Best Napping Locations in London
Rest your weary feet at our specially selected secret venues for the best places to have a quick sleep in London.
If New York is the city that never sleeps, then London is definitely the city that’s barely awake. Doubtless many might point out that the City of London is the world’s finance capital; that London’s culture is best in the West; that the city’s pull is such that the rest of the UK is a barren, hostile wasteland. Nevertheless, it has to be said that if there is one thing that London does better than anything else, it’s napping. New York, a utilitarian experiment in gridding gone badly wrong, has no private alleyways, nooks or crannies to speak of when one wonders through the streets looking for some shut-eye. London, by contrast, is full of such delightful urban coves. Whether one is looking for somewhere to sweat out the night previous, or rather looking for something altogether more languid and Proustian, London has a location for you. Here are three of London’s best places to have a nap. Where to sleep in London.
The House of Commons.
Do you like green leather and wooden panelling? Do you need a low buzz of democracy in process in the background to drift off? Then why not have a nap in the House of Commons! The Public Gallery of the House of Commons is certainly a distinguished place to nap. The room itself, re-opened in 1950 after being destroyed in 1941 by a falling bomb, is synonymous with somnolence. The Public Gallery is open on days when a debate has been tabled. Be sure to attend on a day when you are sure you have a). No vested interest in the debate taking place, b). No intellectual interest in the debate taking place, and c). No need to relay what’s going on to the outside world. (For these reasons it is not advised to be a journalist covering Parliament when attending the debate for a nap.)
The National Theatre: The Olivier Stage
Performing on the Olivier stage is the dream of thousands of aspiring young actors. Strutting about as Hamlet, Rosalind or Othello, actors can hear their voices boom out in the superbly crafted acoustics of the room, knowing that their years of hard toil waiting tables and embarrassing their parents with their career choices has finally paid off. It also happens to be a wonderful place for a snooze. The seats are comfy, the lighting is dim, the red wine is smooth and expensive, you’ve come straight from a long meeting, your company is invariably awful, you have read the programme and understood very little, small people onstage are babbling on about God or the King or both in a language you can barely understand, why not doze off? One word of warning. If you are a sleeptalker or sleepwalker be sure to buddy up with a dozing partner – someone who can slap you awake if you begin to get too rowdy. For some reason people seem to resent that at the Olivier.
Holland Park: Kyoto Garden
The beautiful Kyoto Garden is a sanctuary of peace within Holland Park and the surrounding opulence of Kensington and Chelsea. The Kyoto Chamber of Commerce, in celebration of the Japan Festival held in London in 1992, gifted this zen-like garden to Holland Park. This section of the park is beautifully maintained, with burbling waterfalls and a pond, in which you might be able to spot bright orange coy. I would recommend lying down on the stone bridge next to the waterfall. Koi Carp will swim under you, people might tread lightly over you to plop coins into the stream below, and clouds may move silently across the sky. Only do look out for the peacocks. They roam free all around Holland Park, and have a loud, siren-like squawk. This is where to sleep London.