Leeds has a firm reputation as a vibrant, diverse and booming city, well known for its evolving cultural and business existence. Leeds possess a distinctive culture evolving around its lively nightlife, complemented by a unique selection of celebrated restaurants.
Being the Business hub of Yorkshire, 100,000 people commute into Leeds for business and work every day, Three quarters of a million people live in Leeds, a lively city with an unrivalled nightlife, lots to explore, fantastic shopping and a rich culture. Thousands more make the most of Leeds fantastic shops, restaurants and range of attractions on a daily basis.
Leeds is rich in local history, as well as boasting world class sports venues, extensive high street shopping facilities and diverse entertainment such as fairs, festivals, plays, arts and theatres.
Leeds City centre is well known amongst Leeds Letting agents as a great place to live, and has recently been the subject of large investment by Leeds property investors and developers, taking advantage of well priced studio to penthouse apartments with views of the River Aire.
A Shopaholic’s Dream
With over 1000 stores across the City Centre, from chic to designer labels, the city’s unrivalled shopping facilities cater for every possible taste.
Since Harvey Nichols opened their first out-of-London store in Leeds, the city has seen a host of eager designers, retailers and boutiques open wonderful stores across the High Street. Leeds takes shopping seriously and deserves its ‘Knightsbridge of the North’ reputation extended by the Lonely Planet Leeds.
The ornate and funky Victoria Quarter boasts a broad range of specialist and high end consumer goods within elegant grade two listed buildings and home to the major high end consumer brands such as Paul Smith, Rose & Co, Vivienne Westwood, Agent Provocateur, Louis Vuitton, and All Saints.
The Corn Exchange is a magnificent domed structure well worth a look, with a large number of unique and independent boutiques. The building provides a perfect backdrop for the best in creative and innovative independent retailers, maintaining the heritage of the exchange and the heart of the local community.
Kirkgate Market houses over 800 specialist traders in the recently renovated Edwardian Buildings, the huge open air market is actually the largest in the country, selling almost every food from the humdrum to the exotic.
Briggate, which runs gently downhill, is lined with independent stores, high street staples and some of the city’s best shopping arcades. Arcades and shopping centres line the high streets with fabulous historic examples, glittering and gilded, with marble floors, stained glass and magnificent decorative detailing. You’ll also find lots of high street brands, trendy shops and boutiques in Leeds Shopping Plaza, the Headrow Centre, the Thorntons Arcade, Merrion Centre and St John’s Centre.
The Light is a retail and leisure destination with fashion and design stores, cafes, restaurants, bars, a 13-screen multiplex cinema, health and fitness club and 4-star Radisson Hotel.
Eating in Leeds
In the city centre you’ll find lots of trendy bistros and sleek restaurant/bars and fantastic eateries, a variety of cafés, coffee shops, and hot lunchtime spots, superb restaurants with food from every corner of the globe as well as a great selection of beautiful fine dining restaurants.
The Oliver awards recommend you try:
Lunch time treats, head for Arts Cafe Bar & Restaurant, Harvey Nichols fourth floor, Kobe, La Grillade, Malmaison, The Restaurant Bar & Grill, Arts Cafe Bar & Restaurant, LS6, Napa, Sandbar, Seven or Toast.
Indian and oriental food lovers head straight to Akbars, East, Aagrah, East, Zouk, Mumtaz, Chino, Latino, Oriental City, Red Chilli, Thai Sabai or Thai Edge.
If it’s Pizza and Pasta you want try Casa Mia Grande, Ciao Bella, Del Verde, Diva Italiana Bar & Trattoria, Divino, Piccolinos Leeds, La Diva or our favourite, Bibis.
After something different, there’s lots of independent European restaurants such as Brasserie Blanc, Kendells Bistro, La Grillade, Martha & Vincent, Divino, Dough Bistro, Morenos Restaurant, Mustard Pot or Olive Tree Greek Restaurant.
Leeds is the nightlife capital of the north with so many bars and clubs to choose from there is something to suit every taste, with small clubs and bars being popular here there is a local feel to the city. Leeds is renowned for a great night out. The city boasts a large array of independent bars, pubs and nightclubs as well as all the usual high street chains.
Leeds has 152 pubs, bars and cafes. Well-celebrated is the Call Lane bar circuit where you can drink and dance at Revolution, BrB, Mook, Jakes and many more. You’ll find a load more bars at places like Millenium Square and Greek Street too.
Living in one of the UK’s liveliest cities, you will probably want to check out some of the many nightclubs on offer such as the 02 Academy which is a favourite for live acts and bands, Mission, a critically acclaimed new superclub, very glam with a diverse crowd or The Mint Club with cutting edge dance sounds, LED ceiling and Function One sound system. The Hi-Fi Club? is great if you like laid back surroundings with the best in funk, soul, rare groove and jazz.
Culturally, Leeds is a haven with an exciting range of round-the-clock attractions with popular, entertaining and challenging theatre. The Royal Armouries and Henry Moore Institute are two of the region’s most prestigious museums, while film-lovers are treated to the Vue cinema in The Light shopping centre.
Leeds has some of the best theatres in the North.
You’ll have a laugh at the City Varieties, where the former music hall is now a top venue for comedy and live music. If amateur productions are your thing the Civic Theatre is a great shout. Touring productions of West End shows, musical events and the home of Opera North can be found at the Grand Theatre.
Alternatively, Northern Ballet Theatre encompasses a mix of classical ballet and more contemporary works such as Romeo and Juliet, alongside adaptations of Dracula and Dr Jeckyl & Mr Hyde. The West Yorkshire Playhouse, According to The Times, is the finest rep in the country, making serious theatre popular and playing host to some of the greats of modern drama.
A little out of town, the magnificent Kirkstall Abbey is well worth a visit.
Leeds has a strong dance and club scene as well as a good record of producing indie bands (Kaiser Chiefs, The Wedding Present, Chumbawamba. More recently, folksy blues singer, Corinne Bailey Rae etc). There’s plenty of top-class live music venues as well as Rock festivals held in Roundhay Park, gigs in Harewood House and Leeds Town Hall, events in Millennium Square, Classical concerts in the Town Hall and talk of building a large arena in the city.
In the winter months there’s an ice rink in Millennium Square – the UK’s largest outdoor ice skating rink with over 1200 square meters of real ice.
Leeds possesses a rich creative heritage, playing host to the Leeds International Film Festival. Outstanding productions and performances are showcased at venues such as The West Yorkshire Playhouse and Leeds Town Hall.
Sport plays a big part in Leeds, the home of Yorkshire County Cricket Club, the Leeds Rhinos (Rugby League) and Leeds Tykes (Rugby Union). Eland Road is home to Leeds United FC. Leisure centres across the city and golf clubs aplenty – especially around Alwoodley and Roundhay.
Transport In Leeds
Leeds Train Station is one of the largest in the country, and the sixth busiest outside London. There are services to all of West Yorkshire – the West Yorkshire rail network serves 67 local stations operated by Metro. There’s a Transpennine service to Manchester and Liverpool, and regular trains to London Kings Cross. Also services to the Midlands and Scotland.
Metro bus service running throughout Leeds and the whole of West Yorkshire. Leeds’ city bus station, for both local and countywide services, is on New York Street. There’s a coach terminal for inter-city bus travel next door.
Excellent road connections – the M1 motorway runs from London to Leeds via Leicester, Nottingham and Sheffield. The M621, A64, A65, A61, A58 are also easily accessed.
Leeds-Bradford International Airport is located between Leeds and Bradford and has internal UK flights and flights to Europe, Egypt and Turkey.
Investing in Leeds
During the last ten years, Leeds has transformed rapidly. It’s not just the impressive economic performance that tells the story. As well as a major commercial makeover, Leeds vastly changed skyline demonstrates why Leeds is the fastest growing city in the UK.
Leeds can boast one of the largest manufacturing sectors in England, with a fifty percent share, as well as being the top legal city outside of London. Large Media and Telecommunications companies have set up in Leeds making it the third largest business centre in the UK. Leeds has a strong influence on Internet traffic, with all the large players such as Freeserve, Wanado and Orange based in Leeds, creating a third of all Internet traffic.
Leeds provides more jobs than any other city in the UK, outside of London, not surprising considering the two large Universities, churning out thousands of successful graduates each year. Over 55,000 students live in Leeds making the Leeds Student accommodation market very appetising to investors. The popular Leeds University receives more applications than any other University in the UK.
It’s not just the economic performance and Universities which make Leeds what it is. Certainly, the appealing compact city centre and the influence of new money, new industries, new energy and new thinking is everywhere to be seen and is a considerable factor, but Leeds is a great place to live as well.
Property In Leeds City Centre
The revitalisation of Leeds has enhanced its reputation as a great place to live and the building boom over the past decade provided city dwellers with plenty to choose from. It all began back in 1980 when developers began converting old industrial warehouses aligning the Aire River and predominantly in and around The Calls into smart riverside apartments.
The pace was relentless, with the number of homes increasing ten-fold from 2,500 in 1996 to an estimated population of 25,000 in 2010. The majority of the development took place around the waterfront and to the South of the City.
The most exciting schemes included Clarence Dock, a large development of Leeds accommodation with a 1000 new properties to rent Leeds, as well as shops, restaurants, bars and cafés lining the picturesque waterfront and the Royal Armouries. Granary Wharf at Leeds Canal Basin took on a drastic transformation into a waterside village with shops, restaurants and three buildings providing over 200 new Apartments.
The next phase of developments is scheduled to begin once the property Leeds has to offer picks up in demand with market conditions, with the exciting Greenbank canalside development that will include 700 Leeds rental properties as well as shops, restaurants and office space.
Leeds Development And Investment
The development of property and the canalside attracted thousands of investors. Worryingly, there was talk of a major oversupply of accommodation to let in Leeds, although the government predict a long term shortage of Housing during the next decade. There are numerous schemes still in the pipeline, including especially The Holbeck Urban Village.
City centre living has inspired singletons and young professionals who like being close to the action and are happy to avoid the commute, they have plenty of bars, restaurants and clubs to choose from, but a recent report from the council highlighted the need for more mundane facilities such as local shops, dentists, doctors and family property in Leeds. These basic needs should be met as the development of the city centre unfolds.
It is fair to assume that the lure of city living will continue to prove irresistible to Leeds rental market, who are not quite ready to move to the suburbs.
Leeds rent market in favours Young professionals where flats to rent command a considerable increase over suburbs such as Armley, Bramley and Beeston. Letting agents Leeds consider this area highly as a useful rental market.
As online Leeds letting agents, you can rent Leeds student accommodation, professional property Leeds, as well as some family accommodation Leeds. To see our properties available in perform a Leeds rental search, using Let-Leeds.com, click To Rent Leeds.
HOP Group are your local online Letting Agents Leeds for professional accommodation to rent in Leeds.