Perched atop London’s impressive skyline, is a hidden paradise for all the world to see. The Sky Garden. Spend an hour or two on top of the world, and you’ll never want to get back in the elevator. Unless you’re afraid of heights. At 160 meters tall, 20 Fenchurch street, colloquial known as the walkie-talkie, is the 13th tallest building in London. One thing that isn’t high is the price. An admirable feature is that it’s free to visit, just book a time slot and bring photo ID. Because it’s available to all, expect to share the horizon with a handful of London fanatics.
Great coffee, neon painted bicycles, vintage leather sofas, it would appear a delicate slice of Shoreditch has been placed in the window display. If the view wasn’t so distracting, you could probably hook up to their public wi-fi and write emails for half an hour as well. Gillespies, the designers of the space deserve all the praise they are given.
For us, we found the Sky Garden a truly inspirational place. The array of tropical plants juxtaposed against the brutal London skyline, gave us a new perspective of our city and an insight into how adventurous architecture can be.
A few melted jaguars from it’s refracted glass panelling aside, this building is a triumph. Providing 360 degree view of the streets we walk daily. Some find the building’s unique bulbous structure off-putting, but isn’t London renowned for it’s quirkiness, it’s innovation and sense of adventure?
Also, great telescopes. If you can pry it from the hands of an enthusiastic five year old for a second, you can catch a glimpse of builders scratching their heads, or business people pacing across the millennium bridge, or tell what time it is from Big Ben’s clock.
Article by Rowan Ottesen, Co-founder of The City Works.