KINGSTON IS A DREAM FOR SHOPPING
The old market town of Kingston has long been a haven for shoppers, with traders plying their wares in the Ancient Market Place for over 800 years. Dances were held in the Market Place in Tudor times, and criminals were whipped there. Today, it is altogether rather more civilised, though no less bustling, with shoppers snapping up everything from flowers to fancy dress. A couple of minutes’ walk will bring you to the riverside, with numerous pubs and restaurants offering great views over the Thames.
Around the corner from the market is the Bentall Centre – the side facing John Lewis was built in the 1930s and once formed part of the original Bentalls department store – the design of which was inspired by nearby Hampton Court Palace. Inside is a thoroughly modern mall, flooded with natural light through an impressive glass atrium that is higher than the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral.
All the major brand names are there, including the likes of Zara, Apple, H&M, and Guess. Yumi is the place for highly wearable street style. We love its cute dresses, perfect with leggings and boots. The centre is now home to Californian lifestyle brand Hollister Co – you can’t miss the bizarre shop frontage which is decked out with a tile roof, chandelier and arm-chairs. We were disappointed when we found it wasn’t a new bar!
Handily, the mall also has an OFSTED approved crèche for one to eight-year-olds so kids can be entertained while you take yourself off around the shops.
The mall is still home to the Bentalls department store – its huge cosmetics department is a must for make-up addicts. Don’t miss Bentall’s Carluccio’s for a pick-me-up coffee and cake. It is also fab for last minute Christmas presents for the foodie with olive oils and biscuits, which can all be wrapped up for you for a bespoke Italian hamper. The top floor houses an impressive children’s department for cute designer togs for tots, as well as everything you need for a luxury nursery – and it has a parent’s room nearby for feeds and nappy changes for your little ones.
Walk a little further on and you’ll find a row of fallen phone boxes – vandals have not been on the rampage – it is the work of artist David Mach, and is entitled ‘Out of Order’. This marks the start of Old London Road, home to Kingston’s vast Antiques Centre with 90 dealers. Check out 37 Old London Road for stylish upcycled furnishings such as funky cushions, tables, and lighting.
All budgets are catered for in Kingston with Primark for fashion bargain-hunters, and Wilkinson for cut-price homewares and household stuff.
Set over four floors, the John Lewis department store in Kingston has everything you need all under one roof, whether it’s beauty products, fashion, electricals or sports equipment.
They offer a wide range of branded products from leading suppliers, exclusive lines and own-brand merchandise. John Lewis’s aim is to offer all their customers, quality and value as well as an excellent level of service.
The Bentalls Centre has over 80 shops all under one roof, offering a variety of brands from H&M, Zara, Superdry and Hollister, along with a broad range of cafes and restaurants to choose from. If you are in need of some advice for that perfect outfit, then book in with the Bentalls Centre personal stylist and personal shopper service to help with all your fashion dilemmas
Bentalls Department Store
Bentalls department store has been the heartbeat of Kingston town centre since 1867 and is home to an exclusive range of brands across womenswear, menswear, childrenswear, cosmetics and home including Mango, Miss Selfridge, All Saints, Kiehl’s, Dermalogica and Armani Cosmetics.
The store also boasts a fantastic range of restaurants including Carluccio’s, Caffè Nero, Frank B’s American Diner and Bentalls Centre View Restaurant on the Third Floor.
Eden Walk Shopping Centre
The Eden Walk Shopping Centre has the perfect mix of shops and café. As well as great high street brands, the centre also has a collective of cafes which are perfect for a mid-shopping spree break.
BoConcept is a great destination for modern and contemporary furniture. They offer customised, coordinated and affordable design furniture and accessories. Visit their skilled interior designers who can introduce you to their product range.
Seriously Sofas is a family-run business that offers an extensive range of modern and chic sofas, corner units and chairs. They also are able to offer bespoke and customised furniture.
Bang & Olufsen
Bang & Olufsen designs and manufactures an exclusive range of luxury products, including televisions, music systems, loudspeakers, telephones and multimedia products that combine technological excellence with emotional appeal.
Skin Deep Leather Centre
Skindeep in Kingston are a leather and sheepskin specialists. The shop has a great collection of leather coats and stylish jackets to suit all tastes and they can also provide tailored bespoke leather garments and repairs and alterations.
If needlework is not your forte than Fast Stitch in Kingston will be your life saver. The shop provides the highest standard of alteration for both ladies and gentlemen. Fast Stitch’s belief is that nothing is impossible in tailoring, and their highly experienced service team are always happy to assist you with any enquiries and tasks.
Fired Earth specialises in interiors products; floor and wall tiles, paint, bathrooms, kitchen furniture and wood flooring. Since the launch of the Fired Earth brand in 1984, they have always ensured that they source the most beautiful and finest, crafted products from around the world.
Paperchase is not your ordinary stationery store, if you are looking for something a bit different then have a look at their range of cards, gifts, notebooks, pens and mugs.
Dwell offers one of the most innovative collections of contemporary furniture and home accessories ranges on the high street. With unique aspirational designs as well as problem solving solutions, the Dwell range is backed up with a top quality customer service and a no quibble return policy.
This unique store from Sweden has been providing helpful solutions for the home since 1918. With over 10,000 products across five ranges – home, multimedia, electrical, leisure and hardware, Clas Ohlson has everything you need to solve those everyday practical problems all under one roof
Away from the hustle and bustle of the high street you will find Sweaty Betty in the historic Market Place. Its friendly local vibe will make you smile while you wander around the organic farmers market. Whether you’re running under the moon or saluting the sun- they have the perfect outfit and best advice for you!
Heal’s is spread over four floors in the heart of England’s oldest Royal Borough. Heal’s Kingston is one of the best-stocked and most reputable stores in Kingston, with fantastic ranges of furniture and homeware, combined with helpful and knowledgeable staff.
Feather & Black
Feather & Black is the ultimate destination for trends, inspiration and bedroom style. Staffed by knowledgeable lovers of all things sleep related, the stores are fabulous at pillow talk and make buying a bed and mattress simple. Choose from classic wooden designs, opulent iron beds or a beautiful upholstered style.
Montezuma’s has become well known in foodie circles for its inventive approach to chocolate making. Shop here for both traditional favourites and quirky concoctions, such as Eton Mess or Spotted Dick. Each purchase also supports British food making as the chocolate is all put together in nearby West Sussex
37 Old London Road
37 Old London Road sell “upcycled” home furnishings, classic period pieces upholstered for modern tastes. Fans of Mary Portas may remember the store getting its own stylish rebirth on BBC Two’s Mary Queen of Shops. From the products to the store itself, 37 Old London Road constantly charms
Chest of Drawers
Chest of Drawers sell woodwork that is slick and environmentally friendly. An interesting variety of woods are used in their creatively designed furniture. The team’s responsible sourcing won them a Guardian Sustainable Business Award in 2011