WITH ITS ROYAL STATUS AND ABUNDANCE OF LONDON LANDMARKS, ST JAMES’S IS ONE OF THE MOST ENVIABLE ADDRESSES IN THE WORLD
One of London’s most centrally located neighbourhoods, St James’s is both traditional and a one to watch. Surrounded by art dealers and renowned auction house Christie’s, the upscale neighbourhood is one of a kind.
ST JAMES’S: FIRST IMPRESSIONS
“St James’s is an utterly charming enclave with enduring appeal. Steeped in history, and with significant royal connections, it’s one of London’s most prestigious addresses,” says Claire Reynolds, co-head of prime central London residential at Savills. Nestled between Green Park, The Mall and Piccadilly, St James’s is home to some of London’s finest architecture.
“The area has a reputation for discretion, and its ever-growing desirability is perhaps down to the fact that a unique rarity is attached to property here. Homes simply don’t come up for sale very often, as residents tend to stay for a long time and families often make their home here for generations,” says Reynolds, adding that, “Properties on St James’s Place are like gold dust and are particularly coveted as they back onto Green Park.”
In recent years, its mix of world-class shopping on Jermyn and St James Streets, restaurants, galleries and private members’ clubs have drawn renewed interest from global buyers. Packed with famous institutions – Fortnum & Mason and The Ritz, White’s and The Wolseley – the area has also benefited from investment by the Crown Estate, with sensitive enhancements to is venerable streets.
“Recent developments, such as those on Arlington Street, contain beautifully appointed flats, with roof terraces boasting some of the West End’s best skyline views,’’ says Reynolds. Jonathan Fieldman, partner in Knight Frank’s Mayfair office notes that St James’s is a quieter neighbourhood, “a quality which attracts residents from all over the world.”
A DAY IN ST JAMES’S
Game, set, match
Start the day with a game of squash. Located on St James’s Square, the team at Nordic Balance provides a holistic and intuitive approach to wellbeing. The health club also offers sports massages, dry needling, and training to motivate you to reach your fitness goals.
Suited and booted
Stop at the aptly named 45 Jermyn St for a modern breakfast, designed for a global palate. Favourites on the menu include Orkney kipper with lemon and scrambled eggs with smoked salmon or caviar. With some time to spare, take a turn along Jermyn Street, known as the home of traditional tailoring. Pass Neal and Palmer and Oliver Brown, before arriving at your appointment at Turnbull & Asser Bespoke on Bury Street.
Lunch like 007
In the quaint St James’s Place, lies Dukes Hotel. It’s said to be where author Ian Fleming, anointed the martini as James Bond’s favourite signature tipple. Its Great British Restaurant offers traditional fare, including pie of the day. Another quintessentially British dine – complete with Edwardian interiors – is Rowley’s. Work off lunch with a wander around Fortnum & Mason to pick up superlative loose-leaf teas and order a Christmas hamper for lucky relatives.
With Christie’s on King Street, take time to explore the many art galleries that line the pavements of St James’s. Martin Beisly on Ryder Street specialises in Victorian and Pre-Raphaelite masters. Grosvenor Gallery on Bury Street, focuses on contemporary South Asian art.
Unwind in one of the area’s legendary private members’ clubs.
There’s 67 Pall Mall for wine enthusiasts, as well as Brooks’s, Boodles and Carlton Club.
ST JAMES’S: ASK A LOCAL
Lizzy Rudd, Chair, Berry Bros. & Rudd shares, “Berry Bros. & Rudd has traded from the same iconic address at No. 3 St James’s Street since 1698 – it is both the physical and spiritual home of fine wine and spirits. The building’s heritage is special – there’s magic in the walls, the cellars are steeped in history, and everyone that visits experiences a sense of belonging.
We feel a true part of the St James’s community – dropping by Dukes Bar for a post-work martini made with No. 3 gin is always a treat, and I’m lucky to be able to pop next door to St Jacques for breakfast or lunch, sitting in the sunshine on Pickering Place. I also love to visit Paxton & Whitfield for cheeses to pair with our wines. And Fortnum & Mason is wonderful for tea and gifts.”
ST JAMES’S: FOOD AND DRINK
1 Carlton Street
Delicious Nordic cuisine awaits Aquavit diners. In November, look out for A Savour of Scandinavia menu tasting. The expansive dining space was designed by Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, reflecting the natural aesthetic of Scandinavian design.
73 St James’s Street
A favoured institution, Chutney Mary is Indian dining at its finest. On the menu are tokri chaat, scallops Mangalorean sauce and Afghani chicken tikka. Creatively exploring the richness of as many as 16 Indian cuisines, this eatery builds a bridge between tradition and modernity.
16 Bury Street
A hidden treasure, Quaglino’s is the spot for legendary cocktails and live music. Serving contemporary European dishes, it has hosted many A-listers and even the Queen. Make your grand entrance via the sweeping staircase.
16-18 St James’s Place
Within The Stafford London, The Game Bird menu is the creation of Michelin-starred chef Lisa Goodwin-Allen. Inspired by the historic area and British seasonal produce, expect classic dishes and flavourful twists. Among the delectable options are beef Rossini and house-cured chalk stream trout gravlax.
160 Piccadilly St
British heritage with European grandeur sums up legendary institution The Wolseley. Resplendent with art deco details, the much-respected café-restaurant’s menu is inspired by the grand cafés of Europe. Perfect for all-day dining, its reputation proceeds itself.
This traditional, five-generation family- owned wine bar and restaurant is the epitome of classic British dining. Dating back to 1870, the wine merchant selects and ships its own wines, many bottles on the menu are exclusive to Davy’s. While menus are subject to change, favourites that keep guests coming back include aged steaks and sticky toffee pudding.
ST JAMES’S SCHOOLS
While St James’s is more “pass the port” than “after school hot chocolate”, its central location means you are only ever a walk away from an excellent school. In Westminster, the well-regarded co-ed primary, St Matthew’s on Old Pye Street, is just across from the Department of Education. In the other direction on Bryanston Square, Wetherby Prep is a highly sought-after independent for boys. Towards Marble Arch, Connaught House School offers a nurturing environment for boys and girls, from prep to seniors.
Eaton Square Senior School is set in a handsome Portland Stone address on 106 Piccadilly, with interiors by Robert Adam providing an inspiring setting for learning. While Westminster School is world-renowned as one of the finest academic schools in London. It takes boys only from year 9 (age 13+) and girls join in the sixth form. Finally on Marylebone Lane, Wetherby Senior, is an excellent boys school in the heart of the West End.
ST JAMES’S ON THE MARKET
ASK AN AGENT: PETER WETHERELL, FOUNDER AND DIRECTOR AT WETHERELL
“With a street layout virtually unchanged for centuries, St James’s was an early hotspot for wealthy aristocrats with their 17th and early 18th century gentlemen’s clubs. St James’s Palace was built by King Henry VIII in 1531 on a plot of 185 acres with the land becoming St James’s Park – London’s oldest royal park. The palace was the main residence to kings and queens for more than 300 years.
The area is now renowned for its old English shops, the art world, upmarket restaurants and a lively feel, with the majority of residents aged between 30-60 years. With a low sales volume, St James’s market is strong mainly up to £5m, but still scoops the trophy sales (a house in Carlton Gardens sold at £90m). New to market is a selection of six apartments of one-three bedrooms from £1.65m, with car parking wetherell.co.uk.”
ST JAMES’S PLACE
Spectacular three-bedroom duplex apartment in one of the most sought- after buildings overlooking Green Park. The main reception opens onto a communal garden. Comes with underground parking and porter. £10m.
THE GRANDE HOUSE
Immaculate five-bedroom townhouse in Park Place, just off St James’s St. Plenty of wow factor and full Creston automation. £16.5m.
1C KING STREET
This first-floor two-bedroom flat is the former home of Emperor Napoleon III, where he hosted Disraeli and Dickens. £4.5m.
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London Mayfair: The five-star neighbourhood rich with history
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