It’s that time of the decade again – Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas Queen, Defender of the Faith, or better known as just ‘The Queen’, is celebrating another successful 10 years on the throne. This time around it’s her Diamond Jubilee, marking 60 years since her coronation in 1952. And for us that means an additional bank holiday weekend (June 2-5th) embellished not just with diamonds, but fun and festivities, with the whole of London roaming around town in celebration.
With every barman, restaurant owner and shopkeeper in town trying to cash in on the big day(s), it may prove to be quite the challenge to find the best way to spend the big weekend. For that reason, we here at ItsRudeToStare rolled up our sleeves and did the dirty work for you. Just remember to book tickets, make reservations and set up your deckchairs early enough – if in 1977 some 10 million people flocked to the streets to celebrate, you can just about imagine, how many there will be in 2012! We ourselves are planning to wear our mother’s pearls to a civilized afternoon tea, after which the Docs will go on and street parties begin – on the Jubilee Weekend, you can have your scone and eat it too!
After the wedding shenanigans last spring and Diamond Jubilee this year, one might get used to the Royal Family providing an extra bank holiday weekend each year – wonder what they’ll have in store for us for 2013, a royal baby perhaps…
Diamond Jubilee River Pageant, Sunday, 3th of June on Thames River – Binoculars at the ready! The most extravagant event of the Jubilee festivities will take place on River Thames – it will be the largest flotilla held on the river in modern times with over 1000 boats participating and the Queen leading the way. Spot HRH alongside hubby Duke of Edinburgh on board of the Spirit of Chartwell. The bridges are closed between 7am to 8am (Albert, Lambeth, Westminster, Blackfriars, Tower, Millennium and Jubilee are closed; Vauxhall, Waterloo, Southwark, London Bridge open to pedestrians between 3 and 5.30 only for crossing and not viewing). For more information, click HERE
Day Festival at Battersea Park, Sunday, 3rd of June – Don’t quite feel like sacrificing your ribs to get a glimpse of Her Majesty and would rather just sit back and watch the whole shebang on telly? Well, staying in and watching telly is not an option – head over to Battersea Park instead. There they will provide a great opportunity to watch the River Pageant from the riverbank or from big screens in the park. With Vintage Festival’s Hemingway Design on board, expect all the glory from the day of the coronation from swing bands to fun fairs and an outdoor cinema, while the Noisettes, the Selector, Fairey Acid Brass among others will perform on the main stage. The lovely tea garden is attempting to break records with the world’s tallest cake! For more information, click HERE
The Book Club Street Party, Sunday, 3th of June, FREE – Join the cool and the gang in East End for round deux of the Book Club Street Party, what is promising to be the biggest in London for the Diamond Jubilee. And after what they put on for the Royal Wedding last year, it will no doubt be one! There will be music, DJs, burgers from Bukowski and beer from London Fields Brewery; fancy dress is highly recommended and after the third toast you’ll know it was a jolly good idea. As will the other 5000 expected to turn up on the day! The event is free, kicks off from 12-noon and getting a priority wristband from the Book Club beforehand is recommended. For more information, click HERE
The Big Jubilee Lunch, Sunday, June 3rd, Piccadilly – The fourth annual Big Lunch falls fittingly on the Jubilee weekend and with that the Londoners hope to put on the biggest street party the country has ever seen. With the length of London’s Piccadilly and a 500 seat table set up, it seems higly likely! On show will be the best in British entertainment, culture, art, music and of course, food. Bring your own lunch or enjoy the lavish offerings on the tables by the road, or splurge and get your meal from the restaurants and food stalls along the road. For more information and to book an hour-long slot at the table, click HERE
AFTERNOON TEA – If love thy neighbor and festive togetherness is a tad too much to tolerate this Bank Holiday weekend, make a civilized reservation in one of London’s best restaurants:
Afternoon Tea at The Ritz – Watch The Big Lunch take shape in the decadent comfort of the Quintessentially British Ritz hotel Palm Court, enjoying a glass or three of champagne with your scones, cream and jam. Dress in your finest and enjoy a lush treat of an afternoon tea, after which you can walk home with a souvenir to add to your Royal China collection. Make reservations HERE
Archer Street’s Mini Street Party, Monday, 4th of June – An alternative to The Big Lunch on Piccadilly, West End’s newest hotspot, Archer Street will host a traditional street party. The venue will be pre-selling special tables of fours all themed around our best-loved royals. They will also be serving the bespoke, Jubilee cocktail, containing Millers Gin, Chase Rhubarb Liquer and Lady Grey Tea stirred with Rose Syrup, Cranberry Juice and Rhubarb Biters served in a vintage teapot as wellother favourite concoctions. So, join us for a quintessentially British knees-up – Rule Britannia style. Find out more and make a reservation HERE
Fortnum and Mason’s Jubilee Tea Salon – Fortnum and Mason on London’s Piccadilly has been sourcing and selling tea for over 300 year, so trust them to have the traditions of drinking tea down to fine art by now. Don’t believe – just ask the Queen as it was her who opened the newly refurbished St. James’s restaurant in March 2012. Turning tea time into a little bit of something between lunch and dinner has long traditions and where else to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee, then at London’s finest tribute to United Kingdom – the Fortnum and Mason department Store’s Tea room and restaurant. Find out more and make a reservation HERE
Albert Roux at The Landau – 2012 is also a special year for Albert Roux, who’s career in the kitchen started the same year’s has the Queen took over the reigns at Buckingham Palace. So Chris King at the Landau has recreated some of his favourite dishes to celebrate this. The Diamond Jubilee menu will launch on 28th May 2012 and will include one ‘Jubilee’ option per course. These dishes will reflect traditional menu items from the 1950s, straight from the recipe library of Albert and Michel Roux Jr. Sample dishes include: Soft Cotswold Legbar hen’s egg à la Reine, Gewürztraminer poached Var salmon Royale and Hereford strawberry Queen of Puddings. Find out more and make reservations HERE.
‘Street’ Party Brunch and Afternoon Tea at the Corinthia Hotel – In a prime location to celebrate the Jubilee, the Corinthia Hotel offers Afternoon Tea and a special Sunday brunch to celebrate the occasion. The Tea in the Lobby Lounge includes treats, such as your very own chocolate crown sprayed with edible cold colour. Bassoon have created a commemorative Jubilee Cocktail mixing Bombay Sapphire Gin, Miclo Apricot eaux de vie, Lemon juice, Lavender, bitter orange and Dubonnet rouge! The Northall will hold its very own ‘Street’ Party Brunch on Sunday 3rd June with Laurent-Perrier Champagne running on the tap. Massimo Restaurant & Oyster Bar will hold a quintessentially British picnic with a twist – instead of you bringing your food why don’t we bring our Italian style to your very own picnic table at Massimo’s! Oh, and did we mention they have a pretty awesome SPA at the hotel – laying under 2 slices of cucumber seems like quite a nice way to spend the Jubilee… Find out more and make reservations HERE