13 Blenheim Crescent, W11 2EE
This pretty bookshop advertises itself as ‘the destination for beautiful books,’ which could mean that this is where all beautiful books should go, or that this is where you should go if you want to find beautiful books… Either interpretation seems worthwhile.
Notting Hill Bookshop itself started life as an exclusive travel book shop, like Daunt Books, in 1979, but in 2011, twelve year after its notorious ‘appearance’ in ‘Notting Hill’ (the film), it widened its stock to cover leading and popular titles, and has a wide range of film-related items including notebooks, enamel badges and other items of memorabilia to send tourists and booklovers alike home happily. When we were there, there were many visitors and passers by who stopped to take their photos and selfies outside the shop, and this even twenty years after the film’s initial release. Its success story is measured by the fact that it opens for a full eight hours on Sunday up till 6pm. The people working in the shop were all very friendly and knowledgeable, and ready to help the confused or enthusiastic book lover. While perhaps a little less concerned with the more literary scope of the nearby Lutyens and Rubinstein, the Notting Hill Bookshop is well worth a visit, and certainly a complementary experience.
Its main busy hours were the edges of the week and weekends, with the middle of the week being a lot less frantic. One thing we were told was that the locals (except the eccentric ones) often missed it geographically whereas the tourists always made a beeline for it. A pleasant and colourful experience.
Address: 13 Blenheim Crescent, W11 2EE
Phone number: 020 7229 5260
Opening hours: Mon – Fri: 9am – 7pm; Saturday: 9am -7pm; Sunday: 10am – 6pm
Nearest tube station: Ladbroke Grove
Buses: 7, 23, 52, 452