Cubicles in the sky - the view from The Shard toilets
It’s a beautiful surprise as you open the cubicle door. Brilliantly, the toilets at The View from The Shard, the skydeck experience at the top of The Shard building in London, have been fitted with floor-to-ceiling windows, offering visitors a unique way to take in the magnificent view. It's like you've just been handed your very own personal viewing pod, albeit one containing a toilet and a sink. There’s an electric, button operated, blind for anyone wanting a more traditional toilet experience. But leave it open and many of London's most iconic sights are visible beneath your feet, as you sit.
Watch the electric blind in action here:
The Shard sits on the south bank of the River Thames, above London Bridge Station. The View from The Shard observation deck is on floors 68-72 and the toilets are on floor 68:
This animated film, from Elbow Productions, tells the story of how Italian architect Renzo Piano was inspired by history when designing The Shard - particularly London’s numerous church spires and the masts of sailing boats on the Thames:
And this aerial footage of London includes several fantastic shots of The Shard, now perhaps the most visually impressive feature of London's skyline:
Introducing toilet based sightseeing…
An open-top bus is one way to see the sights. Could this be another? Major London landmarks visible from The Shard toilets include:
The Tower of London - originally built by William The Conqueror following his invasion of England in 1066. Now a World Heritage Site.
HMS Belfast - first launched in 1938, this historic warship played a key role in the D-Day Landings during World War II. Now permanently moored on the Thames. Find out more at the Imperial War Museum website.
30 St Mary Axe - a.k.a. the Gherkin, this commercial skyscraper opened in 2004. It is informally known as the Gherkin on account of it looking like a gherkin.
As you can see in this promotional video, The View from the Shard was opened by Boris Johnson, back when he was Mayor of London. We do not know whether or not he visited the toilets:
Homepage image Alex Groundwater.