London Design Festival 2013

This year London will be hosting the 11th London Design Festival, due to take place in September. First staged in 2003, the Festival line-up is made up of over 300 events and shows staged from around the world. With more than 300 exciting events and exhibitions, London Design Festival 2013 promises to showcase the best of global design.

This annual event sets to promote the city’s creativity and excellence, by drawing in some of the country’s greatest educators and practitioners to help deliver what has been described as an ‘unmissable’ event.

From established businesses to entrepreneurs, London design festival has partnered up with businesses all over the nation to bring the best of the capitals culture. For that reason, individuals will not have to worry about finding something to do as there will be plenty of programmes, seminars and workshops for everyone to get involved in. There is a broad range of activities on offer, and the best part is, the majority of exhibitions are free to enter!

One of many spectacular displays at the festival has to be the Endless Stair, “a visually and architecturally astonishing” piece and one of the highlights of the event this year. You can take a closer look at this magnificent creation on your visit to the renowned Tate Modern.

As the day draws to an end you can take pleasure in relaxing in our PJ Lounge, with a contemporary twist, it’s all yours to enjoy on your next visit to DUKES London.

Mayor Thames Festival 2013 Returns to London

If you’re stopping by London this September, why not take a trip to the iconic Mayor Thames Festival, a free celebration of the history of the famous river and the city that sits on its banks. With a whole host of activities taking place across the ten-day spectacular, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Displays of river-related art, music and educational activities make it a gala of cultural diversity. 2013 marks the first year the festival has been extended to ten days, so you don’t want to miss out on the jam-packed line up of festivities and fun.

The highly anticipated annual Great River Race is due to take place on the 7th of September. 300 crews from across the globe gather to compete in this river-based marathon of speed and endurance, spanning a 21 mile distance that passes many of London’s most popular tourist attractions. Stand by the finish line at Ham House and cheer in the winning competitors.

As night descends upon the river on the 15th, stand witness to a maritime opera performance like no other. The main performers of the symposium are described as “an armada of historic vessels from the age of sail, steam and diesel”, gathering and exploding in a collective concerto of booming ship horns and blasting cannons. The river becomes the stage with the stunning O2 Academy lighting the performance against the darkness. The heady musical elements and outstanding display of historic vessels of long ago will culminate in a truly unique performance.

After all this cultural enrichment you’re going to need a place to relax, ready for what the rest of the festival has in store. Why not take time to enjoy a traditional Afternoon Tea in our stylish Drawing Room and Conservatory? Delicate finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones and a choice of patisserie are served with a choice of tea. Please visit our website for more information.

Waterloo Food Festival

If you’re in London this month, there’s still time to catch the Waterloo Food Festival! Renowned for its specialist food shops, bars, cafes, pubs and restaurants, the Southbank is hosting the fifth year of the celebration of food and flavour.

Join in with the festival for tastings, cooking demonstrations, and a selection of street food, where food businesses within Waterloo sit alongside long-term festival sponsors, featuring tropical cocktails, freshly prepared Latin American food, traditional pub grub and a selection of butchers, bakers, greengrocers, coffee specialists and wine merchants.

Making its debut is also the Lower Marsh Market, one of London’s oldest and best loved street markets, with mouth watering offers on every delicious food stall. Festival goers can check out the many outdoor food and music events, such as a tequila tasting and ethically sourced Mexican food, or explore the Fantasy Cafe, in which artists take over to create a place ‘full of your wildest dreams’.

The event is now more accessible than ever, with a brand new free app to download, helping food fans informed on the go. The Twitter feed also provides live updates, and the offers and competitions page is a great way to find out how to get an amazing deal. Make sure you go soon, as the exciting event ends on the 31st July!

This is a wonderful destination for foodies everywhere, so why not quench your thirst after at DUKES bar? The best venue to relax in a timeless atmosphere. The exclusive and intimate bar is famous for its personalised cocktails and renowned Martinis, and is the perfect end to a day of exploring your taste buds.

Sundance Film and Music Festival returns to London

This year’s Sundance Film and Music Festival is set to take place at The 02, London. The Sundance Festival offers four sensational days of live music and the UK premieres of American independent films, fresh from the 2013 Sundance Film Festival in Park city, Utah.

This year’s film festival boasts, amongst a variety of extraordinary films, Lake Bell’s award winning “In a World….” which is the story of an underachieving vocal coach, who is motivated by her father to pursue her aspirations of becoming a voice-over star which sets her on a path to change the voice of a generation.

Musically, Sundance London presents a fantastic range of genres, including newcomer Alex Burey, a 17 year old soul singer from Croydon and Lesley Pike who is known across Northern America and the UK for her engaging and comical live shows of electronic music which hold a hint of a 1980s influence.

Alongside film and music, Sundance London offers a range of special events which are designed to bring a unique experience to festival goers, one such event is the Filmmakers Hub Talk which is an exciting opportunity to have a sit down talk with some of the festival’s filmmakers.

The bonus to this amazing experience is that it is affordable, individual screenings cost £14 which includes a booking fee. However, if you’re an avid film enthusiast, you might be more interested in the festival’s packages; such as: the sky superscreen pass which is £280.

Just a 25 minute, no fuss train journey from the hotel to the o2 Arena, DUKES London is a great place to stay while attending this remarkable festival. You can take the opportunity to wind down after the excitements of the day in our infamous bar or alternatively you can relax in one of our luxurious suites.