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Top 10: Chinese New Year in London 2014

It is Chinese New Year on 31 January, the start of the Year of the Horse, and to celebrate London is hosting many events around the capital. From the traditional Chinese dragons in Trafalgar Square to shopping for gifts in London’s top department stores, we’ve listed the best things to see and do this Chinese New Year

City Guide
Emily Scrivener,

Trafalgar Square

Chinese New Year celebrations will start from as early as 10am on 2 February in Trafalgar Square, where the square will be filled with floats, dancing dragons and performers. The programme will kick off with the Chen Brothers Flying Lion Dance and will also take in areas such as Leicester Square and Charing Cross Road


London’s Chinatown will once again host a spectacular array of festivities, with hundreds of thousands of people coming down to take part in the celebrations. Banners, lanterns and dancing dragons will line the streets, and the restaurants themselves will have special menus to feed the hungry throngs

Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds is getting the VIP treatment this Chinese New Year with a couple of well-known Chinese icons flying over from Madame Tussauds in Shanghai. Visitors will be able to get up close and personal with Chinese martial-art masters Jackie Chan and Bruce Lee, and watch special performances from lion dancers

Madame Tussauds, Marylebone Road, London NW1 5LR, +44 (0)871 894 3000

BFI Southbank

For those looking to escape the crowds this Chinese New Year, head over to the British Film Institute on London’s Southbank for a veritable feast of East Asian cinema. The programme kicks off with a day of new Chinese documentaries on 15 February and will show the life-affirming film Full Circle. It’s a must for film fanatics.

British Film Institute, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XT, +44 (0)20 7928 3232

EDF Energy London Eye

The London Eye is renowned for its role in the traditional New Year celebrations and now, to celebrate the Chinese New Year, the Eye will turn red and gold to welcome in the Year of the Horse

London Eye, Riverside Building, County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7PB, +44 (0)871 781 3000


Situated on level 33 of the Shard, Hutong serves spectacular northern Chinese cuisine, with equally impressive panoramic views of the London skyline. Four exclusive cocktails will be available throughout January, all demonstrating traditional themes and wishes: Fortune, Happiness, Wealth and Longevity. Enjoy the Happiness cocktail – walnut and strawberry liqueur, fresh strawberries shaken with gin and topped off with Champagne – with the specially created Double Happiness Menu

Hutong, The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, London SE1 9RY, +44 (0)20 3011 1257

National Maritime Museum

Celebrate British East Asian heritage at the National Maritime Museum with a day of exciting workshops, performances and traditional lion dances on 15 February. There are a host of other activities for children from 17-21 February, including learning about lucky red envelopes and writing good-luck wishes to loved ones

National Maritime Museum, London SE10 9NF +44 (0)20 8858 4422

School of Wok

Learn how to make mouth-watering East Asian dishes at the School of Wok’s Chinese New Year Scoff and Quaff night. The School of Wok’s Chinese New Year classes on 31 January include a two-hour cookery and wine tasting lesson, so you can learn as you eat and raise your glass to the New Year all at the same time

School of Wok, 61 Chandos Place, London WC2N 4HG, +44 (0)20 7240 8818


Paying tribute to the Year of the Horse, Harrods’ iconic windows will come to life with horse-inspired displays in vibrant red and gold hues. Inside, the spectacular displays will continue with traditional decorations and in-store exclusives. Renowned milliner Philip Treacy has created a series of exquisite hats for the festive occasion, and Harrods Bank is offering gold bullion inspired by the Year of the Horse

Harrods, 87-135 Brompton Road, London SW1X 7XL, +44 (0)20 7730 1234


Shop for Chinese New Year with Year of the Horse exclusives at Selfridges. Brands including YSL, Chopard and Tumi have created limited-edition products for the festive season – perfect gifts for a loved one or to commemorate this special event. Make sure you pay a visit to the pop-up Fendi store for its celebrated bags, including the latest Fendi demi-jour crossbody bag

Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, London W1A 1AB, +44 0800 123400 (UK), +44 (0)113 369 8040 (international)



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