With just a handful of platforms Marylebone is both the smallest and youngest of London’s major train stations. Fortunately though that doesn’t preclude it from being both vital and terribly well positioned. Read on for our Marylebone taxi driver’s guide to some terrific places to eat, drink, shop and discover. Since 1975 Addison Lee have been at the forefront of London’s private hire services. We’ve brought our own brand of excellence and reliability to the city on a daily basis. Guaranteeing you safe and comfortable passage with every journey. To date, we manage over 2,000 trips across the capital each day. Every one of which is expertly monitored and guided from our headquarters in central London. So it doesn’t matter where you are, what time it is or even how far you’re going. Our drivers will always be on hand to provide that same service at a consistently affordable price. Which, at 30% cheaper than most black taxis, isn’t half bad. London Marylebone. We all think we know how to pronounce it, but do we really? The most common usage is Marley-bone but you might be surprised to learn that the actual phonetic pronunciation should be Marry-le-Bon. A reference to the church – St Mary’s on the bourne (a small river known as the Tyburn) – that once stood here. Differences aside, this is certainly one of the nicer spots in central west London. With even the station looking the part. Originally built to serve Sheffield and Manchester in the north, Marylebone was re-assigned to become the main terminus through Banbury up to Birmingham in 1996. Step out through its charming stone archway and into your pre-booked Addison Lee to start exploring the area. Whether it’s shopping on Marylebone High Street or just wining and dining in one of the many nearby restaurants, this is an area for everyone. Just follow our Marylebone taxi driver’s guide for all the best spots – including a few that are bit of a trade secret.
Where to drink
This large and friendly pub on Marylebone High Street is the ideal stop if you’re in need of a break from all that retail therapy. They describe themselves as a ‘chic pub with a chandelier’ but in truth it’s all a bit tongue in cheek. By day it’s a great place to stop off for a refreshing drink, or some excellent pub food. By night it comes alive with the buzz from all the local offices. They have a quiz on Mondays and every time we go in there the staff are incredibly friendly. Highly recommended if you’re after somewhere to get a proper pint away from all the glitz and glamour of the neighbourhood.
71 Marylebone High Street, W1U 5JN
At the absolute polar opposite end of the spectrum you’ll find the incredibly elegant Artesian. Burrowed away in the belly of the Langham hotel is a place that was – in 2015 – voted to be the best bar in the world. No mean feat or small potatoes here, this place is the real deal. Of course, bars like the Artesian don’t come cheap, but even if it’s just for the one cocktail you’d be mad not to go. Claiming to have the largest rum collection in London, as well as some phenomenal food, they’ll treat you like the king or queen only you dared to believe you were.
1C Portland Pl, London W1B 1JA
In the name of parity, we’ve chosen The Marylebone because it sits almost perfectly between the other two bars in terms of its style. Part pub, part mixology parlour, these guys base a lot of their drinks around their in-house spirit infusions. Steeping all kinds of spirits with other flavours, they’ve created their own range of fruity, chocolate-ey and savoury liquors that they ably use to build your cocktails. They also have a great range of beers and wine but don’t do food. That being said they encourage you to bring in your own if you like. Not a bad deal if you ask us.
93 Marylebone High St, W1U 4RE
Where to eat
Galvin Bistro Deluxe
There are a couple of these fantastic French restaurants around London now. But for us, none of them will ever come close to the classically gallic feel of Galvin’s Marylebone bistro. The menu is brief and probably just about expensive enough to be categorised as a ‘treat’, but the food is nothing short of outstanding. Pristine white table cloths adorn the thick cluster of tables in this dark, oak panelled and stone floored room to give it the feel of a real Parisien ‘bistro moderne’. Hugely popular with local office workers and French saveurs alike. This is the kind of meal you’ll never want to end. There’s a cheaper menu available for lunch too.
66 Baker St, W1U 7DJ
Another local gem but of a different European origin, La Briciole is one of our favourite Italian restaurants in all of London. Everything from the incredible range of meats, oils and olives on display in its delicatessen through to the slightly naff website lets you know immediately that you’re in the presence of greatness. We’d tell you that watching the frantic chefs work away in its open kitchen is a real pleasure but we’re pretty sure it’s not supposed to be open. They’re just short on space. This place is a true haven of flavour. Rich with the aromas and impressions of real, unpretentious Italian food.
20 Homer St, W1H 4NA
OK so we saved the big one til last. The Chiltern Firehouse is London’s most recent ‘hot’ place to be seen (at the time of writing – fashion is so unpredictable) . Set inside a Grade II listed former firehouse, the Chiltern has been revamped into a New York style brasserie by the folks behind L.A.’s famous Chateau Marmont. It’s expensive but not crippling and the food is well worth a go. Not to mention the glamorous surroundings. But like all super trendy spots, it comes with a price. Bookings can be an absolute devil to nail down, as all us regular folk are bumped to the bottom of a celebrity filled guest list.
1 Chiltern St, London W1U 7PA
What to do
Like all tourist traps, Madame Tussaud’s comes with a caveat. Queues. Bl**dy great big long ones. But apply logic to this situation and you’ll soon realise that people rarely queue for something that isn’t worth it. Filled with wax effigies of the rich and famous, this vast museum is as much a part of the west London landscape as Regent’s Park. What a lot of people don’t realise is that the museum actually dates back to the 19th century and has grown into its place as one of the city’s most visited spots through years of dedication and reimagining. Book in advance to get a ticket, and don’t worry, the queues go down quickly.
Marylebone Rd, NW1 5LR
There are so many excellent places to shop near Marylebone station it would be impossible – nay, unfair – to pick out any one store as our favourite. But The Ginger Pig is a shop with a difference. This jaw droppingly great butchers on Moxon street started out with a patch of land in Yorkshire and a dedication to raising great meat. What makes it really fun is that they also offer classes in butchery. Which sounds brutal, but if you’ve got a strong enough constitution is a real treat. They’ll teach you how to properly carve meat from different parts of the animal and then you get to take it home to cook. An ideal activity for any meat lover.
8-10 Moxon St, W1U 4EW
Sherlock Holmes Museum
If you haven’t noticed by now, Marylebone station sits right next to another, more eulogised address. Baker Street, number 221b to be precise. Home to Arthur Conan Doyle’s fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes. Interestingly, the address itself was also fictional until an extension of Baker St in 1932. So the museum lies a little bit short of its purported location, despite what a blue plaque outside may tell you. The museum is a fantastically fun homage to the the great detective. Visit the rooms of Holmes, Mrs Hudson and even read the diary of Dr Watson. It’s all terribly British and twee but if you’ve ever shared the worldwide passion for the great man’s legend, it’s well worth a visit.
221b Baker St, NW1 6XE