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11


The £3bn luxury lanes


THE ANNUAL SPEND in London’s Luxury Quarter – an area that covers more than 42 streets, lanes and arcades and is home to more than 1,000 retail and leisure units – has reached an estimated £3 billion, up 42 per cent since 2005.


The first London Luxury Quarter Report – compiled with the support of Jones Lang LaSalle – was commissioned by the New West End Company and the Heart of London Business Alliance, the two West End Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) responsible for promoting the London Luxury Quarter globally to investors, brands and shoppers. The report stresses the importance of the area’s mix of powerhouse brands such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Burberry, which last month opened its state-of-the-art world flagship store on Regent Street. Also key are exclusive brands, with retailers such as Dover Street Market providing unique touches. It also says that development such as that on Mount Street is key to sustaining growth and that to maintain its unique DNA, the Luxury Quarter needs to keep providing original and diverse experiences


and welcome offerings beyond retail – including world-ranking art, leisure and social establishments. The report says that the commitment of property owners including The Crown Estate and Grosvenor to mixed-use residential, office, retail and leisure is vital for the attractiveness of the area. It cites a number of developments that offer such a mix including The Crown Estate’s 100,000 sq ft St James’s Gateway development and Grafton Street’s 60,500 sq ft development, currently in pre-planning stage. Giles Clarke, executive director of Grosvenor’s London estate, says: “London is a cosmopolitan city and people have high expectations of areas such as the London Luxury Quarter. However, it’s not just the shops, it’s the place. In Mayfair, we work hard to generate a vibrant heart in the West End where people want to be, whether working or relaxing. “Open and attractive streetscapes give an inviting, continental feel, and, of course, there are the shops, which need to be both local international brands to attract the customers, who rightly suppose that London has it all.”


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