British Philly Takes The Biscuit

Visitors Can Explore Philly's English Side At Museums, Restaurants, Pubs & Shops Around Town

Feb 06, 2013, 08:00 ET from Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation

PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --  

Tweet It: The @PhilaFlowerShow's English theme extends beyond the annual event. Check out @VisitPhilly's British side:


Anglophiles rejoice: Brilliant!: The 2013 Philadelphia Horticultural Society Flower Show will be on view at the Pennsylvania Convention Center from March 2-10, 2013, and the best of Britain doesn't end with the show's exquisite themed garden displays, on view for two full weekends for the first time ever. English culture remains alive and well across the Philadelphia region, with historic sites, top-notch museum collections, pubs, tearooms, theaters and sporting events. This season makes the perfect time to explore Philly's British treasures, and the following are just a few places to start:

Ace Sights: History & Art:

  • Independence National Historical Park Philadelphia's history has long been intertwined with Britain's. The Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and the many other historical sites that comprise this park are ground zero for the American struggle for independence from English rule in the 18th century and a fascinating area to tour for anyone interested in this dramatic historical period. 5th & Chestnut Streets, (215) 965-1785,
  • Cliveden of the National Trust The official site of the Battle of Germantown, Cliveden sheltered British troops from American revolutionary forces in 1777. Visitors can tour the house and property with its period furniture and decorative arts. Open April through January. 6401 Germantown Avenue, (215) 848-1777,
  • Valley Forge National Historical Park No tour of local Revolutionary history would be complete without a trip to the site of the 1777-78 winter encampment of the Continental Army. Ranger-led tours and programs illuminate the park's rich history. 1400 N. Outer Line Drive, Valley Forge, (610) 783-1099,
  • Philadelphia Museum of Art Among the vast holdings here are thousands of objects of English origin, including silver, furniture, ceramics and a recreation of an 18th-century drawing room, plus works by notable British artists such as J.M.W. Turner. 26th Street &
    the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, (215) 763-8100,
  • Bartram's Garden Philly native John Bartram created a seed and plant exchange with the leading patrons in England and was appointed the Royal Botanist by King George III. His garden thrives today, with an 18th-century English ginkgo bilobo tree (thought to be the oldest in the North America) still on the premises. 54th Street & Lindbergh Boulevard, (215) 729-5281,
  • Awbury Arboretum The former Cope family estate is a 55-acre retreat in Germantown, with trails and gardens landscaped in the Romantic and Victorian English styles. Grounds are open year round from dawn to dusk and free to visitors. 1 Awbury Road, (215) 849-2855,
  • Shakespeare Memorial Alexander Stirling Calder paid tribute to England's national poet with his 1926 sculpture depicting Hamlet and the jester Touchstone at Logan Square on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. 19th Street at Logan Square
  •  Barnes Foundation While the museum is perhaps best known for its French collections, it also houses a gorgeous sampling of English furniture and decorative objects from the 18th through the 20th centuries. 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, (215) 278-7000,
  • Rosenbach Museum & Library – This archive and literary museum proudly holds an impressive collection of literature from the British Isles, including two 15th-century manuscripts of Chaucers' Canterbury Tales, more than 450 books and pamphlets by Daniel Defoe, an extensive Lewis Carroll collection, a Dickens manuscript parodying Shakespeare and more. 2008-2010 Delancey Place, (215) 732-1600,

Picks For The Peckish: Restaurants & Pubs:

  • The Dandelion Modeled after the contemporary gastropubs in Britain, this Stephen Starr eatery is a cozy place to imbibe a cask-stored pint and dine on delicious welsh rarebit, rabbit pie and Eton mess. There's even an afternoon tea available. 124 S. 18th Street, (215) 558-2500,
  • Pub & Kitchen The hearty menu at this popular corner spot nods to the United Kingdom with bangers and mash, fish and chips and sticky toffee pudding, not to mention an impressive list of ales, gins and whiskeys. 1946 Lombard Street, (215) 545-0350,
  • The Whip Tavern Expatriates gather at this Coatesville enclave for excellent renditions of English grub (Scotch eggs, roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, ploughman's lunch) and UK beers and ciders to be enjoyed by a roaring fire. It's also a great place to catch a rugby match.
    1383 N. Chatham Road, Coatesville, (610) 383-0600,
  • Heart of Oak Pub A true hideaway located in the basement of Baci Restaurant, Heart of Oak serves up hearty plates of bangers and mash and chicken and leek pie with frothy pints of London Pride and Boddingtons. Routes 202 & 413, Buckingham, (215) 794-7784

Four O'Clock Spots: Tearooms:

  • A Taste of Britain Cafe and Tea Room English delicacies are the thing at Wayne's premier tea-tique, with daily afternoon service that includes sandwiches, scones, pastries and a pot of one of the many tea selections available. Other British foods (HobNobs, black currant jam, Branston pickles), plus candy and loose teas are available for purchase as well. 503 W. Lancaster Avenue, Wayne, (610) 971-0390,
  • Talking Teacup Set in a restored 250-year-old farmhouse, this Chalfont eatery and gift shop offers two morning and six different afternoon spreads, including a high tea, a luncheon tea and even a children's tea, with seasonal pastries and pairings. 301 W. Butler Avenue, Chalfont,
    (215) 997-8441,
  • The Four Seasons Hotel's Swann Lounge For the ultimate in luxury, it's hard to beat the Four Seasons' afternoon tea, with its impossibly delicate sandwiches, cakes and exotic brews (pear caramel, karigane, verbena mint chrysanthemum). Also available: signature cocktails and a gluten-free version of the menu. 1 Logan Square, (215) 963-1500,
  • The Rittenhouse Hotel's Mary Cassatt Tea Room Whether it's a tisane steeped from local herbs or a superb Earl Gray, a melon, salmon and minted marscapone sandwich or a chocolate madeleine with a creamy raspberry filling, the afternoon refreshments at the Rittenhouse's tea conservatory make for a posh and memorable day. 210 W. Rittenhouse Square, (215) 546-9000,

Brilliant Buys: Shops:

  • Duke & Winston A Northern Liberties boutique and showroom, Duke & Winston is the brainchild of an English expat who produces his own line of casual clothing with European flair and a bulldog mascot. 633 N. 2nd Street, (267) 639-5594,
  • Bus Stop Boutique The London-born proprietor of Fabric Row's funky shoe shop carries plenty of fashion-forward Brit labels for both men and women, like GOLA, Fly London, Look, Swear and J Shoes. 727 S. 4th Street, (215) 627-2357,
  • Jack Wills The new Center City outpost of this English retailer provides plenty of fodder for Oxbridge fantasies—plaid shirts, striped rugbies, cozy jumpers and brogues for young lads and lasses. 1617 Walnut Street, (215) 751-1055,
  • Metro Men's Clothing The smart fashions at Passyunk's best menswear retailer include street-wear pieces by classic Brit labels Ben Sherman and Fred Perry. 1615 E. Passyunk Avenue, (267) 324-5172,
  • Dr. Martens With the renewed popularity of England's famed worker boot comes this Center City store, offering unisex styles from classic oxblood oxfords to knee-high boots covered in pastel pansies. 1710 Walnut Street, (215) 545-2455,
  • Barbour Founded in 1894, this family-owned British outfitter has finally come to Philly's shopping row, bringing with it its trademark oilcloth jackets, as well as Tattersall shirts, sweaters and other gear for the outdoorsy family. 1517 Walnut Street, (215) 255-8420,
  • Burberry Limited Few patterns are as iconic and instantly recognizable as Burberry check, which instantly signifies English wealth and taste. The Philly retail store continues that tradition with upmarket clothing, shoes and leather goods. 1705 Walnut Street, (215) 557-7400,  

The Play's The Thing: Plays & Playing:

  • Shakespeare Theatre In addition to an ongoing festival focused on the works of the great Bard, this Center City company also supports programming in schools, an acting academy and a summer camp. 2111 Sansom Street, (215) 496-9722,
  • Shakespeare in Clark Park Every summer, this public art-minded West Philadelphia organization mounts a Shakespeare production with multiple outdoor showings in Clark Park. 43rd Street & Chester Avenue, (215) 764-5345,
  • Philadelphia International Cricket Festival Held the first weekend of May, the PICF celebrates the sport of cricket and international sporting with a tournament of 18 teams who compete for charity on the campus of Haverford College, where there is also the C.C. Morris Cricket Library and Museum. 370 Lancaster Avenue, Haverford, (610) 896-1162,
  • Polo at Chamounix Equestrian Center The home of Penn's polo team and the United States Polo Association National Open Interscholastic Polo Champions of 2011 and 2012, the Chamounix Center offers lessons for adults and children interested in the sport English gentry made famous. 98 Chamounix Drive, (215) 877-4419,

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SOURCE Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation