As I may have mentioned (I never shut up about it) our office is in a lovely location in the heart of SE1. A stone’s throw away from some of London’s greatest landmarks, there are much worse places we could be spending Monday to Friday. I’ve decided to take you on a mini guided tour around the area we work, feel free to come and visit us to see it for yourself!
Across our shared cobbled car park is the Design Museum, hosting work by some of the greatest artists and designers of all time. As well as design exhibitions, though, the famous museum is also sometimes used as a film set, most recently for Johnny Depp’s upcoming crime movie Mortdecai. Our car park was used as the catering area (so of course we lost a day of work to staring out of the front door hoping to bump into Depp) whilst Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor filmed scenes in the museum’s cafe and on the street outside. We even managed to sneak over and watch some of the filming, so keep your eye out for our film debuts in the background
To your left is Butler’s Wharf, a cute cobbled street where the buildings are connected by pretty rustic bridges. A selection of independent coffee shops and bakeries line the street, as well as a number of restaurants that overlook the river. We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to deciding where to go for a team lunch, but we know no matter where we go we’ll always have a great view.
If you continue straight ahead you’ll come to Tower Bridge, which really needs no introduction. One of the most “London” things about London, the bridge makes me swell with excitement every time I see it. Not to mention you can actually book a tour to go right to the top and take a look around, which is pretty sweet.
Again continuing straight on you’ll end up at Potter’s Fields, a small park overlooking the river that becomes a hive of activity during summer lunchtimes. Ice cream trucks and sandwich stalls aplenty, Potter’s Fields is the place to be when the sun is shining. The green is also used as an event space, with artists, designers and charities (amongst others) regularly putting on displays there. We’ve seen thousands of tiny teddy bears lined up to raise meningitis awareness, popcorn falling from a giant plastic popcorn cup suspended in the sky for Orange Wednesdays, and last summer a bungee jumping crane even stopped by.
If you turn around and retreat towards the office, you can climb the steps onto Tower Bridge and head down one of the many side roads that take you down to our end of Butler’s Wharf. Once on the bridge you’ll see an array of restaurants, pubs and cafes to get your teeth stuck into. A couple of my favourites are The Draft House (tasty American food that comes in large American portions, the side of macaroni cheese is not to be missed) and Dean Swift, a craft beer house that serves up fantastic food perfect for office lunches (we’ve been there for a team birthday lunch and the burgers were a perfect medium rare). They also decorate their windows with subtle fairy lights at Christmas time, which really helps to add some atmosphere to some potentially creepy streets after dark.
From there all that’s left to do is head back to the office. But once you’ve had a nose around the design museum, relaxed in the park and stuffed your face with cheesy macaroni, your lunch break is probably over anyway.