When travelling, I am less interested in the tourist attractions and more interested in pretending to be a local. I absolutely love discovering the places where people live, which cafe’s they choose and where they spend their down time. I would probably never get to live in the beautiful and very expensive parts of London but, that doesn’t mean that I can’t experience their lifestyle, even for just a day.
So, on a recent trip to London, we investigated Notting Hill, Kensington and Marylebone. I love the glamour of the architecture and the fashion around these sophisticated areas.
Since watching the Richard Curtis film, Notting Hill, I have always wanted to visit. My favourite aspects of films are generally the fashion and the interiors. A lot of the time, and with William Thacker’s flat, the interiors are shot on a set. However, I love that the majority of the shops in the film did actually exist. A lot of them have since closed, including the little coffee shop which Hugh Grant’s character visited a million times every day. However, the authentic feel of Notting Hill is genuine. The antiques market on Portobello Road is still a feature and has become a huge tourist attraction.
Even so, it’s not quite Big Ben or Buckingham Palace. It wasn’t flooded with tourists, but I may be wrong. There may be more ‘pretending-to-be-a-local’ tourists like me. However, it was a Monday when we visited Portobello Road Market so the stalls were less film-set-esk and more fruit and T-Shirts. I’m pretty sure the people buying fruit were locals and the people buying T-Shirts were not (Sherlock level detective work there).
The famous blue door of William Thacker’s flat was actually the door to Richard Curtis’ own house, thus why the interior to William Thacker’s flat was a studio set. I am, however, still in love with the interior of that flat (designed by Production Designer Stuart Craig).
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