Boris Johnson Opens LFW at Somerset House

The jet set lifestyle had clearly been taking its toll on Boris Johnson as he yawned his way through a catwalk show today.

The mayor, who has spent the past week in New York promoting London as a tourist destination, had been invited to open London Fashion Week, which this year celebrates its 25th anniversary.

Mr Johnson was flanked by editor of Elle magazine Lorraine Candy and British Fashion Council chairman Harold Tillman as designer Caroline Charles presented her collection for spring 2010.

September 16, 2009

Boris Johnson, the mayor of London, and his New York City counterpart Michael Bloomberg have struck a deal to boost tourism in the two metropolises.

The two-year agreement will see both cities provide each other with advertising space, as well as working closely to share ideas and run joint publicity events.

It will be seen as a significant coup for the Eton-educated London mayor, whose unconventional style appears to have gone down well in the US financial hub.

Under the terms of the deal, New York will carry advertisements for London on 71 bus shelters for four weeks per year, worth $178,500 (£108,000).

In return, Londoners will see adverts for holidays and flights to New York spring up on 250 posters dotted around the London Underground network. Those posters will run for four weeks twice per year, matching the advertising value of the US campaign.

Visit London and NYC & Company, the tourism marketing agencies for both cities, have also agreed to share best practices and assist each other with campaigns.

Announcing details of the bilateral arrangement during his trip to the US, Boris gushed: "London and New York City share many similarities, including a strong sense of optimism and determination, along with a great appreciation for diversity and innovation.

"Our common cultural ties – not least absolute dedication to providing world-class services and experiences for both residents and visitors – make the two cities exceptionally well poised to combine knowledge as well as resources to impact the economies and future of the cities."

The charismatic London mayor, who was born in New York, also touched on air transport matters, speaking out against video conferencing as a way of doing business.

He told journalists that video link-ups are a poor substitute for face-to-face communication – an argument that closely resembled a new campaign by British Airways, which The Guardian claims gave Boris four free Business-Class tickets for his trip.

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