Insider guide to London: Andrea Klettner

Andrea Klettner - picture by Jessy Boon Cowler
Andrea in her flat – picture by Jessy Boon Cowler

I first met Andrea when we worked together on an architecture newspaper, and she was one of the coolest journalists you could hope to meet. We bonded over Acne sales on the Outnet.com and funny animal gifs.

Now she’s moved on to the world of PR where she helps represent architecture practices and London Boroughs. She also runs the Love London Council Housing blog, packed with information on some of London’s overlooked treasures for hardcore architecture fans. With her job keeping her up to date on all things new in London’s architectural scene and her love of modern buildings, Andrea’s an invaluable source for tips on things to see that are a bit off the beaten path.

Andrea Klettner - picture by Jessy Boon Cowler
Andrea Klettner – picture by Jessy Boon Cowler

She’s also lucky enough to live just by the famous Columbia Road flower market and is passionate about her patch of east London. And she can help you find the best place for Karaoke on a Friday night.

Andrea Klettner - picture by Jessy Boon Cowler
Andrea Klettner – picture by Jessy Boon Cowler
The Ginger PIg cafe
The Ginger PIg cafe

My favourite place for a quick dinner: The Ginger Pig on Hoxton Street does the best burgers in the world. It’s never too busy, they have a great selection of local beers and ales and the staff are super friendly. I went here after I ran my first half marathon in Greenwich (on the other side of town), that’s how awesome it is

The best place to cycle: Cycling in London can seem scary, but it’s by far the best way to get around. My favourite bike ride is along the Thames Path. Greenwich is a good place to start, just head east from there and you come across all sorts of interesting that are beautiful in a bleak, industrial kind of way. Past the O2 Arena there’s the Thames Barrier – one of the city’s greatest bits of engineering – and if you have it in your legs I’d recommend going as far as Thamesmead to explore one of the UK’s first purpose-built post-war towns. Right at the end there’s Sir Joseph Bazalgette’s grade I listed Crossness Sewage Works, a powerhouse of Victorian engineering.

Liberty of London
Liberty – photo by Daquella Manera

The best place to try new makeup: This is kind of an obvious one, but Liberty has the best selection of make-up to buy in London. There’s all the obvious main stream brands, and lots of smaller ones too. My advice would be to get there early in the morning before the crowds descend.

The Royal Oak, Columbia Road
The Royal Oak, Columbia Road – photo by Edward Betts

My favourite pub: This is a difficult one. I have lots of favourite pubs for different reasons. But if I had to choose just one to go to it would probably be the Royal Oak on Columbia Road. It’s cosy without being too squished, it has a nice beer garden and the food is tasty and not ridiculously expensive.

Borough Market
Borough Market by Jeremy Keith

The best place to buy food: Borough Market. Amazing meat, fish and veg. It’s a bit on the pricey side, but worth it.

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