Why move to Chelsea?
Chelsea is synonymous with opulence: high-end shops and fine dining are what the world-famous King’s Road is best known for. It's a great place to visit, and it's also a fantastic place to live. Just two-and-a-half miles south west of central London, Chelsea has South Ken to the north, Pimlico to the east, the Thames and Battersea to the south and Fulham to the west: there’s no better place to be for enjoying the cultural and historical sights of the capital. There are few places more sought-after in central London than Chelsea – the district oozes exclusivity, but it's also a real melting pot of different cultures.
A little bit of history
Chelsea was originally just one manor house, acquired by Henry VIII in 1536 who installed two of his six queens: Catherine Parr and Anne of Cleves. By the early 1700s the area was already popular with the wealthy and described as a ‘village of palaces’. Perhaps the most famous building is the Chelsea Royal Hospital for soldiers, which was built in 1682 at the request of Charles II by Christopher Wren. The Swinging Sixties era was defined on the King’s Road, while the Sloane Square area gave the term 'Sloane Ranger’.
Architecture and property
Chelsea’s diverse architecture encapsulates the finest in the London property market. Ranging from elegant Georgian properties to contemporary riverside property, Chelsea is predominantly 19th century, with a plethora of red-brick Victorian terraces, Art Deco mansion blocks and white stucco villas. Popular addresses include The Boltons, Tregunter Road, Park Walk, Cheyne Walk and Chelsea Waterfront.
Shopping and amenities
Shopping in Chelsea includes some of the finest designer labels in the world, but there are also plenty of amenities for residents. The new Cadogan development brings new shops and an improved Waitrose supermarket, and there are many convenience stores locally selling day-to-day essentials. The Pavilion Road area has small independent shops such as a butcher, fishmonger, baker, cheesemonger and grocer, alongside smart boutiques.
You’re in the thick of it as far as entertainment and nightlife is concerned. Some of London’s best restaurants are here: Tom’s Kitchen, Bluebird and Restaurant Gordon Ramsey to name but a few. The Cadogan development will bring an Art Deco-styled Curzon Cinema for 2022, as part of the wider project including a rooftop bar and new homes. The Chelsea in Bloom floral display during the Chelsea Flower Show is also a highlight of living in the area, when the streets and shops come alive with extravagant floral arrangements. For days out, Chelsea is walking distance of the Saatchi Gallery, Chelsea Embarkment, Battersea Park, Knightsbridge, Belgravia, the Natural History Museum and the V&A, with the rest of London on your doorstep.
Despite its central and convenient location in the heart of the capital, Chelsea has more than 30 parks which are managed by the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. These parks are often manicured and beautifully managed, with space for walking, sitting and enjoying the planting or doing activities like yoga. What’s more, Chelsea is within walking distance of Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park, two of the largest areas of green space in the city.
Schools in Chelsea offer a good range of educational options, including a number of state primaries, secondaries and sixth form colleges, together with a large range of independent fee-paying schools, including prep schools. Notable examples include Ashbourne, Eaton Square, Queen’s Gate girls junior and senior schools, Redcliffe School, The Hampshire prep school and Sussex House School for boys.
Chelsea’s nearest tube stations are Sloane Square, Earls Court, Gloucester Road and South Kensington, served by the Central, District and Piccadilly lines, while the Overground from Imperial Wharf has trains to Clapham Junction for connections to Victoria and Waterloo. There are also useful commuter bus services up and down the King’s Road. The TFL River Bus runs from Cadogan Pier to Blackfriars, offering a pleasantly alternative commute to the City. For international travel, the Piccadilly Line runs direct to Hatton Cross station at London Heathrow Airport, which takes in all terminals via select services.