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London Travel Guide

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It’s one of the world’s most visited cities and after you see it for yourself, you’ll understand why. This sport-mad city is chock full of things to do and see, from first-class museums and galleries to designer shopping, and there are heaps of attractions and all things touristy.

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London Travel Guide

  1. 1. PRESENTS LondonA GUIDE TO LONDON ENGLAND
  2. 2. Roadrips Presents London | 5 It’s one of the world’s most visited cities and after you see it for yourself, you’ll understand why.This sport-mad city is chock full of things to do and see, from first-class museums and galleries to designer shopping, and there are heaps of attractions and all things touristy. London has some of the top hotels and restaurants in the world and is a great destination for those seeking out the best of the best. While the city is so quintessentially British, it is also incredibly diverse, with a third of the population having been born abroad.The multicultural aspect is a huge part of what makes London so unique; where else can you can get a taste of so many other ethnicities (sometimes literally at some of London’s wonderful restaurants) without the culture shock? Between Wimbledon and the Summer Games, we’ve spent a lot of time in London and we want to pass along some of the things we’ve learned about this great city. L
  3. 3. Roadrips Presents London | 7 TRAVELTIPS London is a vibrant city with so much to see beyond the Wimbledon Championships. While London competes with other world capitals in terms of entertainment, attractions, shopping and dining, the city is relatively compact and once you get the hang of it, it can be fairly easy to navigate. As is usual when venturing outside of our home country, there are always challenges present, usually extending from differing customs and common practices. One of the great things about London (at least for our English-speaking guests) is that unlike many other international destinations, there is no language barrier. One of our goals at Roadtrips is to help set your expectations and do whatever we can to ensure that you are prepared for London’s challenges and triumphs, and to create the best possible experience for all of our guests. L
  4. 4. 8 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 9 GETTING TO LONDON London is a major airline hub and as a result, there are plenty of flight options from major North American cities.The majority of these international flights arrive into Heathrow International Airport (LHR), which is located 15 miles west of the city. Gatwick Airport (LGW), 27 miles south of London, also handles a fair amount of international traffic. London City (LCY), Stansted (STN), and Luton (LTN) airports also service London but mainly with domestic and European flights. To get to the city from Heathrow, we recommend pre-booking a private car and driver for a stress-free ride into central London. For the utmost in comfort, Roadtrips can arrange your transfer in a beautiful new Jaguar or Mercedes Benz. If you’re feeling more adventurous, the tube (London’s underground rail system), via the Piccadilly line, is an inexpensive and quick option. As an alternative, there are taxis of course, but if you find yourself stuck in the notorious London traffic, the meter can rise quickly. TRAVELTIMES & TRANSPORTATION Like most major world cities, traffic can be a significant issue in London. In particular, when it comes to major events such as Wimbledon, traffic patterns are, by nature, always somewhat dynamic. Roadtrips accesses official information from local authorities and from our destination partners to provide the best information possible about traffic, estimated travel times, and permitted drop off points at the All England LawnTennis Club (AELTC). Roadtrips’ Wimbledon guests will benefit hugely from our experience working at multiple Wimbledon Championships as well as the 2012 London Summer Games. We strongly recommend that you plan your journey to Wimbledon in advance, with the assistance of the Roadtrips At-Your-Service Desk. Our personal concierges can arrange a luxury vehicle and driver to take the stress out of getting to Wimbledon. It is important to take into account that roads servicingThe Championships will be heavily congested, and extra time may be needed to complete your journey. There are plenty of public transportation options available for getting to the Wimbledon Championships as well, either via tube, train, tram, or bus.TheTransport for London website offers a journey planner that can assist and of course, the Roadtrips At-Your-Service Desk is well-prepared to help you plan your route as well. DINING OUT& RESERVATIONS Boasting a long list of Michelin-starred restaurants, London is a standout in the restaurant scene. London restaurants are generally open for lunch around noon and dinner from 6 pm. Often Londoners take later meals than we are used to in North America, so if you find yourself without a reservation for dinner, you can opt for an earlier seating time and will most likely find a table. Many restaurants also offer a pre-theatre seating before 7pm, often a special pre-set menu. For top-end restaurants it’s wise to reserve a table in advance, either directly with the restaurant, or with the assistance of the Roadtrips At-Your- Service Desk. Be sure to check out our London Restaurant Guide to hear about some of our favorites. HOW TO DIALLOCALLY AND INTERNATIONALLY To call a London phone number from a US or Canadian phone (mobile or land line) you must dial 011 + Country Code (44 for United Kingdom) + Area Code (20 for London) + the local phone number. To call a US or Canadian phone number from your North American mobile phone you must dial 00 + 1 + Area Code +Telephone Number. LANGUAGE The language spoken in England is of course, English. While this makes things easy for our Anglophone guests, even those most skilled
  5. 5. 10 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 11 at the language may be occasionally tested (and amused) with the notorious British slang. While you’ll hear more English than any other tongue, London is a very diverse city and you may hear dozens of different languages spoken throughout your visit. WEATHER Summer can be very pleasant with temperatures averaging 18°C (64°F) and often rising into the low 20s (70s F), perfect for taking in a match. While warm summers are the norm, London does occasionally experience heat waves with temperatures soaring well above 30°C (86°F). The number of rainy days is fairly consistent throughout the year with between 11 and 15 rainy days each month. Overall rainfall is highest in November and August and is lowest in March and April. Centre Court at the AELTC does have a retractable roof, so that you can enjoy the tennis regardless of the weather. BANKING & LOCALCURRENCY The UK’s currency is the pound sterling (£ / GBP). Despite being a member of the European Union, the UK has not adopted the euro. Just as Americans have dollars and cents, the UK has pounds and pence, with 100 pence equaling one pound. More colloquially, pence are often referred to simply as “p,” a pound is known as a “quid”, a five-pound note is a “fiver” and a ten-pound note a “tenner.” Credit cards, especially Visa and Mastercard, are widely accepted in London’s restaurants, bars, cafés and shops. American Express and Diners Club cards are less commonly accepted. There are plenty of cash machines (also known as cashpoints or ATMs) dotted around London. Most accept international cards with the Visa, Plus, Mastercard, Cirrus or Maestro symbols. Note that if you have a non-UK account you will almost certainly have to pay a charge when you withdraw cash. ELECTRICITY Voltage in London runs between 220-240 V. You will need to use a converter, which allows your electronic device to run on a different voltage, especially for anything that runs on 110 V. Most outlets in London are the European 3-prong style or two round, oversized prongs and will require an adapter to convert a North American pronged plug to fit the outlet. TIME ZONE London is on British SummerTime (BST) duringThe Championships. During Daylight SavingsTime (the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October), London is one hour ahead of Greenwich MeanTime (GMT/UTC). In the winter, London is the same as GMT. It’s standard practice to leave a tip for good service in a restaurant, generally 10-15% of your total bill. Some restaurants may include a service fee in the total (particularly for larger groups) so it’s wise to check your bill first.Tipping the bar staff in London’s many pubs is not necessary or expected. As for taxis, it’s common to show your appreciation by rounding up to the nearest pound, or leaving up to 10% for longer rides or exceptional service. WHATABOUTTIPPING?
  6. 6. 12 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 13 TRANSPORTATION London is a very compact city, making it easy to take in a lot of its spectacular attractions in a day. Roadtrips’ guests travelling to Wimbledon will have the benefit of our At-Your-Service Desk to assist with planning transportation to the event and throughout their stay in London. For many of our guests, a private hosted vehicle will be the most desirable transportation option for getting toThe Championships at Wimbledon. As one would expect, London has plenty of other transportation options available, with the tube (underground railroad) being the most popular. If you plan on using primarily public transportation, we recommend picking up a Visitor Oyster Card, a prepaid combined travel pass that allows you to access the tube, bus and most rail services. . L
  7. 7. 14 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 15 TAXI Black cabs (which are not necessarily black) can be hailed in the street or at designated ranks situated in prominent places including most mainline rail, tube and bus stations.They can also be booked by telephone. If the yellowTAXI sign is illuminated, the cab is available for hire. Fares are metered, and cabs are licensed to carry up to five people plus luggage. All black cabs are wheelchair accessible.The black cabs (also referred to as taxis) are different from minicabs, which must be pre-booked. PRIVATE HIRE VEHICLES Roadtrips can arrange for a private vehicle for those preferring the comforts of a dedicated car, including brand new Jaguars and Mercedes Benz. In addition, the concierge at our premium hotels can make private chartered vehicle arrangements on request, when and where available. UNDERGROUND London’s underground rail network, or ‘the tube’ as it is more commonly known, is usually the quickest and easiest way of travelling around the city. Greater London is served by 12 lines; the color-coded routes have clear signage and lots of connections to service most of the city. To get to Wimbledon on theTube, take the District Line to Southfields, then follow the signs for the short 15 minute walk to the gate. TRAM ArelativenewcomerontheLondontransport scene,London’stramnetworkbeganservicein 2000.Thetramnetwork(Tramlink)runsbetween BeckenhamandWimbledonandiswheelchair accessible. BUS London buses run an extensive network throughout the city, stopping at designated bus stops. Many routes operate 24 hours a day, though night service is less frequent. All buses are wheelchair accessible. During the Wimbledon Championships, there is direct bus service to Wimbledon from St. Pancras, Euston, Baker Street, Marble Arch, and Victoria Stations. CAR RENTAL As there are so many transportation options in London, car hire isn’t necessary or required to get around. Navigating the streets of London can be a hassle, finding parking even more so. If you do feel a car is the best option, London has all the major international car rental agencies. Ensure that you have proper insurance, good maps and that you stay on the “right” side of the road! WALKING It’sverypossibletoexploretheessentialsof Londonbyfootifyouprefer.It’sworthittograba mapfromyourhotelconcierge,planoutyourroute andtakeastrollalongtheThames.Ifyougettired, thereareplentyofoptionstogetyoubacktoyour hotel–ataxi,adouble-deckerbusorthetubeare allveryaccessible.TheLondonA-Zguideisalso veryhelpfulifyouaregoingtotrytonavigatethe streetsonyourown;it’ssoldinbookstores,tube andtrainstationsalloverthecity. CYCLING A 24-hour bike rental program called Santander Cycles has a network of over 700 stations around London.The first 30 minutes are free but beyond that the charge goes up incrementally by the half hour.The program allows you to borrow a bike and then return to any station. Payment is by credit card or debit card only. A guided bike tour is also a great way to see the city of London
  8. 8. 16 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 17 TOP 5 THINGS TO SEE IN LONDON L
  9. 9. 18 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 19 BUCKINGHAM PALACE Buckingham Palace has served as the official London residence of Britain’s sovereigns since 1837 and today is the administrative headquarters of the Monarch. Marvel at the magnificent architecture and be sure to stay for the changing of the guard. If you happen to be in London when the Palace is open to visitors (typically late summer and fall), you can tour the magnificent staterooms, lavishly furnished with some of the greatest treasures from the Royal Collection. NearestLondonUndergroundStations: St James’s Park - District and Circle Lines (0.4 miles) Victoria - Victoria, District and Circle Lines (0.4 miles) GreenPark-Piccadilly,JubileeandVictoriaLines(0.5miles) Hyde Park Corner - Piccadilly Line (0.7 miles) KENSINGTON PALACE After a major £12 million project in early 2012 to create a palace for everyone, Kensington Palace features newly landscaped gardens, entrance loggia, free public spaces and a café. Inside, the first permanent interpretative story, Victoria Revealed, is a fascinating story of QueenVictoria from her childhood to her old age. Additionally, visitors can explore the beautiful state apartments and a small evocative display of dresses belonging to Princess Diana. NearestLondonUndergroundStations: HighStreetKensington-DistrictandCircleLines(0.4miles) Queensway - Central Line (0.5 miles) TOWER OF LONDON The tower of London spans over 900 years of British history. Fortress, palace, prison, arsenal and garrison, it is one of the best-preserved and most famous fortified buildings in the world, and houses the priceless Crown Jewels, armories, Yeoman Warders and ravens. NearestLondonUndergroundStations: Tower Hill - Circle and District Lines (0.2 miles) WESTMINSTER ABBEY Theworld-famouschurchpresentsastunningtripthrough thehistoryoftheBritishIsles.Aworkingchurch,theAbbeyis hometocountlesstombsandmemorialstothemostfamous kingsandqueens,statesmenandsoldiers,poetsandpriests, andwasmorerecentlythevenuefortheRoyal Wedding. NearestLondonUndergroundStations: StJames’sPark-DistrictandCircleLines(0.2miles) Westminster-Jubilee,DistrictandCircleLines(0.2miles) BOROUGH MARKET Borough Market is London’s most renowned food market; it’s a source of exceptional British and international produce.This market has developed into a vast repository of culinary knowledge and understanding. It’s a place to explore, to ask questions, to discover new flavors and to savor a unique atmosphere. NearestLondonUndergroundStations: London Bridge - Northern and Jubilee Lines (0.1 miles) Borough - Northern Line (0.3 miles)
  10. 10. 20 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 21 ACCOMMODATIONS London really has it all when comes to accommodations; you can find everything including a great selection of charming boutique hotels and the utmost in luxury properties. With so many diverse neighborhoods to explore, it’s easy to find a perfect fit for your home in London. All of our London hotels are centrally located to give you an ideal base for exploring the city. Our accommodations have been carefully selected not only for the location, but also for their service, amenities, and comfort. Choose from some of the best hotels in the city, includingThe Ritz,The Corinthia andThe Savoy. L
  11. 11. 22 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 23 ROADTRIPS RESTAURANT GUIDETO LONDON London is a fabulous destination for a foodie. As one of the most diverse cities on the planet, you can find almost any type of food, and often at any hour of the day (or night). You’ll find everything from mouth- watering takeaway at hole-in-the-wall type places to the finest of dining at Michelin-starred restaurants. We’ve listed some of our favorites below, sorted by neighborhood. L
  12. 12. 24 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 25 MAYFAIR LE CAPRICE Cuisine - European Whether for lunch or dinner, Le Caprice serves delicious upscale Modern European comfort food.The menu varies widely, featuring Confit duck leg and Black Mount venison alongside fish and chips and the Caprice burger. Incredibly popular is the salmon fishcake served with buttered spinach and sorrel sauce. You can also give their special brunch menu a taste, available on Sundays. www.le-caprice.co.uk HAKKASAN Cuisine - Asian Highly recommended is Hakkasan, a Michelin- starred gem in Mayfair. Indulgent and delicious asian cooking is prepared under the watchful eye of executive head chefTong Chee Hwee and his creations are complemented by a bumping and stylish atmosphere. hakkasan.com/locations/hakkasan-mayfair THE WOLSELEY Cuisine - European Not sure whatyou are in the mood for?The Wolseley isyour answer. A grand café-restaurant that buzzes from early morning until late, seven days a week,The Wolseley features eclectic menus for any time of day including breakfast, afternoon tea, lunch, dinner and an all-day menu which encompasses European classics.You can satisfyyour hunger with a wide array of choices from eggs benedict to delicious soups and sandwiches to rib eye steaks and Cornish crab. www.thewolseley.com AVISTA RESTAURANT Cuisine - Italian If excellent Italian cuisine is whatyou seek, look no further than Avista restaurant.The Burrata starter is an absolute must, which can be enjoyed with any of their varied main courses including pastas, fish, and meat-based dishes.The chef’s own version ofTiramisu prepared al minuto and served in a martini glass is top-notch. www.avistarestaurant.com BABBO RESTAURANT Cuisine - Italian Babbo’s seasonal menus showcase the best of simple Italian classics done incredibly well. The restaurant has a great vibe and wine list to complement the delicious cuisine.The menu includes fresh bread and home made pastas, as well as a number of mains that feature both meat and seafood as the highlighted ingredient. Highly recommended is the traditional veal Milanese with rocket salad and cherry tomatoes. The service and the food are both excellent, making Babbo a great choice for lunch or dinner. www.babborestaurant.co.uk TAMARIND Cuisine - Indian For a taste of something different, try the Michelin-starredTamarind, a modern Indian restaurant with an extensive menu and excellent service. Recommended is the Hyderabadi Shank, a slow-cooked lamb shank with turmeric, yogurt, browned garlic and freshly ground spices, which your server will debone for you at the table. Also delicious is the Awadhi Murgh, boneless chicken in an aromatic sauce with melon seeds, yogurt and spices. Finish your meal with the house specialty velvety dark chocolate mousse flavored with a hint of cinnamon and orange zest www.tamarindrestaurant.com SOHO THE ROCK & SOLE PLAICE Cuisine - Fish & Chips ForthoseseekingaBritishstaple,headtoTheRock &SolePlaiceforsomeexcellentfishandchips.The restaurantservesdeliciouslybatteredfreshfishand hand-cutchips,popularwithtouristsandlocalsalike. Thereareafewindoorandoutdoortablesbutyou canalsoordertotakeawayandenjoyyourmeal whereveryouchoose. www.rockandsoleplaice.com
  13. 13. 26 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 27 BOCCA DI LUPO Cuisine - Italian AminutewalkfromPiccadillyliesthetrendyBocca DiLupo,servinguniquetapas-styledishesfrom acrossItaly.Themenuchangesalmosteverydayto keepupwithchangingseasonsandtoensurethe freshestingredients.Themenufeaturesamultitude ofoptionstosatisfyyourappetiteincluding pastas,soupsandstews,meatandseafood,all complementedbystartersandsidessuchasthe delectableMozzarellaBocconciniFrittiRomani,so goodyouwillwanttohaveitfordesserttoo www.boccadilupo.com SOUTHBANK OXO BRASSERIE Cuisine - British If a fabulous view and fabulous food is what you seek then the OXO Brasserie is sure to please. Located on the eighth floor of the OXO Tower with floor to ceiling windows, it provides panoramic views of theThames and the city. You can also request a table on the terrace to enjoy an al fresco summer dining experience. A favorite starter is the San Daniele ham with caramelized Comice pear, goat’s curd, toasted brioche and truffle honey hazelnuts. www.harveynichols.com/restaurant/the- oxo-tower/brasserie ST.JAMES’S THE BALCON Cuisine - French/British Just around the corner fromTrafalgar Square, you’ll findThe Balcon, a modern London and Parisian grand brasserie. Enjoy excellent service and spectacular dishes such as the French onion soup and specialtyTrealy Farm Charcuterie Salad with Roquefort and caramelized pears, and those are just the starters.The menu offers varied mains, from rotisserie chicken with baked potatoes and sage and onion stuffing to slow cooked Scottish beef and foie gras cottage pie with chanterelle mushrooms. www.thebalconlondon.com STRAND THE HAWKSMOOR Cuisine - British Steakhouse We know the words British, steakhouse, and great meal don’t usually go together. The Hawksmoor is the exception to that rule!The best beef in London (served with a decidedly British twist) can be found here in a former underground brewery that has been transformed into a hip, Covent Garden dining room. Definite recommends include shared chateaubriand for two, chips fried in beef drippings and succulent creamed spinach. thehawksmoor.com LES DEUX SALONS Cuisine - French This bustling Grand Parisian brasserie situated in Covent Garden serves delicious classic and modern French food.The menu features starters, salads, terrines, soups, and a wealth of mains including dishes from the charcoal grill and of course, the classic slow cooked beef with carrots in a red wine sauce that never disappoints. Finish your meal with a warm apple tart and vanilla ice cream, perfection! www.lesdeuxsalons.co.uk THE SAVOYGRILL Cuisine - Steakhouse The menu at Gordon Ramsay’sThe Savoy Grill is presented much like an a la carte steakhouse with numerous beef and seafood variations to choose from and sides such as honey carrots and cauliflower gratin to supplement your main course. We recommend the delicious lobster bisque to start, which is presented with lobster pieces topped with fresh butter while the server pours the bisque directly from the saucepan to your bowl. For dessert, try their pistachio soufflé served a la mode. gordonramsayrestaurants.com/savoy-grill
  14. 14. 28 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 29 ASIA DE CUBA Cuisine - Asian Fusion Asia De Cuba features an unassuming façade with no exterior signage so as to maintain the secrecy of this hidden gem.The menu, a fusion of Asian and Cuban cuisine features large portions that are perfect for sharing, such as their grilled strip steak main course, served with gingered chickpea fries.The sweet brioche Mexican doughnuts are a must, rolled in cinnamon sugar and filled with butterscotch sauce they are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. www.morganshotelgroup.com/originals/ originals-st-martins-lane-london/eat-drink/ asia-de-cuba MULTIPLE LOCATIONS GOODMAN Cuisine - Steakhouse London’s version of the New York Steakhouse, Goodman’s chefs pride themselves on serving you the most tender full-flavored steak in London, only ever using the finest prime beef. Although steaks are king at Goodman, their all-day menu features plenty of other tempting options such as the Goodman Burger served with the traditional chips and unique sides like the lobster mac and cheese and truffle chips. www.goodmanrestaurants.com JAMIE’S ITALIAN Cuisine - Italian Jamie’s Italian recreates fantastic rustic dishes in a relaxed, neighborhood atmosphere.The menu offers a wide selection of antipasti, pasta, mains, sides, and desserts. For your starter, try the Bruschetta, topped with seasonal ingredients, it is a definitely a tasty way to start your meal. For your main course, the chicken liver tortellini, featuring Norfolk Black chicken livers flamed with Vin Santo, crispy pancetta and a silky sage sauce is highly recommended. www.jamieoliver.com/italian/restaurants
  15. 15. 30 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 31 WIMBLEDON FACTS+FIGURES L
  16. 16. 32 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 33 From June 27th to July 10th, 2016, the tennis world will descend upon the historic All England Lawn Tennis Club, where since 1877, many of the sport’s greatest competitors have tested their skill and determination on Wimbledon’s famous natural grass courts. Arguably the most impressive and prestigious major tennis tournament, the early rounds of Singles and Doubles are played during the first week, with top seeds playing on the Centre Court and Courts 1 and 2.The Ladies’ and Men’s Singles Finals take place over the final weekend of the Championships. Each year, five major events are contested, as well as four junior events and three invitational events.The five major trophies which the players compete for during the course of the Wimbledon Championships include: • The Gentlemen’s SinglesTrophy, which was first presented by the All England Club in 1887. It replaced the Field Cup (1877-1883) and the Challenge Cup (1884-1886), which were both won by William Renshaw after twice winning the gentlemen’s title three times in succession. • The Ladies’ SinglesTrophy is a silver salver, sometimes referred to as the Rosewater Dish or Venus Rosewater Dish, and was first presented to the Champion when the challenge round was introduced in 1886. • The Gentlemen’s DoublesTrophy is a silver challenge cup for the Gentlemen’s Pairs’ competition. When the doubles moved to Wimbledon in 1884, the Oxford University LawnTennis Club presented the trophy to the All England Club. • The Ladies’ DoublesTrophy is an elegant silver cup and cover, known asThe Duchess of Kent Challenge Cup, and was presented to the Club in 1949 by HRHThe Princess Marina, President of the All England Club. • The Mixed DoublesTrophy is a silver challenge cup and cover presented to the All England Club by the family of the late S.H. Smith. S.H. Smith won the doubles title in 1902 and 1906, in partnership with the late F.L. Riseley.
  17. 17. 34 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 35 THE HISTORYOF WIMBLEDON Wimbledon is one of the most prestigious tennis tournaments in the world today and is the only grand slam still played on grass. But if you go back in history, it had a very humble and rather unremarkable beginning. It started as a minor sideshow in 1875 at the All England Croquet Club based at Worple Road, Wimbledon.The club was founded in 1868 at the height of a croquet craze. Over time, when lawn tennis superseded croquet, the club went through a few name changes and is today known as the All England LawnTennis Club. L
  18. 18. 36 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 37 The person responsible for introducing lawn tennis at the club was Major Walter Clopton Wingfield, a British army officer who is regarded as the founder of lawn tennis. At that time, the sport was in its infancy and was called Sphairistike. He set one lawn aside for the sport, leaving the rest for croquet. Soon the game grew in popularity and the club changed its name toThe All England Croquet and LawnTennis Club. The first tennis championship at the club was held in 1877 and it was a men’s singles tournament. It was held to raise money for the pony-drawn roller for the croquet lawns. At that time the serves were made underarm. Spencer Gore, the winner of the year and possibly the first Wimbledon champion, is reported to have said that “lawn tennis will never rank among our great games.” He couldn’t have been more wrong. The club introduced Ladies’ Singles and Gentlemen’s Doubles in 1884 and Ladies’ Doubles and Mixed Doubles in 1913. In 1922, the club moved to the larger ground on Church Road, Wimbledon where it remains today.The move was prompted by the popularity of the Frenchwoman Suzanne Lenglen, who won 31 tennis championships between 1914 and 1926. The All England LawnTennis Club, now popularly known as the All-England Club, currently has 19 grass courts, 5 red clay courts, 3 continental clay courts, one American clay court and five indoor courts.There are also 22 Aorangi Park grass courts, which are primarily used as practice courts.The club holds the Wimbledon Championships over two weeks in late June and early July every year and attracts an average attendance of 450,000 people.
  19. 19. 38 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 39 WHATMAKES WIMBLEDON SO FUN? This year we had one of our best trips to Wimbledon ever, and we got fantastic feedback from our guests about how great the experience was. We asked our fabulous host Sam Buffie to tell us why this year was so good, and what it is that makes this such a fun sporting event to attend. L Roadtrips Host: Sam Buffie
  20. 20. 40 London | A Guide to London, England Roadrips Presents London | 41 So Sam, what is it that makes Wimbledon so special? Wimbledon always seems like it is such an exclusive event, I think in part because it is held at such a small venue. It feels like an intimate venue, because there’s only seating for 14,000 so really no matter where you are sat you can see exactly what’s going on.This includes being able to see into the Royal Box. You can actually look over and see which members of the royal family are there, which is pretty cool. Plus, it is such an iconic event and so quintessentially British, and there are all those things that come with it, such as having strawberries and cream there, and visiting the champagne bar or having Pimm’s and lemonade. What is the atmosphere like at the event? Wimbledon is super laid-back and friendly. It isn’t super dressy - people are dressed smartly but it isn’t over the top.The grounds there are just so beautiful and well maintained that it is a pleasure to just be there. Even in the court, people chat with their neighbors, which makes for a really sweet experience. Was the tennis especially fantastic this year? Oh yes, it really was.To be able to see Andy Murray and Roger Federer play was really cool. Just to be able to get tickets alone to that match makes the experience we were able to offer our guests so unique. When guests are staying in London for Wimbledon, are they close to lots of other major attractions? Absolutely.There are so many iconic sights in London. A few of our guests’ favourites are Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, theTower of London and the London Eye. And of course keeping an eye out for royals at Buckingham or Kensington Palace. Many clients enjoy taking in a stadium tour as well - such as Wembley or Arsenal.The tube makes it easy to get around but some visitors prefer to have a private vehicle. London is just a fantastic city with world renowned attractions and activities. What reactions do you commonly get from guests that we take to Wimbledon? The most frequent comment we hear from our clients is that Wimbledon was always one of the top sporting events they wanted to attend - it was their bucket list trip and did not disappoint. I think the atmosphere of Centre Court is very unique, and knowing that it is a favourite event for the players makes it even more special. We’ve received very positive feedback about the organization and detail put into their trips too. Being a spectator at Wimbledon is a one of a kind experience, and very special indeed.

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