England, Europe, Exclusive

New attractions coming to London soon

After a year spent in the limelight, it seems the whole world is talking about London. There much more to come from the capital to ensure London is still one of the top weekend destinationsin Europe. The latest event to hit the headlines is the official opening of the viewing platform on the Shard, the capital’s newest and most controversial landmark. The View from the Shard is set to become one of the must-see sights in London, with unrivalled panoramas extending 40 miles across the city.

The Shard is the tallest building in Western Europe and is the centrepiece of an entirely revamped area on the south bank of the Thames, known as the London Bridge Quarter. The Shard itself will house offices, restaurants, private residential apartments and a lavish 5-star hotel. The 200-room Shangri-La, which occupies a spectacular position on floors 34-52 and takes its inspiration from the Far East, is destined to become one of the most iconic hotels in London and across the world.

If a night in the exclusive Shangri-La is a little out of your reach, you will also be able to enjoy the same breathtaking views from the three restaurant floors grouped around a spectacular glass atrium. Full details of the restaurant operators are still under wraps, but reservations are bound to be like gold dust when the openings are announced. If your name’s not on the list, there are plenty of good places to eat just a stone’s throw away at ground level, although the view might not be quite so special.

The View from the Shard opens to the public in February 2013 and tickets are on sale now from the official website (http://www.theviewfromtheshard.com).

Another new attraction which, if plans are successful, is likely to catapult straight to the top of the world’s must-see lists, is the £2 billion Paramount theme park. This ambitious development is set to utterly transform a disused brownfield site in Kent, less than 20 minutes by train from central London and linked with the European mainland via the Ebbsfleet International railway station.

Plans for the venue include the largest indoor water park in Europe, rollercoasters and rides, live entertainment venues, cinemas, hotels and restaurants, and should rival Disneyland Paris as Europe’s most family-friendly destination. At its heart will be a Paramount entertainment resort which will draw on the legendary Hollywood studio’s back catalogue of films such as the Indiana Jones series, Transformers, Titanic and Mission Impossible. If the proposals are accepted, the new development is also expected to create thousands of new jobs and breathe new life into a neglected part of the Thames estuary.

Photo by yaketyyakyak on Flickr.

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