Today’s Meet a Londoner takes us to Notting Hill, a place many of us know and would love to live. It’s beautiful Georgian architecture and pretty little streets have captured the attention of Notting Hill resident Alex Zouaghi who documents it through his very popular instagram page Alex on the road. In this interview he shares his love for the area.
Meet Alex, Notting Hill
Alex, can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Hello ! My name is Alex (Alexandre), I am 28 and I come from Paris! I work in a French School here in London where I teach…Chinese! When I am not in front of my students, I love to take pictures on my instagram page Alex on the road and work on my blog Mr.Swaggy on the Road
London has always been a city in which I could picture myself living in! I used to live in Paris and I had the chance to come to London twice before moving here. Each time, I remember thinking that it would be great to live in the city! The reason why I finally moved to London is because I got a position in the school where I am working right now. The project was really exciting so I decided to jump in!
I am now living in Notting Hill which was for me the place I was dreaming of but in which I never thought I could live! And yes, sometimes miracles do happen haha! And I absolutely LOVE my neighbourhood! As you can see on my instagram, Notting Hill really is my daily inspiration for pictures: There is so many beautiful houses, nice coffee shops and restaurants here!
Where are your favourite places to visit in London?
While I am not in Notting Hill, I love to go to Hampstead, Primrose Hill or Richmond. I love the village spirit which makes this part of London charming.
Where is your favourite place to shop?
I am not a big fan of shopping! I only buy things when I need them, especially clothes but I love to go to stationery shops like Pedlars in Notting Hill or even bigger shops like Tiger!
What restaurants can you recommend to our readers and why?
That’s such a difficult question! I love Farm Girl in Notting Hill, the food is delicious and the place is lovely! If you love eating vegetarian, Nama in Westbourne Park is your place! And for those of you who would love to try something different, why not give Danish food a try? Snaps & Rye, in Golborne Grove is great for that!
Is there anything that annoys you about living in London?
Before moving to London, I was living in New York which I fell in love with but which is also really stressful and noisy! I don’t have those problems anymore but here in London there are two things I don’t like about the city: The price of transport and when the tube is not working correctly!
Can you give our readers some tips to capture the best photos of the city?
There are so many different possibilities to shoot good pictures here! My advice would be to go away from the main streets and get lost in the small alleys and paths to see something different! This is what I love to do and I am always very lucky to find beautiful homes, an old vintage car or a cute solo bike!
Can you share any hidden gems in London that nobody else knows about?
I am now very familiar with Notting Hill that I have walked through it a thousand times! A lot of people only stay in Portobello but I will recommend to go a little north, closer to the Ladbroke Grove tube station, there’s a really small village called Clarendon Cross village. The place is cute and so quiet with great shops nearby and coffee places!
Finally, are there any other cities in the world that you’ve visited that you would live in?
I used to live in Beijing while I was studying Chinese. Living in China is so different from what we can experience in Europe but that really was a great time in my life! I also had the chance to live in New York for my work and it’s there where I started my blog! New York is a fantastic city that I am really excited to go back to someday!
Thanks Alex for sharing your love of Notting Hill, I will definitely be checking out Clarendon Cross Village when the weather is a little warmer.