Famous playwright Oscar Wilde once remarked that “Liberty is the chosen resort of the artistic shopper.”
Opened in the 1920s, many come to see this Tudor-style building’s timber frontage, which is salvaged from two ships. The wood panelling and smaller rooms inside also give an intimate feel, making you feel like you’re in a luxurious home rather than a store.
But all is not as old as it seems as. Liberty might well look traditional, but it actually sells cutting-edge designs and continues to serve the luxury end of the shopping scale with its celebration of fine craftsmanship.
It’s easy to get lost in here, but it’s not a bad thing as it gives you plenty of time to enjoy the famous Liberty prints in the textiles department and the gorgeous oriental rugs.
This Christmas, check out: The hand-drawn 2D animals that can be found throughout its Christmas displays, from its storefront windows to its central atrium, where a stunning hot air balloon will take your breath away.
9. Fortnum & Mason
Quintessentially English and popular with the royal family, Fortnum & Mason has been on Piccadilly for more than 300 years since 1707. Tea is the most popular item sold here and many make this their stop for afternoon tea. Yes, it’s all about high standards, but it’s also surprisingly welcoming.
The doorman still wears a top hat and the ornate clock on the front of the building has miniature figures of Mr Fortnum and Mr Mason who appear on the hour to bow to each other, before turning around to go back inside. The antique wooden cabinets are also still in use, along with original fireplaces and the carved wooden staircase.
Fun fact: Did you know that there are beehives on the roof of Fortnum? Five to be precise. The honey is harvested once a year in September, and there’s a waiting list for these highly prized jars!
The Food Hall takes up two floors and above the ground floor, you’ll find menswear, womenswear, cosmetics, homeware and luggage spread over many levels.
This Christmas, check out: The extensive festive collection from the Masters of Merry, who pride themselves for being synonymous with the season. Think beautiful handwoven wicker baskets bursting with gourmet delicacies, unique wooden advent calendars and Christmas crackers filled with all sorts of treats like champagne truffles and tea.