We are in London, our final stop on this whirlwind tour of England at Christmastime. Always a vibrant city, it pulsates with light during the festive season. Let’s start on Oxford Street, a well-known shopper’s destination.
Pink and white globes are festooned across the street as far as the eye can see.
Turning the corner onto Regent Street, the decorations switch to these glorious soaring angels. These photos were taken at about 10 pm, but you can see the streets are crowded with people, cars, buses, the lot. A lot of the stores were still open. hoping to tempt shoppers with holiday purchases.
The Apple store is housed in a classic building with rounded arches, square columns and lovely mosaics.
It was doing a land-office business, even at that late hour.
Glenn thinks the angels look like Spiderman. He does have a point.
We crossed over onto Conduit Street on our way to Old Bond Street and the lights turned to peacock feathers.
The crowds are a little more sparse over here.
I loved the Dior window on Old Bond Street.
Wouldn’t you love to swan around in this very elegant ensemble? Perfect for a wedding or garden party.
The black & white colour scheme was very striking.
Across the street, the teddy bears in the Ralph Lauren display caught my eye.
Bursting with sartorial splendour, the portraits in the background lend an air of gravitas.
The bears look like members of the landed gentry.
Preparing to entertain, among all the casks.
And my favourite, the kids with all the teddy sweaters.
Across the street, this alpine scene is a backdrop for a jewellery display (prudently put away for the night, as the shop was closed).
Turning onto Picadilly, we poked the camera through the gates at the Burlington Arcade to get a snap.
This one of the premium shopping arcades in London. The Brits emply a commonly used joking phrase when disparaging a discount shopping venue, “Not the Burlington Arcade, is it?”
The angels are strung across Picadilly, too.
On the other side of the street, the Picadilly Arcade is just as beautiful.
Isn’t it magical?
We walked down St. James’s Street toward our hotel. Peeking into Jermyn Street, the angels here are different; the wings more blue, with fewer streamers and more stars.
The courtyard in the back of the hotel is surrounded with lighted Christmas trees. People are still eating outside, warmed with portable heaters.
The front of the hotel looks like a Currier & Ives scene.
It couldn’t be more welcoming, could it?
The next morning we set out again, armed only with the iPhone. so these shots are quick snaps. First stop, Fortnum & Mason’s windows. They remind me so much of the major department store windows we loved as children.
The giant hampers filled with nuts and chocolates,
The enormous silver teapot with all the tea-goodies.
The giant silver spoon!
Inside, we were enchanted to see some new wooden advent calendars, as well as some traditional ones. This one is a model of the Fortnum & Mason store.
Beside it was one for tea lovers.
Inside are tiny tins of loose tea – 24 different varieties. They sell refills for both kinds of calendars. Isn’t that convenient?
There’s a new shop.
A toy shoppe.
And a Christmas Village scene.
Of course, I couldn’t resist checking out the china department. This black & white set by Rory Dobner is captivating. Don’t you love the giraffe plate?
Lots of dogs and cats.
Balloons and birdcages.
Turtles and teacups. Lots of imagination, but with 22 carat trimming, it’s a bit pricey.
This set was new to me. Apponyi by Herend is a revived pattern originally used in the Hungarian Cout, and has been licensed to Fortnum and Mason’s exclusively. Their signature eau-de-nil colour makes it very striking.
Another turquoise pattern I found irresistible was Cloverleaf. The ruffled edge plates are exquisite.
Again, not for the faint of wallet but we’re just window shopping, right?
Back outside we visited the Picadilly arcade for a view of the latest in men’s night attire. Get a load of these! We have the horse-theme.
The generally startling.
And the piece de resistance – turquoise dragons. Really!
That was the end of our shopping tour yesterday. We went on a tour of Spencer House, the townhouse of the Spencer family (of Diana fame), now leased by the Rothschild Investment Trust who has undertaken extensive refurbishment to return it to its Georgian splendour. It was breathtaking. Regrettably, no pictures allowed inside, but please do visit the site. It’s got excellent pictures and really good descriptions of the notable features of each room. We loved it.
It’s our last day, so I’m anxious to get out and about. First stop: Breakfast at the Wolseley. Have a good day everyone!
I’m sharing this post with Between Naps on the Porch.