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A Guide to the Best Attractions in Notting Hill

Tuesday January 25, 2022


Notting Hill, located in West London, is known as a cosmopolitan and multicultural neighbourhood. It is famous for its annual Notting Hill Carnival and the exciting Portobello Road Market. From colourful pastel houses to eclectic markets and theatres galore, there’s enough to do in Notting Hill to fill a couple of weeks.

Whether you’re here to learn, eat, shop or just wander around, there’s always something for you to do in Notting Hill. That’s why we’ve asked some of the top attractions in the area to contribute to this guide so you can find out, first hand, why it is such a great place to visit.

If you’re visiting Notting Hill but are unsure where to go, we’ve got you covered. Here are 9 of the best attractions that you can visit in Notting Hill.

1. Lutyens & Rubinstein

Lutyens & Rubinstein Bookshop has been on Kensington Park Road in Notting Hill since 2009. They sell fiction and general non-fiction with special sections for children’s books, poetry and art books. The emphasis at Lutyens and Rubinstein is on excellence in writing and narrative across a broad range of genres. The core stock was put together by canvassing hundreds of readers – writers, publishing contacts and friends about which books they would most like to find in a bookshop. This means that every book in the shop has its place because somebody loves it and has recommended it.

Lutyens & Rubinstein are firmly set in their status as a London hotspot for book lovers.

21 Kensington Park Rd, London W11 2EU

2. Select Gallery

Set in the heart of Notting Hill, just steps away from the buzz of Portobello Market, Select Gallery opened its doors in Summer 2019, offering a range of multimedia contemporary artwork reflective of this vibrant West London borough.

Director, Anna-Maria Thetford, shares her 22 years’ experience in the fine art world to help you select the perfect artwork, including bespoke commissions, home visits, wedding lists and corporate proposals.

Operating with an “open door” policy, Select Gallery welcomes seasoned and new collectors, browsers and aficionados of bold and refreshing contemporary art seven days a week, no appointments necessary.

3 Blenheim Crescent, London, W11 2EE

3. Museum of Brands

Hidden away in the quieter side streets towards Ladbroke Grove, the Museum of Brands details the development of consumer culture and highlights some of the best ads you know, and possibly some you didn’t. Their collection takes visitors on a nostalgia trip through over 200 years of culture shift and social change. It’s a trip through childhood memories that are brought back again by their time tunnel, created by historian Robert Opie.

They have everything from royal coronations, two world wars, the first man on the moon, all the way through to the present day, covering the ground of centuries of change.

The museum also has a subtropical garden, and a museum gift shop for visitors to enjoy, as well as new galleries and event spaces, of which they hold conferences and temporary exhibitions.

111-117 Lancaster Rd, London, W11 1QT

Museum of brands exterior

4. Sambourne House

Tucked away in Holland Park, stand Leighton House and Sambourne House. Combining living and studio space, these two artists’ houses remain largely unchanged today. They are the extraordinary legacies left by two ‘celebrities’ of the late Victorian era – Frederic Lord Leighton (1830-1896) and Edward Linley Sambourne (1844 -1910).

When the Sambournes moved into the house in 1875, they immediately redecorated the house, adding stained glass windows and fashionable wallpaper. They kept adding to the house for the 35 years they lived there, including paintings and new ceramics. After the death of Edward Linley Sambourne, the interiors of the houses were preserved and today, the house appears much as they left it.

While the museums undertake exciting redevelopment and conservation plans, ahead of the big reopening in spring 2022, you can still join their online programme of talks and workshops before you plan your visit.

18 Stafford Terrace, London, W8 7BH

5. The Notting Hill Bookshop

Located in the heart of beautiful Notting Hill, minutes from the vibrant Portobello Market is the world famous Notting Hill Bookshop. It prides itself as a classic London Independent bookshop, covering a wide range of upto date and lesser known titles. Their team of booksellers love talking about books and are always happy to help. While they have a wide range of genres they do still have an extensive travel section, as they started out as a travel bookshop. This inspired a well known film that you might have heard of.

In 1999, the bookshop became famous after its interior had been copied in the Notting Hill film featuring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts. Ever since the premiere they’ve enjoyed visits from thousands of fans of the film coming from all over the world. Known as the bookshop which inspired the Notting Hill film, it’s quaint and cosy with friendly staff and a curated selection of beautiful editions, quirky titles, quality non-fiction, gifts and toys.

The store opened in 1979 and originally specialised in travel books only. In 2011 the shop opened up to a wider audience and broadened its stock to cover most areas of publishing while still maintaining a sizable travel section. In recent times they concentrate more on beautiful gift editions, irresistible pocket hardbacks, satin-bound classics and a wide range of golden gilt leather-bounds.

13 Blenheim Cres, London, W11 2EE

6. Electric Cinema

The Electric Cinema on Portobello Road is a Grade II Listed building and one of the oldest working cinemas in the UK. It was built in 1910 and was one of the first buildings in Britain to be designed specifically for motion picture exhibition. It was restored in 2001 at a cost of over £2 million, preserving the original architecture.

The Electric Cinema was to revolutionise cinema-going. With the Soho House ethos of the ‘personal touch’ and quality service as a strong influence, audiences seem to like this take on going to the cinema.

The cinema is now a unique and luxurious experience with seating options including leather armchairs, large comfy sofas or even a velvet double bed. The films screened here are a healthy mix of current releases, re-runs, cult and classic films, and there is even a fully licensed bar serving cocktails, wine, beer and champagne with waiter service.

191 Portobello Rd, London, W11 2ED

7. The Coronet Theatre

Resting on Notting Hill Gate, The Coronet Theatre is a risk-taking, international theatre in an iconic, Grade II listed building and shows some of the best theatre, dance, poetry, music and visual art from around the world. It opened in 1898 as a Victorian Playhouse, before transforming into a cinema 1923, and is now the theatre we know today in 2019. Using the building’s many spaces, they bring work from across the world, celebrating diverse and wonderful art forms and the audiences who enjoy them.

The Coronet is a rich part of Notting Hill history, being featured in the 1999 film Notting Hill and is a staple in the South Kensington community. Home to ‘the most atmospheric bar in the known universe’ the Coronet offers a unique programme of entertainment and a great evening out. The theatre stages a mix of new productions, commissions and visiting artists, including a number of UK and world premieres.

103 Notting Hill Gate, London, W11 3LB

Image of inside of coronet

Image of coronet theatre

8. Portobello Road

Portobello Road has one of the most famous street markets in the world and is home to one of the UK’s most diverse communities. It has a rich history dating back to the 19th century with millions of visitors visiting the market each year. Visitors can find almost everything they wish for, from jewellery, furniture and stamps, to fresh produce and freshly baked snacks, with the market stalls stretching for a mile, all the way down Portobello Road.

During the week, Portobello Road is a mix of independent stores and cafes but come the weekend, Portobello Road Market comes alive and welcomes an array of antique, flea market and superb street food stalls, with some families selling their produce there for generations.

Although it can sometimes be a little too popular, it is still one of the best markets in London and a wonderful way to see west London at its finest. If you plan to visit Portobello Road, we would definitely recommend coming at the weekend.

Portobello Rd, London, W10 5TY

9. Vessel Gallery

Founded in Notting Hill, London in 1999, Vessel Gallery aims to be a major destination for all those who appreciate contemporary art-glass sculpture and decorative lighting. From the simplicity of Scandinavian crystal, via Italian art glass, to the best of British and International creative talents. All pieces are unique or limited edition and have been carefully edited to show an unrivalled selection of contemporary design and craft.

Vessel also consults for interior and corporate projects, providing the opportunity to have a commissioning service with unique works created with the client. In addition the gallery is a valuable resource for artists, museums and collectors. Numerous artworks have entered prestigious public collections as a direct result of the Gallery’s exhibitions, and it still strives for the same level of competence today.

114 Kensington Park Rd, London, W11 2PW

Picture of vessel gallery

Back to Aubaine for some well earned dinner

After your day of fun visiting as much as you can in Notting Hill, Aubaine welcomes you with open arms. Aubaine Notting Hill provides an opulent venue overlooking Hyde Park and is as luxurious as it is beautiful. Just a short walk from the Royal Albert Hall, it’s the perfect location for pre-theatre dining, there’s nothing quite like it.

Make a little time in your day to enjoy our all-day-dining menus. Choose brunch, lunch or dinner (or all three perhaps?) and enjoy freshly-baked pastries and modern French dishes.

Once you’re ready to refuel, you’ll find us serving French cuisine that is exciting, creative and quite simply delicious.

We’ll see you there.
View our Notting Hill Restaurant here