Planning a Christmas shopping trip to London? Book a suite in one of our luxurious aparthotels and then check out the guide below for the best areas to pick up all your gifts this…
Oxford Street/Regent Street/Bond Street/Carnaby Street
If you go to just one place for your Christmas shopping, make it Oxford Street. It can be busy, particularly at this time of year, but the key is to get your timing right. Go very early in the morning, late in the evening or pedestrianised shopping days to shop in relative tranquillity.
Oxford Street houses the very best of the UK high street, from Marks & Spencer to Topshop. It’s also the location of one of the country’s best department stores, Selfridges; its rich history was the subject of recent ITV drama Mr Selfridge. Two other destination stores are Liberty and Fenwick, which can be found on the nearby Great Marlborough Street and Bond Street respectively.
For quirkier presents, take a wander through Carnaby Street. Still as hip as in its heyday in the sixties, the small streets plays host to some of the trendiest fashion and lifestyle brands, from Monki to Cheap Monday. Luxury gifts from premium brands can be found taking a trip down Bond Street, and Regent Street has some of the coolest name in fashion, including &Other Stories and Anthropologie, and is the site of the world’s most famous toy shop, Hamleys.
Time from The Rosebery: 15 minutes by tube, 30 minutes walk, 25 minutes by bus
Time from Templeton & Nevern Place: 20 minutes by tube, 50 minutes by bus
Best for: Being a one stop shop: you can find everything here for even the pickiest of recipients. You can make a whole day out of your shopping experience surrounded by beautiful historical architecture.
Looking for something a little more specialised? Covent Garden is full of beautiful boutiques housing brands such as Original Penguin, The Cambridge Satchel Company and 7 for all Mankind. For tech-heads, the gargantuan Apple store is a must visit, whilst fitness fans will love the Reebok FitHub and Lululemon.
Quintessentially British brands also take a front seat in this area: from Hope and Greenwood’s old school sweet treats to North East outerwear behemoth, Barbour and fashionable men’s outfitters Paul Smith and Nigel Cabourn.
It’s also a great spot for buying gifts from luxury beauty big-hitters – Chanel, Dior, Bobbi Brown and Burberry all have stand-alone stores here – as well as other niche and heritage beauty brands such as Kiehls, Penhaligons, Aesop, Jo Malone and L’Occitane.
Time from The Rosebery: 15 minutes by tube, 20 minutes walk, 25 minutes by bus
Time from Templeton & Nevern Place: 20 minutes by tube, 55 minutes by bus
Best for: The atmosphere – between the street performers, the abundant decorations and people piling out of pubs with hot mulled cider, it’s a truly ‘Christmassy’ experience.
For a high-end shopping experience head to Sloane Street. This famous Street is the ultimate destination for designer fashion; home to world-famous brands such as Chanel, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Prada. Even if your purse wont stretch this far, the windows of these exclusive boutiques are works of art over the festive season.
Whatever your budget, Harrods is a must visit at this time of year. One again, strategic timing is necessary to prevent this one-of-a-kind retail experience becoming an exercise in patience and tenacity! Visit early and you will be rewarded with seeing London’s most beautiful Christmas department as well the opportunity to purchase branded Harrods gifts that are certain to please any Anglophile, without having to battle the crowds.
Whilst in this area, a visit to The Kings Road is essential for beautiful, specialised gifts; visit Rococo for chocolates, Limelight for movie posters and French Sole for classic ballet pumps, then pop in to VV Rouleaux for all the trimmings to make your Christmas wrapping Pinterest-worthy. For vintage and antique lovers, Portobello Road market and the surrounding shops are perfect for finding that one-of-a-kind gift.
When you’ve shopped-til-you-drop, this area of London is the place to see and be seen: Sloane Rangers in Knightsbridge, pop stars on Kensington High Street or a range of actors, politicians and models in Notting Hill and is the perfect chic setting for lunch or afternoon tea.
Time from The Rosebery: 30 minutes by tube, 40 minutes by bus
Time from Templeton & Nevern Place: 30 minute walk, 15 minutes by tube, 30 minutes walk
Best for: People watching, café culture and the array of luxurious gifts.
Of course, if you still come up empty handed, there’s no better gift than the gift of travel – why not treat a loved one to a weekend stay at one of our aparthotels?