Chelsea, one of the world’s most iconic retail and leisure destinations, reopens for business this week. Chelsea’s open spaces and the wide-ranging safety precautions in place, along with the area’s unique character and residential neighbourhood, will support its resilience.
Carefully prepared safety measures have been put in place across Chelsea, as one of the world’s most iconic and characterful retail and leisure destinations gets ready to reopen this week.
Cadogan, which manages 93 acres across Chelsea and Knightsbridge, including the internationally renowned luxury fashion destination of Sloane Street, the elegant open space of Duke of York Square and the trend-setting King’s Road, has spent the past month working closely with the wide range of local and international shops in the area to undertake intricate arrangements for reopening while protecting public safety.
One-way systems for shops, organised circulation of the Duke of York Square and the pedestrianisation of Pavilion Road will all change the way people navigate the area. The installation of hand sanitiser stations, eye-catching signage on pathways, in stores and benches will also help guide people. Coupled with this, Cadogan has also identified areas of frequent use that will be regularly deep-cleaned.
Guidance provided to retailers includes limiting the numbers of people in-store at any one time with amended trading hours and appointment-only slots before and after trading, designed to heighten safety and cushion the effect of restrictions. Kerb-side collections and a focus on click and collect space will also encourage safe and secure shopping.
Guidance shared with local businesses has been collated from the UK government, World Health Organisation, other local authorities, industry sources as well as best practice examples from around the globe.
Chelsea is one of the most popular shopping destinations in Britain. The King’s Road has been at the heart of the country’s fashion scene since the 1960s, popularised by celebrity designers such as Mary Quant and Vivienne Westwood and by music legends such as The Beatles, the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix. Today, Chelsea is characterised by its local neighbourhood charm, open-air space which lends itself to social distancing, and high numbers of residential dwellings which will bolster footfall and help the area remain resilient while tourism and travel remain cautious post lockdown.
Chelsea’s charm is anchored in its strong community of independent boutiques, compelling international flagships, coupled to elegant open spaces and exciting range of food and drink. Cadogan, a long-term family business, has been working closely with local businesses to support more than 200 small firms hit hard by the response to COVID-19 with financial support and advice to help them through the crisis.
Key destinations such as Duke of York Square, next to the King’s Road, will feature a one-way system, while Pavilion Road, a classic mews of “best in their field” artisan independent shops and cafes, will be pedestrianised. The vinyls, markings and signage will represent the distinct character of the individual destinations within the 93-acre estate as well as conveying a clear message of safety first.
Hugh Seaborn, CEO Cadogan, said “Public safety remains our number one priority as we work actively with retailers and other occupiers to reopen the area for business soon. Chelsea is a residential neighbourhood with a strong local identity and as such relies less on tourism or travel providing a solid platform from which to start reopening safely and sustainably.
The rich tapestry of independent shops combined with exciting international flagships, a wide range of food and drink and the delightful and uncrowded outside spaces, such as Duke of York’s and Pavilion Road, all combine to create an attractive and compelling place to visit. I am confident that as people increasingly venture out, they will value what they have locally more than ever. Chelsea is immensely fortunate to have a wide and rich range of boutiques and restaurants coupled to a strong sense of community that appeals to all tastes.”