As November rolls around the corner, London starts to pick up with exciting events on offer, in anticipation of the festive season. From Christmas markets to special theatrical performances, live music events and more, there’s plenty to see and discover around Paddington.
With the Chilworth London Paddington Hotel enjoying a central location in the heart of the city, guests can easily get to experience the best of what’s on offer, in Paddington and nearby. Read on to find out what’s happening in and around Paddington this November, and how to get involved.
Ai Weiwei – Lisson Gallery
This autumn, the Lisson Gallery will be hosting an exceptional exhibition of work from the groundbreaking artist, Ai Weiwei. While it closes on 2 November, it’s well worth seeing if you can. The exhibition, entitled Roots, features stunning tree root sculptures, made out of cast iron, partnered with dreamy, light cloud-like creations. Exploring a wide range of influences and ideas, including contemporary politics, environmentalism and the artist’s own personal history, the result is profound and thought-provoking.
The stunning art gallery is always worth exploring and located close to Paddington, it provides the perfect place to spend a meaningful afternoon. Pair a visit with a delicious Indian afternoon tea, for a relaxing and enjoyable few hours in the city.
Natacha Atlas – 229 London
Natacha Atlas is one of the most underrated of contemporary singers, with a profound and moving voice that merges Eastern and Western influences for a hypnotic and beautiful result. Her exceptional voice has seen her working with stars from all across the globe, including the Indigo Girls, Peter Gabriel and Nitin Sawhney. This year, she’ll be releasing her latest album, entitled Strange Days, that weaves contemporary jazz with Arabic influences.
Lauded as one of the most distinctive of voices in the contemporary jazz scene, it’s well worth taking the chance to see her perform while she’s in the city. She’ll be on stage in Paddington at the 229 London bar, on 21 November. This small and intimate venue is the perfect place to soak up her stunning music and is close by to some of the best restaurants in Paddington if you fancy getting a bite to eat after the show.
Lighthouse – The Cockpit Theatre
The Cockpit Theatre is one of London’s smaller theatrical gems, dedicated to smaller fringe performances by local artists and community shows. With its cosy and intimate atmosphere, it’s a great space to enjoy a performance, with fantastic views and wonderful atmosphere.
This November, the theatre will be putting on a variety of novel and exciting performances that span genres and boundaries, for a creative and compelling result. Lighthouse is part circus performance, part theatre, and part dance, blending all three into a fascinating and unique show. Featuring a solo performer, Hazel Lam, the show comprises of her expertly and fluidly moving with PVC plastic tubes, as she brings them to life with her own body.
The show runs 8 to 10 November, with tickets available in advance.
Oxford Street Christmas Lights
November sees the city get into a festive mode, and one of the main signals that it’s Christmas time in London is the big Christmas light switch on. Just a short distance away from Paddington, this is one of the most exciting and fun-filled evenings in the run-up to the season, featuring live music, celebrity guest appearances, in-store events, and plenty more.
The Oxford Street lights are usually the first to come on, around the first weekend of November, and the whole area will often be shut down to car traffic, allowing the streets to fill up with revellers. While there are plenty of food outlets nearby, it can get extremely busy during the event, so it’s often a good idea to eat out beforehand. Check out some of the best restaurants in Paddington close to the hotel, so that you can enjoy a leisurely meal before heading out.
Canal Café Theatre
The quiet haven of Little Venice is just around the corner from Paddington Station, but provides a world of peace and quiet, just moments away from busy city roads. It’s a perfect place to explore at any time of the year, and as November approaches, the charming floating theatres and venues come alive with special offerings.
The Canal Café Theatre is one of the neighbourhood’s most highly renowned venues, having hosted many of the top comic talents of recent years. If you’re in need of a serious dose of laughter, head to their News Revue, where emerging and established comic stars hit the stage to take part in the world’s longest-running live comedy show. It’ll be on through November from Thursday to Sunday every week, and features a variety of cast members to tackle world affairs and current events, with a blisteringly funny touch. Afterwards, be sure to check out the theatre café too for drinks or a snack, as it’s the perfect place to unwind post-show.
Spirit – The Puppet Theatre
Little Venice has something to offer everyone, for all age this month, and the historic puppet theatre is a much-loved fixture in the neighbourhood. Originally established in 1978 as a touring company, the theatre is now a 72’ barge, which tours around the River Thames through the year. During the winter months, the theatre settles in its base in Little Venice, and you’ll find the colourful barge situated just a short walk away from the Chilworth London Paddington Hotel.
Throughout November, the puppet theatre will be putting on a magical performance of Spirit, a delicate marionette story that incorporates puppetry and shadow theatre, for a spellbinding and otherworldly performance. Recounting the inspiring, funny and sometimes moving stories of everyday life, this is a wonderful show to immerse yourself in. Seats are limited as the barge is relatively small, so if you’re visiting with friends or family and want to make the performance, it’s worth booking in advance.