03. On Top of the World

10923733_10152486797796891_3901696804215232766_o

This was the view last Friday.

Welcome to the Sky Garden, ladies and gentlemen.

It’s a newly-opened space up on the 35th floor of the Walkie-Talkie building across from the Shard on the North Bank.

10920256_10152486795111891_3921662454066980961_o

For those unfamiliar with London’s landscape, the building was famous a little while ago for melting nearby cars and heating up shops due to its top-heavy structure that bent and concentrated sunlight at a specific spot on the ground.

After much renovation, it now no longer poses a magnify-glass-threat, and instead stands with one of the best 360 degree perspectives on the city of London and beyond.

The rush to reserve the free visitor passes began a few weeks ago, and I was fortunate enough to grab two of them.

1403088_10152486805286891_333965059644882196_o

After having our bags and bodies scanned, my water bottle was detained and never to be heard from again. The tragic loss left me looking for a remedy, which is exactly what I got when the elevator doors pinged open on the 35th floor to this.

10644348_10152486796426891_3677710621171799383_o

Two sets of glass doors lent itself to a beautiful space, holding a cafe/bar, the Sky Pod, in the middle. It is framed on both sides by the “garden” with two staircases leading up to the back, where a close-up-and-personal view of the Gherkin and the Cheese Grater stood before me.

10896198_10152486804211891_44498650803443283_o

Here, I met a further few steps up to the most expensive restaurant the Sky Garden holds: Frenchurch. The one underneath it, Darwin, is a more affordable brasserie option for those of us with near-empty bank accounts.

10917220_10152487016781891_1713200889032393872_o

The different levels of the three establishments seem to correspond to their price range.

My friend and I entered this magnificent haven at 2:45pm. Half an hour of walking around, gawking and drooling at every angle and item there was, and we finally settled down enough to each order a giant cookie and a warm drink for high tea. Get it? Get the pun?

10497912_10152486806471891_1073953000367958439_o

It took us a good part of an hour to nibble through those pizza-sized goodies. By 4pm, exhausted from our efforts to eat through macadamia nuts and chocolate chips, it was time for the reward of a fancy cocktail.

10923721_10152486813946891_2752955013978281359_o

Most cocktails stand at 11.50 pounds. They came with edible flowers, “edible”. I couldn’t eat it. I could barely chew it. But it nevertheless added a beautiful touch a delicious mix, every bit as deserving as their beautiful names: “Chelsea Garden” and “Princess Jasmine”.

Day turned into night, and our drinks disappeared along with the sun.

10842026_10152486815111891_1319394338416589037_o

The sun then gave way to a quick rainstorm, in good ol’ fashion London style.

1531670_10152487016421891_7820679169280046649_o

Even in the dreary grey, I was still in love with this place. Now if that’s not true love, I don’t know what is.

10869402_10152487016541891_2981010161847783025_o (1)

Like the cool, mysterious, handsome guy at a party, the rain rolled it and rolled out, leaving behind a marvellous trail of colours and light, and two wonderstruck girls.

10828074_10152487016691891_817608753223568150_o

“Why, Sir, you find no man, at all intellectual, who is willing to leave London. No, Sir, when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.”

Well said, Samuel Johnson. Well said indeed, sir.

10917928_10152487563226891_3294767740583492609_o

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s