Photographer David Bailey once said “If you’re curious, London’s an amazing place”. At the heart of the city you’ll find Mayfair, an area that embodies this sentiment with all that the capital has to offer at your fingertips. Join us as we walk through a day the life of a Hyde Park resident.
Starting your day early you can’t beat lungfuls of fresh air and some exercise to get both body and brain going. Hyde Park covers 350 acres of land, a lake and over 4000 trees; a peaceful haven right on our doorstep. Throughout the year it’s a special place to spend some time with nature, go for your morning run or take a slow amble. If you’re looking for something a little more vigorous, Mayfair-based Matt Robert’s Evolution and Ten Pilates up in Fitzrovia offer a variety of classes and equipment to get your heartrate going.
Catch your breath and sip a coffee at the Serpentine Lido Cafe. If you’re feeling peckish there’s the Serpentine Bar and Kitchen, an iconic building overlooking the lake at the centre of Hyde Park. Designed by the architect Patrick Gwynne to capture the essence of English country living, breakfast at this Benugo-run eatery includes hearty dishes including wild mushroom and spinach on toasted focaccia, and smoked pancetta and mozzarella rosemary focaccia.
If you’ve had your fill of leafy goodness, head for coffee and deliciousness at the acclaimed Connaught Patisserie where pastry chef Nicolas Rouazaud plates handmade pastries, loaf cakes, scones and gâteaux de voyage.
Relaxed and replenished, spend your midmorning soaking up fine art and antiquities at some of London’s leading institutions. The Serpentine Galleries, ensconced in the Royal Park of Kensington Gardens, runs a forward-thinking contemporary art programme. If you’re looking for options steeped in history you can visit the 250-year-old Royal Academy of Arts or The Wallace Collection to see paintings by Canaletto, Rembrandt and Rubens. In fact, the area is such a hotspot for arts and culture we’ve created a complete guide to the best museums and art galleries in Mayfair.
With eyes full of beauty and brains full of wonder, it’s time for lunch. If you’re after something light, Shepherd Market’s Titu has made a name for itself serving Asian-inspired tapas dishes. Famed for its gyoza – including Wagyu beef & black pepper or chicken and foie gras – we also love Titu’s chicken katsu escalopes, salted padron peppers and seaweed salads. Delicious, fresh and perfect for sharing.
For classic market-fresh feasts Scott’s is always a good option. Head chef David McCarthy always creates stylish seasonal menus – from Lindisfarne rocks oysters and oscietra caviar to fillets of Hereford beef. The menu tends towards the carnivorous, but with vegetarian options including miso blackened aubergine with fried tofu, pak choi and sesame, the kitchen works hard to provide interesting options for everyone. After a long lunch with plenty of time for people watching over a salted caramel chocolate fondant, we’d spend our afternoon ambling through the winding alleys of Mayfair village.
(Looking for more recommendations? You can read our guide to the best restaurants in Mayfair now.)
Mayfair spans 279 acres across nine London districts, but there’s plenty to discover even on a short wander, from super cars on Park Lane, to the mid-17th century architectural elegance of Mayfair town. (Find out more about Mayfair’s remarkable history here.)
With shops and boutiques around every corner, from antiques to jewellery through to specialist glassware, you could spend a week exploring just one area. For the fashionistas there is an abundance of the latest fashion and designer brands with Prada, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, Roger Vivier, Miu Miu, Marni, and many more brands sporting Mayfair locations alongside the iconic Selfridges.
For heritage quality the wine merchants Berry Bros, the fishing and lifestyle brand Orvis and the archetypally British Burberry are all in the area. Around the corner, Burlington Arcade opened in 1819 “for the sale of jewellery and fancy articles of fashionable demand, for the gratification of the public.” Today, it has 51 independent boutiques selling everything from hats to macaron. Anyone with a taste for historic excellence can visit one of the oldest chemists in London, Dr Harris & Co., the barber and perfumer Geo F Trumper or Paxton and Whitfield, one of the city’s oldest cheese shops.
Inspired by your morning museum visit? Head over to JD Malat to find a new artwork to adorn your wall. Run by the art gallerist and curator Jean-David Malat, renowned for his sharp dress sense and extensive contact list that includes the likes of Kate Moss, Bono and Madonna, the gallery is a destination for aspiring collectors.
After a quick caffeine hit at the self-proclaimed ‘‘most instagrammable cafe in the world”, EL&N London, it’s high time for one of the best cocktails in London at Bar Des Prés. And if you want a delicious plate of food with your wine, you must sample chef Cyril Lignac’s Franco-East Asian creations. Satay beef fillet anyone?
Another new and glamorous option is Bacchanalia, brought to you by the same people behind The Ivy and Annabel’s. Inspired by the classical god of wine Bacchus, the restaurant reimagines Greek and Italian recipes, serving up lavish banquet-style platters and sharing plates, accompanied by a fittingly extensive wine list (650 bottles long). With art works from Damien Hirst on show alongside 2000 year old artefacts, Bacchanalia is another top-tier addition to Mayfair’s food scene.
A quick stop by the Art’s Club for a nightcap (they have sake on tap – the only place you’ll find such a thing in Europe) will see you safely back to the quiet sanctuary of Hyde Park Residence.
For those looking for a little more excitement, Mayfair has an abundance of late night venues, bars and clubs to discover.
However, after a jam-packed day out you might just want to stay home and cosy up with a book in the comfort of your Hyde Park Residence living room. Not sure what to read? Luckily we’ve prepared this guide to the top books inspired by the area, perfect for those dark, winter nights.
At Hyde Park Residence we’re proud to deliver a welcoming, secure and comfortable home with a caring attitude and high quality service. Learn about staying with us here.