The Culture List
Interesting things to see and do, from 4-17 December
Lockdown lifted this week, and while we’re still facing a number of restrictions to our activities in December, we at least have the option to get out and enjoy some engaging events in the run-up to Christmas if we want to.
Whether you’re keen to get out and about or are happier staying at home, we’re here to help you enjoy your free time with our pick of the best physical and online events from around the country, from a festive performance of a Dickens favourite to wreath-making masterclasses.
Browns Virtual Personal Shopping
While standard online shopping has allowed us to keep stocked up with essentials and luxuries even at the height of lockdown, it’s not the same as a bit of in-person retail therapy. Luckily, Browns has come up with the perfect solution by making its Personal Shopping team available for private virtual styling appointments, offering an experience tailored to every customer. Then just sit back and wait for your designer picks to arrive at your door.
Christmas at Kew
As Christmas approaches, many of us will be looking forward to putting the trials of 2020 behind us and enjoying some festive pleasures – and they don’t come much more festive than Christmas at Kew. Follow the winter trail across Kew Gardens, through the Temperate House and Rose Garden and over the treetop walk while enjoying magnificent sculptures, light displays and glittering tunnel of bells. Finish it all off with a treat from the street food vendors or Kew’s Botanical restaurant. Christmas at Kew runs from 4 December to 17 January.
Andrew Lincoln in A Christmas Carol at the Old Vic
Charles Dickens’ wintery favourite is on its way as part of the online Old Vic: In Camera season. Long-time favourite of stage and screen Andrew Lincoln stars as the archetypal miser Scrooge as he’s visited by three ghosts and comes face-to-face with the many mistakes of his lonely life – and is offered a chance at redemption. Matthew Warchus directs This is England writer Jack Thorne’s adaptation of A Christmas Carol, which is performed in the Old Vic auditorium and available to stream live wherever you are across various dates from 12-24 December.
Petersham Nurseries’ Festive Wreath Making
Among the many things that symbolise the Christmas period, perhaps nothing is as beautiful and welcoming as a lovely wreath hanging from your front door. Petersham Nurseries is offering you the opportunity to get a bit of personalisation into your wreath this year with a series of Covid-safe masterclasses, as well as a touch of their signature dramatic floristry style. Attendees will be provided with everything they need to create their wreath, along with refreshments to cap off your outing. Classes at their Richmond and Covent Garden locations are available up until 15 December.
Christmas through the ages with Lucy Worsley
Historic Royal Palaces chief curator and TV history maven Lucy Worsley is joined for this online event by HRP public historian Charles Farris and food historian Richard Fitch to explore festive traditions throughout the ages. From the origins of modern standards – many popularised by Queen Victoria and her family – to some weird and wonderful royal favourites from times past, there’s loads to learn. We’re promised the traditional recipe for mince pies may put you off for life – consider yourself warned!
Berry Bros & Rudd Christmas Clarets online wine tasting
Just because you can’t get out as much as usual this December doesn’t mean you can’t bring some serious flair to staying at home. Berry Bros & Rudd will deliver four deliciously Christmasy and carefully selected clarets to your door for a luxury online wine tasting event on 16 December. An expert host will guide you through wines from Pauillac, Pessac-Léognan, Margaux and Côtes de Castillon. And as no tasting would be complete without a selection of artisan cheeses, they’ve partnered with Paxton & Whitfield to provide the accompaniment.
Treasure your time
Though many of our plans have been curtailed by Covid-19, you can still get the most out of life with the help of The Platinum Card® from American Express and its great benefits. Book your spot for the hottest tickets in town – whether those are virtual today or back at your favourite venues in the near future – and earn a Membership Rewards® point for every £1 you spend. You can redeem your points quickly and easily on any device, from using them to pay for almost any item on your Card Statement or on your next Amazon order. What's more, Membership Rewards points never expire, so you can save them up and spend them on something you love when the time is right.
When we’re able to dine out again, American Express holds specially reserved tables for Platinum Cardmembers at some of the best-known restaurants as part of its exclusive Global Dining Collection. Reserve a table at your favourite restaurant ahead of time by booking directly through the American Express® App for something to look forward to. And when you're ready to travel again, the Platinum Concierge service offers expert, 24/7 travel and lifestyle advice wherever you are, day or night, as well as helping with booking for any kind of experience, whether in-person or virtual.
For more information and to apply for The Platinum Card, click here.
Annual Fee £575. Terms and Conditions apply.
If you’d prefer a Card with no annual fee, rewards or other features, an alternative option is available – the Basic Card. Applicants must be 18 or over. Approval is subject to status, and Terms and Conditions apply.
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Global Dining Collection reservations are based on a first come, first served basis. In the event of a reservation cancellation, the Cardmember will be subject to the restaurant’s cancellation policy, which will be communicated to the Cardmember by Concierge at the time of booking. Concierge is not responsible for informing the restaurant of your dietary restrictions or for the restaurant being able to accommodate the restrictions; we do ask that you provide this information directly to the restaurant. For full Terms and Conditions, please visit americanexpress.co.uk/platinum.