Let’s face it; there are few pleasanter and, frankly, more satisfying areas of London you could choose to stay in during a short-break in the UK capital than the salubrious environs of leafy, Regency-brick-brimming, aspirational Kensington. However, it’s not just about the stylish look and rich vibe of this district that so promotes it, there’s also the excellent, varied attractions that are so near for those staying in Park Grand London hotels…
Shop/ window-shop in Harrods
(87-135 Brompton Road SW1X 7XL)
The sophisticated institution around which the equally salubrious Knightsbridge district (which roughly lies between Belgravia and Kensington and Chelsea), Harrods feels like it’s been around forever; with its über-luxurious approach to selling luxury goods of all kinds, shapes, sizes and (mostly expensive) prices. Such a legendary place is that many visitors frequent the place on a stay in the capital merely to look around and take in the atmosphere, without any mind to actually buy anything. Whether it’s the gorgeous designer wear, the glorious food on offer in the food halls or the ostentatious Egyptian-themed radiator, there’s so much to see and take in at Harrods for those staying at nearby Park Grand accommodation.
Admire the Albert Memorial
Charismatic and full of charm and even a little magic for the little ones, Kensington Gardens offer much to extoll, among their hugely pleasant, relaxing and appealing features being this rather awe-inspiring and thought-provoking monument that was commissioned more a century-and-a-half ago by Queen Victoria to commemorate the life and achievements of her much lamented deceased husband, Prince Albert. It’s a particularly stunning piece of art that’s beset with fine sculpture- and relief-work, including companion sculptures depicting the Victorian dedication to progressing the sciences and arts (which Albert was dedicated to) and representations of the four corners of the world.
Pop along to the Peter Pan statue
Putting the aforementioned childlike magic into Kensington Gardens is this truly wonderful bronze status of J M Barrie’s hero, ‘the boy who never grew up’, whom has an indelible association with the Gardens (thanks to that Barrie had with the location himself; he lived nearby and would often visit in his down-time). The statue features the character along various with fairies and animals, symbolising the ‘Lost Boys’) and Tinkerbell; naturally!
Seek out the animal cemetery
Yes, that’s right, there is an actual animal cemetery in Kensington; in fact, maybe even more improbably (or not?), it’s located in the northwest corner of Hyde Park. How did it possibly come to be? Well, it was set up as a formal resting place for deceased pets following so many local residents taking it upon themselves to bury their late-lamented furry friends in the Park and became a fashionable animal burial spot when the then Duke of Cambridge (a major military general who was cousin to Queen Victoria) had his dog, named Prince, laid to rest within its confines in 1882. You may be happy (or not?) to learn that the cemetery is no longer interring local residents’ pets.
Check out Kate and Wills’ house
Lying on the western edge of Kensington Gardens is the pad in which the present Duke – and Duchess – of Cambridge live, along with their children; specifically in Apartment 1A. A splendiferous abode, indeed, Kensington Palace has a long, eventful history as an official Royal residence, being where the monarch themselves lived until the 18th Century’s King George II moved out, after which it became the childhood home of the future Queen Victoria and where both the 20th Century’s Princess Margaret (the Queen’s sister) and Princess Diana (Princes William and Harry) lived until their respective deaths. Today, the vast majority of the building is run by the Historic Royal Palaces body and designated areas – including its grounds – are open to the public practically every day, featuring exhibits and more. Indeed, what better attrasction to give a visit during your own salubrious stay in the area, courtesy of the likes of the Park Grand London Kensington hotel?