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Babylon at Kensington Roof Gardens

99 Kensington High Street London W8 5SA

High above Kensington High Street is this oasis of calm and greenery, unknown to most people passing beneath it on their way to and from the surrounding shops. The gardens are spread over 1.5 acres and are organised in three themes: the Spanish Garden (based on Granada's Alhambra), the Tudor Garden and the English Woodland. Although everything must grow in just 1.5 metres of soil there are several fully grown oak and fruit trees as well as numerous varieties of shrubs and plants. A wander along the trickling stream or through the lush greenery up here will have you believing you're not in London at all, and what's more, access is completely free of charge. Even better, why not enjoy something to eat up here among the greenery? Babylon restaurant serves a high quality menu of contemporary British dishes for both lunch and dinner, and although prices can be steep for those who order a la carte, there are good-value set menus which offer the same standard of food for a much reduced price. Starters may include dishes such as scallops, seasonal soups and goat's cheese salad, while mains range from vegetarian risotto or lasagne to seabass, salmon and fillet of beef. Puddings are worth saving room for too – the crème brûlée is particularly delicious. If you're having dinner here on a Friday or Saturday night, you can also pay an additional £10 for entry into the club, a private members' bar which serves up pricey cocktails to a stylish 21-and-over crowd.

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