London has long been one of the world’s top shopping destinations. And today, helped by a weaker pound, the capital is seeing a remarkable increase in the number of international tourists flooding the department stores and malls to buy the latest fashion. But with so many options, it is difficult to know where to go. So check out our top 10 of some of the hottest shopping destinations.
Located on Brompton Road in Knightsbridge, Harrods is arguably the world’s most famous department store. The 160-year-old luxury shopping destination is famous for exclusive collections and excellent service.
Harrods has seven floors and numerous departments selling fine products in food, fashion, homeware and technology. The new womenswear department, Superbrands, has 17 boutiques dedicated to top in international brands including Valentino, Prada and Dior.
The department store is also a renowned as a foodie destination and houses more than 20 restaurants and cafes.
Since Harvey Nichols first opened in Knightsbridge in 1831, it has led the way in sourcing the most desirable and cutting-edge designer brands. Recognised as the UK’s premier luxury fashion retailer, Harvey Nichols is internationally renowned for its expertly edited fashion and beauty merchandise, premium food and wine offer and award-winning restaurants.
The Royal Exchange luxury shopping area in the heart of the City of London, is housed in a historic building that dates back to the 16th century.
It was established by wealthy merchant Sir Thomas Gresham, who is known as the father of English banking. He built it as one of the earliest centres for trading stocks – which is fitting given the building is still in the heart of the capital’s financial district.
The building was destroyed by fire twice and the current shape goes back to 1844. The finance centre was turned into a luxury shopping and dining destination in 2001.
Today the Royal Exchange is one of the capital’s top luxury shopping destinations and home to top brands and boutiques, including Gucci, Jo Malone London, Paul Smith, Tiffany & Co and Watches of Switzerland.
TheVillage at Westfield London is an ever-evolving space that combines couture and culture, with luxury shopping, events, exhibitions and fashion installations.
With more than 40 luxury brands, from Louis Vuitton to Prada and Mulberry, all under one roof, The Village is a place to discover the best in designer fashion and lifestyle.
Take the sweeping staircase to the first floor where the cascading chandeliers seem ever closer, for tempting food and fashion with Caffe Concerto, Isola Bella and even more luxury fashion and accessory boutiques.
Concierge services include personal chauffeurs, tax-free shopping, valet parking and international delivery.
Spread over seven floors, Debenhams is one of the largest department stores on Oxford Street. Five floors are devoted to fashion, along with a Clarins Skin Spa, Tanning and Waxing Bar. There are four places to eat, including the W1 Bistro and Restaurant on 5.
The Peter Jones department store is in Sloane Square in Chelsea, at the top of the King’s Road and opposite the Royal Court Theatre. A wide range of brands – from Armani to Zoggs – is on offer, and there is also a Clarins spa. The shop is named after Peter Rees Jones (1842–1905), and is now part of the John Lewis Partnership.
House of Fraser, now known by regular customers as ‘HoF’, traces its roots back to 1849, when Hugh Fraser opened a drapery shop in Glasgow, Scotland. It became House of Fraser in 1941, and its flagship store on Oxford Street carries hundreds of brands across womenswear, menswear, childrenswear, home and beauty.
Marks & Spencer is an iconic name in British retail, and its 170,000 square foot branch on Oxford Street is its flagship store. The chain specialises in food, clothing, lingerie, household goods, children’s toys and beauty products.
Fortnum & Mason’s branch at St. Pancras International station opened in 2013 – its first new store in more than three centuries. It sells the historic brand’s famous hampers, while there’s also an elegant ‘tea salon’ in which to sit down and relax. Perfect for a quick bite before boarding a Eurostar train for a weekend getaway in Paris.
Liberty is one of the last great emporiums for innovative and eclectic design. Situated in the heart of London since 1875, it remains to this day the destination of choice for the savvy and sophisticated shopper.