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London Diary: Belgravia


When Belgraves, the next addition to Thompson Hotels opens on Chesham Place in London’s Belgravia next year, it will be the latest lustrous addition to a much-beloved district that has always been one of the storied city’s go-to locales. Bordered by Knightsbridge to the north, Grosvenor Place and Buckingham Palace Road to the east, Pimlico Road to the south, and Sloane Street to the west, it fetches up in Sloane Square, the stomping ground of that alluring creature the Sloane Ranger. The Duke of Westminster,Chopin and Mozart, Ian Fleming, Sean Connery and Roger Moore, and Nigella Lawson and Elle Macpherson have all called it home. Here are some of the area’s highlights…

Brothers Tom and Ed Martinhelped pioneer the gastropub movement and have since expanded their empire to the accompaniment of accolades aplenty. Two of their best are in the ‘hood – The Botanist (above), an elegant bar/brasserie that shows they can do white table cloths as well; and the Cadogan Arms, a spruced-up old school British pub and eatery complete with billiards room.

The Botanist, 7 Sloane Square, 020 7730 0077 | website
Cadogan Arms, 298 Kings Road, 020 7352 6500
| website

Bamford & Sons‘ boutique (above) in a former bank building in Sloane Square is a bastion of top-drawer British style, featuring everything from cashmere blankets to custom Rolexes. It also houses a café called Daylesford Organic, featuring fresh produce from the aristocratic Bamford family’s English country estates. Also nearby is an outpost of Gieves & Hawkes, the eminent Savile Row tailor to stylish gents from Winston Churchill to David Beckham.

Bamford & Sons, 31 Sloane Square, 020 7881 8010
Gieves & Hawkes, 33 Sloane Square, 0161 832 3414
| website

Entertainment-wise, the area has something for everyone from night owls to culture vultures. The posh members-only club Kitts with its understated decadence is worth cozying up to someone who knows the doorman. The famed Saatchi Gallery (above) is close at hand for the cutting edge of the artworld and an eyeful of Damien Hirst. And the storied Royal Court Theatre puts on equally provocative plays.

Kitts, 7-12 Sloane Square, 020 7881 5990 | website
Saatchi Gallery, Duke of York’s Square, King’s Road, 0207811 3070 | website
Royal Court Theatre, Sloane Square, 020 7565 5000
| website

– Jared Paul Stern