#CurioCity Campaign Connects Austin's and London's Start-up Cultures

Jamie Nanquil@the_jamielynn I'm in London! Shoreditch, to be specific. If you aren't familiar with Shoreditch now, you will be soon. It's located in London's East End and has been transformed and rejuvenated over the last decade into THE place to be for all things hipster and creative—something an Austinite can truly appreciate. It's a hotbed for trailblazing tech start-ups, unexpected concept boutiques and urban art everywhere you turn.

Let me back up. How did I get here?

British Airways launched their direct non-stop route from London to Austin in March of this year. Realizing a connection between the innovative minds and the communities of tech companies and start-ups in each city, they decided to team up with Mashable to develop the #CurioCity campaign. Five winners from each city would be chosen to experience the culture in the opposite city. To my surprise, I was one of them. You can read more about that here.

Yesterday, I was whisked away by the class and elegance of British Airways' new Boeing 787 Dreamliner and arrived to a beautiful morning in London. Along with four other contest winners, I met with the Innovation team of BA to discuss the ideas that had landed us here. After settling into our hotel, we wandered around Shoreditch to experience the buzz for ourselves. One of the coolest things we ran into is BOXPARK, a pop-up shopping mall, constructed of stripped, and refitted shipping containers, creating unique, low cost, low risk pop-up stores.

Box Park London

That night we had the pleasure of attending 3beards "Don't Pitch Me Bro!" event. 3beards is a content, promotion and events company, focused on growing the global start-up community. From a platform that helps you get feedback on your writing to one that live streams music from DJ decks, start-up ideas were presented to the audience, purely for feedback and advice.

3beards

It was a great first day, and I'm looking forward to what's to come! Follow the conversation on Twitter with the #CurioCity.