The shift in crowd from Exmouth Market in Clerkenwell to Shoreditch High Street used to be much more well-defined: now the same trendy hipsters frequent both, often starting off at Cafe Kick in Exmouth Market only to move to its second home on Shoreditch High Street.
The Barbican, which falls somewhat in between the two areas, is dominated by its famous residential estate of the 1960s and 1970s, an outstanding example of brutalist architecture, and its arts and entertainment venue, aptly named the Barbican Centre. It is easy to get lost among the grey concrete blocks on your way to sexier Shoreditch, with its grungy streets, now home to pop-up restaurants, exclusive member clubs (Soho House has an outpost here, Shoreditch House, replete with a roof-top pool), and slightly-pretentious galleries.
The low-rents of the areas, which used to attract artists and galleries, are a thing of the past, with rental prices matching those in Notting Hill and Mayfair, although if one wanders slightly further north on Kingsland Road you can still manage to find something more reasonable. This part of Shoreditch is known for its Vietnamese restaurants, with the scruffy facades and interiors betraying the quality, authentic food within.