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Harrods


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Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Translated by Lottie Davies — one year ago

Original text by Patricia Saiz Díaz

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Who hasn't visited Harrods during their stay in the British capital, or at least heard of it? This huge department store, the most exclusive in the whole of England, is located right in the heart of London. The closest Underground station is Knightsbridge (on the dark blue Piccadilly line). It's located in the wholly commercial area of London, close to Hyde Park, Green Park and Piccadilly Circus (don't even doubt for a second that everyone who has set foot in London knows these places like the back of their hand).

On this particular occasion, it was Christmas time. Yes, I had decided to spend part of the festive period the 'English' way and celebrate the arrival of 2015 there. At the end of the day, 2014 deserved the best send off possible. It was my fourth visit to the British Isles, so this meant that it was also my fourth trip to London and, consequently, Harrods. I always end up here, despite the fact that I am not rich enough for this kind of luxury, as this department store is always a compulsory visit for those who like fashion, or at least like admiring the art that both the building and its façade have.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

In order to enter Harrods, you cannot be dressed in just any old thing. I will always remember the first time I walked up to the doors watched over by several security guards when I was just wearing a jumper, trainers and jeans - giving me a more casual/sporty look. Basically, they wouldn't let me enter the store. I had to ask to borrow one of my friend's boots and coat, and we ended up taking turns to go in while the others waited outside to borrow the clothes.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

I will never fall into that trap again. I always make sure to dress up a little bit when the day that I go to my favourite department store arrives (it's the same situation with Galerías Lafayette in Paris... I know, I have expensive taste).

Upon entering through one of more than four entrances that it has, we found ourselves in the perfume section, where the most exclusive brands, like Chanel, Dior, and Bvlgari, come together. Obviously, my friends and I took advantage of this by putting on some of our favourite scents with the testers that were out on display.

After so many prior visits to Harrods, I already more or less know where each section is located within the department store. But, for those who don't, you could go to reception, where a friendly man will provide you with a little leaflet that shows what things can be found and on which floor.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

The building has both escalators and lifts, which personally remind me of those from the Titanic.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

One of these escalators leads directly to the tribute to the deceased Princess of Wales, more commonly known by all as Lady Di, and her boyfriend, Dodi Al Fayad, who both tragically died in an accident on the Pont de l'Alma in Paris. We cannot forget that Mr Al Fayed was the son of the owner of Harrods. The tribute, located on the ground floor, consists of a statue of the couple dancing and a small memorial with candles and photographs of them both. What catches your attention most about this area, however, is its completely Egyptian-style decoration, with several statues of Pharaohs.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

We moved from that area in direction of the hospitality area, which is situated in the centre of Harrods where all the walkways converge, and hundreds of people meet to enjoy some canapés, amongst other amazing dishes, worthy of only the most exquisite palates (and bank balances).

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Going up a few floors, we were met by the famous macaron house, Ladurée de Paris, whose franchises are located across several world metropolises, one of which is right here inside Harrods. I will hold my hands up and say that I am a huge fan of these little, sweet treats, and I always buy some when I find myself in one of their stores.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Next, we headed to the homeware floor, where we found multi-coloured and extravagant decorative items for living rooms, dining rooms and bedrooms.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

Finally, we went over to the souvenir section of the store, which is where I always myself a little something (I will never forget the typical Harrods Westie teddy that I bought myself in 2010. I still bring it with me and give it a lot of love). There, we took advantage of the giant (life-size) Harrods bears and took lots of photos with them, one of which donned the typical Royal Guard outfit, and another with traditional Scottish attire.

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

I have to point out something that didn't stop surprising me - the extremely high number of Arab women that I ALWAYS see buying items in Harrods. It's not difficult to guess who manages the money if we are talking about this in financial terms...

Maximum exclusivity laced with a flavour of London

My virtual visit through Harrods ends here. I hope I'll be able to say the next time I go that I had enough money to buy something fancy that doesn't just come from the souvenir floor of the store.

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