers river buses. For more info, visit www.vis­i­tor­shop.tfl.gov.uk.


For 24-hour travel in­for­ma­tion, visit the Trans­port for Lon­don ( TfL) web­site. www.tfl.gov.uk/vis­it­in­glon­don or call T: 0343-222 1234.

Lon­don Un­der­ground (The Tube)

www.tfl.gov.uk. See Lon­don Un­der­ground map (op­po­site). Ser­vices run Mon-Sat 5am-12.30am and Sun 7.30am-11.30pm on most routes. The night Tube ser­vice runs on Fri-Sat on the Vic­to­ria, Ju­bilee, Cen­tral, North­ern (via Em­bank­ment) and Pic­cadilly line. Fares vary; a Zone 1 adult fare costs £4.80 (£2.30 with an Oys­ter card).

Lon­don Buses

Lon­don buses run 5am-12.30am. Night buses (mid­night- 4.30am) op­er­ate on main routes (sev­eral ser­vices are 24-hour). You can’t pay for a bus fare with cash, so use a Vis­i­tor Oys­ter card, Oys­ter card, Trav­el­card or a UK-is­sued con­tact­less pay­ment card. Visit www.tfl.gov.uk/ buses. Sin­gle fare is £1.50 with an Oys­ter card or UK-is­sued con­tact­less pay­ment card.

Lon­don Over­ground

www.tfl.gov.uk. See Lon­don Un­der­ground Map op­po­site). Trains run Mon-Sat 5am-mid­night; Sun 7am-11.30pm on most routes.

Dock­lands Light Rail­way

Trains run ap­prox­i­mately ev­ery three-anda-half min­utes to 10 min­utes. Mon-Sat 5.30am-12.30am; Sun 7am-11pm. T: 020-7363 9700.


Padding­ton serves the West Coun­try, Wales and the South Mid­lands.

Liver­pool Street and Fenchurch Street serve East Anglia and Es­sex. Eus­ton King’s Cross St Pan­cras Maryle­bone and St Pan­cras In­ter­na­tional (con­nects to King’s Cross St Pan­cras) serve north and cen­tral Britain, and south­east Eng­land. Char­ing Cross

Lon­don Bridge Water­loo and Vic­to­ria serve south­ern Eng­land.

For times and tick­ets, visit www.na­tion­al­rail.co.uk or call T: 0845-748 4950.

Eurostar uses St Pan­cras In­ter­na­tional. Visit www.eurostar.com for more in­for­ma­tion, times and ticket prices. Call T: 0344-822 4777 (or if you’re out­side the UK, call T: 01233- 617 575).

Ac­ces­si­ble Lon­don

Get in­for­ma­tion for deaf and dis­abled trav­ellers, in­clud­ing step-free jour­neys on the Tube, bus and river ser­vice at www.vis­it­lon­don.com/ ac­cess and www.openbri­tain.net.


You can hail a black cab (taxi) in the street. Fares in­crease after 8pm. You can­not hail pri­vate-hire or mini­cabs, which you must book. We strongly ad­vise against you us­ing any ve­hi­cle that ap­proaches you in the street, ex­cept for li­censed black cabs. For more in­for­ma­tion, visit www.tfl.gov.uk.

Car hire

Make sure your driv­ing li­cence is valid for the UK and see ‘Con­ges­tion Charge’ below. Hertz: T: 0870- 844 8844. www.hertz.co.uk. Kendall Cars Ltd: T: 020-8542 0403. www.kendall­cars.com. En­ter­prise Rent-A-Car: T: 0800- 800 227. www.en­ter­prise.co.uk.

Con­ges­tion Charge

There is a con­ges­tion charge to drive into cen­tral Lon­don, Mon-Fri 7am- 6pm. Payable in ad­vance or on the day of travel (£11.50), or the day after (£14). UK: T: 034-3222 2222. In­ter­na­tional: T: +44 20-7649 9122. www.cclon­don.com.

River ser­vices

www.tfl.gov.uk/river MBNA Thames Clip­pers: T: 020-7001 2200. www.thamesclip­pers.com. Cata­ma­rans leave ma­jor piers ev­ery 20 mins. Ser­vices run be­tween Water­loo Pier and The O2 (North Green­wich Pier) and on to Royal Ar­se­nal Wool­wich Pier, stop­ping at 20 main piers. Dis­counts on sin­gle jour­neys on all MBNA Thames Clip­pers river buses. The River Roamer day pass gives un­lim­ited hop-on, hop-off travel from £17.35.

Emi­rates Air Line ca­ble car

Lon­don’s only ca­ble car runs across the River Thames be­tween Green­wich Penin­sula ( The O2) and the Royal Docks (Ex­CeL Lon­don). You can board from ei­ther the North Green­wich or Royal Vic­to­ria sides of the river (re­turn flights are avail­able). You can buy a com­bined ticket with MBNA Thames Clip­pers and Lon­don Trans­port Mu­seum. www.tfl.gov.uk/emi­rate­sair­line.

On foot

It’s of­ten quicker to get around Lon­don by walk­ing. Look out for blue and yel­low Leg­i­ble Lon­don street maps. www.tfl.gov.uk/ leg­i­blelon­don.

San­tander Cy­cles

There are 11,500 bikes for hire from 750 dock­ing sta­tions through­out cen­tral Lon­don. From £2 for 30 min­utes; the first 30 min­utes are free. There’s no need to book, but you need a debit or credit card to hire a bike. Visit www.tfl.gov.uk/ san­tander­cy­cles or call T: 0343-222 6666.


Lon­don’s main coach ser­vices use Vic­to­ria Coach Sta­tion, a cen­tral hub which of­fers travel to des­ti­na­tions around the UK and some parts of Europe. SW1W 9TP. T: 0843-222 1234. www.tfl. gov.uk/coaches Vic­to­ria. Map D4.

DE­LIV­ERY AirPortr (Lug­gage de­liv­ery ser­vice)

Same-day lug­gage trans­fer be­tween Lon­don’s air­ports and ho­tels – travel bag-free and make the most of your time here. Prices start at £15 for one bag plus £10 for each ad­di­tional item (any size or weight). T: 020-3384 6677. www.portr.com.

Mail Boxes Etc

World­wide par­cel de­liv­ery, courier and postal ser­vices. There are 1,600 stores world­wide and more than 150 stores in the UK and Ire­land. Mail Boxes are also trained cer­ti­fied pack­ers. T: 01608- 649230. www.mbe.co.uk/lon­don.

How do you start the day?

The best days start with rig­or­ous boul­der­ing at The Arch Climb­ing Wall in Ber­mond­sey. I go from 6.30am with my younger brother. It is a won­der­fully phys­i­cal way to be­gin the day, and there’s a healthy eroti­cism to it all with bod­ies splayed across colour­ful geo­met­ric chal­lenges.

What is your per­fect break­fast?

Break­fast it­self is eaten en­route to the studio. On good days, this is a large hunk of seed cake made by my flat­mate who is a pas­try chef.

What are your favourite build­ings?

The Ele­phant and Cas­tle Shop­ping Cen­tre for the bowl­ing; the IMAX for the vis­i­tor ex­pe­ri­ence honed to cel­e­brate the ar­chi­tec­ture; and St Paul’s Cathe­dral – my brother just got en­gaged in the Whis­per­ing Gallery.

Tell us your favourite mu­se­ums.

As of­ten as pos­si­ble I visit Sir John Soane’s Mu­seum, the strange house of one of Britain’s fore­most ar­chi­tects. It is a cabi­net of cu­riosi­ties crammed full of ar­chi­tec­tural or­na­ments; he even had a her­mit’s cell built for a live-in mys­tic. Another favourite is Tim Hunkin’s self-made ar­cade in Hol­born called Nov­elty Au­to­ma­tion. It con­tains a pin-ball ver­sion of the Large Hadron Col­lider.

Where do you like to shop?

I nor­mally buy a cou­ple of books a day. Tate Mod­ern’s book­shop goes some way to en­abling the habit.

What is your favourite green space?

This has to be the Bar­bican’s se­cret jun­gle con­ser­va­tory; it’s one of the lush­est places in Lon­don com­bin­ing Bru­tal­ist ar­chi­tec­ture, trop­i­cal plants and ter­rap­ins. We hosted our book launch for Feast­ing with Bom­pas & Parr amid the fo­liage.

What do you like to have for lunch?

Padella was a re­cent suc­cess – the Ital­ian restau­rant is in Bor­ough Mar­ket and it’s cheap.

What places in the city in­spire you?

The River Thames for the chang­ing smell; the re­cent pol­lu­tion for cre­at­ing beau­ti­ful fogs, de­spite ru­in­ing Lon­don­ers’ pink lungs; The Lon­don Li­brary; the Nat­u­ral His­tory Mu­seum’s mighty Earth Gallery; Cross­rail for the enor­mity of the en­gi­neer­ing; and Cross­bones Grave­yard in Bor­ough.

What place holds a spe­cial mem­ory?

Shored­itch House – the scene of some rev­els, in­clud­ing Wet­ness at Break­fast: Gourmet Bathing and Morn­ing Cock­tails, which had a sub­merged ban­quet ta­ble and mer­men mixol­o­gists.

How do you pre­fer to travel?

On the front seat on the top deck of a bus.

Where do you like to drink?

The Lord Clyde in Bor­ough, be­tween my studio and house, is a beauty. The cop­per is pol­ished, in­clud­ing the pipework above the uri­nals.

Would you do any­thing ex­trav­a­gant?

When I turned 30, my par­ents said I needed to buy fur­ni­ture. In­stead I picked up a Ne­buchad­nez­zar (15 litres) of Cham­pagne, chilled it in the bath and hosted a party. Feel­ing re­morse­ful the next day, I turned the empty bot­tle into a mighty lamp. I could do with another bot­tle to fur­nish the rest of the room.

Where do you like to have din­ner?

Right now it is Hoi Pol­loi at the Ace Ho­tel in Shored­itch. The restau­rant stays open later than most places and one of the wait­ers wears roller­skates. The acous­tics are phe­nom­e­nal, too.

What would you do for en­ter­tain­ment?

Ri­flery in the se­cre­tive gun club in the foot­ings of Lon­don Bridge. You shoot out over the River Thames and few peo­ple have any idea it’s there.

Where would you spend the night?

My heat­ing broke down dur­ing the win­ter of 2015, and the house was bit­terly cold. It is sav­agely deca­dent, but on re­ally cold nights I would check into the sen­sual and lux­u­ri­ous Mon­drian Lon­don at Sea Con­tain­ers ho­tel. The rooms were the per­fect refuge, and I also loved a pre-mixed Beeswax Old Fash­ioned by mixol­o­gist Ryan Chetiyawar­dana. For more in­for­ma­tion about culi­nary ex­pe­ri­ences, visit www.bom­pasand­parr.com

This im­age: a foot mas­sage In­set: John Bell & Croy­den

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