Beware of the Pretend Sloanes

The new Sloane Rangers – now with less charm

The new Chelsea set try very hard to dress like the old one, but they are richer, more knowing, harder working and less sincere


Nanny wars!

Since the arrival of the oligarchs the battle to secure the right childminder has gone nuclear


A fantasy world with its own perfumed air: the Colony Grill Room

The Beaumont Hotel is a bright white cake in the silent part of Mayfair, where the only sound is Patek…

(Photo: Getty)

Which behaved worse: callous Thomas Cook or cynical Barclays?

Which is worse, morally and reputationally — to be Thomas Cook, shamed by its refusal to show proper human concern,…

Rhubarb at Sky Garden - High Resolution08

Fenchurch in the Sky Garden – like going for dinner in Total Recall

Fenchurch is a restaurant that is scared of terrorists. It cowers at the top of 20 Fenchurch Street, a skyscraper…


What Labour needs to do is estrange its awful voters

And so now we have to suffer the epic delusions, temper tantrums and hissy fits of the metro-left. They simply…


Lefties should cherish trendy London while they still can

London is a bad thing. Everybody knows this now. Britain has had enough of London. Ed Miliband failed in part…


Can Cameron bring us full employment? And do we want it?

‘Two million jobs have been created since 2010 — but there will not be a moment of rest until we…

The Spears 500

Posh, educated and energetic: meet the servants of the super-rich

There is a huge industry catering to London’s foreign plutocracy

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There’s only one place to mourn another Labour loss

Ed is a plank. He was always a plank — and now he is in Ibiza being a plank. Plankety–plankety-plank:…


In praise of the pit bull terrier

Last night I saw a woman dancing with a pit bull terrier. It was about 9 p.m. and her curtains…


Why the internet hasn’t killed estate agents (and what might)

I don’t like to make business predictions, but — barring some apocalypse — I suspect there will be plenty of…

Dear Mary: How to cope with London Library overcrowding

Q. As a writer I find working at home too distracting. I am a longstanding member of the London Library…


I don’t want to be a mansion tax migrant

The super-rich can shrug off Labour’s big tax idea. People like me will be forced out


Tinder went looking for fresh flesh – and accidentally found me

Can mobile dating apps move beyond the promise of a one-night stand?

(Photo: Liavittone)

The Portrait restaurant: a secret glade of stone and brick, suspended above Trafalgar Square

The Portrait Restaurant lives at the top of the National Portrait Gallery, London. It is fiercely modern, but likeable. You…

English cities don’t have quarters – whatever the executives say

‘No quarter given,’ yelled my husband as he stabbed at a cushion with his stick, spoiling the cavalier effect a…


‘About time too!’: Joan Collins curtseys to Prince Charles

The day of my investiture at Buckingham Palace dawned bringing freezing rain and fierce winds, which lashed at the windows…

Vienna's Belvedere Palace

Neither London nor New York will be livable in ten years’ time

A recent column in the FT made me mad as hell. The writer, Simon Kuper, calls Vienna a backwater, which…


Boris Johnson on his plans for the Olympic Park: inspired or whimsical?

Jack Wakefield on the Mayor’s ambitious, not to say whimsical, vision for the Olympic Park

The Ivy Chelsea Garden

The Ivy Chelsea Garden: Richard Caring has finally built a restaurant I admire

The Ivy Chelsea Garden is a restaurant inside an Edwardian house disguised as a Tudor house on the King’s Road;…

Matisse trumps Picasso Photo: Getty

Andrew Marr’s diary: Why this is such a tooth-grindingly awful election

So far, what an infuriating election campaign. We have the most extraordinary array of digital, paper and broadcasting media at…

Bus Conductor

'I will call the police!': My close encounter with 'revenue protection'

Conversations with a ticket inspector on the Norwich train

William Hogarth’s ‘Night’, in his series ‘Four Times of the Day’ (1736), provides a glimpse of the anarchy and squalor of London’s nocturnal streets

Dickens’s dark side: walking at night helped ease his conscience at killing off characters

James McConnachie discovers that some of the greatest English writers — Chaucer, Blake, Dickens, Wordsworth, Dr Johnson — drew inspiration and even comfort from walking around London late at night

Kitty Fisher’s: proof that the PM has good taste in restaurants, if not in friends

David Cameron is too cowardly, or too cynical, to debate with Ed ‘Two or Possibly Three Kitchens’ Miliband — which…