Arnaud Zannier’s guide to London’s top interior design destinations

Zoe Gunn

22 September 2021

The founder and CEO of Zannier Hotels, and interior design enthusiast, shares his favourite spots for unique home finds

22 September 2021 | Zoe Gunn

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f you’ve ever stayed at a Zannier Hotels property you’ll know that, aside from their stunning locations in Namibia, Vietnam and Cambodia, it is the attention to detail paid to the interior design that really makes these resorts special. Whether it’s the tactile natural materials and elegant simplicity of a luxury tent in Omaanda, or the traditional architecture and soothing palette of a hilltop hotel in Bãi San Hô, each resort is full of thoughtful design touches you’ll wish you’d thought of yourself (and will absolutely be stealing for your own home).

Somewhat unusually, however, it is in fact the group’s CEO and founder, Arnaud Zannier, that you have to thank for your new design inspiration. A true savant with impeccable taste, while Zannier’s hotels are inspired by his travels around the world, when it comes to his own West London home, it is the capital’s top interior design destinations to which he turns. Here, he shares his favourite spots for unique finds.

Sunbury Antiques Market, Shepperton

Arnaud says: Held at Kempton Park Racecourse, this is a sprawling flea market where you can find everything from antique clocks, silverwear and paintings, to books, jewellery and vintage fashion. You need to set aside a whole day to rummage through the huge variety of antiques and collectables.

We say: Located in the suburban area west of Hampton Court Palace, Sunbury Antiques Market just about qualifies as being in London. Having been held at Kempton Park Racecourse for more than 40 years, the market remains a family-run affair that has expanded to become one of the largest in Europe, attracting a stellar list of antique dealers spanning a huge variety of eras.

Visit sunburyantiques.com

Portobello Road Market, Notting Hill

Arnaud says: This is one of London's oldest and most famous markets – it's as much about the vibe as it is about the shopping. The antiques start at the Notting Hill Gate end, with food stalls further up and emerging designer and vintage clothes along the walkway to Ladbroke Grove. I usually try and visit on a Friday when it's slightly less busy and always come home with an interesting find.

We say: Portobello Road really needs no introduction. Whether you’re into fashion, food or homewares, there’s something for everyone here. Held from Monday to Saturday, you’ll find the biggest range of stalls open on the weekend – but also the largest crowds. Arrive early to avoid queues.

Visit portobelloroad.co.uk

Lots Road Auctions, Chelsea

Arnaud says: I could spend hours browsing this sprawling warehouse crammed with antique furniture, artwork and bric-a-brac sourced from across the globe. If I'm lucky, I might snag a rare vintage piece or pick up a Persian rug, antique chest or porcelain vase.  

We say: This Chelsea auction house has been offering an eclectic mix of antiques at its weekly sales since 1979. Whether you’re in the market for a mid-century dining table, a piece of Russian art or a Louis XV mirror, you’re sure to find it here – plus there’s online bidding available if you’re not local.

Visit lotsroad.com

Lassco, Vauxhall

Arnaud says: Situated in a fabulous Georgian mansion in Vauxhall, Lassco in Brunswick House is an eccentric treasure trove of salvaged antiques. It's filled with extraordinary things – from stuffed animals to chandeliers and garden ornaments. Plus, there's a very good restaurant.  

We say: Housed in a beautiful building somewhat incongruously situated on a distinctly unlovely roundabout next to a chain gym and a questionable sushi restaurant, this might not immediately strike you as the place for world-class interior curiosities. Step inside, however, and you’ll find yourself transported to a wonderland of classical statues, antique chandeliers and mid-century furniture. All served with a side of Jackson Boxer’s exquisite cuisine.

Visit lassco.co.uk

Robert Kime, Chelsea

Arnaud says: I love popping into Robert Kime's shop on Ebury Street – it's so inspiring. He is a true genius at sourcing and combining beautiful objects, characterful pieces of furniture and vintage textiles to create rooms filled with personality. 

We say: Having started his career dealing antiques to his professors while studying history at Oxford, Kime is now renowned both for his all-round interior design projects and his extensive line of own-brand fabrics. Beware though. Pop into the Chelsea boutique for new cushion covers and you might just come out planning an entire home makeover.

Visit robertkime.com

Design Centre Chelsea Harbour, Chelsea

Arnaud says: With over 600 brands, there is nowhere else where you'll find such a high concentration of the biggest names in luxury interiors. I'm in utter heaven if I can spend a day browsing the showrooms and always return home full of inspiration.

We say: If you’re planning a top-to-bottom reinvigoration of your home, there are few better places to begin than at Design Centre Chelsea Harbour. A favourite among interior design professionals, it boasts some of the most respected brands in the industry – each of which is staffed by experts in their field.

Visit dcch.co.uk

Read more: Theo Fennell's guide to Chelsea

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