While Uruguayan architect Rafael Viñoly designed the gardens as a public space to be enjoyed by visitors; the 9,000 square feet of green is more of a subtropical afterthought to the array of restaurants and bars run by events and restaurant business Rhubarb. Nevertheless, the highest park in the UK is astonishing and you have to wonder how an earth all those plants were hoisted up to the 37th floor.
Dining at the Walkie Talkie
There are three choices at the Sky Garden for diners: the Fenchurch Seafood Bar & Grill on Level 37, the slightly more down to earth Darwin Brasserie on Level 36, and the seasonally-changing Sky Pod | Seasons In The Sky on Level 35.
The Walkie Talkie building itself has caused a great deal of commotion, particularly after last year’s debacle when the curved glass managed to melt a man’s car and fry an egg outside a local restaurant. It was originally objected to by English Heritage and Unesco for its impact on the Tower of London, but was given the go ahead with reassurances that the £500 million construction would become a public space and iconic design. Now outside of the agreed cluster of tall buildings defined by the then City of London planner Peter Rees, the Walkie Talkie has become what Rees calls ‘the prow of (the City’s) ship’.
To reach the top of the privately owned Walkie Talkie, you’ll have to enter a difficult booking procedure, but persevere - the 150 metre tall building and its curious Sky Garden are a great alternative to the vastly popular Shard experience. And of course you can always pretend you’re controlling the Death Star and destroying entire planets with your giant laser.
Click here to book your tickets for the architectural event of 2015
|What||Sky Garden, Walkie Talkie|
|Where||Walkie Talkie, 20 Fenchurch Street, London, EC3M | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Monument (underground)|
12 Jan 15 – 12 Jan 16, 10:00 AM – 4:30 PM
|Website||Click here to book tickets|