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6 Mar 2013

Kensington's Royal Credentials


Kensington has always been one of London’s finest residential areas, desired for its distinctive English architecture, charming tree-lined avenues, grand garden squares, world-class museums and immense wealth of entertainment. Real estate here is among some of the most expensive in the world and a Kensington apartment in London is extremely sought-after for its prestigious address and rich variety of property styles ranging from stunning town houses, mansion blocks, mews houses and period conversions. Most dating back to the prosperous Victorian and Georgian eras.

But more than its posh homes and classy bolt-holes, what warrants this neighbourhood’s exclusive status is the fact that it is also one of only four London districts to possess adequate regal merit to be officially termed as a “Royal Borough”. Westminster, Kingston and Greenwich are the other boroughs that share this rare and exceptionally honourable title with Kensington and Chelsea affirming their direct and historic links to Crown.

The royal affiliations that have made the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea such a privileged place to live are:

Birthplace and childhood home of Queen Victoria 

Firstly it is home to the Kensington Palace, the birthplace and childhood home of Queen Victoria who wished that Kensington be given a “Royal status” in her will. It also was the residence of the late Diana Princess of Wales and is today the official London home of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge aka Wills and Kate. It is a working Royal residence and has recently undergone a £12 million makeover which coincided with the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. It is also a key tourist attraction and hosts many tours and exhibitions of the Royal Family and its remarkable Royal collection of art, fashion and memorabilia.

Kensington Gardens

Then there is the magnificent Kensington Gardens, one of London’s most beautiful Royal Parks, with acres of splendid landscaped grasslands, thriving wildlife, popular recreational facilities and many significant points of interest that include the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial and Peter Pan Statue.

Kensington Gardens also features the spectacular Albert Memorial which was commissioned by Queen Victoria in memory of her husband Prince Albert and designed by Sir Gilbert Scott in 1872. The gigantic gilt statue of the Prince consort lies beneath a rich gothic edifice surrounded by elaborate marble and granite statuary representing the continents, industries and professions from the world of arts and sciences.

Royal Albert Hall

And lastly we have the Royal Albert Hall, a 19th-century highly acclaimed concert hall and a British institution for music and the performing arts. It has set the stage for some of the most famous shows in the world like The Proms, English Ballet and Cirque du Soleil, and continues to has entertain and inspire generations within the walls of its iconic terracotta building.