Hats off to the team who managed to slide nine high quality, modern town houses of varying but decent sizes into a small, unattractive, unobtrusive mews tucked behind the equally unattractive 1970s buildings lining the northern side of Notting Hill Gate (and that’s a road, not an area). The owners of houses in Ladbroke Road must be relieved the development is complete because it’s rammed up against their back gardens. The people who are most likely to benefit though, live in Victoria Gardens. Always the most secondary street in ‘A’ list Kensington, West Village’s swishness helpfully raises the tone by several degrees.
The general location is very good if you can ignore that untidy ’70s architecture. No combination of plastic and real living walls will ever hide it. The houses down at the far end will suffer light loss when the imposing Camden Hill Towers casts its shadow over them and they are also further away from the garage parking. The development’s dedicated parking is certainly convenient but inconveniently residents can’t get a Kensington & Chelsea residents parking permit. So it’s there or nowhere. The garaging is in the form of a lift-system – key in your number and the garage will juggle everyone else’s cars around until it finds yours and then brings it up to street level. Never expect to be able to drive out in a hurry!
The finish of the six mews houses is high quality, the rooms are light and airy and given there’s no, or very little, natural light at the back they don’t feel claustrophobic. Whether they still don’t after a few weeks of living there only a full-time occupier can say. The show house is conveniently furnished as a family home but these six houses have no outside space, apart from a balcony off the master bedroom and off bedroom two, above.
The three houses at the western end are much bigger and they have outside space at the lower ground floor level. At the time of writing (November 2018) two of the larger houses and two of the smaller ones at the far end were let and that may be what lies ahead for the rest of them. Like so many developments, West Village outflashes its time and place with the usual brochure photos of glamorous women browsing flower shops and boutiques two miles away. Notting Hill Gate was brutally redeveloped in the 1950s as part of a road-widening scheme and whatever happens it will never be quaint, quiet, charming or lined with expensive boutiques.
Please tell us what you like and dislike about this area:
Notting Hill Gate is great fun. It has everything most sensible people might need and is thankfully not solely occupied by, and existing for, the very rich. It may be ugly and tatty (there are three supermarkets and a McDonalds) but we all need a chemist, a health store, a newsagent, good takeaway coffee options, a hardware store, a picture framer, a cinema, a theatre, estate agents, a choice of restaurants and very good public transport. People throng here all day, every day and a lot of the night as well. On Saturdays there’s a deluge of tourists pouring out of the tube and heading for Portobello Road. Residents rightly avoid going there at weekends if they can possibly help it.
Please disclose any commercial relationship to this development or developer:
I have no commercial or other connection with this development, the developers or their agents