In 2003 I left the University of Southern California for a year to study at the London School of Economics. The beginning of that year was somewhat of a nightmare! One of my best girlfriends and I could not figure out where to live, how to open up a bank account, where to eat…and then there were the important questions- where can I get a manicure for under £100! Seven years later I am back living in London, and after about 3 years, I finally feel like a local, and absolutely love my vibrant and exciting life here.
So, a little background… two encounters inspired me to start this website. First, while studying in London during law school one of my girlfriends asked me after class- “Why do you like it here so much? There is no place to eat and no place to shop!” The poor girl had been holed up in her dorm room and would only venture to the touristy (and horrible) night spots in Leicester Square. I felt so bad, I wanted to throw her in a taxi and drive her straight to Harvey Nichols!
Years later, after permanently relocating to London with my husband, I had a run-in with a lovely New York woman who had just moved around the corner from me. She was in a complete panic- she didn’t know where to begin! She emailed me a laundry list of questions from- “where do I buy groceries?” to “how in the world does the school system work here?!” I found myself continually emailing the woman offering any help I could, including sending her the contact information for my esthetician and favorite date-night spots.
I finally decided that there should be a resource to help women who were as lost as I was back in ’03 in how to navigate this massive city. A resource tailored to fabulous and chic ex-pats!
The purpose of An American Girl in Chelsea is to share all I (and my trusted friends) have learned about moving to and living in London. There’s fun things like where to eat and shop, but also practical information- (i.e. How to get pages added to your passport for those last minute trips? What ex-pat groups should I join?, Should I find a private dentist? Etc, etc)