The Travel Book Shop

Movie Notting Hill Roger Michell (1999)
The romance between an American superstar and a London bookseller in Notting Hill gave the neighborhood a sudden and lasting fame. The scent of the film still lingers in the famous Travel Book Shop, the place where Anna and William meet.
The Travel Book Shop
The Travel Book Shop - Credit: Fantrippers

“Happiness isn’t happiness without a violin-playing goat.”

Anna Scott (Julia Roberts)

When filming begins, director Roger Michell fears that the arrival of Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts on Portobello Road will cause a riot. Nevertheless, the security service works miracles and everything goes on as planned.

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The bookstore run by William Thacker, Hugh Grant’s character, becomes the epicenter of the production. While the team takes up residence in a store that they have to make up as a bookstore, the inspiration for the project comes from a real bookstore, based around the corner. The store in question, called The Travel Book Shop, refused the presence of the cameras, so Roger Michell had to content himself with reproducing the decor in another room.

The shop closed in 2011, following the increase in rents in this very popular area. The owners have moved to 13 Blenheim Crescent. Fun fact: the travel book section is still called The Travel Book Shop.


The first version of the film lasted 210 minutes. Almost 90 minutes were thus cut off.

Scene in front of The Travel Book Shop in Notting Hill
Scene in front of The Travel Book Shop in Notting Hill – Credit: PolyGram Filmed Entertainment, Working Title Films, Bookshop Productions, Notting Hill Pictures
Scene in front of The Travel Book Shop in Notting Hill
Scene in front of The Travel Book Shop in Notting Hill – Credit: PolyGram Filmed Entertainment, Working Title Films, Bookshop Productions, Notting Hill Pictures

The Travel Bookshop

The Travel Book Shop is not really a bookstore but a souvenir store. Even if the sign might suggest otherwise.

When director Roger Michell sets up his cameras in the little store at 142 Portobello Road, it is occupied by a store called Nicholls Antique Arcade. Later, the Gong sign sold furniture and eventually gave way to the souvenir shop. However, the owners decided to capitalize on the success of Notting Hill by putting the sign from the movie above their store. The perfect place to buy trinkets and other objects with the image of London.

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By Gilles Rolland

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.

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