Tara Hartley, Store Manager at House of Fraser in Richmond, explains why Richmond upon Thames is the perfect place to do your Christmas shopping this year.
10 Top Reasons to Go Christmas Shopping in Richmond
It’s that time of year again and whether you find Christmas shopping a drudge or a delight, at some point you need to decide where you’re going to make your festive purchases.
So what are the options for those of us in South West London? Couch potatoes will claim they can get everything they need online at the click of a mouse. But where’s the fun in that? Others will argue in favour of the West End, which is okay if you like crowded streets, crowded shops and crowded trains and have body-builder muscles to carry everything. Some people like driving to the big purpose-built malls, but they’re a bit characterless and you’ve got to factor in hassles like traffic and parking.
However, there is a place where you can have the best of all worlds – a traditional town centre in a beautiful setting with great shopping choices, easy access by public transport, car and foot and fantastic cafés, bars and restaurants.
In this blog we’ll give you 10 top reasons to choose Richmond upon Thames as your #1 Christmas shopping destination.
1 Quality Brands
Richmond has a superb selection of over 100 shops and stores including many top quality retail names. From fashion to fitness and technology to toys, you’ll find an awesome array of leading brands catering to even the most discerning shopping tastes.
Remember, with most of Richmond’s big retail brands, you can either, research online and then collect in store, or if you prefer, check out potential purchases in the shops and buy online. At some larger retailers, you can even purchase in store and have your items delivered to your home.
2 Speciality Stores
Tired of the same old High Street shops? Richmond is home to a wonderfully eclectic mix of outstanding speciality stores offering everything from fine art to fine food and bespoke wedding gowns to custom-made footwear.
3 Marvellous Markets
Everybody loves a market and Richmond is home to two of the best, every weekend in elegant Heron Square.
On Saturdays, from 11am till 4pm the Richmond Foodies market is a must for anyone who cares about the quality and provenance of the food they eat. Independent food producers and small businesses offer delicious local and ethical foods in a vibrant friendly atmosphere.
The Richmond Artisans market, which runs from 10.30am until 5pm every Sunday features locally made arts and crafts, gifts, homewares and clothing. Add to that live music and food and you have a perfect day out.
4 Easy Access
There can’t be many places with better transport connections than Richmond upon Thames. London Underground, London Overground, National Rail, buses and excellent road links – Richmond has them all. There’s even a riverboat service in the summer. So, wherever you’re travelling from, Richmond really is within easy reach.
5 Cafés Bars and Restaurants
Christmas shopping can be tiring work. But fear not, whether you’re tired, hungry, or thirsty, or even a combination of all three, Richmond has an unrivalled selection of cafés, bars and restaurants in which to relax and recharge. Whatever your refreshment requirements, you’ll find just what you need in Richmond.
6 Lovely Lanes
One of the great pleasures of Richmond town centre is exploring the lovely lanes that lead off from the main streets. Packed with charm and character, these traditional side-streets exemplify the heritage of the town and host a wonderful mix of shops, cafés, pubs and restaurants.
7 Beautiful Riverside Setting
You haven’t experienced Richmond until you’ve walked along its beautiful riverside, which this year, for the first time, will be festooned with festive lights. So, if you need a break or some gift inspiration, wander down to the waterside and enjoy the view, catch some quiet time or check out the bars and restaurants nearby.
Richmond upon Thames town centre is steeped in culture, with historic buildings, a museum, an art gallery and not one, but two award-winning theatres. When you need a break from the commercial side of Christmas, indulge your inner-aesthete and enjoy Richmond’s cultural offerings.
9 Vibrant and Happy
2017 has been a great year for Richmond. In the spring it was listed in the UK’s top 10 most vibrant retail locations (ahead of London’s West End, Westfield Stratford and Canary Wharf). But that’s not all, in October, for the third successive year, Richmond upon Thames was named as London’s happiest borough. Christmas shopping with a spring in your step and a smile on your face sounds like a great combination to us.
10 Places to Stay
As Richmond is blessed with some of South West London’s nicest hotels, here’s a thought – why not make a weekend of it? Do your shopping, enjoy a delicious meal, catch a show and then stroll back to your hotel for a nightcap and well-earned sleep. In the morning, after a hearty breakfast, you can enjoy one of the weekend markets.
Tara Hartley is Store Manager at the House of Fraser department store in George Street Richmond upon Thames.