South & West Hampstead - Area Guide
South and West Hampstead sit just between Finchley Road, St Johns Wood, Swiss Cottage and Kilburn and on the border with Hampstead Village. Falling under the jurisdiction of the London Borough of Camden, both areas have significant music connections and like Hampstead Village, a vibrant arts and social scene.
Located on the outskirts of Hampstead Heath, much of South Hampstead is a conservation area. One of its most renowned features is the former Decca recording studios, where Fleetwood Mac, the Rolling Stones, David Bowie and the Moody Blues all set down tracks and where now the English National Opera rehearses. All of this, however, pails into insignificance in comparison to the building’s most infamous story: it was the very place where The Beatles were famously rejected and sent on their way with the comment that they had ‘no future in show business’.
West Hampstead is a relatively new residential district in the historical scheme of things, only transitioning from forest land around the end of the 19th century up until such times it was known as West End. Like South Hampstead, there are notable music associations. Back in 1964, the Rolling Stones were allegedly locked in their West Hampstead flat until they could come up with a new song of their own creation, and Dusty Springfield was born in the area. It is a chic location with excellent transport links and close proximity to London, yet a welcome oasis of calm in comparison to the nearby city centre.
Property in South & West Hampstead
West Hampstead is one of London’s most sought-after property districts. If you are buying here you will find prices here above average, as are the rental rates. Here you’ll find striking Victorian houses, some of them converted into apartments. Another feature of the area is its eye-catching red brick mansion blocks such as Chomley Gardens, Lyncroft Mansions, Marlborough Mansions and Alexandra Mansions, all of which offer extremely spacious accommodation.
South Hampstead remains an attractive green Victorian suburb which is almost 100 per cent residential and most consistent where its property styles are concerned. In this area you’ll find large, semi-detached and terraced Victorian houses, many of them in red brick and sporting ornamental brickwork and terracotta panelling, beautifully tiled pathways, intricately carved timber doors and stained or leaded glass windows. There are lots of open green spaces and the area is generally tranquil whilst still sitting within a stone’s throw of the well-known and much in demand Abbey Road and Finchley Road.
Schools in South & West Hampstead
South and West Hampstead boast a number of very good schools including pre-school, Montessori, primary and secondary.
Things to do and see in South & West Hampstead
South and West Hampstead really are a mecca for diners and shoppers alike. Most of the action can be found on West End Lane and Finchley Road, branching out into Hampstead High Street where you’ll experience more of the boutique scene.
Eating and Drinking: This is an area renowned for its eateries. An array of independent establishments offers a host of choice, some of the most notable of which are the Wet Fish Café with its specialist coffee; Elephant Walk known for its exquisite Sri Lankan cuisine and Ladudu for its traditional Vietnamese fare. There’s also a Mexican street food restaurant on West End Lane which sports its own downstairs bodega. Bars and public houses abound, creating an alluring buzz both by day and particularly by night. The Alice House, The Black Lion, The Gallery and the Lower Ground Bar are some of the most popular hangouts.
Shopping: The boutiques of Hampstead are much renowned and the area in general really does spoil the seasoned shopper. The O2 Centre on Finchley Road is packed with places to eat, work out and even catch a film, as well as numerous shops covering the full spectrum from homeware to fashion and pretty much everything in between.
Attractions and Amenities: Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy the parks of The Grange and Fortune Green and of course there is the expansive Hampstead Heath with its famous swimming ponds, and Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill are nearby. Every Saturday between 10am to 2pm there is a farmers’ market in the forecourt of West Hampstead Thameslink station where you can treat yourself to fresh free range and organic produce.
For art lovers, the Camden Arts Centre on the Finchley Road offers free entry to browse the artists’ studios and galleries and take a thoughtful pause at the café. Film screenings, lectures and family days are a regular feature, making the centre quite a lively pull. It’s open every day except Monday.
South & West Hampstead Transport
Both South and West Hampstead are well served by public transport. West Hampstead on the Jubilee Line connects to Stratford International for the Queen Elizabeth II Olympic Park and the Eurotunnel. West Hampstead Thameslink on the Overground and West Hampstead Silverlink Metro are alternatives and all three stations are very close to each other on West End Lane. Plenty of buses connect the area to the City including the 24-hour Number 139.
If you are interested in renting, buying or selling property in South or West Hampstead, get in touch with the experts at Excel Property Services. Based in the heart of Hampstead on the Finchley Road and with over 20 years of local area knowledge and expertise, we are in the best place to provide you with the guidance you need to make the right property decisions.
Call us on 020 7691 9000, drop us a line at email@example.com or call into see us at 146 Finchley Road, Hampstead.