London has delightful antiques shops that will appeal to both serious collectors and casual shoppers alike. With dozens of dealers all in one place, the antique malls are especially convenient, and there are several great ones to choose from. Plus, they’re usually open during the week when most of the markets are closed.
If you’re interested in high-end furnishings and fine art, there are top-notch antique dealers around St. James, Bond Street — where you’ll find the Fine Art Society and Waterhouse and Dodd — King’s Road, and Kensington Church Street — home to Haslam and Whiteway and Rafferty and Walwyn.
Gray’s Antique Mall opened in 1977 in a 19th-century terracotta building in the West End. Today, there are more than 200 antique dealers selling everything from Edwardian, Art Nouveau and Art Deco jewelry to Hawaiian shirts. You won’t find many bargains here, but there’s an amazing selection of high-quality collectibles.
Vintage Mode in Grays Mews sells gowns, handbags, shoes, and accessories. And there are shops that specialize in Bakelite, antique dolls, timepieces, medals, perfume bottles, pewter, old photographs, gems, advertising, and compacts.
Gray’s is a must-visit for travelers who appreciate beautiful, old things.
Opened by Bernie Gray in 1976, Alfie’s Antiques Market occupies the old Art Deco Jordan’s Department Store on the east end of Church Street. There are four floors of stalls here and a rooftop restaurant where you can have breakfast, lunch, or a glass of wine. Alfie’s has a little bit of everything, but it’s especially strong for vintage fashions, 20th-century decorative arts, and fine, antique jewelry and watches.
The dealers here are extremely knowledgeable, and many have been tenants since the 1970s. If you don’t find what you’re looking for here, there are more than a dozen antique shops on Church Street.
In Islington, Camden Passage is best on Wednesdays and Saturdays, when the stalls are filled with dealers. There are antique stores in arcades on both sides of Islington High Street and Camden Passage. Circa 1900 has beautiful Art Nouveau jewelry, Christina Tattum has antique boxes, Gordon Gridley has fine art and decorative objects, David Webb has classic jukeboxes, and Finbar MacDonnel has old prints.
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In a beautiful building on the King’s Road, Antiquarius is one of the most attractive antique malls in London. There are over 80 dealers selling top-quality glassware, jewelry, furniture, clothing, decorative arts, and timepieces. In business since the 1960s, Antiquarius is an enjoyable destination.
With 200 dealers on two floors, Admiral Vernon Antiques Market is the largest arcade off the Portobello Road Market. It’s packed on Saturdays, but if you want to miss the crowds, most of the shops are open during the week. You’ll find armor, antique guns, cameras, jewelry, silver, glass, clocks, and toys. There’s a café on the lower level.
If you’re looking for reclaimed architectural items like chimneys, fireplaces, doors, columns, paneling, flooring, lighting, or stained glass windows, the London Architectural Salvage and Supply Company (LASSCO) is your best bet. Most of the things here are expensive, but they are truly one of a kind.
With nearly 30 dealers specializing in antique silver, London Silver Vaults has the largest collection in the world. In addition to jewelry, there are boxes, pipes, perfume bottles, card holders, letter openers, clocks, tea services, and more. The building, which dates from 1876, was originally the Chancery Lane Safe Deposit.
Francophiles will enjoy The French House which sells French furniture from the Renaissance to the Napoleonic era. The owners travel to France once a month, so there’s always something new. Doors, fountains, fireplaces, and garden benches, and old lighting are also available.
Lovers of antiques should set aside some free time in London to search for treasures in these great spots.
Read about the best antique shops in Barcelona here.
- Gray’s Antiques Market
- Alfie’s Antiques Market
- Camden Passage
- Admiral Vernon Antiques Market
- London Architectural Salvage and Supply Co
- London Silver Vaults
- The French House