Monday 21 October 2019

Philip Treacy on London's festive highlights

Fortnum and Mason Christmas window display, 2011. Photo: Getty Images
Fortnum and Mason Christmas window display, 2011. Photo: Getty Images

Philip Treacy

Fortnum & Mason’s Christmas windows Their displays are the most exquisite and magical in the world. Each year they choose a theme (this year it’s "Showtime!" and the result is wonderfully theatrical) then work on the windows for months, perfecting every tiny detail. I go every year and it always puts me in a festive mood. (181 Piccadilly, W1A 1ER)

Il Corriere

I’ve sent many friends to this little caff in Victoria, including Kim Cattrall, much to the delight of the male regulars. It’s run by a cockney-Italian lady called Diana who really knows how to do Christmas. The atmosphere gets even cosier, the menu is filled with festive treats and she makes lashings of her speciality dish: Christmas custard. (6 Elizabeth Street, SW1W 9RB)

Winter Wonderland

Taking over Hyde Park every winter, this wonderful free event has a fantastic German market, an outdoor ice rink, a circus and a fairground with a beautiful old carousel and some rather scary new rides, too. I like it best at night when the whole place is sparkling with pretty coloured lights. (

Midnight mass at St Mary’s Bourne Street

This tiny Anglican church in Chelsea is quite exceptional because it has remained exactly the same for hundreds of years. And their midnight mass is something else. The clergy wear the most incredible vestments, the gold altar seems to glow and the atmosphere in the congregation is very special indeed. (30 Bourne Street, SW1W 8JJ)

Borough Market

Wandering past the trussed turkeys and Christmas puddings, listening to the stall owners shout, you’ll feel as if you’ve stumbled into Dickensian London and are about to bump into Ebenezer Scrooge. And the shopping’s not bad either. (

For inquiries about purchasing Philip’s hats, visit his shop at 69 Elizabeth Street, London SW1W 9PJ or call 020 7730 3992

Philip was talking to Katy Birchall

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