Notting Hill & Holland Park

Notting Hill is a fashionable London borough, world famous for the colourful street carnival held annually. Every August bank holiday locals fill the streets with spectacular costumes and floats and dance through the weekend to celebrate the Afro-Caribbean culture synonymous with the area. It’s a fun party attended by two million visitors and you don’t need a personal invite!  Holiday rentals are in demand during the festivities.

For the rest of the year Notting Hill has yet another claim to fame – the weekly antiques market held at the heart of the area, Portobello Road. This is a well loved place to poodle around and enjoy the cosmopolitan atmosphere provided along with bric-a-brac, antiques and international fresh produce. There’s always something new to admire, and the market holders are passionate and enthusiastic. There is such a range of things to look at and buy, you are sure to find that unusual gift. Fresh produce is also abundant, and there are many good specialist food shops, street-food vendours, and small bakeries and café’s.  With so many attractive amenities on offer it is no surprise the neighbourhood is popular with tourists looking for holiday rentals.

Notting Hill is proud of its bohemian atmosphere and funky-artistic image. A boho edge is successfully combined with a move upmarket. There are numerous great eateries, bijoux designer shops and interesting galleries to cater for monied residents and sophisticated visitors. Explore some of the side-streets…they are lovely to wander down, lined with shops and pretty, pastel colored houses with their own garden squares.

The small independent shops dotted around are fun to browse in. Books for Cooks on Blenheim Crescent for example, is a famous, specialist bookshop selling cookbooks and books on food history. They have a small cafe selling home made food. The shop used as the travel bookstore run by Hugh Grant’s character in the famous film Notting Hill is also to be found here. These independent shops are unique and often unusual, greatly adding to the area’s famed individuality. Take a break from shopping in one of the many tea rooms or cafe’s you will stumble across. There are good pubs and bars in the area too…

The borough’s location is very convenient for moving around central London. Transfer to Heathrow Airport is super swift on the Heathrow Express to Paddington. The central line is four stops up to Bond Street and there are frequent buses running on Bayswater Road. It’s a very lovely walk through Kensington Gardens, up through Hyde Park and on to Marble Arch…bike hire is also all the rage these days.  All of these areas offer quality holiday rentals throughout the year.

Venture 15 minutes east and you are in the West End. The world renowned Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park are within walking distance and will energize you and slow the pace. Take time to seek out the good restaurants and shops to be found in the many interesting neighbouring areas such as Westbourne Park and Ladbroke Grove. You will find the famous Westfield Shopping Mall, the largest of it’s kind in Europe, in Shepherd’s Bush.

Neighbouring Holland Park is an attractive, fashionable area with a respected, old-world feel to it, known for fabulous large Victorian townhouses, foreign embassies and the excellent shopping and restaurants on Holland Park Avenue. There are wonderful specialist shops to seek out here too, such as a family-run butcher, a high-class specialist food shop, and a good bookshop. There are many popular shopping destinations located within an easy distance of here, such as High Street Kensington, Portobello Market and Westbourne Grove.

It is one of London’s most elegant districts, its tiny park being its main feature. In the late 19th Century, this was home to the Holland Park Circle, a group of renowned artists and art collectors. It’s the ideal location for those wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of the city but who don’t want to travel too far out of the centre, either.

The park itself is known as London’s most romantic and peaceful. Delightfully intricate, it offers small, cosy grassy knolls, cooling woodland glades, wild ponds, pavilions, an open expanse for games and general frolicking, playgrounds for older and younger children and a café. There are beautiful woodland trails, manicured lawns and formal gardens, the Japanese Garden that come complete with Coi, and an ice cream stand in the middle of it all! Look out for moody peacocks and busy squirrels.

All in all, a green, tranquil, sought-after area which is full of attractions as well as being one of those calm, central locations. Easy access from here to surrounding areas such as Kensington, Notting Hill and the West End either by foot, bus or underground. Holland Park tube is on the central line with Oxford Circus a few stops further along, and there is a good bus service on Bayswater Road, making travel in either direction quick and easy. Having both Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park near you to walk through is wonderful.

Bayswater Road is a long, wide, main road which runs from Marble Arch, down past Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens, past Holland Park, all the way into Notting Hill and beyond. It’s quite a pleasant walk down this road from Holland Park into Notting Hill. There are huge oak trees dotted alongs it’s length, with the park alongside. Sometimes there are artists displaying their paintings and other work on the park railings when the weather is fine. If you’re too tired to walk after a busy day’s sightseeing, hop onto one of the frequent buses that run along here and enjoy great views of the park and surrounding architecture from the top deck! You can simply hop off again if you want to stroll into Notting Hill. Bus hopping is fun and practical, especially if you have a travel card. After a good night’s rest you have the pleasant option of walking up the road, into Hyde Park and on towards Marble Arch and Oxford Street.  Ask us about the holiday rentals we offer nearby.