Found on buzzing Oxford Street in central London, the iconic Selfridges building is a must-see when visiting the capital. With a fascinating history, this unique department store is a modern wonder and a top destination for shopping and culture fans.
First opened in the early 20th century, Selfridges has been a must-see for over 100 years, defining a new breed of department stores and wowing customers with a world-class shopping experience.
It’s notable that Selfridges is the one shop of its kind to be voted the Best Department Store in the World three times. Originally opened by Harry Gordon, Selfridges is in a stunning Neo-Classical building. His vision was to create a shopping spectacular that amazed and broke boundaries. And from the hype of its launch, where police were forced to hold the crowds back, to the present-day ITV show documenting the store’s history, Selfridges has always existed as more of a cultural wonder than just a place to buy things.
Things to do in store
Visual spectacle and a full experience has always been the driving notion behind Selfridges. From the revolutionary layout of the store, now copied by shops across the globe, to the presentation of cultural artefacts, like the aeroplane belonging to the first aviator to cross water in 1909, there’s always been something to titillate and surprise.
Today, hours can be spent browsing the racks, shopping for clothes or knickknacks, or for a more extravagant experience there’s the option to hire a personal shopper. This is the epitome of luxury and a true retail experience. Both men and women can enjoy a lazy afternoon in Selfridge’s Wonder Room, taking advice from trained assistants on clothes and accessories from the comfort of a sofa.
When it comes to grabbing a bite to eat, the options in store range from the classy Champagne & Oyster Bar, to Aubaine’s French bistro, Dolly’s Art Deco-inspired café and Lola’s, who specialise in luxurious cupcakes.
Selfridges’ prominent setting on Oxford Street, one of the top shopping destinations in the world, means there’s no shortage of places to explore in the local area. The original and iconic BBC buildings are a short walk away, and Christies Mayfair, the world-famous auction house, is just around the corner.
More cultural experiences can be had at any of the galleries within walking distance, from the Wallace Collection, a gallery hosting free talks and workshops, to Fashion Space Gallery from London College of Fashion.
This vibrant area houses a mix of gorgeous buildings and stunning places to stay, so finding a hotel near Selfridges is easy. 5-star retreats include The Langham and The Soho Hotel, while there’s plenty of more budget-friendly options nestled within the beautiful townhouses lining the streets nearby.
So when you’re in the capital, make sure to take time out to explore the delights in and around the iconic Selfridges store.
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