For any fan of royalty dreaming of Britain ahead of the Queen's official birthday celebration on 8th June, there's the chance to get a taste of some of the capital’s regal locations with our royal London illustration! Featuring the finest royal tailors, the Queen’s favourite grocery store, and the makers of Meghan Markel’s engagement ring, our interactive drawing reveals more about these royal institutions and suppliers, making it the perfect place to start when imagining a right regal foray.
Imagine a vast garden filled with soothing bird song, a gentle breeze and the whisper of the footsteps of historic British queens! With ornamental flower beds and graceful fountains, Kensington Palace Gardens was commissioned by Queen Mary and transformed into the grand park it is today by Queen Caroline in the 1700s. It was at that point that the Serpentine boating lake, Broad Walk and round pond were added to the grand 242-acre garden. Those daydreaming about soaking up some of this royal tranquillity can enjoy a virtual tour of Hyde Park and the nearby Kensington Palace Gardens.
The setting for every coronation since 1066, Westminster Abbey is one of the most iconic buildings in existence, as its walls have seen more than 1,000 years of British tradition. Royal fans keen to imagine donning a twinkling crown and sceptre can get a little closer to their dreams as they admire the High Alter, used as the setting for coronations, with this online tour of Westminster Abbey.
This stunning 57-acre Royal Park is located in the heart of Westminster and is home to The Mall and Horse Guards Parade. There are spectacular views of the park from the Blue Bridge and a chance to marvel at majestic monuments like the Queen Victoria Memorial and the Duke of York statue.
This Georgian residence was built in 1732 and became home to several aristocratic families as well as King Charles II’s mistress Nell Gwynne. It’s now an upscale boutique hotel (part of the exclusive Soho House Group) and provides traditional British style and comfort to its guests.
Situated just around the corner from Buckingham Palace, this prestigious jewellers made Meghan Markle’s enormous diamond engagement ring. Cleave’s craftsmen also create decorations and medals for palace offices, heads of state and military institutions around the world.
To think of one image that embodies royal London is to envisage the red uniformed Queen’s Guards! Horse Guards Parade is situated just off Whitehall and is the site of the Trooping the Colour, the ceremony to mark the Queen’s official birthday. The Household Cavalry Museum details the history and accomplishments of the Household Cavalry, while providing a unique behind-the-scenes look at the work of the Queen’s Mounted Bodyguard. A virtual 3D tour of the museum reveals more about these respected British traditions.
With more than 300 years of history spanning 12 British monarchs, and having received two Royal Warrants, it’s no wonder Fortnum & Mason is known as the ‘Queen’s grocer’! The department store is infused with regal luxury, offering a chance to smell and taste a slice of royal life, as it continues to sell the finest foods and luxury hampers - Queen Elizabeth is even said to enjoy their delicate Earl Grey blend every morning! Why not browse through the full range of luxurious goodies fit for a queen.
Located on St James’s Street, Lock & Co. Hatters is the oldest hat shop in the world. Known for its fine craftsmanship and innovative designs, this family-owned business has designed hats for Sir Winston Churchill, Oscar Wilde and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Aside from wondering which style of hat to choose, why not take a look at the outside of the shop for a visual taste of British millinery tradition.
The largest of the royal palaces, this has been the official London residence of the UK’s sovereigns since 1837. As the Queen’s London home, and the birthplace of Prince Andrew and Prince Charles, Buckingham Palace is often the focus of both royal and national celebrations. The State Rooms are a particular highlight, a set of beautifully decorated rooms where the Queen and the Royal family entertain guests on state, ceremonial and other occasions. For those dreaming of visiting, it’s possible to explore many of the rooms, including the Throne Room, White Drawing Room and Grand Staircase, in 360˚ images on the Palace’s official website.
2020 saw the Royal Horticultural Society host a virtual flower show, celebrating all things fantastically floral online. The world-famous annual five-day event brought together horticulturalists from around the globe to digitally showcase their palms, inspirational gardens and floral delights. with more information on the RHS website.
Guarded inside the Jewel House at the Tower of London, the Crown Jewels is a dazzling collection of 23,578 gemstones. Still used in royal ceremonies today, the collection contains crowns and ceremonial regalia that date back to the 1600s. Those wanting to see the home of these historic jewels can embark on an online tour of the tower to delve deep into its past.
This luxury brand has provided the Royal Family with the finest garments since 1809. It holds three Royal Warrants and has a long history of crafting uniforms for the Royal Navy and the British Army. The Gieves & Hawkes flagship store is located in the home of bespoke tailoring, Saville Row, one of London’s most stylish streets.
For more information contact:
VisitBritain Media Teampressandpr@visitbritain.org