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Go Inside the Grandest Homes in London

Royal palaces aside, the historic homes of London are usually overshadowed by their stately country cousins (your Blenheims, your Chatsworths, your Downton Abbey–inspiring Highcleres), writes James Stourton in Great Houses of London, a lavish photo book published by Frances Lincoln (originally released in 2012; newly revised in 2022). 

The public’s relative lack of familiarity with London’s residential splendor is not due to a dearth of worthy options, according to Stourton (though the Blitz of World War II “knocked about many houses,” as he puts it with British understatement). A publisher’s description explains, however, that many of London’s most spectacular interiors hide behind sober facades, giving passersby little clue to the marvels within.

But thanks to sumptuous images captured by award-winning photographer Fritz von der Schulenburg along with Stourton’s vivid storytelling, readers of Great Houses of London get to be lookie-loos inside 41 of the city’s most dazzling dwellings, from elaborate baroque properties to futuristic visions in glass and steel. 

The book opens the doors to historic addresses such as 10 Downing Street, where the U.K.’s prime minister lives, as well as buildings now used as embassies, private clubs, charities, and, in many cases, private homes. Given that many of the interiors are closed to tourists, the book supplies an enriching supplement to an in-person visit to London, granting rare access to some of the city’s most exclusive spaces. 

Scroll on to see a selection of images from the book.

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