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 February 14

by Carolina

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Brent is known for a lot of things.

Wembley Stadium, Wembley Arena and Neasden Temple to name a few. But unlike neighbouring boroughs like Kensington and Chelsea, it’s not really known for its celebrity presence.

The North-West London borough has seen some famous faces come out of it like George Michael and Louis Theroux but there isn’t a long list of them flocking back into the borough.

Except in the case of the little known street in Kensal Green that’s home to many familiar faces including Rita Ora , Paloma Faith and formerly 007’s Daniel Craig.

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Chamberlayne Road in Kensal Green sits between Ladbroke Grove, Willesden and Queens Park and is quietly one of the Europe’s ‘hippest’ streets in Europe according to a 2009 Vogue article.

What’s so good about it?

So there aren’t any eateries open at the moment so don’t head there this weekend but one of the reasons A-listers like Lily Allen and co chose to call the streets of Kensal Green home, is the selection of bars, pubs and restaurants.

The Chamberlayne Pub, now called The Rise Pub, is the most popular pub on the road and the go-to for a casual drink and also known to do really great steak – it’s also been frequented by actress Thandie Newton, who, yes, also lives in the area.

The Rise pub is a favourite of actress Thandie Newton who lives in the area

The Rise Pub is a favourite of actress Thandie Newton who lives in the area

Another popular venue in Kensal Green’s answer to Beverly Hills, is the area’s only nightspot, Paradise by Way of Kensal Green. With a snazzy rooftop bar and vintage interior you won’t be surprised to know it’s a popular hangout for Made in Chelsea stars only a few minutes away in the neighbouring borough.

The shop, which even has an appropriately hipster name, is another landmark in the Brent town also home to Sophie Dahl, author and granddaughter to writer Roald Dahl. It’s a small bar that serves cocktails in jam jars for the ultimate hipster experience.

Of course at the very heart of Chamberlayne Road is an independent run Indie Cinema. Lexi Cinema, run by volunteers, screens mainstream films as well as opera so definitely not your regular VUE or Cineworld.

Some of the best outdoor space

Kensal Green Cemetery is also a sight to behold. A rarely acknowledged facility among the features that would attract you to an area but it’s quite a breathtaking space with a few notable people in it.

Rock star Freddie Mercury was cremated at Kensal Green Cemetery, and the mother of writer Oscar Wilde is buried in the West London graveyard.

Freddie Mercury was cremated at the Kensal Green cemetery

Freddie Mercury was cremated at the Kensal Green cemetery

If you’re not into the spookier parts of the area, however, Queens Park is one of the more quieter and serene parks in London and if you’re lucky you might see one of the many celebrities in the area walking their dog.

Connected to the city

Another big part of why Kensal Green is beloved by celebs is its proximity to other popular London spots.

It’s about a 20 minute walk to Portobello Road, not too far from Paddington and with Kensal Green Underground station sitting on the Bakerloo line, it’s only a few short stops from Oxford and Regent Street.

The average house price in the area has risen by over six per cent in the last eight years according to Foxtons so the influx of celebrities is clearly having an impact, but if you can’t live there you can visit as much as you like and befriend whichever famous people you find.

Unfortunately, due to lockdown, you’ll have to take our word for how amazing Kensal Green and all its features are but it’s definitely worth the wait and a top location for celebrity spotting.

Original posted at www.mylondon.news

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