About the Area
The Marble Arch area is a busy commercial district of Central London. Located in the area surrounding the junction of Edware Road, Oxford Street, and Hyde Park, this locale is a popular shopping destination, as well as a popular spot for tourists with a number of hotels in the area. The area is named for the Marble Arch monument, which stands in the middle of a traffic island, just off of the northeasterly corner of Hyde Park. This arch was originally used as the gateway to Buckingham Palace, and was first erected in 1833. Later, in the 1850s, the arch was relocated to the corner of Hyde Park, where it now stands, to be used as a ceremonial entrance to the park.
Places of Interest
Passing through the arch, you will find yourself at speaker's corner, the most famous section of Hyde Park. This part of the park is famous for being a gathering place for open-air public speakers, who are allowed to talk about, discuss, and debate any subject they like. Speaker's Corner has become a popular place for street preaching, political speeches, anti-war demonstrations, protest movements, and other types of public discourse. Some of its most well known visitors have included Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, and George Orwell. Venturing past speaker's corner, you will find yourself in Hyde Park, a 253-hectare property that forms the largest public park in London. This property is comprised of vast grassy sections where Londoners love to play and relax, and also includes 111 hectares of public gardens. On the other side of the arch, you will find yourself on Oxford Street, which is the busiest shopping street in Europe with over 300 shops in a 2.4 km strip. Or, heading north from the arch, you will find yourself on Edgeware Road, a major thoroughfare that is also home to a large number of shops, as well as several restaurants, hotels, banks, and other businesses. There are some great restaurants in the area, including Prezzo (Italian) and W1 (British/French) on Great Cumberland Place, and La Porte Des Indes (Indian) on Bryanston Street. Of the area's many hotels, some standouts are the five-star Hyatt Regency Churchill Hotel on Portman Square, the Cumberland Hotel on Great Cumberland Place, and the Thistle Marble arch on Bryanston Street. And, because this is a busy shopping district, there are also a number of major banks in the area including Lloyd's, Halifax, and HSBC.
From the underground, Marble Arch is accessible from either the Marble Arch tube station, on the Central Line, or the Bond Street tube station, on the Central and Jubilee Lines. From the Bond Street station, you will find yourself on Oxford Street just east of Oxford Circus. From the Marble Arch station, you will find yourself directly in front of the arch itself. For bus access, there are a number of routes that pass through the area, including 2, 16, 23, 113, 274, 390, 414, and 436. By car, the area is most easily accessed via Edgeware Road to the north or Bayswater Road to the West, as both are major thoroughfares. Motorists should be warned that Edgeware road serves as the dividing line for the London Congestion Zone, and anyone who wishes to drive anywhere to the east of Edware Road will have to pay a fee. There are also a number of car parks in the area, as well as a fair amount of room for street parking.