I’ve heard my fair share of “i’m tired of instagrammable locations”. If you’re expecting me to have 5 carefully thought out paragraphs, about why i’m abandoning instagram’s favourites all together for a more original life, you’d be wrong. On the other hand if you’re looking for the group of people still very much basking in well photographed London cafés, you’ve found the club’s president. My name is MariaJBlogs (well, it isn’t but it might as well be, even my parents call me it now) and i’m an instagrammable location addict.
Flower walls, over priced cupcakes, neon signs ..London in the last year has become one big instagram opportunity. A walk down Elizabeth St on a Saturday will find you surrounded by tourists, even in the drizzle you’ll see a group of 4 girls, outfits with accents of pink all sat around a table at Peggy Porschen.. they’ve got the train in from somewhere (outside of the M25) and the first stop on their list was a picture at the pink café.. drizzle was not planned.
“Where do they find these places?”– Everyone, 2018.
I have done my fair share of hitting up London’s famously photographed locations, so in my attempt to make the images slightly more worthwhile rather than wasted on 24 hours Instagram exposure, i thought i would compile them into a second instagrammable locations post. (Yes there was a first, it’s old now, you can find it here.)
1. Dominique Ansel Bakery, Elizabeth St, Belgravia, SW1W 9RP
Yes, you want a photo in front of the flower wall at the Dominique Ansel Bakery.. or like me you turn up, wait for a table in front of the flower wall (hover next to it in a pressuring manner) and two come available at once. In this most rare of cases you decide a photo sat at your table is not enough, you must perch yourself on the arm of the bench, so everyone who sees this photo on the gram knows what rarity you have achieved. “Rumour has it you can hire out the Café for photo at the flower wall” is what they’ll say.
2. Elizabeth Street, Belgravia SW1W 9RB.
If you thought “Elizabeth Street” sounded familiar that’s because it is. It’s the same street where you’d find the bakery above, and Peggy Porschen for that matter too. The street has become Instagram’s London home; it started with Peggy, then moved to floral displays during Chelsea in Bloom and now has permanent floral fixtures. Most shops have their own answer to an instagrammable backdrop, some with flower arches, window displays or one of my favourites – the bike with peonies in the basket.
3. Sanderson London, Berners St, Fitzrovia, W1T 3NG
The Sanderson, a hotel undoubtably with Instagram in mind. Book into the Courtyard for the Alice In Wonderland themed afternoon tea, with a side order of flamingos statues and tricking water in the middle of all. The main attractions here being the floral swing obvs, the Long Bar which has a floral ceiling and Berners terrace (2nd picture above) for a quiet central London pitstop.
4. Palm Vaults, 411 Mare St, Hackney, E8 1HY
Bougie fact for you: Both times i’ve visited Palm Vaults i’ve been sent a car.. i think to a PR Hackney is classed as an alien area, or some type of no mans land .. in fairness it is only accessible via the Overground and not the tube so i suppose .. it kind of is? Let’s be honest if someone offered you an Addison Lee to Tesco you’d probably take them up on the offer. If you do decide to take a trip Palm Vaults it’s well worth it, very Miami cool with a no laptop rule – but i don’t think anyone is actually coming here for a coffee shop office, you’ve come for the gram and you know it.
5. Wild At Heart, 222 Westbourne Grove, W11 2RJ
Probably one of my most favourite Instagram pictures ever taken. Despite the woman’s face in the background i had previously asked permission to take these, and chatted to her for a while about Instagrammers being here all day everyday. They know it’s happening so there’s no point in being shy about it, and i had bought flowers from the Wild At Heart stall for the privilege (most don’t, but i like to give bloggers a good name.. like a personal crusade). Don’t turn up on a Sunday when it’s closed, although you’ll still have the overhanging flowers and the neon sign it won’t be in full bloom with all of the flowers out.
6. Bourne and Hollingsworth Bar, 28 Rathbone Place, Fitzrovia, W1T 1JF
A big pink wall with bulbs on, what more could you want? Be careful though, if you want to find this don’t type “Bourne and Hollingsworth” into maps and hit search. There’s a couple of different locations and you’ll end up at Clerkenwell with brown brick if you’re not careful, shudder, use the address above.. i’m here for a reason.
7. Radio Rooftop Bar, 336-337 Strand, WC2R 1HA
Covent Garden and the surroundings can get, warm, noisy, difficult .. i could go on but you get it – tourists. Here i am trying to get a A+ insta photo, but a flock of Spanish school children seem to make their way into every image in this area.. whats a girl to do? Go up. Self proclaimed “London’s biggest rooftop bar fan 2018” i couldn’t not include a sky scraping location in this. Nothing says classic instagram like a skyline view, and this relaxed venue above the Me London provides the perfect backdrop.. not only for the photo but for a cocktail too.
8. Neverland London, (Or Fulham Beach Club) Wandsworth Bridge Road, SW6 2TY
Possibly the most instagrammable location ever, Neverland is south of the river (for those of you who reside north of the river like me, don’t panic – it’s walkable from an Overground station ) and well worth it for the ‘gram obviously. They also have ‘bookable’ day beds so if you’ve spent your summer jealously scrolling passed people lounging at Ibiza beach clubs, you can have your own ..but by The Thames.
9. Liberty, Regent St, Carnaby, W1B 5AH
Flowers seem to be a theme in this don’t they? But i couldn’t possibly do an instagrammable locations post and leave out Liberty of London, or more importantly the flowers outside. Many a #FromWhereIStand post has been taken here, a right of passage for every instagrammer: the shot of your legs, feet and some type of surrounding – be it tiles on holiday or in this case the flowers at liberty. Extra points if you’re holding a bunch.
10. Saint Aymes 59 Connaught St, W2 2BB
The purple answer to Peggy Porschen? That’s what i thought when i got to Saint Aymes at first, but honestly it’s better. Quieter, a more interesting menu (23ct gold coffees to name just one option) and dare i say it, prettier? I actually think the two female owners were present while i was there*, which makes me think there’s more love and attention put into this café over others – it feels like an independent female owned business which i’ll happily support over chains. *I think that’s them in the back of my pictures, might be wrong but I’m pretty sure.
11. Feya café 23 James St, Marylebone, W1U 1DT
An actual (well not real) white blossom tree above a row of cakes, these instagram cafés are pushing the boat out. I want to go back to Feya Café on a day where i’m not visiting for an event, so i can get the good old classic “here i am in a nice cafe” shot, but until then take these two pics that i’m using to get this place on the list.
12. Drunch 1 Woodstock St, Mayfair, W1C 2AA
Finally we have the last on our ‘no particular order list’ Drunch, Mayfair. I think this might be London’s latest instagrammable spot, i’ve only seen it pop up on my feed in the last two months or so but that could just have been when they installed the flowers.. Flowers = popularity if you haven’t already guessed. Instagram’s favourite meal is brunch so it seems appropriate that this has become a much frequented instagram hot spot, the question is now … which one will you choose to visit?
Other notable IG hotspots include: Sketch, The Rooftop St James, Elan Café, the Maddox Gallery – No doubt i’ll be flouncing about in front of them soon.