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Bond ‘baddie?’

It will be no surprise to regular visitors to our site that we have a love affair with Europe. You know what we mean. No matter where you go or what you do there, something new is always around the corner. And, sometimes that something new takes you by surprise, not only because it exists, but more that it’s not what you expected it would be. And this post is about something just like that. Let’s first start with a name: Goldfinger: ring a bell? Of course it’s one of the characters in a 007 James Bond film. But did you know that there actually was a real Goldfinger? And did you know that he designed buildings in the UK? Even if you’re up on this subject, read on: you can visit some of his creations in London. He was one of the fathers of Brutalism.

If you’re not a follower of design, that’s fine too, because there are always ways to be a Bond aficionado. So who exactly is Goldfinger? Brutalism is an architectural style that emerged in the mid-20th century, characterized by its stark, rugged, and monumental appearance. The term derives from the French word “béton brut,” meaning “raw concrete,” which reflects the style’s emphasis on the honest and unadorned use of materials, particularly exposed concrete. You see it everywhere across Europe, even today.

So, how will you know it when you see it? Here are some clues. Exposed Concrete: The most defining feature of Brutalism is its use of raw, unfinished concrete. The surface often bears the imprint of the wooden forms used during the construction process. Monolithic Appearance: Brutalist buildings are typically massive and block-like, with a heavy, fortress-like quality. Functional Design: Brutalism often emphasizes functionality and utilitarian design. The buildings are designed with an emphasis on their purpose, sometimes resulting in stark and austere aesthetics.

When you happen upon these stunning works, you may shrug your shoulders and not be too impressed . . at the time. Remember that Brutalism became prominent in the post-World War II era, particularly in Europe, as a response to the need for quick, affordable housing and public buildings. Its use of concrete made it practical for rebuilding efforts. London and all of Europe are filled with these marvels. Click here to start your Brutal tour adventures.

You’re almost there: featuring accommodation with a balcony, Luxury 3 Bedroom Flat with Balcony in Westbourne Park is located in London. The property is around 2.4 km from Paddington Station, 3 km from Lord’s Cricket Ground and 3.7 km from The Serpentine. Free WiFi is available throughout the property and Portobello Road Market is less than 1 km away. Click here to book.

Take the train when you can. Raileurope can show you around London. Click here to book.

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