Published: 09/05/2022Why buy a home in Hampstead?
Hampstead is the ideal neighbourhood. Culture, beauty and well-being are the watchwords here, as gorgeous shops and restaurants line Hampstead’s streets. One can live a cosmopolitan lifestyle while retaining a village feel, sitting atop a hill that looks across London.
The Heath is never more at its best than when the dawn mists are rising from its treelines and the air is crisp and fresh. Walking the Heath is a must – not just for the postcard-perfect views of London, but also for social interaction and none more so than dog walking.
Swimming in the ponds.
There are many physical and mental benefits to wild swimming, and the year-round, open-air swimming ponds in Hampstead Heath attract swimmers of all sensibilities. There are three ponds on Hampstead Heath: the mixed bathing facility is the nearest to the High Street, while the Ladies Pond is further north, near Kenwood House, and the Men’s Pond is on the Highgate side.
For child-friendly swimming, take a look at Parliament Hill lido with its un-heated outdoor pool which is open all year round.
Hampstead’s mix of immaculately preserved Georgian cottages, Victorian conversions and Edwardian residences is an absolute dream for enthusiasts of architectural history. For centuries, churches like Hampstead Parish Church, Christ Church and St John’s have been seen as symbolic landmarks as well as places of worship and community centres.
Kenwood House, Burgh House, Keats House and the Freud Museum are historic venues that host art galleries, classical concerts and mini-museums.
The Hampstead Antique and Craft Emporium is a unique antique hub hidden away in the heart of the village, reached by a charming courtyard, while the streets around it are dotted with independent art galleries, namely Clarendon, Catto and Zebra One – all well worth a visit.
The theatre, the cinema.
The Pentameters Theatre in Hampstead has been the birthplace of many great acting careers. This is because of its reputation as a sounding board for budding local playwrights and actors. Today, the horseshoe pub is connected and is a great place to hang out pre- or post-show. Across the street, the Everyman cinema has become a cinema destination for movie-buffs everywhere, as it has a curated programme with a focus on music, comfort, and events.
Hampstead’s pubs have retained their history, character and clientele over the years. Our favourite is the Spaniard’s Inn, from the late 16th Century, which was so revered that Hampstead Way had to be built around it. It was in this pub that Keats composed “Ode to a Nightingale,” as his house is just a short walk away. It is also close to the local landmark Kenwood House.
Parliament Hill has one of the best and most famous views of London. It is a vantage point that is next to the Heath but has superior sightlines. It’s a great place for taking dawn photographs of the skyline as the sun comes up over your left shoulder and sets up the picture perfectly. Kite flying, picnics and New Year firework displays are also a major feature here.
Although you could consider it an elitist utopia, Hampstead is an accessible and welcoming place where culture and social enjoyment live together with luxury.