Burlington Gardens, W1S
Road in/near Mayfair, existing between 1725 and now
Print-friendly version of this page Burlington GardensMayfair (originally called The May Fair) is an area of central London, by the east edge of Hyde Park. Mayfair boasts some of the capital's most exclusive property of all types.
, with houses dating from 1725, was laid out on land that was once part of the Burlington Estate.
Mayfair is named after the annual fortnight-long May Fair that took place on the site that is Shepherd Market
today. In 1764, the May Fair was banned at Shepherd Market
because the well-to-do residents of the area disliked the fair's disorderliness, and it moved to Fair Field in Bow in the East End of London.
The district is now mainly commercial, with many former homes converted into offices for major corporations headquarters, embassies and also hedge funds and real estate businesses. There remains a substantial quantity of residential property as well as some exclusive shopping and London's largest concentration of luxury hotels and many restaurants. Rents are among the highest in London and the world.
The freehold of a large section of Mayfair also belongs to the Crown Estate.
The renown and prestige of Mayfair could have grown in the popular mind because it is the most expensive property on the British Monopoly set. Victor Watson, the head of Waddingtons at the time, and his secretary Marjory Phillips, chose the London place names for the British version — Ms Phillips apparently went for a walk around London to choose suitable sites.