“Oh. My. God… I went to FriendsFest!”
This week, along with my Mum and best friend, I went to Kennington Park in London to see the sets and props from the world’s greatest sitcom, Friends.
Throughout the event we got to go inside three apartment sets, visit the famous coffee house and dress up in ridicuolous costumes.
We had an hour to kill before our set tour, so we began by browsing the outdoor sets. There was the wedding chapel from Las Vegas, Ross’s couch which he tried to “pivot” upstairs and Phoebe’s yellow taxi.
There was also a large model of Monica’s yellow frame on her front door where people could dress up in costumes from the show and pose for a photo in the frame. We saw three women in wedding dresses and two other ladies in Rachel and Monica’s prom dresses from high school. We also posed for a photo ourselves, my friend and I wearing turkeys on our heads and sunglasses and my Mum in Rachel’s cheerleading outfit.
After posing for our ridiculous photo, we went onto the main tour. The first set we entered was Joey and Chandler’s apartment. This included the foosball table, the barker lounger, the yellow sofa, the kitchen, the canoe and my favourite bit, Hugsy the Penguin.
As we left this apartment, we got to view the hallway between apartment 19 & 20 and got a photo sat on the step.
The next apartment was Monica and Rachel’s. It looked a lot larger than it does on television and the purple walls looked lighter. It had the sofa, side tables, TV, Monica’s french poster, the kitchen and of course the famous front door.
Our tour guide who was in our group gave us some interesting facts about filming on this set:
- Monica’s yellow frame was originally a mirror but before shooting, a crew member broke the mirror and they kept the iconic frame instead.
- The reason for the French poster was to cover a camera used for close up shots in the living room.
- The cupboard near the bathroom which was discovered by Chandler to be Monica’s messy cupboard, was in fact the main entrance on and off set.
The last apartment we entered was Ross Geller’s, formally the home of Ugly Naked Guy. On this set, there were a variety of dinosaur pictures, Ross’s couch and the famous curtains which Rachel and Phoebe hide behind to frighten Ross in The One with Unagi.
Our final stop was a drink of lemonade (it was a warm day!) at the famous coffee house, Central Perk and grabbed a snap shot of us on the famous orange couch.
I was hoping to enjoy a sing-a-long of Smelly Cat that Phoebe sings in the coffee house but unfortunately it was unavailable this time.
The event took place on a field at Kennington Park which was relitively even and not too bumpy in my wheelchair. All the apartment sets were fully accessible and I was even given a bit of extra time to view everything on set after the rest of our tour group had moved on which was great help.
My only criticism would be when taking the photo at the large model of the yellow frame. There was no ramp to get up behind the frame. Instead I had to stay on the grass and pose in front of the frame which I thought was slightly disappointing.
Booking tickets was quite simple. A disabled ticket plus companion cost half price of a standard ticket and I was able to book tickets for my full party on See Tickets website.
Overall it was a great afternoon exploring the sets and props of my ultimate favourite television programme and I thoroughly recommend all Friends fans out there book your place at next years Friendsfest!
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