Bordered to the south by Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens, to the west by fashionable Notting Hill and to the east by Marylebone, Bayswater has long been one of London’s most cosmopolitan areas.
Besides longtime British residents, there is a large Arabic population towards Edgware Road, a Greek community attracted by the Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Moscow Road, as well a number of American families attracted by the relative proximity to the American School in St John’s Wood.
The area suffered a degree of bomb damage during World War I, but still has some attractive streets and garden squares lined with stucco terraces, mostly now subdivided into flats.
Property ranges from very expensive apartments in new developments such as The Lancasters, with superb southerly views across Hyde Park and amenities every bit as sophisticated as those of its contemporaries in upper-crust Knightsbridge, to small studio flats interspersed with bed & breakfast hotels, for which the area used to be synonymous. As a consequence of the bomb damage there are also a number of purpose-built apartment blocks.
The biggest landowners in the area are The Church Commissioners, who have embarked upon a programme of reinvestment around Connaught Village, which is becoming one of the capital’s more fashionable shopping destinations.
Streets such as Porchester Terrace offer a mix of period townhouses with well-maintained gardens. Queensway and Westbourne Grove are the busiest shopping streets and offer a wide range of ethnic cuisines in their inexpensive restaurants.