There is no shortage of places to shop in London. Whether you’re looking for the luxury experience, high street brands or the everyday variety: you are sure to find it in this city. For the dedicated Fashionista: the person who arranges their appointments according to the schedule of every Fashion Week around the world to ensure that they do not miss the first, exclusive launches of their new lines; the person who always has their finger on the pulse of what trends will be hot or flops each season, well you have come to the right city. Now, you need to know exactly where to go.
This is therefore your guide of which roads to visit, in what areas and what you can expect to find depending on where you go. Hopefully, this will sculpt your expectations of the kind of fashion you will be finding and how to hit all your desired spots that are in close proximity to each other so that you don’t end up traipsing back-and-forth with all of your shopping bags.
Fortunately, the fashion experts of London have banded together in the general Mayfair area: so this makes your expedition to find the hottest pieces considerably easier, but it does still help to know where everything is grouped because you’ll still be doing a lot of walking. While many articles focus on Oxford Street and Regent Street (and this one will mention them too), the main focus of this article centres around New Bond Street and Old Bond Street.
The Big Brands & Your Plan of Attack
Anyone who is an expert shopper knows that it is all about strategy. If a store has just opened, released an anticipated new line or just gone on sale to clear out the season then you need to get in there fast and early on in the day before all the good things get snatched up. But you already know that and likely have a few designer names in mind, so I will provide a virtual tour of sorts so that you know where in this area you can go to find the labels and shops that you have not yet located or were previously unaware of.
My advice would be to hit the flagship stores first. Not only do brands typically keep their best items for these stores (rather than the external retailers that they supply), but your shopping experience is much more personal and fabulously lush. Expert tip: there is never any harm in asking for a glass of champagne. This applies to most areas of life too.
After that, I would head to the exclusive luxury department stores in the Mayfair area that make London the shopping paradise that it is: Selfridges, Fortnum & Mason and Liberty. Whatever brands you did not find on the streets will all be within their walls and conveniently displayed right next to each other.
I am going to assume that you have been just as strategic in booking your hotel accommodation as you are with your shopping missions. In this case, you would have been scouring the internet for London Hotel Special Offers to make sure that you get the best of all possible Hotels Packages. Because you’re already smart enough to be a member of The Montcalm Club and want to be situated somewhere close to the best shops but also not too far away from your favourite West End Restaurants, then the obvious choice would be for you to stay at The Montcalm London Marble Arch. From here, you would take a short walk down Great Cumberland Place until you reach the top corner of Hyde Park at Marble Arch Station: and this is where our journey will begin.
Mayfair: The Famous Streets and Shops You Keep Hearing About
Turning left off Great Cumberland Place, you will now find yourself on the famous Oxford Street, with the wonder that is Selfridges on your left and all of the different possibilities down every street that leads off to your right. By all means, follow your intuition down whichever winding path and into whichever shop piques your interest: but here are the highlights.
If you carry on down Oxford Street, then the main streets to explore will begin when you hit Bond Street Station. From here, you will continue down Oxford Street until the next road, which will be New Bond Street. This is where you will find all of the latest and most coveted labels: more than I could ever properly list here, so here are some select few in the order that you would find them if you turned off Oxford Street.
The big designers start grouping together consistently when you reach Brook Street and fill find Montblanc, BOSS, Emporio Armani & Mulberry. Past Grosvenor Street you will see Breitling, Ermenegildo Zegna, Fendi, Chloé, LONGCHAMP, Tory Burch, Miu Miu and Jimmy Choo.
However, it is when you hit Bruton Street that you really need to hold onto your hat because there is Hermès, Burberry, CHANEL, Louis Vuitton and Dior. Carry on straight when the road bends to the left and your journey will continue past Celine, Givenchy, Chopard, BVLGARI, Harry Winston, CHANEL Fine Jewellery, Cartier and Ralph Lauren.
After this, you will officially be on Old Bond Street, where you will find Tiffany & Co., Alexander McQueen, Prada, Saint Laurent, OMEGA, Gucci, Valentino and Michael Kors Collection. And as I said before: these are just the few that stuck out to me – there is so very much more on offer.
At the end of this, you will find Piccadilly Street, which is also sprinkled with the finest shops including the one-of-a-kind Fortnum & Mason: which you will find if you turn left down Piccadilly Street and carry on until you see the first road on your right. You can’t miss it – and really shouldn’t miss out on it either – because Fortnum & Mason takes the greatest pride in their own personal brand just as it does the other designers that it takes such pleasure in flaunting for you.
Lastly, a fashionista’s trip to London would be incomplete without a visit to Regent Street, just across the way, that is a complete mix of the luxury brands mentioned above (and also where you will find Karl Lagerfeld, Tommy Hilfiger, Kate Spade, Lacoste and Coach) with the likes of Zara, H&M and Uniqlo. What a world we live in. Just make sure that you make the trip to the fashion palace that is Liberty: the Tudor-revival building filled with all of the high-end fashion, homeware and even its own personal fabric line.