South Kensington has one of them:
This isn’t somewhere to slope or sidle. It’s a place to step jauntily, or to mooch enigmatically, or even to promenade wistfully.
Given its proximity to the Royal Albert Hall, the last of these traits seems particularly fitting.
It is shamelessly Victorian in both pretence and purpose. It is anti-modern, in that it tries to mask rather than celebrate the real purpose of its existence. Thanks to the arcade, the Underground at South Kensington can feel a bit like an undignified sideshow: the equivalent of someone coughing during the performance of a light opera.
It’s a delight in spite of rather than because of its role as part of a public transport utility, and that makes it rather an anachronism on this blog. I don’t think, however, that such a distinction diminishes its status as a great thing about the Underground. On the contrary, it sparkles with a personality that is simply different from, not necessarily inferior to, the parade of stylistic icons that march up the Piccadilly and Jubilee lines.
Plus it also looks gorgeous in the sunshine. Fancy a stroll?