London is full of interesting and cool boroughs, but none have the same hip air that Shoreditch carries. Over the years, Shoreditch has become the place to go if you want an authentic taste of alternative London.
Home to artists, boutiques and unique shopping experiences, Shoreditch is an eclectic and lively place where there’s always something to see or do. Staying at the M by Montcalm Shoreditch, you’re in a perfect position to sample everything the borough has to offer.
So, if you’re in the mood for exploration and want to know what Shoreditch is all about, read on.
Bethnal Green Road
If you want to get an idea of how Shoreditch mixes its origins with its cool, outsider status, there’s no better place to start than Bethnal Green Road. It’s only a ten-minute journey from your Montcalm hotel, and a great jumping off point to explore the area.
Cutting right across Shoreditch, Bethnal Green Road shows just how much Shoreditch has changed in a very short time – but it also exemplifies a place that accommodates all the different strands of people that make up the area. You’ll see ultra-cool stores and eateries right next door to supermarkets and grocers, reflecting the varied nature of the area and exemplifying the communal, ever-changing face of Shoreditch.
It’s also worth keeping an eye out for London vinyl institution Flashback Records and independent boutique Pam Pam – both of which call Bethnal Green Road home.
Only a minute’s walk from Bethnal Green Road, Boxpark is an utterly Shoreditch-ian take on the shopping mall.
Created from old shipping containers arranged into a sprawling, independent shopping area, Boxpark is totally cool and home to many great boutique stores. Whether you want retro sunglasses, bespoke leather satchels or vintage clothing and jewellery, Boxpark has got it.
It’s an almost overwhelmingly hip place, but it’s also one of the best places to find unique, often hand-made clothing and items you won’t find anywhere else. And, if you tire yourself out, you can always retire to the Burdock and Aviary for a little refreshment.
In many parts of the world, authorities are quick to remove and cover up graffiti – not so in Shoreditch.
The area has a storied history of being home to outsider artists – Damien Hirst and Tracy Emin once called the area home – and so street art is prized in Shoreditch, rather than maligned. And it’s all easy to see from your room at M by Montcalm Shoreditch.
You’re likely to see works dotted all over the place, and there are even a couple of Banksy pieces around if you know where to look. Nathan Bowen has also graced the area with some of his public works, and new pieces appear daily in doorways and hard-to-reach spots. You can even take a street art tour if you’re really interested, which provides a comprehensive and insightful overview of the Shoreditch area and the artists that call it home.