Don’t miss a shopping trip to Harrods when visiting Park Grand Kensington

Harrods Uk

If you love shopping and have some cash to spend, then Don’t miss a shopping trip to Harrods when visiting Park Grand Kensington. London is a great destination for shopping lovers. The capital offers plenty of famous shopping districts, such as Kensington High Street, Oxford Street, Regent Street and New Bond Street. There are also plenty of wonderful markets, shopping malls, department stores and boutiques where you can find beautiful goods and great prices.

Shopping in London

But whether you’re a complete shopaholic or prefer to stay at home and do all your shopping online from the comfort of your sofa, there’s one store in London that everyone should visit at least once: Harrods.

Harrods is a department store in Knightsbridge, but it’s not just any department store – it’s a luxury shop that covers an entire city block. Its footprint spans five acres, and inside there’s more than one million square feet of retail floor space spread over seven floors.

If the sheer size of Harrods wasn’t enough, this palace of retail offers plenty of reasons for visitors to come and spend a penny (some of the bathrooms are glorious), several thousand pounds or some amount in between. In fact, it sees around 15 million visitors every year.

The history of Harrods

Let’s start with a little step back in time.

The history of Harrods goes back to 1824 when Charles Henry Harrod established a drapers and haberdashery business in Southwark. Several years later, he began a grocery business in East London.

In 1849, he decided to capitalise on the upcoming Great Exhibition and set up a small shop in Brompton on the site of the current store. Of course, it was much smaller back then – just a single room with three employees. Eventually, the business passed to Harrod’s son, and it continued to expand. Eventually, they acquired the adjoining buildings, and by 1880, the shop employed a hundred people.

Then, in 1883, a fire destroyed the building in early December. Amazingly, the store was still able to fulfil all of its commitments to make Christmas deliveries that year and made a record profit too. Soon after, a new building was constructed on the site, and the business continued to thrive.

In 1898, the store became the proud owner of England’s first “moving staircase”. Unlike modern escalators, this one was more like a conveyor belt made of woven leather with mahogany and glass balustrade. Customers who were brave enough to try the new device were offered a brandy once they reached the top.

In 1889, Mr Harrod sold his interest in the store, and over the years it changed hands several times until it was purchased by House of Fraser in 1959. It remained with House of Fraser until 1985 when it was bought by the Fayed brothers. In 2010, it changed hands again when it was purchased by Qatar Investment Holdings, the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar. It has been reported that the price tag was £1.5 billion.

A little bit of everything

Harrods has long been thought of as the place where you can buy “anything”. In fact, its motto is Omnia Omnibus Ubique – All Things for All People, Everywhere.

This might be best illustrated by the story of Christian the lion, who was bought from the store by John Rendall and Anthony Bourke in 1969. Eventually, the big cat was released into the wild in Kenya.

Today, Harrods doesn’t sell lions – or any animals at all. Its pet department closed down a few years ago, but there’s still plenty to be found – from clothing and accessories to toys, jewellery, food, chandeliers, furnishings, electronics and musical instruments. There’s even a seasonal Christmas shop where you can get baubles, decorations and other items.

Other highlights to look out for include the ornate Egyptian Escalator and the memorials to Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed. Also visit, All You Need To Know About Harrods.

Visiting Harrods

If you’re planning to visit Harrods, here are some things you need to know:

  • Its address is 87-135 Brompton Rd, Knightsbridge, SW1X 7XL.

      • The closest Tube station is Knightsbridge on the Piccadilly line.

        Knightsbridge Station on a map of the Piccadilly metro line in London, UK

      • Buses that serve the local area include the 14, 74, 414, C1, N74 and N97.
      • Its normal opening hours are 10 am to 9 pm from Monday to Saturday and 11:30 am to 6 pm on Sundays.
      • It does have a dress code, but it’s not as strict as you might expect. Most tourists will be fine in their normal clothing.
      • Photography is permitted in most parts of the store – but it is restricted in a few areas, such as fine jewellery. If you’re not sure, ask.
      • There’s a left luggage service at Door 2A on the ground floor.

Finally, if you’re looking for accommodation near Harrods, the Park Grand London Kensington is a beautiful boutique hotel that’s less than 1.5 miles away. It’s the perfect place to relax after a busy day of shopping.