What’s that lion doing in my wardrobe? Narnia business! Geddit? Because if you’re heading out in London this winter, you’ll definitely get it. This Christmas expect to walk through so many wardrobes that you’ll be on passing terms with Mr Tumnus come January. But the proliferation of Narnias can only be a good thing, who doesn’t love the books? And who doesn’t love the prospect of a Narnia bar crawl?
Anyway, here we check out the Narnia options that have opened SO FAR this autumn. Please holler if you see any more and we’ll add them in; this thing is only going to get better.
We think they deserve credit for being the first to announce that Narnia was coming to London, though now it’s been open for a couple of weeks it’d be good to update the old imagery from this watercolour Artbeat effort. Either way, the first Narnia terrace of the year, and in true wintery style there’s fondue (less so The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe stye, which we’re pretty sure makes no fondue references), there’s alpine chalets, apple pie and alcoholic hot chocolates (yes to that). Obviously you enter through a wardrobe, and there are Narnia references throughout. Go team Narnia.
Where: 350 Kings Road, Chelsea, London, SW3 5UU, United Kingdom
Nearest station: Imperial Wharf (0.8 miles)
And the Narnia mantle passes to the St Martin’s Lane Hotel, who have brought the White Witch’s kingdom to Covent Garden. Step into the hotel lobby and you’ll find yourself immediately transported into a winter woodland, with faux fur throws and rugs, snow underfoot and a grand wintery throne, set on a plinth against ornate stained glass, which ‘will bring the splendour of Cair Paravel to London’. Enjoy Turkish delight, Edmund’s favourite, thanks to chocolatiers Rococo, the bar, Blind Spot, will be lit by a Narnia style lantern and you can join Mr and Mrs Beaver in The Den for an afternoon tea.
Where: 45 St. Martins Lane, London, WC2N 4HX, United Kingdom
Nearest station: Leicester Square (0.2 miles)
You should never step into a wardrobe lest it shut behind you. Unless you’re walking into a wardrobe that’s actually a lift, in which case that’s fine. Especially if it leads into Savage Garden’s Narnia terrace. The White Forest is in collaboration with Absolut Elyx Vodka and will see you travel 12 storeys up in the lift (anyone else feel a Lion, The Witch and the Great Glass Elevator mashup coming along?) before stepping out into a magical world with enchanting views, complete with lamp post, fairy lights and copper lanterns. See quotes from C.S. Lewis’s allegory, or just grab a selfie on the White Witch’s throne, Edmund style.
Where: 7 Pepys Street, Tower Hill EC3N 4AF
Nearest station: London Fenchurch Street (0 miles)
Scrabbling around for a fourth (why, Phil? Three’s a trend), it’s over to The Curtain in Shoreditch. Their ballroom has had a winter wonderland makeover and, get this, you only enter THROUGH A WARDROBE! Proving that Narnia is out of control this winter.
Where: 45 Curtain Road, Shoreditch, EC2A 4PT
And it doesn’t look like there’s any sign of the whole Narnia thing going away any time soon. As a betting man, I’m fully expecting to see at least three or four more Narnia pop-ups, events, terraces or spaces arrive between now and Christmas.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, St Martins Lane seem to have stayed most authentic to the book. So if you want REAL (ish) Narnia, head there first.