Our dedicated team of London restaurant property experts always have their fingers on the city’s pulse. This means having outstanding relationships with some of the UK’s biggest leisure property estates.
But it also means understanding their ambitions, preferences and the visions they have of the villages they want to build. Here we look at three of London’s most important property estates.
The Grosvenor Group are one of the foremost guiding hands in the formations of London as we know it today. Their most renowned asset, the Grosvenor Estate, is the direct descendent of the 500-acre Ebury estate which fell to Thomas Grosvenor in 1677.
Since then, the Group has diversified their portfolio, investing in property around the world – from China to Australia. But they still recognise the primacy of London, with CEO Mark Preston calling telling FT that, despite new ventures, London “is our most valuable asset.”
The family-led values of this leading London property group emphasise long-term returns and maintenance of their historic reputation. Today, the Grosvenor Group is recognised for taking their responsibilities to cities’ inhabitants seriously, and they can be credited for naming more than their fair share of all the streets and squares (some of the most prestigious) in London.
As we have written, these prestigious central locations are fiercely contested, with dozens of operators fighting over every prime location, and properties able to attract annual rents in the millions of pounds. Grosvenor are especially well endowed with these prime cuts of London restaurant property.
Of the 62 Michelin Starred restaurants in London, 21 are in Grosvenor Group’s Mayfair heartland, making it the place to be for high-end, Michelin-aspiring operators.
To the north of the historic Grosvenor Estate, is the Portman Estate. Like their neighbours, the Portman Estate is privately owned. Christopher Portman, 10th Viscount Portman, manages the estate today.
The Estate currently holds 110 acres across central London, mainly between Oxford Street and Edgeware Road. The jewel of the Portman crown, however, is the Marylebone district of Westminster.
The Portman portfolio is a mix of residential, retail and office property. As a business, the Portman Estate prides itself on being family run: not least since this affords them the freedom to act decisively in the short-term, but also to maintain a coherent long-term strategy.
With its mix of different property types, the Estate looks to build a community feel in the Marylebone area, managing its assets directly as a landlord and through selecting compatible long-term leaseholders.
This is most keenly felt in Portman Village, comprised of Seymour Place and New Quebec Street. Here, the Portman Estate has assembled the kind of successful cluster of independent operators that we wrote about earlier this year.
The variety of choice provided by independent restaurants from Donostia’s gourmet Basque tapas to The Lockhart’s refined southern US cooking and The Grazing Goat, which offers a fine French menu in a more casual setting, all serves to boost footfall and interest in the area, to the benefit of all: from customers to landlords.
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