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London has a lot of big name attractions but its weird and wonderful history is best discovered through architectural gems that aren’t on most tourists’ bucket list. Let us guide you around a London hidden in plain sight.
Yes, yes, St Pauls has the Whispering Gallery but the St Andaz Hotel (adjacent to Liverpool St Station, a short walk from St Pauls) has a secret Masonic temple that’s over 100 years old. Originally the Great Eastern Hotel and one of the first hotels in London, the enormous marble covered room was discovered behind a fake wall when renovators moved in a few years ago. The Masonic lodge is one of the finest examples in London and features a blue and gold domed ceiling with zodiac and esoteric signs.
London’s last remaining music hall is the oldest surviving music hall in the world and you can bet your bottom dollar that it has had much more of a riotous past than the Royal Albert Hall. Originally five ale houses, the hall began as a concert room in the mid 19th century and was thought to be where the Can Can was first performed in London and then promptly banned. It now runs local gigs, magic and performance nights and has a lovely bar.