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London’s festive sights 2017 – Mayfair

A post with a slight difference – xmas decorations in those posh parts of Central London! I could have gone on for hours and hours doing this but limited it to just Mayfair (inc Shepherd Market and Green Park.) Some of these places I would never be able to set foot in, but despite wearing a coat almost beyond repair and most definitely not a well to do person of any sort, I was in fact allowed into a couple of these places to take pictures of their trees. A first for me!

This post came up almost by accident. I ventured along to take pictures of the Connaught tree (cannot miss that) for my xmas posts. This year its Tracey Emin’s turn. Having  spotted the Park Lane Hilton towering in the distance, I thought to myself what if I could take pictures of their tree? And so it went on from there. I didnt think I was reputable enough but gave it a go! Anyhow, we start with the Connaught Tree, as this is in Mayfair too,. The tree features a poem penned by Emin.

Emin’s tree is a bit dark and not very colourful. I don’t know if that was the intention, as the message of love is clearly the tree’s main feature. I should have taken pictures of it in the day time to bring out the best of it as these night time pictures don’t really do it justice.

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General view of the Connaught tree

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Emin’s tree shares the space outside the Connaught with Michael Craig Martin’s Scissors (2013)

DSC 0553 - London’s festive sights 2017 – MayfairThe front of Claridges is nice (last year it featured some cut out reindeer.) Its simple yet effective, being the most basic thing expected at xmas – traditional presents gift wrapped with bows. The tree inside this year is by Karl Lagerfield.

DSC 0555 - London’s festive sights 2017 – MayfairI looked at the hotel’s very smart clientele – and thought to myself no way will they let me in – so just settled for the exterior. Here’s a tweet of the Lagerfield tree though, many of you will know of this because it is upside down!

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Here’s the front porch of Claridge House, just round the corner from the hotel. Many doorways in the area have these xmas wreaths things. If one however peers inside often a there too is a lovely tree adorning the hallways!

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Something a little different. Ever so busy Oxford Street belies the fact its very quiet down Davies street yet xmas decorations abound here. This is Hedonism Wines’ sledge bike fully laden with xmas presents.

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Lobby off Mount Street sporting the obligatory xmas tree

I thought Mount Street this year was a bit lacking. Last year there definitely was more creativity….

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Xmas tree at The Audley on the corner of Mount and South Audley Streets

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Picturesque Grosvenor Chapel in South Audley Street seemed to be having some sort of choir practice, nevertheless here’s a peep through its doors showing the attractive architecture and xmas tree.

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Xmas window display at T. Goode & Co in South Audley Street. Being an antiques shop, the bear is obviously some sort of expensive toy covered in regalia but still gives a sense of it being xmas!

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The Grosvenor House hotel, as always, has its xmas decorations sited along the pavement in Park Lane

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The iconic MINI dealers in Park Lane, selling one of the UK’s most popular and famous cars

Park Lane is of course home to many of London’s more famous hotels, some of which have been here a very long time. The great views offered across Hyde Park make this one of London’s most select and expensive locations

IMG 9087 - London’s festive sights 2017 – MayfairThe Dorchester hotel is unusual in that is stands at an angle to Park Lane. This is because it is built on the site of the old Dorchester House, which too stood at the same angle. This year there is one new feature and that is the Dorchester’s mistletoe arch. Couples taking a picture of themselves kissing under the mistletoe would put this in a competition and the best entry would win an overnight stay at the hotel.

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Another difference this year at the Dorchester is this sweet shop within the foyer, complementing the hotel’s traditional christmas tree.

For the third successive year this very popular gingerbread model of the hotel has been part of its xmas fayre. First seen in 2012, this is the second such model, made in 2015.

IMG 9095 - London’s festive sights 2017 – MayfairIts said 8,000 pieces of gingerbread were used to make this and the process took ten months. The gingerbread is varnished in order to preserve it. The big surprise behind it all, literally, is the model of the hotel itself seen from the rear. There’s even a miniature version of the gingerbread hotel within its lilliputian lobby!

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The lilliput version of the Dorchester!

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The Dorchester’s tree is rather like the Park Lane Hilton’s further down the road, its a traditional tree and the decorations are kept back each year. The entire foyer is nicely decorated too.

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Another view of the tree with the hotel main entrance and lobby

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A birdie on the Dorchester’s xmas tree!

The long bar area to the rear is lined with many xmas trees this time of year, and its clear the hotel has a very strong feel for the festive season. This bar area is known as The Promenade, and also called ‘the drawing room of Mayfair.’ It is one of the hotel’s most enduring features ever since it opened in 1931.

Part two tomorrow (Boxing Day) including the Hilton and Shepherd Market.

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