The traditional LASIG pre-conference dinner
If you are arriving in Glasgow in the morning or afternoon of Sunday 2nd April, 2017, and are free between 6.30 and 10pm, why not arrange to meet up with LASIG members at their traditional gathering on the evening before the pre-conference event (PCE)? It is a wonderful opportunity to meet old friends and new, to network, get to know people better, hear about other living, working or study environments, or simply relax in pleasant surroundings, with good food and convivial company!
The venue selected this year because of its pleasant environment, friendly and helpful staff and its wonderful range of Spanish tapas and other authentic Hispanic delights is Elena’s restaurant, which is managed by the hospitable Scottish and Spanish owners, Neil and Elena. It’s situated in the heart of Glasgow’s West End, actually not too far from SECC. It’s located directly opposite Glasgow’s famous Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum (which sits just off of Argyle Street and Kelvingrove Park), at the top right-hand corner of Regent Moray Street, where it meets Old Dumbarton Road and Yorkhill Street. The address is 90 Old Dumbarton Road, Glasgow G3 8PZ (be careful to come to Old Dumbarton Road, because there is a newer Dumbarton Road, very closeby in Partick, which might easily be confused). The menu at Elena’s is constantly changing according to the seasons and what is freshly available. You can get an idea of the menu options here. We are gathering at 6.30 to start eating at 7pm and we will pre-order our choices from a menu to avoid disappointment. So, how can you get there?
By underground/subway, which operates only from 10.00 till 18.00 on Sundays, so you’ll have to return to your accommodation by a different means. Take the subway to Kelvinhall Station and then walk along Dumbarton Road towards the City Centre, but turn right at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and walk up Regent Moray Street (5-8 min walk).
On foot, from the City Centre, walk along Sauchiehall Street till it meets Argyle Street (20-30 min walk). Turn left at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and walk up Regent Moray Street to the corner where it meets Old Dumbarton Road.
By bus, from the City Centre. Take a First Bus number 2, 3 or 77 and get off at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery. Walk up Regent Moray Street and you’ll see Elena’s on your right.
By train to Partick Station and from there walk along Dumbarton Road in the direction of the City Centre, or take the subway one stop from Partick Station to Kelvinhall Station and walk from there, or take a bus from Partick Station which stops at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and walk up Regent Moray Street.
Sightseeing suggestions before the dinner
Glasgow is a place steeped in history and the good thing is that entrance is free to most museums (they accept voluntary donations). Here are some suggestions for places in and around Elena’s restaurant which you could visit on Sunday morning or afternoon and which are within reasonably close walking distance.
Depending on weather conditions and the time available to you, you could visit Glasgow’s Botanic Gardens, located where (Great) Gt. Western Road meets Queen Margaret Drive and the top of Byres Road. It is a popular place with visitors and Glaswegians alike, with interesting plants, trees and bushes, as well as sculptures and more exotic species in its hot-houses. A river runs through the gardens and adds a little bit of drama.
From there you could make your way down Byres Road which has some interesting charity shops, bookshops, craftshops, cafes and bars which are popular with students and the artistic set and open on Sundays. Near Hillhead Subway Station is Ashton Lane, which is famous for its bars and restaurants and its student night-life. There is also a cinema there.
Either from here, or further down on University Avenue, if you keep going left, you will enter Glasgow University Campus, a university which has a history extending back to 1451. You are free to enter the gates to the main building and explore Professors’ Square, the Quadrangles, the Cloisters and the Bell Tower and enjoy the Gothic architecture which has appeared in Harry Potter films. If you come out of the quadrangles on the other side, you will be treated to a breathtaking view of the university itself, the magnificent red sandstone building which houses the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery and a bird’s-eye view of Kelvingrove Park. You can either take a self-tour of the campus highlights or you can join a group with a knowledgeable guide at a cost of £10.00 per Adult. Tours start at 2pm from the Reception Desk in the John McIntyre Building and there is an additional booking fee of £1.00.
Within the Campus, you can also visit the Hunterian Museum (Open Sun. 11-4, Admission free), visit the Hunterian Art Gallery (Open Sun. 11-4, Admission free [though there are charges for special exhibitions]) and, in the same building visit The Mackintosh House (Open Sun. 11-4, Admission charge £5.00). There are also gift shops in the Hunterian Gallery and below the West Quadrangle, open on Sundays, which are a good place for finding souvenirs and small gifts and cards for loved ones.
From University Avenue you can turn and walk along the impressive tree-lined Kelvin Way, which runs through Kelvingrove Park and will take you in the direction of the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery (postcode G3 8AG - Open Sun. 11-5, Admission free). You could spend hours wandering around the museum and art gallery which exhibit artefacts and artwork from all over the world. The museum also has a shop and is another good place to pick up all kinds of gifts and postcards. There are (free) daily organ concerts, so you might be lucky and hear the impressive strains of the organ as you flit from gallery to gallery or relax in the coffee shop.
Opposite this Museum, also housed in a red sandstone building is the Kelvin Hall. Recently, the University of Glasgow together with the National Library of Scotland has created the Hunterian Collections Study Centre in this building, so if you still have a few minutes to spare, you can get a taste of what’s to come by visiting its Glasgow Club, where there are some temporary displays (Open Sun. 8am-8pm, Admission free).
From here, Elena’s restaurant is literally a hop, skip and a jump away. If all this wandering and exploring has made you work up a thirst and beer is your thing, you could do no worse than stop at the corner of Argyle Street (1397-1403) and Regent Moray Street for a taste of some famous craft beer at Brew Dog Glasgow. But just allow yourself a small sip, because Elena’s also has an interesting range of drinks on offer to accompany the fabulous food!