Honeymoons tend to be very private, but we ended ours with a huge group of people – two of our very favourite Japanese people, along with half of their company workers!
On the London Eye with Kyoko and Adachi
Kyoko and Adachi are like second family to me, having let me stay in their house rent free for a year when I lived in the northern Japanese city of Yamagata back in my twenties. They are jazz musicians who love a good party, and frequently opened their doors to the various waifs and strays I brought home (i.e. most of the foreigners who lived in Yamagata) – their house became known as the ‘Adachi Hospital for Homesick Foreigners’ as there was always a cold beer and warm welcome for anyone who visited. (You can read about the crazy way I met them in this post). They also looked after us in the first couple of weeks of our sabbatical in Japan last year.
Adachi travelled the world in his youth and lived in Notting Hill way before it was hip, and Kyoko has been heavily inspired by western music as a Jazz singer, but they had never been to England together. I always promised that of course I would look after them if they ever came to visit, so when they decided to take their team to Europe to celebrate a pivotal birthday for their company, I pursuaded them to give up their idea of going to Italy and come to England instead. But that was before we got engaged. The irony was, they then booked their flights, and it ended up being a week after our wedding (which we would have loved them to come to), and WE were in Italy for our honeymoon! So we decided to spent the last couple of days of our holiday in a lovely London hotel exploring with them instead, and it was such fun.
Charlotte Street Hotel
We booked ourselves into the gorgeous Charlotte Street Hotel in Soho. It is really expensive so we had just taken a simple room, but when we got their they said that as a honeymoon gift they had upgraded us to their loft suite – an apartment overlooking London charged out at £1000 a night! It was so fabulous we didn’t want to leave, but headed out onto the streets of London to see the sights with our visiting friends.
The living room of our loft apartment (complete with our own private lift!)
We have both been to London countless times, but usually to see friends or for work – rarely as a tourist. It was so much fun to see London through the eyes of our friends – the London Eye, live music on the banks of the Thames, the British Museum, Big Ben, afternoon tea in a posh hotel, sunday lunch in an old English pub etc. We also surprised them with three of our English friends who had stayed at their house over the years turning up for lunch and dinner!
Here are a few happy snapshots:
This time with old friends was actually the perfect way to end our honeymoon and start the rest of our married lives. Thank you so much to our friends and families who contributed to our honeymoon and make it so special.
You can read my other honeymoon posts here: (1) Florence / (2) Castel Monastero / (3) Winetasting in Tuscany / (4) Borgo Santo Pietro / (5) Pasta masterclass / (6) Pisa and home