Bond Street set for bumper year of store lettings as vacancy rate falls

Aquazzura opened a Bond Street store in 2023  (Instagram/Aquazzura)
Aquazzura opened a Bond Street store in 2023 (Instagram/Aquazzura)

Bond Street is having another bumper year with store lettings closing in on last year’s record and the vacancy rate falling back to pre-Covid levels, new data reveals.

In a boost for the capital’s status as a top high end shopping destination, just as London Fashion Week starts, it shows a host of retailers have committed to Bond Street stores. That is despite high business rates, economic uncertainty and concerns about the loss of VAT-free shopping impacting trade.

Real estate consultancy Savills said so far six deals have been signed this year, including high heels maker Aquazzura, and Danish jewellery designer Georg Jensen. A further four sites are currently under offer.

The firm said that is well ahead of the pre-Covid five year annual average of 3.4 deals. It added that with one quarter remaining more lettings could be sealed that would put activity in line or above the record 13 signings in 2022.

In addition brands such as Burberry have shown confidence to invest in Mayfair, with the trench coat maker opening its refurbished global flagship on New Bond Street in June.

Marie Hickey, director of commercial research at Savills said deals have been boosted in part due to more stores becoming available owing to some new developments.

Hickey added: “While the loss of tax-free shopping has generated some headwinds relative to other European fashion capitals, occupational demand from luxury brands for Bond Street remains very robust.”

In a further sign of momentum building on Bond Street, Savills found the second quarter vacancy level improved to 5.7%. That was down from 13.6% seen at the height of the Covid crisis and edging towards the 5.4% recorded pre-pandemic.

Footfall has also picked up for some tenants. James Amos, director of jewellery company Boodles said: “2023 has, so far, been another year of growth, following on from a remarkable year last year. Our Bond Street shop has again seen high footfall numbers, this time coupled with a higher average spend.”

The latest research emerged as scores of designer clothing fans flock to the capital to see catwalks and presentations, and this is expected to boost weekend footfall for a number of central London retailers.