I'm no night owl, but my time in London is as close as I've come in recent years to spending more time outside, out and about, at night than during the day. This is because over the course of the past week, I've spent my hours between my grad school's campus in London and the hotel.
I promised myself I wouldn't become a business school blogger, and I'm holding myself to that, but I'm remiss to not sprinkle some of the travel and experiences the program opens up for me across SV. This week my cohort traveled to London for the first of our two international stints. Since I was going to be holed up in either my hotel, a study room or a bar (um, reading?), I dragged my mom along so she could enjoy the city. Thinking we'd be clear mid-Saturday to cab into the city from Heathrow, we forwent the Express - big mistake. Road closures and Wimbledon had folks in taxis for longer than 3 hours! We had our cabbie drop us in Chiswick so we could address our beverage and bathroom situation.
We stopped for some sustenance and beers at The Old Pack Horse - part traditional British pub, part Thai restaurant. The plan was to take the tube into town once we felt a bit more human.
If we didn't have to get to the city by sundown, I would have more adequately explored the generous beverage menu.
I combated my deep desire to go to sleep with dinner with my classmates at Paternoster, a pub and restaurant right near St. Paul's Cathedral.
I expected our time to do anything but attend lecture, complete classwork and keep up with work would be limited, but I was sure to not miss a night hosted by our Russian contingent. They rented out pre-opening Jean-Jacques, which is a Moscow original modeled after the French bistro. The Russians were our heroes, having personally transported Beluga vodka and caviar from Moscow. (Jean-Jacques is now open to the public. The food was amazing. Go!)
I justified not being able to fully capitalize on the city's beauty by enjoying a lovely walk to school each day. Even the basic office building charms.
While we were generally lucky with good weather, we got our share of ominous gloom. Made sitting in class more welcomed :p
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Stay. This time around, we stayed at Club Quarter's at St. Paul's. I was not familiar with Club Quarters until recently. The concept is simple: streamlined, comfortable, membership-based accommodations geared toward business travelers. CC maintains partnerships with organizations (companies and academic institutions) that yield discounted stay rates. While basic, it gets the job done.