Apartment Locations in London

Sep 6th, 2015, 03:25 PM
Original Poster
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Apartment Locations in London

We are two mature couples considering the following apartments in London for a 10 day stay in May 2016. How would you rate the different locations based on our preferring to walk as much as possible instead of taking the tube? We are also interested in the proximity to restaurants/cafes/bakeries/grocery stores.






Thank you for taking the time to answer to help us choose a location for our trip!
mountainshadow is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 04:54 PM
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I hope I don't mix these up, but I might.

The second one has bunk beds in the second bedroom, and I wouldn't like that.

The fourth one is not in a location I would like.

All the rest seem pretty good to me. I don't understand the preference to walk rather than take public transportation, but if that's your choice, I don't see that any of these aren't desirable. There are loads of buses too, if it's underground you object to.

But in the rain, or late at night, or if I have a blister, handy public transportation is good.
tuscanlifeedit is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 05:13 PM
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Looking only at location, I'd be inclined towards the second one. It's very central and you'd be close to Marleybone High Street which is a very fashionable area with lots of elegant independent food stores, a cheesemongers, butchers and a delicatessen, all on the expensive end of things but quite delightful. Great for the Wallace Collection!

The third location in Kensington toward Kensington Palace is also a nice area and I know there's an M&S on the Hight Street.From this location you could walk to the south Kensington Museums V&A and even Buckingham Palace/Knightsbridge but you'd probably take a bus to the West End.from here you could explore Holland Park, The Leighton House and 18 Stafford Terrace(covered in my blog linked below) all on foot, as well of course as Kensington Gardens.

I understand your state goal to walk rather than take the Tube, but I think you'll find that London is quite a large city and you'll need to take either the bus (my preference for the view) or a taxi occasionally to get around. With four of you it may be quite affordable too.

Cromwell Crescent is a lovely upmarket area (incidentally very French!) but you'll be taking a bus in. However the advantage is it's a real (albeit incredibly expensive neighborhood) which has its own advantages in my mind. I'd love to have a flat here.

Unless you are somewhere like Covent Garden or Charing Cross you're probably going to find yourself jumping in a cab or using public transport at some time. If you download an app like CityMapper you'll find it easy to navigate the city. It's great for walking too!

Personally I'd lean away from Pimlico given your requirements and the other alternative. I like Pimlico quite a bit and my sister-in-law owned a flat there for years but it's a little less central to my mind and not as well connected.

Hope this helps!

Lots more London tips on my blog
welltraveledbrit is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 05:16 PM
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Yikes, Tuscanlifeedit - I only looked at the location not the bedrooms. I wouldn't describe myself as "mature" and I wouldn't fancy a bunk bed either!
welltraveledbrit is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 05:19 PM
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All of these are "lower ground floor" - or basement apts. I would be hesitant to stay in one without security (but perhaps this is my NY POV - never take a ground floor apt without security guards on the windows).

# 4 is too far from the center IMHO unless you tube a lot.

#5 looks nice but it is also a basement apt - 10 steps down so think windows will be below street level.

Also note that what they are calling a king size bed - 60" - is a queen in the US. In the US a king is 72". But this is true in many places in europe. As long as you are OK with a regular double I wouldn't worry about it.
nytraveler is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 05:51 PM
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I actually really (REALLY) like Pimlico. Walking distance to Chelsea, the Parks, Buckingham Palace, Tate Britain, Westminster (Palace of and Abbey), Sloane Square, etc.

But w/ any of those properties you won't likely walk to more than a handful of sites -- after the handful . . . you'll be on transport of some sort.

#1: From this Pimlico flat (it appears to be across from Dolphin Square), a very convenient bus route runs up Lupus Street. the 2nd bedroom looks VERY small. Basically wall to wall beds w/ a tiny table between.

#2: I wouldn't consider w/ the bunks

#3: Lovely area -- but quite far west and you won't really be able to walk much of anywhere except IN Kensington, Holland Park and Kens Gardens/Hyde Park. After those -- you'll need buses and/or the tube.

#4: Really in Earls Court and awfully far west if you want to walk places.

#5: A bit deceptive -- the listing says 'Knightsbridge & Belgravia' but it is neither. The nearest tube station is Pimlico. Like I said -- I like Pimlico and this one is a bit closer to various sites than is the one on Claverton Street. This is actually the most central of all five and closer to more places. But none of them are close to very many of the major sites.

Note: ALL of these (except maybe the Earls Court one) are in good areas, but if you want to mostly hoof it to most places you really should be looking more centrally . . . Covent Garden, Holborn, limited parts of the South Bank, St James's, Soho, etc.
janisj is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 05:53 PM
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Meant to add -- I don't mind lower ground floor flats - they often have back terraces/gardens. But some people find them off putting.
janisj is offline  
Sep 6th, 2015, 10:05 PM
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For location I would go for the second one, near Marylebone High Street. As welltraveledbritt says, lots of very nice food shops. It's a great area.
The third one, off Kensington High Street, is good too. Lots of restaurants and shops nearby

I'm not a fan of Pimlico. It's much quiter, not so many shops and restaurants compared to the Marylebone or High Street Kensington location.
Tulips is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 05:53 AM
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Tulips: that one would be a good choice -- except the OP says they are two mature couples . . . and one of those mature couples would have to use the bunk beds.

Another one that is a bit deceiving since the listing says "Mayfair" and I'd consider that to be Marylebone. But never mind - for location I'd choose it or Pimlico (quiet is one of the reasons I like Pimlico). But someone in their 60's or so (and probably used to a King or Queen) might not want to climb up into the bunk bed.
janisj is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 06:48 AM
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Didn't look at the photos.
I'd prefer Kensington High Street to Pimlico, but the decor of that flat looks old-fashioned.
Tulips is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 11:50 AM
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Well, unless one is going to deal with a bunk bed, the second apt is out. Did you see that when you looked at it? I don't think of pensioners utilizing sleepaway camp bedding.

The third apt is in Kensington, which is not convenient. South Kens could be, but Kensington itself is not.

That fourth apt isn't near Leicester Sq - it's miles away. If you want to be able to walk around London and visit various top museums and tourist sites, you need to be a LOT closer to Leicester Sq/Piccadilly Circus. Earl's Court won't do at all.

You really need to get a good map and a handle on what you want to visit. London isn't compact and there is not one place on your list that is (reasonable) walking distance to Leicester Square/Pic Circus/Holborn/Charing X Road/Trafalgar Sq, etc. (Anyplace can be "walking distance" if you're willing to do it, but Patrick Leigh Fermor was a teen when he took off through Europe in the early '30s, not a "mature" adult). If you want to visit the British Museum, Tate Modern, St. Paul's, and the Tower, and not have a 30 minute public transport commute, each and every one of your locations sucks.
BigRuss is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 12:06 PM
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That's what I tried to explain - but you brought it home better

The least sucky location(s) would be the Pimlico properties but even they are a long walk from say the National Gallery (nearly 2 miles) and a more than 2.5 miles to the British Museum.

If one was staying in Covent Garden for instance: British Museum less than .5 mile; National Gallery about a quarter mile; St Paul's a mile; Big Ben 3/4 mile; etc etc.
janisj is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 02:47 PM
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I'm just the tough love type. Don't want the OP to dance around with a myriad of choices that have little or nothing to do with his/her desired outcome.

If they all stay in Covent Garden or Holborn, they won't be able to swing a dead cat without hitting restaurants.
BigRuss is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 03:56 PM
Original Poster
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We really do thank all of you for your comments. About the apartment with the bunk beds; that is what happens when you are so tired of looking at apartments. That one is definitely out!

We don't mind taking the tube; we just did not want to walk 10-15 minutes in the rain to a stop. Will do some looking around the areas suggested and will come back with some more options.

We are not as familiar with London as we are Paris and this makes the apartment hunting much harder.

Again, thanks to all for your opinions.
mountainshadow is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 04:24 PM
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Look in Covent Garden, Russell Square/Holborn, even Victoria.

Be careful w/ 'Westminster' listings because what is normally considered Westminster is VERY central, but the 'City of Westminster' also covers about half of central London and stretches all the way up to beyond Paddington.
janisj is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 04:43 PM
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Also look for Tottenham Court Rd/Goodge Street/Oxford Circus. It is a busy/ congested area but there are some quieter streets and you'd be w/i walking distance of a lot.
janisj is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 05:04 PM
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Also - London is WAY bigger than Paris - so things that don;t seem far away can be a significant distance.

If I were you I would focus on Covent Garden - yes, may be more expensive or may be less luxurious - but you will be able to walk out the door and see things starting in a couple of blocks.
nytraveler is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 05:54 PM
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Look at the Craig's Court apartment offered by London Connection. It is steps from Trafalgar Square. I've stayed in this flat several times while on business in London. It's perfect for two couples. Additionally, London Connection is an excellent organization to work with for rentals.
champ21e is offline  
Sep 7th, 2015, 08:46 PM
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Pretty much agree with janisj and BigRuss - keep looking. And do NOT trust the description of a property to know its actual location - adverts are notoriously elastic in regard to neighborhood boundaries. Get the address or at least street name and look it up on a map- if nothing else, just Google it.

Also very much echo champ21e's recommendation for London Connection - they were marvelous to work with when we were unexpectedly stuck an extra week in London. Their 2/2 in Beaufort Gardens https://londonconnection.com/propert...ufort-gardens/ or another 2/2 on West Street https://londonconnection.com/property/2-12-west-street/ look like viable options for you. Their Shelton Street property https://londonconnection.com/propert...helton-street/ is close to Covent Garden tube station, lots of restos and shops at your doorstep including a Marks & Spencer's for groceries; we have stayed in the area a few times and find it excellent both for the immediate area and ease of getting around. Also nice that they are based in the US (but have staff on the ground in London, too) so you can pay in dollars and contact them via phone easily while planning.

Have also used Ivy Lettings once, and was quite satisfied with the service.
Seamus is offline  

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