Ice as nice

Skate at Sommerset House, presented by Tiffany and co

The backdrop is the architecturally beautiful Somerset House which, from November 22 – January 22, will be home to an open air ice rink for the 10th year running.

As a sport, ice skating now enjoys Olympic status. There is nothing quite like the allure of skating; the promise of gliding gracefully (or not as the case maybe) around the rink a la Robin Cousins, Christopher Dean et al to the sound of music.

Where else can you fling your arms around a strange member of the opposite sex? Or quite literally bump into other people? And the best thing about all of this is that it is not only inevitable; it is the norm – the accepted and established code of conduct when it comes to skating.

For the last couple of years, I have joined the enthusiastic masses and been captivated by the charm of the Christmas rink. The effect is truly spectacular with the beautiful 18th century courtyard space turned into a fairytale setting, illuminated at night by special lighting. My friends and I all started off in much the same manner – hanging onto the barrier at the side of the ice while trying to slither and slide our way around the circuit.

Confidence came quickly tho and soon we were all playing at being Torvill and Dean. If ice skating isn’t your thing, you can always sit alongside the rink and soak up the atmosphere in the Tom’s Skate Lounge over a glass of mulled wine while admiring the 40 foot Tiffany Christmas tree.

However there will be more to Somerset House than just the installation of an outdoor ice rink. Learn how to pirouette at the skate school and then show off your moves at one of the club nights. Alternatively enjoy a Teatime with Tiffany skate session (expect tea-dance music and live ice-dance displays, followed by a free hot drink to warm you up, a Tiffany treat and a luxurious glass of champagne for the adults). Meanwhile kids can enjoy the magic of storytelling beside the Christmas tree.

But the best thing about Somerset House ice rink is that it is out in the open. Its quite magical being able to skate in the open air in the middle of London. With the ornate Christmas tree and the beautiful architecture, you simply couldn’t ask for a more picturesque or perfect setting. Time to get your skates on?

For more information or to make a booking, please visit

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