As Britain dukes it out with Croatia in the FIFA Semi-finals, we can’t help but think about all the things we love about the UK.
You don’t have to be a footballer to know that England is playing Croatia in the FIFA semi-finals today. At first, we didn’t want to choose sides. Croatia’s got a solid squad, and they’ve earned their rightful place in the World Cup ranks. Plus, we have a serious affinity for Croatia’s magnificent Adriatic seashore.
Then again, what’s the fun in watching if you don’t have a favorite? We may have thrown Britain’s tea in Boston Harbor in 1773, and declared our independence in 1776, but we’re still Anglophiles at heart. Really! Here are some things we loooooove about the UK:
Harrod’s, Luxury Shopping on the Grandest Scale
It’s practically the size of the Isle of Man, but somehow, the attendants at Harrod’s always maintain an impeccable standard of service. That’s why it’s always on the itinerary when we touch down in London town. Where else could we find Kurt Geiger pin heels, a Big Ben Lego set, a frock from Stella McCartney, a box of premium tea, and an Aston Martin pram?
And don’t forget to pick up a signature Harrod’s shopper to help you tote your wares.
Something about those iconic checks and stripes makes us feel like we are are superheroes. Our superpower is activated when we are adorned in Burberry: we become impermeable to the London fog, and intemperate weather everywhere.
Harvey Nichols London Fashion Centre
We always make a pilgrimage to Harvey Nichols when we’re in London because it is home to all of our favorite British and International designers. Best of all, they ship abroad, so fabulous London style is never out of reach.
Sure, we all know that Brits love their tea, but when he sun goes down, tea time is over and the cocktail hour begins. The cool thing about Gin is that it is infused with Juniper berries and other botanicals, so it has medicinal properties. At least, that’s what we like to tell ourselves.
1. Originality London Dry Gin: A full-bodied Gin with notes of citrus and licorice root. ($43.68, fortnumandmason.com)
2. Chase Distillery Gin Set: It is made on a distillery in rural Herefordshire from British grown apples and potatoes, and comes in a gift box with a Union Jack flag. You can’t get more British than that. ($27.80, fortnumandmason.com)
3. Professor Cornelius Bathtub Gin: According to lore, Professor Cornelius fulfilled a lifelong dream in 2011 by concocting a small batch of Gin in his bathtub. We promise that this bottle of gin was concocted in a proper distillery, but was inspired by the Professor’s secret recipe. ($39, fortnumandmason.com)
Books for Cooks, the Notting Hill Bookstore & Luncheonette
A bookstore that specializes in cookbooks and serves lunch to those in the know? It’s so charming that’s it’s practically a Julia Roberts movie. It’s so British that it’s totally legit. Read our full story about Books for Cooks.
Even if you’re not a member of the British Royal family, your champagne wishes and caviar dreams can come true when you stay at the Somerleyton Hall, a posh 10-bedroom estate that is home to Lord and Lady Somerleyton. It’s one of Airbnb’s most distinctive European vacation properties. No word on whether you’ll be bunking up with the Somerleytons or if their accommodations are separate.
Before she launched her namesake beauty brand in 2013, Charlotte Tilbury’s make-up artistry graced the pages of Vogue, Vanity Fair, LOVE and V, and she had collabs with high-profile brands such as Tom Ford, Chanel and Burberry. So yeah, you could say that Tilbury knows a thing or two about applying cosmetics for maximum effect. Our faves from her line:
1. Charlotte Tilbury Brightening Youth Glow BB cream is our summer alternative to thick foundation. ($55, charlottetilbury.com)
2. Charlotte Tilbury Brow Lift is a tool and cosmetic in one, and is the key to achieving the brows of your dreams. ($30, charlottetilbury.com)
3. Charlotte Tilbury Shadow Palettes come in 8 different hues, and have everything you need to add drama to your eyes. ($30, charlottetilbury.com)
4. Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipsticks have supernatural staying power and moisturizing properties. ($34, charlottetilbury.com)
London might be the hotspot – but there are acres and acres of beauty countryside just miles outside the city. You can visit a castle, a fort or the London Flower Show. Read more about ELYSIAN’s love for London.