A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of spending a girly afternoon with Charlotte and Ella at Bicester Village.
Our aim of the day was to find an outfit for mine and Ella’s upcoming trip to Wimbledon with the Bicester team. That being said, between the three of us we managed to fit in a LOT more shopping. Including: a special dress for Charlotte for her upcoming wedding celebrations, and some beautiful extra bits for Ella and I both.
If you’re new to Bicester Village, or need a little recap on this incredible shopping destination, I’ve rounded up alllllll you need to know below.
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BICESTER VILLAGE
Bicester Village is a designer outlet village based on the outskirts of Oxford.
Put out of your mind any preconceptions you may have about dreary-looking discount shopping!
Bicester Village is as luxurious as Bond St, and as pretty as a New England town.
The clapboard shops are painted in the prettiest of preppy hues, and the designers which fill them are swoon-worthy.
Are you ready to hear just a few . . . ?!
At the higher end of the scale you have the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Mulberry, Burberry and Stella McCartney. All selling their past-season collections for up to 70% off the RRP!
Whilst the stock is rotated frequently, on my visit a few weeks ago I saw cotton Burberry trench coats for less than £200(!), and so many luxury pieces sold at a fraction of their original cost.
Last year I found a blush Stella McCartney blazer which will forever be one of my most treasured clothing items.
For me, whilst I love the high end brands, it’s the elevated mid-price brands which truly get my heart going. Stores like Maje, Sandro and ba&sh. Not to mention Lululemon, The White Company and L.K. Bennett, amongst many others.
My quest for the dress (or whatever my Wimbledon outfit would eventually be!) stopped when I laid eyes on a floor-length printed silk maxi dress in ba&sh. The print was beautiful for summer, and I knew that its terracotta tones would work for autumn too. I bought the dress for £140, which was more than half off its original price!
I also picked up a stunning yellow skirt from L.K. Bennett which has maximum ‘swish factor’. I’m looking forward to styling it up with a simple cotton tank top and espadrilles for day, and a pair of barely-there heels and a Bardot top for evening.
FOOD & DRINK
The shopping at Bicester Village is definitely the main event, but the restaurants and overall experience of the village make it the truly dreamy shopping experience it is.
I fatigue of shopping pretty quickly, but Bicester Village is designed so that you always have somewhere to sit for a quick breather. VERY helpful when you’re scouring each and every store like we did!
Not to mention that those little perches are often adorned with stunning flower installations. Ahem, they make a great Instagram opportunity! Just sayin’!
Let me not forget the food! The Farmshop cafe is an outpost of Soho House & Co. You can get your own slice of the Soho House experience at Farmshop which serves delicious, healthy seasonal food all day.
I’d be lying if I didn’t say that this was a part of the visit I look forward to a LOT!
With the balmy heat of summer we’ve been experiencing of late I recommend capping off your shopping day with a well-earned glass of rosé!
Excitingly the village has just opened a new restaurant addition – Café Wolseley.
This is an outpost of one of London’s most famous restaurants. The Wolseley in London is where the power breakfasts go down in the city, and the new Café Wolseley at Bicester promises to share the glamour of its city counterpart.
Other than the restaurants there is a huge array of cafes and refreshment counters dotted throughout the village. You can easily pick up a coffee to go, or a snack if you fancy something more low key.
Dress: Diane Von Furstenberg – bought at Bicester Village last year | Espadrilles: The White Company c/o
Bag: Karen Millen (Last year – Similar Style) | Earrings: Dinny Hall
I’ve travelled to Bicester both by car, and by train, and both experiences have been great.
When I travelled by car the Bicester Village team very kindly organised valet parking for me, which meant that not only did I receive valet service, I could also leave my shopping bags to be collected by the concierge service who would then drop them at my car on departure. The. Dream.
Click here to explore all of the extra services you can opt in for.
Arriving by train was also super easy (and in all honesty I was so grateful to put my feet up after all the walking we did!).
Charlotte and I travelled from Winchester, and had one connection at Oxford. Once you reach Oxford it’s only a 15 minute train journey directly to Bicester Village. You’re welcomed on arrival at the Bicester Village station by the lovely Bicester staff – genuinely SO friendly – and the path to the village is then only a short two minute walk.
ALL IN ALL . . .
Bicester Village is, in my opinion, the perfect place to shop. Especially if you have a special occasion in mind, or a particular shopping goal.
A day at Bicester Village is truly a LOVELY experience, and it makes hunting down the perfect dress, gift for a friend or home piece a pleasure.
The designers are phenomenal, and the discounts equally so.
It’s clear that the Bicester Village team have really taken the time to consider what their customers desire, and as such the array of brands, and the environment you can shop them in, is nigh on perfect.
I can’t recommend popping a date in your diary to visit enough!
WHAT’S YOUR TAKE?
Have you ever visited Bicester Village before? If so, what is your favourite store? And what did you pick up? I’d love to know!
Love, Monica x
Photography by Charlotte Bryer-Ash
Thank you to Bicester Village for sponsoring this post.
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