South Kensington Serviced Apartments, History & Area Guide
South Kensington is one of London’s most fashionable areas. You can find out about the history of this chic and stylish part of London, its old world charm and why the Collingham Apartments rank among the very best serviced apartments in South Ken & provide the perfect location from which to explore.
Exceptional, Affordable Short Stay Apartments in South Kensington
There are many options for those looking for accommodation in South Kensington. Yet one of the most popular is that of a short stay serviced apartment. You get the best of all worlds – it’s flexible, affordable, spacious and – in the case of the Collingham at least – exceptional.
Of all the short stay South Kensington holiday apartments, the Collingham is consistently ranked among the very best – offering a great location, outstanding quality and a tranquil escape from the busy life of the most cosmopolitan city in the world.
At the Collingham Apartments, we have seamlessly blended the character and style of the area with exceptional living space and a premium service – small wonder that we were awarded a Traveller’s Choice Award from TripAdvisor as one of the UKs Top 25 Hotels for Families for 2015.
South Ken – The Perfect Location for Your Visit to London
Sitting in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, South Kensington – or South Ken as it’s known by the locals – is about two and a half miles from central London and its boundaries are generally considered to be south of Hyde Park, west of Kensington and north of Chelsea although precise borders are hard to define.
Known as much for being an exceptional residential area as a cultural and shopping centre, house prices in South Kensington can fetch staggering numbers – upwards of £15 – £20 million – and property ranges from exquisite stucco-fronted Georgian, Regency and Victorian mansions to penthouse apartments, quaint mews houses and the usual range of flats, semis and terraces. Of course if you’re simply looking for a short stay then holiday apartments in South Kensington are much cheaper!
Throw in beautiful garden squares, wide avenues and the proximity to some of the world’s finest museums and you can see why the Collingham Apartments is one of the most sought-after serviced apartments in South Kensington.
History of South Kensington
The above-ground layout of South Kensington dates from the 17th century. The area was almost exclusively agricultural land and the local farmers supplied many of London’s shops and kitchens with their fruit and vegetables. However, after the Great Exhibition of 1851 in Hyde Park, the physical, social and political landscape changed dramatically.
After the Great Exhibition – which celebrated modern industrial technology and design and was created to demonstrate to the world Great Britain’s place as a world leader in the manufacturing – the commissioners of the exhibition bought an 87-acre area around what is now Exhibition Road.
The land was designated to create a base for institutions dedicated to the arts, education and sciences and today millions of people each year can enjoy the fruits of that labour – including the Science Museum, the Natural History Museum and the Victoria & Albert Museum as well as the Royal Geographic Society, the Royal College of Art, the Royal College of Music, Imperial College and Baden-Powell House.
Not only are these world-class institutions, they considered architectural wonders and the buildings are as impressive as the work carried out inside.
This massive investment both in the institutions as well as infrastructure such as roads and rail links led to the development of the exceptional homes and spaces that give the area its distinct look. South Kensington was forever ingratiated into the London landscape by the welcome arrival of the tube stations at Gloucester Road and South Kensington in the late 1860s. They linked this up-and-coming area to the socio-political and financial districts in Westminster, the West End and of course the City of London.
In the following one hundred and fifty years the area has flourished and has become home to a wonderful mix of people from all over the globe – it is perhaps best known as home to one of the largest French communities outside France and Quebec. The French consulate is on Cromwell Place and the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle, a primary and secondary school with almost 4,000 students is a road away on Cromwell Road. Because it’s an official centre for the French government, they have French cinema, cultural exhibitions, language classes and naturally, wine tasting! There’s even a host of French bookshops, cafés and shops in the area.
South Kensington – A Village Feel in the Big City
While South Kensington has a somewhat stately feel, it is one of London’s best areas, particularly for culture and shopping. High Street Kensington has a fantastic mix of designer stores, high street fashion chains and the seemingly ubiquitous mobile phone shops! There’s also a heady mix of cool and quirky independent shops selling shoes, furniture, flowers, arts and crafts, antiques, books and ephemera of all types. Indeed, for those staying at our exceptional South Kensington self-catering holiday apartments, the location of the Collingham is as enticing as the quality of the facilities.
The area is also famed for its famous residents, past and present including JM Barrie, Virginia Woolf, Francis Bacon, Benny Hill, John Malkovich and the Beckhams and it’s a rare day that you won’t spot a celebrity walking the streets!
Travelling Around South Kensington
Within minutes of the Collingham Apartments you’ll find Earls Court, Gloucester Road, High Street Kensington and South Kensington tube stations as well as plenty of buses to get you around the city.
The mainline stations of Paddington, Kings Cross St Pancras and Charing Cross are a short taxi or tube ride away from the Collingham Apartments and there is also a number of TfL Cycle Hire stations dotted around if you feel like cycling around London.
The Best Holiday Apartments in South Kensington: Why the Collingham?
If you’re looking for the best serviced apartments in South Kensington, the Collingham is simply perfect. There’s no better testimonial than in the fact that our guests come back time after time and we’d like to think this is due to the high quality of our accommodation and our unwavering commitment to customer service. Throw in our location and the warm welcome everyone receives when they stay with us and you’ve got ideal South Kensington serviced apartments. But don’t just take our word for it, check us out on trip advisor and see why we’re consistently ranked as one of the very best short stay apartments South Kensington.