It’s impossible not to feel enchanted by a visit to Richmond’s Petersham Nurseries, a treasure trove of flora, fauna, interiors inspiration and moreish seasonal dishes. Developed under the creative eye of the Anglo-Italian Boglione family since the 1970s, a sense of relaxed elegance lies at its heart. So it couldn’t be better news that the family has extended this flair right into the heart of Covent Garden with a comprehensive lifestyle offering that captures the unique beauty of the original, while celebrating and enhancing its philosophy.
The new site, largely the brainchild of daughter Lara, comprises a home and garden shop, delicatessen, wine cellar and florist, with plans afoot for the imminent opening of two restaurants and a bar. The shop, housed beneath three majestic Victorian atriums within a Grade II listed building, offers one-of- a-kind pieces and exquisite antiques, fittingly displayed against a verdant backdrop. And with an emphasis on smaller city and indoor gardens, there’s a useful potting service here, as well as inspiration for window boxes, indoor gardens, and terrariums.
A deli offering, inspired by memories of a traditional Italian alimentari, is especially close to Lara’s heart. ‘I wanted to transport the rustic Italian grocery store to an elegant setting,’ she reflects. ‘Inspiration comes from the ingredients found in our own family larder and fridge.’ Indeed, eggs and much of the seasonal fruit and vegetables are sourced from brother Harry’s Devon farm, while Lara has also unearthed a host of regional suppliers across Italy whose wares are making their appearance for the first time in the UK. Keeping it in the family, Lara has also teamed up with husband Giovanni Mazzei to create an extensive cellar to house a selection of handpicked Italian wines. And of course, a new florist, abundant with wild arrangements and elegant bouquets, underpins the whole look, with an emphasis on seasonal British grown flowers. It seems particularly apt that London’s historic floral home is being revived once again with blooms that rival its colourful heyday.
Petersham Nurseries, 31 King Street & 27 King Street, Covent Garden, WC2E 8JD, 020 7305 7676, petershamnurseries.com.
Image courtesy of Petersham Nurseries
Words by Emma J Page