Nestled between two of London’s finest expanses of green space, Hyde Park and Regent’s Park, Marylebone is a diverse, lively and chic area with many European residents. The centrally-located Marylebone High Street was lovingly declared the ‘Best Street in Britain’ in 2002 by BBC Radio 2, and has only continued to grow in charm and prestige since then.
Marylebone takes its name from the ancient parish of St Mary at the Bourne, and residential development in the area began during the eighteenth century under the direction of Edward Harley, Earl of Oxford, and surveyor John Prince. Beginning with the construction of Cavendish Square, Marylebone gradually grew into a distinguished residential area, much of which is still owned by aristocratic estates including the Portman Estate and the Howard de Walden Estate.
This regal history and aristocratic ownership has allowed Marylebone to resist most temptations of modern development and remain as quaint and regulated as it was during the Victorian period, despite the close proximity to bustling Oxford Street. In recent years the regeneration of the Grade II listed Marylebone Fire Station and other buildings on Chiltern Street by hotelier André Balazs has contributed significantly to a surge in popularity here. Famous figures and members of London society flock to the Chiltern Firehouse Hotel and Restaurant, leading some to consider Marylebone as the new Mayfair.
Architecture in Marylebone
The architecture in Marylebone is predominantly Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian, with elegant terraces which have been carefully designed along the deliberate grid system to complement each other and the wider area. The area is also known for having a number of beautiful, hidden mews and leafy garden squares, allowing further privacy for their residents
The architecture in Marylebone is predominantly Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian, with elegant terraces which have been carefully designed along the deliberate grid system to complement each other and the wider area. The area is also known for having a number of beautiful, hidden mews and leafy garden squares, allowing further privacy for their residents.
What makes Marylebone so special?
Despite being many miles from the French capital, there is a Parisian air to Marylebone, as a result of the chic boutiques, charming cafes and restaurants with on-street tables, and the high number of international clientele. Residents are also perfectly positioned to enjoy both of London’s finest parks, with Regent’s Park to the north and Hyde Park to the west, allowing easy access to many acres of green space. Finally, the world-renowned Harley Street is located in the heart of Marylebone so locals can rest assured that the best possible medical care is, quite literally, on their doorstep.
Marylebone property types
Marylebone is home to some of the most elite properties London has to offer, with all residential tastes catered for, from Grade II-listed period homes to luxury penthouses. For Georgian stucco-fronted terraced houses and semi-detached villas the most prestigious garden squares are Bryanston Square, Manchester Square, Montagu Square and the famous Fitzroy Square, formerly home to the Bloomsbury Group and regularly used as the setting for period dramas. Contemporary luxury can be found in The Chilterns development and the Rathbone Square development, both of which offer unparalleled opulence and amenities such as private swimming pools.
Schools in Marylebone
Marylebone benefits from access to the best independent schools in Central and West London, including Wetherby Prep, alma mater of Princes William and Harry, Francis Holland School and Eaton Square School. Co-educational, single-sex, boarding and day schools can all be found nearby.
Things to do:
While the location of this area allows residents to enjoy all that London has to offer, Marylebone itself is particularly well equipped with for those who enjoy cultural attractions, museums and acclaimed independent restaurants.
Moxon Street has become somewhat of a food destination in recent years with a range of bars, cafes and delicatessens, while renowned restaurants in the area include Galvin Bistro de Luxe, Villandry, Fischers, Le Relais de Venise, Berners Tavern and the famous Chiltern Firehouse. For an evening tipple, Artesian Bar at the Langham was recently voted World’s Best Bar at the 2014 awards, so guests can expect only the finest wines and cocktails.
Culturally, Marylebone is home to institutions such as the Wallace Collection, Wigmore Hall, the Royal Academy of Music, the Royal Institute of British Architecture and the popular Sherlock Holmes Museum for fans of London’s most famous detective. There are also a number of exclusive private members clubs in the area such as Home House Portman Square.
Shopping in Marylebone
Marylebone’s many neat shop-lined streets and close proximity to the flagship stores of Oxford Street, Bond Street and Mayfair have led to an enviable reputation as a shopping destination. As well as a High Street full of fine food shops and clothing boutiques including La Patisserie des Reves, the area offers designer fashion in the form of Sandro, Alerre Odette, Wolf and Badger and Paul Smith, antique furniture from Alfie’s Antiques, elaborate flower arrangements from Jane Packer and high-quality meats and cheeses from The Ginger Pig and La Fromagerie.
Meanwhile, a weekly Farmer’s Market provides locals with a wide selection of organic produce and homemade products in the heart of this charming area.
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