Victoria may well be known as a transport hub for commuters from the south, but recent developments mean the district is rapidly becoming a desirable location for a variety of businesses, thanks to major regeneration in the area.
But its not just its accessibility to the Home Counties that make Victoria an attractive proposition to work in, but its closeness to some of the UK’s greatest landmarks, too – Buckingham Palace is a half-mile walk to the north, while Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament are less than a mile away to the east.
The invitation of regeneration has given a once dreary commuter hub a new lease of life. Recreational developments, such as Nova Victoria, means there is now more to the district than its bureaucratic past lets on. This has helped style Victoria into a destination area, with many city-based professionals choosing to work and live there alike.
American brands Google and American Express both have EMEA head offices in the Belgrave House development of Buckingham Palace Road, which opened in 2004. Google, however, are planning to move to a purpose-built, 920,000 square-foot ‘groundscraper’ HQ.
The landmark development Cardinal Place was the first milestone in a £2 billion regeneration of Victoria, spearheaded by LandSec and transforming the area into the go-to destination for premium office space.
In the area…
Naturally, the daily deluge of commuters means Victoria is a place well-equipped to feed and caffeinate the masses. Of the breakfast spots, Danish bakers Ole & Steen is particularly noteworthy, serving up delicious Danish pastries and sandwiches in a cosy Hygge surrounding. Pimlico Fresh, meanwhile, has become a hit with organic fans thanks to its selection of hearty country goodies, such as homemade stews, vegan cakes and farmhouse loaves.
As the rush-hour crowds melt away and you veer into lunch territory, the bars and restaurants around Victoria come into their own. Opened in 1964, Grumbles is one of the district’s more established eateries, serving up French classics such as moules marinières et pomme frites and crème brulée. For a gastronomical experience more of the moment, then there’s Bleecker – a no-nonsense burger-lovers’ dream and the recipient of numerous “London’s Best Burger” awards.
Helping transcend Victoria’s bureaucratic reputation is Nova Victoria, an 890,000 square-foot mixed-use space, which has offices, bars, restaurants, retail outlets and high-spec apartments. The five buildings that comprise the complex are tied together by a pedestrianised centre, dining options such as Rail House Café and Timmy Green are ideal for long working lunches, while Ahi Poke and Bone Daddies happily deliver pan-Asian flavours for those in a hurry.
Victoria now gives people a reason to resist dashing for the first train home, with nightspots such as the ‘social darts’ venue Flight Club ideal for accommodating a team night out. For something a bit more sedate, The Thomas Cubitt is a handsome little gastropub on the Belgravia side of Victoria, which is perfect for after-work cocktails on its front terrace, especially when the sun’s out.
Flight Club – Victoria hits the bulls-eye for social venues
The bar at Flight Club
The Thomas Cubitt – great gastropubs dot the sidestreets
The Thomas Cubitt – try the pies
Illustrious neighbours – Buckingham Palace
Walk through St James’s Park
Pedestrianised zones for relaxed lunches
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