If you’re a shopping-holic person living in England, you must have heard of Bicester Village – a rural English high-end outlet village located in Oxfordshire – that Telegraph has commented about this place as popular among Chinese tourists as Buckingham Palace.
Bicester in my eyes is a shiny new lovely village, which is most unlike other ancient villages in Cotswold, with numerous pastel and wooden-panelled houses of high-end fashion brands; such as Burberry, Gucci, Chloé, and so on.
From my viewpoint, Bicester is such an exotic site that everything is wildly discounted, as well as where the dream of all fashion-loving-bargain-hunters come true.
On the other hand, a non-shopping-obsessed person like me will spend a day in Bicester Village just for a stroll under beautiful spring sunshine,
… and enjoy the beauty of the blooming floral installations and rustic garden furniture dotted about the boulevard, which are laid out in window boxes and wheelbarrows overflowing with greenery.
And don’t forget to take some pictures with shrubberies host signs bearing quotations from literature and philosophy; especially, a lovely blooming handiwork designed by Nikki Tibble.
This village is so much attractive with many single-storey, clapboard luxury retail outlets; however, street food is another highlight of Bicester. Several food vendors in Bicester Village are always crowded and busy to serve for hundreds of hungry shoppers every day, where you can rapidly grab some Asian hot noodles, or gourmet chocolates and cakes, as well as creatively composed crepes before getting back your shopping journey.
After a few hours walking around the village, we sniffed out my favourite places in Bicester – Crêperie Angélie – serving delicious traditional crêpes made from seasonal and local Cotswold produce. As usual, I order a sweet crêpe filled with Belgian chocolate, coconut flakes, and some strawberries or banana, then watch it being made in front of my eyes.
Nothing more exciting than having such sumptuous warm crêpe on a beautiful sunny day!
Shopping is not an easy task because it will bring hunger quicker than usual, especially in the home of 160 discounted boutiques of world-famous brands.
After a tolerable haul, I take a leisurely break at Wolseley Café and enjoy lunchtime with my brothers and sister. This spot offers all-day dining in the European grand café tradition, serving breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner for Bicester Village’s visitors, which belongs to the collection of brasseries & cafés, restaurants established by two famous restaurateurs -Chris Corbin and Jeremy King.
My Grilled chicken escalope with salsa verde is pretty good, which is cooked to the perfect temperature to keep the meat’s juiciness, topped with lemon and some cold sauces based on herbs. For the side, I choose a bowl of gem heart and radish salad with onion olive oil dressing.
Bicester may seem like a rich person’s shopping playground, but this retail area is surprisingly peaceful and welcoming whenever I visit.
Just taking around 45 mins from London Marylebone train station to Bicester Village, there’s a lot of fun more than affordable fashion from global high-end brands, indeed!