London Culture Fix: May to June 2023

Words by
Honey Wyatt

12th May 2023

Want to own London this summer? Get your London culture fix now as the city comes alive with a bounty of exhibitions, roof top bars and concerts over the next month. Honey Wyatt has your itinerary covered.

How do you plan to get your culture fix on the longest brightest nights of May and June 2023? You can luxuriate in the high camp Queen Charlotte afternoon tea at the Lanesborough Hotel, celebrate 250 of Veuve Clicquot with a glass at Solaire Culture, or learn the rebellious power of the sari at The Design Museum.

If being outside is more your thing, soak up the long evenings on one of London’s many well-appointed roof terraces, drink in the city’s culture with a Warpaint gig at the Southbank Centre or a sit back and relax for a performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Globe.

Solaire Culture by Veuve Clicquot
Solaire Culture by Veuve Clicquot
Solaire Culture is an exhibition celebrating 250 years of Veuve Clicquot

Celebrate 250 years of Veuve Clicquot with their first global travelling exhibition, Solaire Culture. Curator Camille Morineau brings together the original artwork of nine female artists that champion the Maison’s culture of joy and optimism. If not for the champagne, Solaire Culture is worth a visit to experience the polka dots of Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama and vibrant illustrations of Olimpia Zagnoli.

Visit Solaire Culture in Piccadilly Circus or attend one of their rooftop terraces at Hotel Café Royal or Aqua Kyoto.

Solaire Culture is free to attend, book tickets here.

Queen Charlotte Afternoon Tea at the Lanesborough Hotel
The Lanesborough Hotel have created a Queen Charlotte afternoon tea in collaboration with Shondaland and Netflix.
The Lanesborough Hotel have created a Queen Charlotte afternoon tea in collaboration with Shondaland and Netflix

Get a taste of luxury at the Lanesborough hotel's Queen Charlotte themed afternoon tea, inspired by Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story and created in partnership with Netflix and creator Shonda Rhimes' production company, Shondaland.

Sip on tea, or a Queen Charlotte gin and raspberry liquer cocktail, beneath the glass domed roof of the dining room and sample the sweet treats of Head Pastry Chef Salvatore Mungiovino, including Danbury Delight, King George Dreams of Venus and Lady Violet’s Buzzing Garden.

Reserve a spot for afternoon tea here.

Best in Show: The Dog in Art from the Renaissance to Today at the Wallace Collection 
Dog of the Havana Breed, 1768, oil on canvas at the Wallace Collection

Best in Show Jean-Jacques Bachelier, Dog of the Havana Breed, 1768, oil on canvas, French School, © The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle

Learn the role dogs have played in art history at the Wallace Collection

If you're wondering whether people have always been as obsessed with their dogs as they are today, the Wallace Collection has the answer: yes.

Among its series of intriguing summer lectures is an evening that delves deep into the role of dogs in art history, drawing on key elements of the collection's current exhibition Portraits of Dogs: from Gainsborough to Hockneyending 15 October. 

Join Dr Edgar Peter Bowron, art historian and curator for an evening of all things dogs in art and to expand your mind inside the beautiful rooms of the collection. Tickets are £25 to attend the lecture in person or £9 to watch online.

Best in Show is on at the Wallace Collection at 6.30pm on Friday 23 June 2023. Buy tickets and find more events by the Wallace Collection here.

The Offbeat Sari at The Design Museum
Image by Hormis Antony Tharakan for the Offbeat Sari at the Design Museum

Photography by Hormis Antony Tharakan

The Design Museum celebrates the modern sari with their latest exhibition, the Offbeat Sari

Unravel the current landscape of India through its most recognisable garment: the sari. The Offbeat Sari celebrates how the sari has been repurposed for the 21st century, from the designers who imagine them to the people that wear them and the fabric that makes them.

In over 90 examples of its fluid and dynamic form, the sari is held up as a lens into the multiplicity of India today. Featured is the first ever sari worn to the Met Gala— designed by Sabyasachi and worn by Indian businesswoman and socialite Natasha Poornawalla.

The Offbeat Sari is on at the Design Museum from 19 May until 17 September. Tickets start from £6.30 for a child and £12.60 for an adult.

Book tickets here

Alto by San Carlo at Selfridge’s
Alto by San Carlo on the rooftop of Selfridge's
Enjoy Alto's Italian menu beneath a floral rooftop canopy

Selfridge's rooftop is open again for the warm weather, offering a taste of Italy with Alto. The perfect post shopping pick me up! Gaze over London with a selection of cicchetti (Vinezian small plates), from arancini to black salt seabass, or enjoy a glass of fizz late into the night. 

Alto is open seven days a week. Book a table here. 

Luxury and Power: Persia to Greece at the British Museum
The Panagyrishte treasure will show at the British Museum for the first time in the UK since 1976

Panagyurishte Treasure, Stag Rhyton © National Museum of History, Bulgaria

The Panagyrishte treasure will show at the British Museum for the first time in the UK since 1976

Take a trip back to Ancient Persia and its empire through this exhibition of luxury objects. Gold, silver and glass artefacts tell the story of the power clash between Greece and Persia between 550-30BC and reframe the historical biases in its accounts by Greeks at the time.

Experience the Panagyrishte Treasure, consisting of nine richly decorated gold vessels, on display for the first time in the UK since 1976, as well as parasols, gold wreaths and mugs depicting the importance of luxury as symbols of authority throughout history. 

Luxury and Power: Persia to Greece is on at the British Museum until 13 August. Adult tickets start at £15 and under 16s go free. 

Book tickets online here

Belgravia in Bloom
Belgravia in Bloom
Belgravia in Bloom begins on May 22

As summer approaches, Belgravia bursts into flower with its annual flower festival, this year with the theme ‘Into the Wild’. Explore the safari floral arrangement at Halkin Arcade or visit Belgrave Square Garden, the private garden that will open to the public on 27 May.

Belgravia’s cafes, shops and restaurants will also be open with flower-themed treats and activities, from honey-based aperitifs and bee-themed cocktails at Latin American terrace restaurant Morena, to floral icing classes at Biscuiteers, or floral masterclasses at the Lanesborough Hotel. 

Belgravia in Bloom is on from 22 to 29 May. Find out more here.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Shakespeare’s Globe
A Midsummer Night's Dream is on at Shakespeare's Globe until 12 August
A Midsummer Night's Dream is on at Shakespeare's Globe until 12 August

Slip from the crowded banks of the Thames into the historic Globe theatre and immerse yourself in the enchanted fairy kingdom of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, directed by Elle White. Catch the evening sun with a group of friends with standing tickets in the yard from £5, or grab at the Swan bar before heading down to your seat, from £65. 

A Midsummer Night’s Dream is on at Shakespeare’s Globe until 12 August. Book tickets here

Christine and The Queens Meltdown at the Southbank Centre
Emily Kokal, Theresa Wayman, Jenny Lee Lindberg, and Stella Mozgawa of Warpaint

For the 28th edition of Meltdown, french genre-bending popstar Christine and the Queens invites a series of ‘gut-wrenching’ artists who have influenced his musical identity to the Southbank for 10 days of performances and activities.

The four-piece all-female Californian fusion band Warpaint make their debut at the Royal Festival Hall on 12 June, with tickets from £35, and Christine himself will perform on 17 and 18 June, tickets from £50. There will also be outdoor sensory experiences by BitterSuite and club nights hosted by Pxssy Palace and the Chateau. 

Meltdown will be on at the Southbank Centre from 9 to 18 June, find out more and buy tickets here.