A brief history of the Crescents, Gardens, Squares and Streets of Knightsbridge

The name Knightsbridge according to Wikipedia can be traced back to the Saxon and Old English times as ‘Cnihtebricge (c. 1050) Knichtebrig (1235) Cnichtebrugge (13th century) and Knyghtesbrugg 1364’. There is a theory that there was a bridge where ‘knights and ladies of the day would meet, (the river is now underground) hence the name Knightsbridge. It’s not a million miles from today, as we still have our fair share of knights and ladies living in Knightsbridge, but they now blend beautifully with residents from around the world who also call Knightsbridge their home.

Knightsbridge homes have always been sought over the centuries partly because of their location and distance to one of the eight Royal Parks in London, Hyde Park. The Park is the largest of the four Royal Parks in central London, which form a magnificent chain-like shape that starts at the entrance of Kensington Palace and ends at the Queen’s formal residence, Buckingham Palace. For this reason alone, there is no real estate like the homes, flats, maisonettes and mansions of Knightsbridge, with their access to 350 acres of beautiful green parkland in Central London.

The Trevor’s as they are known locally include Trevor Square and Trevor Place and are dominated by classic Georgian terraced homes. Trevor Square was designed by William Fuller Pocock in 1810 and is now one of the most desirable squares in Knightsbridge. The listed buildings that surround the square are classically Georgian with their wide archways, brick upper floors and distinctive black railings. These larger than average family homes provide a quiet refuge and are yet within walking distance of the biggest garden of them all – Hyde Park.

Enismore Gardens is just one of our favourite places to help clients both buy and sell. We know the history of every home here and because it’s within walking distance of Harrods, Harvey Nichols, and both Hyde Park and the Brompton Road it’s easy to see why it has always remained a popular place to live. Hyde Park is famous not only for its parklands but for the many activities (tennis, horse riding, cyclists, walkers and joggers) and that it offers both world-class events and concerts together with plenty of quiet places to relax and unwind.

Rutland Gate is another favourite of ours because of its impressive architecture and is now home to one of the most expensive homes ever sold in the UK – 2-8a Rutland Gate. What strikes one most is how quiet Rutland Gate is and how pretty its central leafy square is. It’s also only moments from the Museums and galleries and the Brompton Road.

An area that is known locally as ‘Knights Village’ comprises Montpellier Place which is opposite Montpelier Street and within walking distance of the Brompton Road and all the amenities of the many boutiques, shops, restaurants and bars of Knightsbridge. Montpellier Place with its listed buildings remains a firm favourite for those looking for a quiet square in the heart of London.

Egerton Crescent, Egerton Garden and Egerton Place all reside within SW3. Egerton Crescent was once described as “the most expensive street in Britain” and sits between Egerton Gardens and Egerton Terrace and the Brompton Road. These classically designed Georgian mansion houses that dominate this impressive Crescent were designed by George Basevi and James Bonnin in 1840. It is to this day considered one of the finest postcodes in London.

The Albert Hall Mansions in Kensington Gore need no introduction. Designed by Richard Norman Shaw in 1871, these Grade II listed residential buildings contain 45 flats and are within the Kensington Conservation Area. These regal apartments themselves range from 2,3 & 4 bedrooms all with magnificently high ceilings. This is truly stunning lateral living with handy on-street parking and Hyde Park’s 350 acres to admire and explore. Having sold over 25 apartments throughout my career here, I know exactly why they remain one of the most prestigious addresses in the world. The curve of the architecture always amazes our team. Today the Albert Hall Mansions is one of the most desirable postcodes in Knightsbridge and we love working with both buyers and sellers in this part of London.

Follow us on Instagram @yorkestates_knightsbridge for our latest Knightsbridge London houses and Knightsbridge flats and properties for sale

November 2021 Interview: International Property & Travel Magazine

 

Richard Isadore from York Estates Knightsbridge was asked to contribute to November’s issue of International Property & Travel Magazine. The property feature looks at what keeps Knightsbridge as one of the most sought after areas of London. To read the article in full, please click here.

 

1.    How do you define the Knightsbridge geographical area? What are its physical limits? 

Knightsbridge is a culturally rich and diverse part of central London where the neighbourhood offers the finest restaurants, shopping and schools, as well as world-leading museums and galleries. The area also enjoys the magnificent Royal Parks of Hyde Park, St James’s Park, Kensington and Holland Park which are all within walking distance and is also home to some of London’s premier hotels, that include; the Berkeley, the Bulgari and the Mandarin Oriental. There are no physical limits living in Knightsbridge because of its Central location and easy access to life in and around London.

2.    Historically, Knightsbridge has for some time now been a wealthy area but what is it like to live here?

On the one hand, it feels very much like a village with its Conservation Areas and tree-lined roads, mews and outdoor café society, and on the other with Harrods and Harvey Nichols and the many flagship stores of the leading fashion houses, museums etc. you are aware that you are in the cultural heart of London. It’s a very safe part of London and is surprisingly quiet in the larger Georgian squares and gardens, but is also only moments away from the busier areas of the museums on the Exhibition Road, and the shops and restaurants in Knightsbridge, Chelsea and Belgravia.

3.    What draws people in? Of course, it’s an exclusive area so is it just the name or are there other positives? 

There is a real sense of community in Knightsbridge and living here you start to feel like a local where coffee shops will know your order before you ask and restaurants will know your favourite table as you walk in. With world-class museums and galleries at your disposal, along with fabulous food and parks, the cultural choice is endless.

4.    What are the main property types here? 

Knightsbridge is an architecturally rich area with a wonderful mix of elegant Georgian and Victorian mansion houses and modern apartments and flats all immaculately looked after, most with portered access. The area is also home to many churches of different faiths including the magnificent Brompton Oratory, the CoE Holy Trinity Church, the Russian Orthodox Church in Ennismore Gardens and has a strong military connection by being the home to the Household Cavalry at the Hyde Park Barracks. Many buildings are listed (grades I, II* and II) and most areas have strict planning conditions to meet the enhanced architectural demands of the local Albert Gate and Royal Park Conservation Areas, the Knightsbridge Green Conservation Area, and the boroughs of Kensington and Chelsea and Westminster.

5.    How much does the conservation area impact on development? Are there any new builds at all? 

Planning is still possible for some incredible new homes like One Hyde Park, however any renovations or modernisations or new builds have to pass strict planning laws. The new Knightsbridge Gardens development and 2-8a Rutland Gate are perfect examples of multinational investments to renovate existing buildings and mansions within Knightsbridge.

6.    What are today’s buyers looking for here? What’s on their list of ‘must haves’

Outdoor balconies, terraces and access to communal gardens/private squares and homes with portered access are top of the list currently. We have also seen an increased interest in homes with a home office and a demand for homes with a second home close by for extended family or staff. Following the Pandemic, access to green space has become a priority and because of the close proximity to the Royal Parks and Conservation Areas, Knightsbridge is a beautifully green place to live. Families love the excellent schools in the area across all age groups and having access to the Royal Parks means outdoor space is unlimited.

7.    Who buys here? Are they owner occupiers or investors?

Knightsbridge is a very global area of London with buyers and Clients from all over the world, especially from the Middle East, Far East and Europe and there is a healthy mix between both owner-occupiers and investors. We see interest from Clients who would like Knightsbridge to be their home or pied-à-terre, and also a second home given their portfolio of properties across the world. As one of the most sought-after boroughs of London to live, from an investment point of view it’s a safe one. You don’t just live in Knightsbridge, you also live the lifestyle of this exclusive part of London.

8.    What budget is required? Are records still being broken here?

There will always be a demand for properties in Knightsbridge because it’s such a wonderful place to live, and yes records are still being broken for those one-off, unique properties that perhaps have not been on the market for a number of years, or are either of historical importance, or ideal for redevelopment.

9.    What about rental properties? How strong is the rental market and what is on offer? 

The rental market is very strong and properties range from mansions to apartments and flats. Some buyers find renting gives them a real insight into the road or area of Knightsbridge they would like to live in and then they are in the perfect position to buy if and when a property they desire becomes available.

10. What are the future prospects for properties and property prices in this area? 

There is nowhere in the world quite like Knightsbridge. The museums, restaurants, parks and schools have all withstood the test of time and are only becoming more exclusive and famous as the years pass. There has never been a better time to live or invest in a home or property in Knightsbridge.