February 2016 - CHS Rentals

Month: February 2016

Serpentine Bar & Kitchen
by Cedric

Located in one of the most famous London parks and on the edge of the beautiful Serpentine Lake, the Serpentine Bar & Kitchen can be found in the middle of Hyde Park. Operated by Benugo, a noted sandwich chain, this is an ideal spot to enjoy a special family meal.

If taking advantage of warm weather, there are plenty of tables on the roomy lakeside terrace whereas if it is chilly outside, you can still enjoy a good view of the 350 acre park and boating lake from the inside through the glass front and sides of the café.

Pizzas made to order are cooked in the wood-fired oven, while British classics like fish and chips and fresh seasonal salads are on offer. During the summer months, Benugo offer a pop-up burger and hot dog BBQ and the Gin Bar, which are perfect for a spontaneous meal or cocktail session with friends. There is also a reasonable wine list.

If you would prefer to picnic in the park, a small shop in the entrance also serves takeaway sandwiches, freshly made smoothies, cakes and coffee. While there perhaps you will even be tempted to go boating on the Serpentine, which has a fleet of rowing and pedal boats. Boating is possible from April until the end of October.

For more information go to http://www.benugo.com/restaurants/serpentine-bar-kitchen

For your London Vacation Rental go to www.chsrentals.com/london

Too Much Choice
by Harley Nott

A vacation rental in London? There’s just too much choice!

The problem. Airbnb list over 30,000 London rentals, HomeAway claim over 3,000. How can you possibly filter them and choose the right one for you? Even if you do there’s the nagging doubt that you might not get what seems to be on offer.

The solution. Use a small, specialist company like Coach House Rentals. With just some 60 hand-picked central London properties, a list of satisfied guests as long as your arm (just view our testimonials) and the services of our reservation team to help you choose what’s right for you – we take the hassle and frustration out of choosing and booking.

And it doesn’t end there. We’ll arrange a car to collect you at the airport, we’ll be at your rental when you arrive to greet you, hand over the keys, explain how everything works and answer any questions. And while you’re here we provide a 24/7 help line to call if you have any problems. You don’t get that with Airbnb or HomeAway!

It’s not just in London that we offer this service – we’re in New York and Rome too.


The Boat Race
by Cedric

This year the annual University Boat Race will take place at 4.10pm on Sunday 27th March and it will be the 162nd time that the event has been held. The Boat Race is a coxed eight rowing competition between the University of Oxford (Dark Blues) and the University of Cambridge (Light Blues). Oxford will go into the race as champions, having won the 2015 race by a margin of six lengths. However, Cambridge lead overall with 81 victories to Oxford’s 79 and with one dead heat in 1877. The rivalry is a major point of honour between the two universities.

The first race took place in 1829 at Henley-on-Thames following a challenge between old school friends. Since the second race in 1836 the contest has taken place in London. This famous annual event takes place around Easter each year in south-west London, where the River Thames is still tidal. The Championship Course is 4.2-mile (6.8 km) long and runs between Putney and Mortlake with the finish line just before Chiswick Bridge. Cambridge hold the course record of 16 minutes 19 seconds set in 1998, which was an average speed of 24.9 kilometres per hour (15.5 mph).

The Boat Race is one of the oldest sporting events in the world and can be seen from many vantage points along the riverbank such as Putney, Hammersmith, Barnes or Chiswick. The event is also broadcast live on BBC Television. Over the years the race has not been without incident. As examples the Oxford boat sank in 1951, the Cambridge boat sank in 1978, the race was stopped after one minute in 2001 following a clash of oars and most recently the race was halted in 2012 by a protester swimming between the boats.

The 2016 Boat Races will be known as The Cancer Research UK Boat Races for the purpose of sponsorship and this year will be the first time in the history of The Boat Race that all four senior races, the men’s, the women’s, the men’s reserve crew and women’s reserve crew are to be held on the same day and on the same course along the Tideway. Prior to 2015 the women’s race, which first took place in 1927, was usually held on the River Thames at Henley over a 2,000-metre (2,200 yd) course.

For more information go to http://theboatraces.org/

For your London Vacation Rental go to www.chsrentals.com/london

Science Museum
by Cedric

Founded in 1857 to house the collection of the Royal Society of Arts and surplus items from the Great Exhibition of 1851, the Science Museum is now one of the city’s major tourist attractions with over three million visitors annually. It is situated on Exhibition Road in South Kensington.

In 1885, the Science Collections were renamed the Science Museum whereas the Art Collections were renamed the Art Museum, which eventually became the Victoria and Albert Museum situated in a neighbouring building.

The Science Museum has a collection of over 300,000 items and features seven floors of educational and entertaining exhibits. The exhibits include the Apollo 10 command module, a flight simulator, Stephenson’s Rocket, Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive), the first jet engine, a reconstruction of Francis Crick and James Watson’s model of DNA, some of the earliest remaining steam engines, a working example of Charles Babbage’s Difference engine, the first prototype of the 10,000-year Clock of the Long Now, and documentation of the first typewriter. It also contains hundreds of interactive exhibits. A recent addition is the IMAX 3D Cinema showing science and nature documentaries, most of them in 3-D.

The Science Museum’s medical collections have a global scope and include Clinical Medicine, Biosciences and Public Health. The new Wellcome Wing, with its focus on Bioscience, makes the Museum a leading world centre for the presentation of contemporary science to the public.

The Clockmakers’ Collection, previously held at the Guildhall, has moved to the museum. It is the oldest display of clocks and watches in the world with most of the 1250 exhibits dating from between 1600 and 1850.

For more information go to http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/

For your London Vacation Rental go to www.chsrentals.com/london


Famous London Pubs – Ye Olde Mitre Holborn
by Cedric

Ye Olde Mitre is located in Holborn close to Hatton Garden, the Diamond District of London. The building is a quite hard to find. Some way down Mitre Place, the black brick alley widens out and reveals a tiny pub with a frontage of oak and opaque leaded windows. The only reason you know that the pub is there is because of the amount of people in the alley.

The original Mitre Tavern was built in 1546 for the servants of the Bishops of Ely, who had a palace nearby. In 1576 Queen Elizabeth the First commandeered a gatehouse and a portion of the Palace grounds for her court favourite Sir Christopher Hatton and she regularly came visiting. After stints as a prison and a Civil War hospital, the Palace reverted to the Crown in Georgian times and was then demolished.

This version of the Mitre was actually built around 1772, soon after the demolition of the nearby Bishops Palace. However the rebuilt pub has a stone mitre from a palace gatepost built into its front wall. Also a cherry tree, which once marked the boundary of the ground gifted to Hatton, is still there, preserved in the corner of the cosy panelled front bar.

Ye Old Mitre is quaint on the outside and cosy and serene inside. The décor includes Tudor beams, coal fires, portraits of Henry VIII and dozens of whisky water jugs hanging from the ceiling. There are tiny rooms to choose from, such as the royal red, the Bishop’s Room lounge or Ye Closet, a cubbyhole that intimately seats six people. In other words the place is stuffed with character. However, do not expect a beer swilling crowd. The pub is now a sedate drinking spot frequented by bankers, Fleet Street hacks and tourists eating homemade pork pies.

For more information go to www.yeoldemitreholborn.co.uk/

For your London Vacation Rental go to www.chsrentals.com/london


Tate Modern
by Cedric

Tate Modern is Britain’s national gallery of international modern art. It forms part of the Tate group of art galleries together with Tate Britain, Tate Liverpool, Tate St Ives and Tate Online. Tate Modern holds the national collection of British art from 1900 to the present day and international modern and contemporary art. The gallery is located in the former Bankside Power Station in Southwark on the south bank of the River Thames

The awe-inspiring Turbine Hall once housed the electricity generators of the old power station. It runs the length of the entire building, is five storeys tall and has 3,400 square metres of floor space. It is used to display large specially-commissioned works by contemporary artists. There are also many smaller internal side galleries. Special exhibitions covering the works of specific artists are regularly held

The former Bankside Power Station was originally designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, the architect of Battersea Power Station. It was built in two stages between 1947 and 1963. The power station closed in 1981. In 1992 The Tate Gallery at the British National Art Museum proposed a competition to build a new building for modern art. The planned new building was to hold part of the ever-expanding collection of modern and contemporary art

In 1995 it was announced that Herzog & de Meuron had won the competition with their simple design. The architects decided to reinvent the current building instead of demolishing it. Tate Modern is an example of adaptive reuse, the process of finding new life in old buildings. The building itself still resembles the 20th century factory in style from the outside and that is reflected on the inside by the light brown walls, steel girders and concrete floors. The façade of the building is constructed from 4.2 million bricks that are separated by groups of thin vertical windows helping to create a dramatic light inside

For more information go to www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern

For your London Vacation Rental go to www.chsrentals.com/london



Museum of London
by Cedric

Opened in December 1976 the Museum of London records the history of London from prehistoric to modern times. A few minutes’ walk from St Paul’s Cathedral, the museum is located on London Wall, which is on the edge of the oldest part of London and which is now the main financial district.

The architects adopted an innovative approach to museum design, whereby the galleries were laid out so that there was only one route through the museum – from the prehistoric period to the modern galleries.

Thus the museum comprises a series of chronological galleries containing original artefacts, models, pictures and diagrams, with a strong emphasis on archaeological discoveries, the built city, urban development and London’s social and cultural life, with interactive displays and activities for all ages. Fragments of the Roman London Wall can be seen just outside the museum. The prehistoric gallery, “London Before London” and the “Medieval London” gallery have already been updated, and in 2010 a refurbished gallery on “War, Plague and Fire” opened, covering the period of the English Civil War and the Great Fire of London.

In addition to the permanent galleries, the museum also holds special exhibitions. For example never-before-seen objects from the Metropolitan Police’s Crime Museum are on public display for the first time ever. This special exhibition ends on the 10th April 2016.

In March 2015, the museum announced plans to move from its Barbican site to nearby Smithfield Market. The move, contingent upon raising an estimated £70 million, is planned to be complete by 2021.

For more information go to www.museumoflondon.org.uk/

For your London Vacation Rental go to www.chsrentals.com/london



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