london panoramic cityscape
Harrods
London87-135 Brompton Road
Knightsbridge
London SW1X 7XL
TfL Fare Zone 1
 
 

 

Most visitors to London want to visit this famous shop, if only to be able to show off one of their iconic carrier shopping bags.
 
The red, terracotta tiled and domed shop on Old Brompton Road is easily recognisable. It is in Knightsbridge, a fashionable area popular with tourists and close to Hyde Park.
image
 
Harrods is known for excellence both in the quality of its merchandise and its personal service. Nothing is too much trouble for them but of course it comes at a price. Their motto is 'Everything for Everybody Everywhere'.
 
The shop sells everything from £1M diamond encrusted shoes to cheese. The palatial interior and elegant sales assistants make Harrod's an experience not to be missed.
 
Store Visit Guidelines 
Visitors must understand that Harrods is an up-market London store and as such have some reasonable guidelines for visitors to follow. These guidelines and further information is at:
 
Store History
Harrods started life in 1834 as a little wholesale grocery in the East End of London, close to the docks, specialising in the sale of tea. In 1849 Charles Henry Harrod moved his premises to be close to the Great Exhibition being held in Hyde Park. He opened a one room shop on the present site in Knightsbridge with two assistants and a messenger boy.
 
The business thrived, selling medicines, perfumes, stationery, fruit and vegetables. By 1880 it had expanded into adjoining buildings and employed a staff of 100. Disaster struck just before Christmas when the store burnt down but the owner ensured all the Christmas deliveries were made and even made a profit. The store was rebuilt and expanded, and a credit facility was introduced. Harrods clientele were the rich and famous.
 
image
In the 1890s Harrods became a public company and went from strength to strength. The Managing Director, Richard Burbidge, was well ahead of his time introducing a winter clearance sale, and building an escalator. Nervous customers were plied with brandy after negotiating this newfangled contraption!
 
Burbidge’s vision of Harrods as the grandest and most luxurious store in the world was realised in 1901 when he built the current palatial building. Faced in terracotta tiles it was decorated with swags, cherubs, pilasters, Art Nouveau windows and a baroque dome. It was equally palatial inside – there were 91 departments on two floors. The four floors above were turned into lavishly appointed mansion flats with their own private entrance in Hans Road.
 
On the lower ground floor of the present store can be seen a 1927 silver model of Harrods. A competition as to who would make the most profit between the new Selfridges in Oxford Street and Harrods ended with the luxurious store winning.
 
Noel Coward & AA Milne
Harrods is famous for its customers and their purchases. Noel Coward bought an alligator from the Pet Shop, A A Milne bought the most famous teddy bear in the world (Winnie the Pooh) for his son Christopher Robin from the Toy Department, and Sigmund Freud had himself embalmed by the Funeral Service, just to name a few.
 
Harrods Today
During World War II Harrods devoted itself to the war effort, making uniforms, parachutes and even parts for Lancaster bombers. Times were tough after the war and in 1959 the retail group House of Fraser acquired the business. The shop turned its attention to the younger market introducing Carnaby Street fashion in the 1960s.
 
image
In the 1980s the House of Fraser group was acquired by the Fayed family and Harrods once again became a family business. Harrods has regained its reputation as the world’s best retailer with the highest quality merchandise and unparalleled service.
 
In line with the ‘free enterprise’ tradition, Harrods again has new owners.
 
Opening Hours
Open all year including Bank Holidays.
 
Main Store
Monday-Saturday   10:00 – 20:00
Sunday                  12:00 – 18:00
 
Selected Food Halls
Monday-Saturday    09:00 – 21:00
Sundays                 12:00 – 18:00
 
Getting There
To find the best way for getting to Harrods, visit TfL Journey Planner.
 
- By Underground
Knightsbridge Tube Station   Piccadilly Line.  Take the Old Brompton Road exit. South Kensington & Sloane Square Tube Stations are also convenient.
 
- By Bus
Routes 9, 10, 14, 19, 22, 52, 74, 137, 414, C1 all go past Harrod's. Bus Stops are Knightsbridge, Harrod's and Old Brompton Road. We suggest that you visit the Transport for London website and use their 'Journey Planner'
 
- By Car
Not recommended because Harrods is in the Congestion Zone.
 
Google Map - Harrods