There’s a great quote from Samuel Jackson that goes; “When man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.” While it is true that London can be all things to all people, there are three definite areas that appeal to tourists. So, which are you?
Using insight from Londoners, we’ve produced three guides for each type of tourist. In this first part, we focus on ‘The Spender’
If you’ve come here to shop till you drop, find the latest fashion trend or to hit up Oxford Street, you’re most probably ‘The Spender’! This guide is for you.
Perhaps it’s about the trendiest spot to have a drink, the best farmers market in the capital or the place to go for afternoon tea? If this sounds like you, then head to ‘The Foodie’ section.
Or maybe it’s all about ticking London’s top spots, historical sights and cultural must-have’s off your bucket list? If so, head to the YOLO section (you only live once)!
Let’s start with the big one. Harrods in Knightsbridge is made for tourists…but dust off your credit card because it comes at a price! Premium clothing brands, wedding dresses, even cars for your children can all be found here. Brits love John Lewis and the flagship store on Oxford Street is the ‘go to’ destination for quality goods – from homeware to clothing and all that’s in between.
A mecca for designer brands, you can’t miss Selfridges on Oxford street, which stocks British designers from Victoria Beckham to Burberry… you can never have too many trench coats!
While in the neighbourhood, be sure to visit Liberty’s – one of London’s iconic stores since 1875. Hidden just behind Regent Street, it has great clothes, jewellery and cosmetics, but most impressive of all – a designer vintage garment section.
London is best to divide and conquer when it comes to shopping – and don’t forget to get a black cab when you’re ready to drop!
Not forgetting, if it’s young fashion you’re after then the huge Topshop on Oxford Street is essential! It’s also within easy reach of infamous Carnaby Street, littered with boutiques, plus there’s lots of eateries for when you need to refuel!
Not far away Piccadilly Arcade boasts a boutique luxury shopping experience. The mini mall first opened in 1910 and takes you back to a bygone era with diamond shops and clothing stores all under one quirky roof.
Just over the road is a British institution – Fortnum and Mason (42 Jermyn Street), supplier to Her Majesty the Queen. Here you can pick up quintessentially British produce in its food hall (also great for afternoon tea), you can get some nice gifts for friends here too.
Not to be missed, Covent Garden shops are popular with locals and visitors with an excellent choice from bookshops to jewellers, vintage clothes to record stores. Some favourites include; Urban Outfitters, Apple, Ted Baker, HMV and Banana Republic. Wander down some of its alleys to find boutique shops – head to ‘St Martin’s Courtyard’, off the ‘Seven Dials’ and ‘Neal Street’ for some of the best.
If you want to pick up something original, then Rokit (42 Shelton Street) offers the best affordable vintage clothes in town. Similarly, rifle through new and pre-owned fashions at Westway at Portobello market in Notting Hill – a great way to spend a Saturday!
For everything under one roof, head to Westfield mall. There’s one near Shepherds Bush/White City, the other is out east in Stratford (best coupled with a journey to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park). Westfield is where high street meets high end, with every designer to product you could need, with shops from Marks & Spencer to Mont Blanc.
London is best to divide and conqueror when it comes to shopping – and don’t forget to get a black cab when you’re ready to drop!