Sustainability in London is fast becoming a top priority, so it’s only natural (no pun intended) that the capital’s shops are stepping up their game. In fact, London is home to the world’s first ‘smart street,’ which opened in June 2017. Located just off Oxford Street, it features a stretch of pavement that harvests energy from people’s footsteps. Although it’s yet to be rolled out elsewhere, it’s thought that this technology could help to regenerate the high street.
For now, though, there are plenty of shops to suit every kind of eco-warrior. If you’re visiting us in London be sure to make pit stops at these sustainable fashion and lifestyle boutiques, before heading to one of the city’s top vegan restaurants for bite to eat. Best of all, they’re just as conveniently located as we are, being a stone’s throw away from one or more of our hotels!
133 Shoreditch High Street
Just an 11-minute walk away from our Shoreditch hotel is AIDA; an expansive and beautifully curated ‘multi-concept’ store set in London’s creative hub. Operating as a boutique shop, café and gathering space, AIDA was founded by four sisters in 2012. Lovingly named after their Nan, it’s got community and connection – in both a familial and worldly sense – at its heart. You’ll find men’s and women’s fashion, footwear and accessories, as well as homeware and gifts from independent brands who are committed to sustainability. If you’re looking for some one-of-a-kind souvenirs (sometimes a ‘mind the gap’ t-shirt just won’t do!), you’ll certainly find them here.
27 Brecknock Road
If you’re looking for vegan footwear and ethically-sourced clothing, be sure to check out The Third Estate. Founded in Leeds, it relocated to North London in 2012, setting up shop on the outskirts of Camden. Since then, it’s harvested a loyal following of conscious consumers, who want to look and feel great knowing that what they’re wearing is 100% free from animal ingredients. Sourcing the latest pieces from eco-friendly favourites like Vegetarian Shoes and Vegan Line, as well as sustainable options from big brands including Fred Perry, The Third Estate offers trend-led pieces with a conscience. You can get there from our King’s Cross St Pancras hotel by hopping on the 390 bus; 18 stops (or 11-minutes) later, you’ll find yourself just 2 minutes from their door.
Famed for its many vintage shops, Brick Lane is a must-visit destination if you’re heading east, or staying at our Liverpool Street hotel or Shoreditch hotel (which are 7 and 15-minutes’ walk away respectively). Be sure to make a stop at The Old Truman Brewery at 91 Brick Lane House. Housed in this former brewery you’ll find an array of independent shops and markets, as well as galleries, bars and restaurants. Throughout August, the site is even hosting a vegan and conscious living festival, offering a choice selection of ethical lifestyle events spanning food, fashion and fitness. Whilst you’re in the area, check out Beyond Retro on Cheshire Street too; a former dairy factory that’s chock-full of vintage men’s and women’s clothes, shoes and accessories.
Like Brick Lane (and our Liverpool Street hotel: a 16-minute walk away), Columbia Road is known as one of East London’s gems. Aside from its weekly flower market, which is held every Sunday from 8am-2pm, Columbia Road is also full of independent shops. Here, you can buy everything from vintage clothing and accessories to antique homewares and artisan gifts; there are also plenty of cafés, delis and restaurants serving up organic, locally-sourced food – perfect for refuelling after a shopping spree! At No. 146 you’ll find Artisans & Adventurers; a sustainable home and accessory boutique that works directly with small-scale artisans and crafters from around the globe. Championing makers from far-reaching destinations like India and Kenya, as well as smaller ethical brands that are closer to home, it’s the ideal place to find small buys that make a big difference.
69b Broadway Market
Though it’s a little further out, Hackney is definitely worth visiting if you’re into sustainable shopping, vegan-friendly dining and green open spaces. You can even travel their sustainably from our Shoreditch hotel; why not hire a bike and cycle there? It’s only 11 minutes away! Opened in 2011 by ex-stylist Merryn Leslie, 69b Boutique (‘London’s first store dedicated to a better fashion industry’) offer conscious and contemporary buys from the hippest labels. Since it only stocks brands that are committed to working sustainably, you can be certain that anything you wear from here has been ethically produced.
84 Regent Street
First launched in 2002 in collaboration with luxury British fashion house Mulberry, Bottletop is an accessory brand built on global sustainability. Supporting makers in Africa, each product has been made in an environmentally and socially responsible way. Empowering disadvantaged young people to take control of their futures, they offer training, education and healthcare to people in communities across Africa, the UK and Brazil. Their distinctive designs are entirely made from sustainable materials, and their flagship store on Regent’s Street – a 9-minute tube journey from our Westminster hotel – has been created ‘by robots using up-cycled plastic.’ If that’s not enough to tempt you to visit, we don’t know what is.
14 Bulstrode Street
Opened in 2008, Content Beauty & Wellbeing is an eco-beauty shop and salon found in the heart of the city. Located just a short tube journey (or a 21-minute walk) from our Paddington hotel, it usually stocks cult natural beauty brands before they hit the mainstream, so there’s always something new to discover. In-store, you’ll find cosmetics, skincare, haircare and perfume, as well as gifts and accessories. You can also treat yourself (and why not?) to a range of holistic beauty therapies, including massages and facials. With its chic, upcycled interior and range of high-end products, Content Beauty & Wellbeing has exactly the right mix of unique and boutique.
45 Newman Street
Le Fix, a natural beauty bar located just off Goodge Street, is the perfect place to get your nails, brows, lashes and hair styling professionally done before heading out for the evening; especially if you’re staying central. Using vegan and toxic-free ingredients – even when it comes to their manicures – Le Fix is paving the way for salons to adopt a ‘clean ingredients’ policy. Whether you go for an express mani/pedi or indulge in a blow-out beauty treat, rest assured everything here is totally free of nasty chemicals. They even offer a ‘mini-cure’ for children under 11 year; why not make an afternoon of it with the kids in-between sightseeing?