Notting Hill enjoys such a prime spot on the London tourist map that they named a film after it. The 1999 Julia Roberts–Hugh Grant romantic comedy, where famous film star Anna Scott (Roberts) falls in love with humble bookstore owner William Thacker (Grant), takes a close look at the W11 postcode of West London.
In the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Notting Hill is known for the annual Notting Hill Carnival, the fashionable Portobello Road Market and the celebrity set who live there.
Full of terraced Victorian townhouses, the area has a reputation for affluence, high-end shopping, restaurants and ‘Boho chic’ culture; it has had an association with artists and creative sorts ever since the 1820s. In 2004, the UK newspaper Daily Telegraph coined the phrase the ‘Notting Hill Set’ to refer to the up-and-coming Conservative leadership of David Cameron and George Osborne, who both live in the area.
The famous Portobello Road Market was one of the cornerstones of the 1960s Swinging London scene. The market runs almost the length of Notting Hill from north to south and is known for its antiques, second-hand goods and its fruit and vegetables. Fruit and vegetables are sold on weekdays, along with second-hand goods on the Friday. Saturday is by far the busiest day with visitors from far and wide coming for the antiques market.
Notting Hill is also known for its annual street Carnival, the largest in Europe. Held on the last weekend in August, the event is led by members of the Caribbean community in Notting Hill and has attracted up to 1.5 million people in the past. Elaborate and vibrant costumes and Caribbean food stalls cover 20 miles in and around Notting Hill, while Caribbean music plays and revellers party.