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Boys Will Be Boys… In Seven Dials

Corin Jackson tells us why Seven Dials is a mandatory place for a man-date

Written by . Published on October 12th 2011.


Boys Will Be Boys… In Seven Dials

AS far as I can tell, the majority of men seem to prefer to venture into bars and clubs of the, shall we say, obvious variety, as a way of picking up girls. Don’t get me wrong, such voyages are all very well for a little short term gain, but what about the long term prospects of doing the same things and seeing the same places day in and day out?

We have a suggestion, lads – do a little bit of reevaluating and take a trip to Seven Dials in a bid to improve your pulling power. We've even compiled a list of all the right places to see and be seen.

If, like a large proportion of the male population, you tend to have a fairly short attention span, then Seven Dials could be the place for you. For, in the words of Dickens, ‘The stranger who finds himself in the Dials for the first time […] will see enough around him to keep his curiosity awake for no inconsiderable time.’

A mere two minute walk from the Covent Garden tube stop will lead you to the heart of Seven Dials. The area is tucked away from the tourist hell around the corner and best of all has a village-y feel that is always welcoming and unintimidating.

The original layout was designed by Thomas Neale, in the early 1690s, who aimed to attract some of the city’s most well-off residents. The fact that the plan backfired and the area became one of London’s most notorious slums by the nineteenth century is perhaps what gives Seven Dials some of its charm as a flourishing and prosperous part of town today. 

Couple Shopping

If, like a large proportion of the male population, you tend to have a fairly short attention span, then Seven Dials could be the place for you. For, in the words of Dickens, ‘The stranger who finds himself in the Dials for the first time […] will see enough around him to keep his curiosity awake for no inconsiderable time.’

Although the area has long since lost its ‘unwholesome vapour’, the Dickensian element of unfaltering intrigue remains. While Mysteries Astrology, known for its new age literature and Tarot card readings, may not be your cup of tea, Fopp Records, one of the UK’s biggest distributers of vinyl, and provider of specialist books and CDs may be more your speed. And don't forget, chicks dig music too.

Like it or not, girls like to shop, and Seven Dials offers a nice selection of unique vintage shops that are also guy friendly. Unconditional+ is a boutique for experimental and emerging designers, and it’s unisex so you never know who might be lurking in the aisles. A Robert Cary Williams T-shirt is a safe bet, or the store has a selection of the Rick Owens Dark Shadow collection, for a more don't-mess-with-me look.

If you’re not into vintage, there’s Pose, a brand more concerned with contemporary fashion, purely for men. From suited and booted to surfer or skater, RCR to Rio Beach, Seven Dials is not without its lad-friendly fashion boutiques. Even the most nervous of shoppers can’t go wrong with a choice of Allsaints, American Apparel, Diesel, Firetrap, Superdry, Urban Outfitters, Fred Perry, Baracuta...

Cigar Case And GlassesYou'll be cool enough for these after a trip to Seven Dials

You might as well pop into Nickle too, Philippe Dumont’s male only spa. They offer a full range of manly treatments from sports massages to fitness facials and luxury MANicures (some treatments are a little more masculine than others, but after tackling the shops, you're comfortable enough to handle it). David Beckham certainly has no qualms when it comes to beautifying and I see no shortage of girls falling at his feet. But we're just saying...

Man In Seven DialsThis could be you

You'll probably need a coffee by this point. We suggest Monmouth Coffee Company, officially known as the best coffee in London. Grab one from their original shop on Seven Dials' Monmouth Street or, if you're looking to kick back and relax with your coffee, head to Café Eterno on Neal Street for a piece of lemon drizzle and a comfy sofa.

Polish off your day (or with any luck, your date) with a visit to one of the Dials’ many theatres. Right now can choose from the high-powered performances of Stomp at the Ambassadors Theatre and the very sexy Chicago at the Cambridge Theatre. Jude Law famously performed at Donmar Warehouse, and if Jude Law doesn’t set the standard for cool, then we don’t know who does.

Urban OutfittersUrban Outfitters

So have we convinced you to stop hanging out in the same pubs and dives that you have done since you were what, seventeen? Grow a pair, and step ever so slightly outside of the box. Even if you do continue visiting the same old pubs and clubs, at least have the decency to come to Seven Dials for limited edition Fred Perry imports and Nickle’s famous morning-after rescue gel. After all, if you don’t put in the effort, you can expect zero results. And with effort comes a sense of decency. With decency comes Seven Dials. Simple.

SevenDials.co.uk

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