Things to do in London: June edition
Make the most of London this month and get your summer off to a bright start with the hottest openings, fashion, art, theatre and more
Tate transformed: bigger, better Tate Modern opens its doors
The Tate Modern is the beating heart of the world’s contemporary art scene. So this extensive extension and re-vamped building is big news for London and beyond. 10 storeys, a twisting pyramid, a new collection and a complete rehang: the transformed Tate marks a new dawn for modern art. And there’s a suitably special opening festival to mark the occasion.
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The Boy Who Lived is back: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child comes to the West End
J.K Rowling's waved her wand again: this latest, feverishly anticipated instalment of the Harry Potter franchise is written especially for the stage — and this time it's all about Albus Severus. The Cursed Child is the eighth story, nineteen years later written by Rowling herself in collaboration with hot young playwright Jack Thorne. Muggles won't know what's hit them!
Easy slider: Carsten Höller Slide, Olympic Park
Art has never been so fun: ever playful artist Carsten Höller brings a high-speed twist to East London’s Olympic Park with the world’s longest slide. Wrapping around Anish Kapoor’s momentous ArcelorMittal Orbit sculpture (2012), the slide has 10 twits and turns and will take 40 seconds to descend. Last year Höller’s interactive adventure of an exhibition at the Hayward was a summer highlight, so book fast to get your contemporary art fill with some added thrill.
Hot new opening: The Barbary restaurant, Covent Garden
Since the Palomar restaurant opened in Soho, London’s been obsessed with modern-day Jerusalem influenced menu (those that have managed to actually get a table that is…). Now the chefs are opening a second restaurant, The Barbary. Expect a menu rich in Middle Eastern flavours, featuring polenta, tajine and possibly the Palomar’s beloved Stilton cheesecake. But good luck getting a table: in the centre of the buzzing theatre district, with only 24 covers, it’s set to be in high demand.
Perfect Picnic Spot: 2016 Serpentine Pavilion
Nestled in a leafy Kensington park, the Serpentine Gallery’s Summer Pavilion is our favourite place in London on a sunny day. Every year, the gallery commissions architects to dream up a new temporary pavilion. This year it’s hip Danish firm BIG, who will create a soaring curve of a structure made up of fibreglass boxes. Expect eye-catching, avant-garde design.
Feel good film: Love and Friendship
Lady Susan was once a little known novella beloved only the most ardent of Jane Austen fans but now, in the hands of director Whit Stillman and under the new title Love and Friendship, the story of a sharp-tongued widow, intent on causing chaos is pure comedy gold. Even period drama phobics will be charmed by irresistible screenplay and Kate Beckinsale's luminous lead performance.
Park Table dinners at The Serpentine’s Magazine Restaurant
In the middle of Hyde Park, by an iconic restaurant designed by late architect Zaha Hadid, famous chefs are flocking to host a series of intimate alfresco suppers overlooking the lake. A four-course menu will be served on vast serving platters to 50 diners per event. If you’re lucky, the exquisite food will be complimented clear starry skies and a warm summer breeze.
Mob Rules: Bugsy Malone, Lyric Hammersmith
Custard pies and splurge guns return to the stage this summer as the Hammersmith’s hit family musical returns for the second year. With a cast of outrageously talented children playing pint-sized gangsters in New York’s prohibition era, Bugsy Malone is irrepressably fun for all the all the family.
Young love: La Boheme, Opera Holland Park
This spirited production of Puccini's opera conjures up a country house atmosphere - in the centre of London. Leafy green space, melodious notes and a lively production make the story of Parisian romance a delightful addition to the London calendar.
W-w-w-wake up a Penguin: Sunset Safari London Zoo
Just as the sun sets, the nocturnal animal kingdom kicks squawks, hisses and prowls into action. Go wild this summer, with the special Sunset Safari sessions at London Zoo. Witness animals preparing to slumber, while others are just waking up. There’s a wide selection of tours, trails and child-friendly activities to keep the little ones excited long after their bedtime!