A famous Victorian-era shopping arcade in London’s wealthy shopping area of Mayfair, the Royal Arcade runs from 12 Albemarle Street to 28 Old Bond Street and is located in the premium shopping district of Mayfair. The building, built by architects Archer and Green, was finished in 1880 and is still standing today.
It was not the first gallery in London; in fact, the Royal Opera Arcade on Haymarket, which was built in 1816, is the city’s oldest gallery, dating back to 1816.
Three years later, the Burlington Arcade was built at the further end of Piccadilly, south of Mayfair, on the same site. Despite the splendour of its building, The Arcade did not have the right to proclaim itself “royal” when it first opened its doors. Its classical façade are embellished with intricate plaster embellishments.
The Royal Arcade continues to provide high-end retail space, with current tenants representing a diverse range of internationally recognised and independent companies.
The goddesses and their attendants, as well as legendary scenes depicting Prosperity and Abundance, welcome shoppers who take the time to glance up from their shopping carts. Beautiful archways can be seen from the inside of the portico, which offers a unique viewpoint on the building’s interior. Massive lampshades dangle from the glass ceiling, and gleaming dark wood frames the big windows of the stores that line the street.
Today’s items are more beautiful than they have ever been, ranging from the aromas of an elite perfumery to handcrafted shoes, works of art, and silverware for the table of the upper crust society.
A royal warrant holder is still represented by the chocolate firm Charbonnel et Walker, which creates drinking chocolate that consumers have described as “delightfully delicious.”