Christmas shopping in Victoria
With Christmas fast approaching, the capital’s seasons preparations are getting well underway, and this year Victoria is at the heart of the action
The lights are up, giant fir trees have been erected, festive scents fill the chilly air and Love Actually is already playing on the television twice a week. As Christmas draws ever closer, everyone is eager to make sure their festive shopping is sorted and ready to wrap.
If you would prefer to avoid the bustling crowds of Regent Street and Bond Street this year, then you may find the beguiling streets of Victoria more to your liking. Possessing many of the popular high-end names found more centrally, as well as a number of more boutique brands that call the area their home, Victoria has something for everyone. Here are some ideas to get you started in your search.
Perfumes are the perfect intimate gift for the special someone in your life, whilst also giving you an excuse to spend hours perusing different fragrances. Scent specialists Les Senteurs on Elizabeth Street stocks over 350 fragrances grouped by type and family, allowing you to find an ideal eau de perfume present. For a fail-safe favourite, British perfumer Jo Malone’s new brand, Jo Loves, is just along the road, while the original Jo Malone London brand also has a boutique in Cardinal Place. Or, for those who love nothing more than a long bath, Molton Browne’s range of luxury bathing products could be the perfect gift.
Chocolate is almost synonymous with Christmas and always enthusiastically received. Luxury high-street brand Hotel Chocolat can be found at Cardinal Place, with popular choices including their grand slabs of different chocolates swirled together, Christmas hampers, chocolate buttons and champagne truffles. You may also wish to pay a visit to R Chocolate on Ebury Street, a venture by self-proclaimed chocoholic Sir Evelyn Rothschild. With the brand on a mission to be the finest chocolatier in Britain, their signature salted caramel elephant collection is a must-try.
Something to hang
The giving of artwork is a perfect way to mark the festive season with a gift that can be treasured forever. For lovers of modern art, take a short walk across St James’s Park to Mall Galleries. Run by the Federation of British Artists, the gallery sells artistic endeavours of all types and runs a commissions service to match up ideal artists for special pieces. For more of an international art scene, Eleven on Eccleston Street exhibits names from across the contemporary world from both emerging and well-known established artists.
Are you stuck for some gift-spiration? Why not pop into Joy where you can find an array of clever and funny gift ideas including books, candles, and novelties. From jewellery stands and photo frames to avocado lilos and ‘grow your own wine’ kits, you’ll find something for everyone that’s sure to put a smile on their face. Or perhaps you could focus on the furry friend in your giftee’s life. All manner of pet-related essentials and paraphernalia from treats to tags are available to peruse in Mungo & Maud on Elizabeth Street for guaranteed wagging tails.
Whilst you’re in the area, why not pop into Castle Lane, a new luxury development set in Victoria’s historic Birdcage Walk Conservation Area and a short walk from the station, St James’s Park and all the above outlets. Interiors have a boutique designer finishes, top-of-the-range fittings and appliances. All residents also benefit from a 24-hour dedicated concierge service, meaning you can do your Christmas shopping online safe in the knowledge there’ll always be someone in to sign for it – even if you’re out making the most of the festive season.
VI Castle Lane has just opened new one, two and three bedroom show apartments; contact Strutt & Parker (020 7318 4677) or Knight Frank (020 3826 0673) to arrange a viewing. Alternatively, view the development and register your interest at http://www.vicastlelane.com
Prices range from £825,000 to £3.5 million