London Neighborhood Guide – Best Areas to Stay in LondonSeptember 28, 2018
LONDON is a very large and cosmopolitan city made up of many small communities that have grown together. Because of this historic past, the neighborhoods of this great city are all very different. Knightsbridge is very different when compared to Covent Garden or Kensington while Mayfair has a history and personality all its own. The beautiful thing about London is a visitor has so many fascinating options when selecting the London they want to know best. When a great city offers such diversity, it also assures so many experiences that make a London visit very exciting.
Best Areas to Stay in London
- Covent Garden: heart of London theater district, walking distance to most of the historic sites
- Knightsbridge: high end fashion, tree-lined streets, beautiful residences, Harrods
- Mayfair/St. James: London’s Beverly Hills, galleries, expensive cars, parks, Buckingham Palace
- South Kensington: Embassies, gardens, shopping, museums, Hyde Park
History, theater, and shopping enveloped in the bustling charm of London — even if you don’t stay in this area, you MUST visit!
A VILLAGE IN THE HEART OF LONDON best describes the perfect blend of historical and contemporary Covent Garden with its charming cobblestone streets. Located in the very center of the city, it’s no wonder COVENT GARDEN is a very popular part of London. This exciting area is within walking distance to most of London’s historic sites: theaters, clubs, exhibitions, galleries, churches, monuments. Most West End theaters are found in this part of London.
A visitor will certainly want to visit Jubilee Market in Covent Garden Square (Monday is ANTIQUE SALES), specialty shops, markets, restaurants, and clubs. Tourists will enjoy such places as Trafalgar Square (pictured above), National Portrait Gallery, Royal Opera House, National Gallery, English National Theater, St Martins-in-the-Fields, Cecil Court, New Row, The Savoy, discount ticket shops, Ben Franklin’s House, Leicester Square, cinemas, and many other attractions.
Pictured above is the London Coliseum, home of the English National Opera, plays, and musicals. Attend a performance and feel transported back in time to the early 1900’s inside an ornate theatre resembling the interior of New York’s Carnegie Hall. A splendid evening at the opera.
Covent Garden is the place everyone enjoys for entertainment, restaurants, and clubs. IT IS EXCITING.
Available Properties in Covent Gardens/Soho Properties
Knightsbridge is the best of all worlds: fashion and tourism— this west portion of London is perfect for wandering, exploring, and enjoying tree lined streets and beautiful residences
KNIGHTSBRIDGE is certainly one of London’s most prestigious neighborhoods. This “fashion district” with amazing luxury shopping includes several designer stores and other icons like HARRODS and HARVEY NICHOLS dominate the scene. Beautiful buildings and fine architecture attract visitors who are seeking up-market experiences. Knightsbridge is a place to see and be seen, and it is exciting to watch this scene. On a Friday or Saturday evening, some of the rarest and most valuable cars in the world drive up and down Sloane Street as if they are part of an exclusive club’s parade. Watching fashion houses change window displays gives the ladies in our lives all kinds of ideas.
Centuries ago, this area was somewhat of a no man’s land and it wasn’t until the 19th century that it began to develop into the exclusive location that we find today. One fable suggests the name came because the bridge was crossed over by knights going to London to fight the holy wars. A more dramatic fable tells of two knights that both fell to their deaths in the river while battling each other on the bridge. While visiting Hyde Park (pictured below) it is fun to imagine if the ancient bridge might still exist!
Properties in Knightsbridge are walking distance to the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National History Museum, the Albert Memorial, Royal Albert Hall, the Brompton Oratorio, and Hyde Park. When considering staying in Knightsbridge, a visitor understands that this is where all the great designers have shops along Sloane Street and down the small streets off the Cromwell Road. It is an area which exudes fine living. There are restaurants of all standards, bars and clubs which draw fashionable people.
KNIGHTSBRIDGE is on the west side of London between the Cromwell Road and Chelsea with the Piccadilly Line traversing with easy access to Heathrow Airport and to the most central areas of the city: Green Park Tube Station, Piccadilly Circus Tube Station, Leicester Square Tube Station, Covent Garden Tube Station, etc.
This means that a visitor to London can live in a high-end property in a fashionable district yet be only moments from some of the most desirable monuments in the city. Shop ’til you drop in the morning and spend the afternoon visiting museums and art galleries and then still have time for theater in the evening.
Words like luxury shopping, fine dining, high end, exceptional architecture, beautiful automobiles, style, fashion, elegance define this amazing part of London where many visitors choose to stay.
Available Properties in Knightsbridge/Belgravia Properties
Available Properties in Westminster (East of Belgravia, closer to Thames River)
MAYFAIR is London’s Beverly Hills — many of the shops, galleries, restaurants, designers, antique dealers, and auction houses are found in this district of London
The city’s finest residential architecture will be found as you wander through the streets of this aristocratic area. For those who love fine automobiles, Mayfair is Paradise. Great art galleries and auction houses attract some of the finest collectors from all over the world. Some of the most famous hotels in the world are located in this district like CLARIDGES, THE CONNAUGHT, THE HILTON where fabulous evening dining is moments from your flat. Oxford Street is filled with shoppers who are looking for bargains while the area around Maddox Street provides perfect window shopping.
If you like history, wander through Mayfair and read the BLUE PLAQUES on these beautiful properties which will identify the famous people of England’s grand and glorious history who lived in this area. You will visit the residences of authors, artists, politicians, historians, dethroned monarchs, actors, military heroes, aristocrats, and scientists who once called MAYFAIR home. Walk down Bruton Street that was bombed during the war and see the plaque honoring the site where the Queen was born and a marvelous antique shop. A walk down the Mall with Green Park on one side and St. James’s Park on the other, passing by the memorial to Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother and her beloved King George VI is an evening not to be missed.
Buckingham Palace and the changing of the guard, the Queen’s Gallery, and the Royal Mews filled with regal carriages are located a short distance through Green Park. Apsley House and the Hard Rock Cafe are on Piccadilly close to Fortnum and Mason, the Royal Academy of Arts, and three wonderful Victorian shopping arcades. Often Sotheby’s or Christie’s will have an exhibition or an auction which are fascinating to attend. Enjoy the great exhibitions at the Royal Academy or at Philip Mould Gallery on Piccadilly. Berkeley Square is beautiful with car dealerships Rolls Royce and Bentley exhibiting their finest automobiles.
The bus and the Tube and the black cabs make transportation to all parts of London very convenient from Mayfair. Within walking distance to many London sites, this beautiful area has a more residential feel.
Mayfair and St. James’s together are without a doubt the ceremonial, aristocratic, residential districts of London.
Available Properties in Mayfair/St. James Properties
Affluent properties, gardens, embassies, shopping, business, museums, and music enveloped in the hustle bustle of London life
If you care to stroll through beauty and history and experience London as Londoners do, Kensington is the neighborhood for you. Start the day with a morning run (or walk) through serene Kensington Gardens past the Peter Pan statue and the Albert Memorial. Don’t miss the Italian Gardens as you have your reverie with nature.
Back to civilization to enjoy breakfast at a fabulous pastry shop, and then spend an afternoon visiting Kensington Palace, the former residence of Diana Princess of Wales. Visit three outstanding museums (the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Natural History Museum, and the Science Museum) before enjoying an evening concert at Royal Albert Hall. PERFECT. IT IS ALL TO BE FOUND HERE IN SOUTH KENSINGTON.
The following day is all about shopping along the famous Kensington High Street. These high end shops attract very different clients than do the shops in crowded areas of London. Take a bike ride through Hyde Park, past Serpentine Gallery and by nearby Royal College of Music and London Oratory.
In the grand, elegant buildings of Kensington are found night clubs, antique shops, cafes, specialty shops, museums, fine art for the enjoyment of both visitors and residents.
Available Properties in Kensington/South Kensington Properties
3-44 Gloucester Terrace (north of Hyde Park)
By reserving your London Connection vacation apartment, you will ensure you are living in one of the best areas to stay in London while you are there. Whichever neighborhood you choose, you will LOVE TO VISIT THEM ALL. To help you navigate all there is to see in London, check out the Family Friendly Itinerary. This has been a useful resource for many first-time and experienced London travelers. With the advanced public transportation it is so easy to hop on the tube and be in another LONDON spot in just minutes. The charm of London awaits your presence. What’s stopping you?