Known previously as the location for the annual Notting Hill Carnival, the Portobello Road market and as the setting for the 1999 film starring Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant, Notting Hill has come a long way since the 1970s, when large swathes had fallen into poverty and disrepair.
Historically, the wealthy and respectable lived on top of the hill in family houses backing onto delightful communal gardens, which nowadays are one of the area’s biggest attractions, while the poor and unconventional (two quite different types, divided by wealth) lived at the bottom.
These separations no longer apply. Its contemporary reputation is fashionable and affluent. Its streets are lined with pastel-coloured Victorian townhouses; and high-end shops and restaurants abound, particularly around Westbourne Grove, the neighbourhood’s heartland. But it still clings on to its arty, bohemian reputation stemming from its first development in the 1820s, free of the formality of neighbourhoods such as Belgravia just a couple of miles to the south.
Pembridge Square and Dawson Place are home to some of the area’s largest and most expensive detached houses, along with those in Clarendon Road, which like those in Lansdowne Crescent and Elgin Crescent benefit from access to the beautiful communal gardens hidden behind the pretty facades.
The area is home to some excellent schools and the Central Line provides easy access to The City.