It is a very naive and childish part of me that loves Harrods like I do. It is an amazing department store in London, similar to Macy’s from the old days in the US, and I think that vague connection is what makes it such a magical place at Christmas time-at least in my mind. Like “A Miracle on 34th Street”, but set in London! And much, much more expensive!
Harrods is a true luxury store, with every “important” label out there-Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Chloe, Rolex and Peugut and Cartier, all of that, displayed in its halls. But what I love the most, more than all of the rest, are the food halls. Amazing selections of delicacies and pastries, meats and fruits and dishes from all over the world, plus the best on offer from this gray, chilly land, England. It is decadent. There is a La Duree in there as well! Macarons!
And this weekend I saw a ham on sale that cost….wait for it…..£1300. THIRTEEN HUNDRED POUNDS. For a ham. Believe me, a trip to Harrods is a a mouth watering wander through the best of all kinds of treats, both material and edible, and maybe most of us will not be able to afford oh….3/4 of that deliciousness.
It is a crazy place.
The only thing I have ever purchased at Harrods was loose leaf tea for my mom. And even that was not cheap. Some day I may buy something more, or maybe even sit down and have a meal at one of the counters/restaurants….but let’s not get our hopes up! They also sell a Christmas hamper (English word for gift basket) every year that costs upward of £1000, full of fancy champagne, caviar and other tasty/fancy goods. Yeesh. For now, I’m content with looking around and enjoying the sights and atmosphere-particularly during the holidays.
The Knightsbridge area of London, where Harrods can be found, is also home to the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Harvey Nichols, and any number of other luxury shops. So it’s to be expected that they step it up to impress the hoi-polloi come the holidays, and ohhhh they do! They really do. It is gorgeous down there, and the lights and window displays are just beyond lovely.