If you’re a Harry Potter fan and you’re in London, you have to include the House of MinaLima – a townhouse devoted to Harry Potter design – at least once.
It’s not easy to sum up this magical destination. I was expecting an art gallery and shop but it’s much more than that. The owners, designers Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima, are most famous for creating the wonderful props in Harry Potter so the place is full of enchanting designs – most of which you can buy! I was also excited to see a full floor devoted to the MinaLima editions. This series of interactive books has been been produced in collaboration with Harper Design. We own two of these and they are very special.
You can find the shop at 26 Greek Street, just behind Cambridge Circus (where Harry Potter and the Cursed Child runs at the Palace Theatre). The ground floor is packed full of affordable Harry Potter merchandise. I was so bamboozled by the choice that I didn’t take a photo but I did manage to capture the familiar sign on the door that leads to the basement.
If you climb the rickety stairs, you’ll find the MinaLima editions in a room that’s pure fairytale. There are plenty of display copies to leaf through. You can buy these more cheaply online but we purchased in store as we wanted a signed book.
You re-enter the world of JK Rowling on the third level. The Marauder’s Map that covers the floor is amazing. Yet another example of the MinaLima design talent which surrounds you in this wondrous place. What I love about the House of MinaLima is that although you’re in London, you feel as if you’ve been transported to the wizarding world once you step inside. It has a real air of hidden magic.
Up again and you reach a stunning installation of Hogwarts’ invitations flooding out of the fireplace. There are also smaller rooms dedicated to Fantastic Beasts. They were so cosy that I felt quite at home there. The staff were incredibly welcoming too – all friendly and happy to chat.
I could have seriously spent hours looking at the prints but with a tired small child in tow, we decided to call it a day. We bought a copy of The Jungle Book and a Sirius Black card although we would have liked to take all the Harry Potter merchandise home. Saying that, it is possible to purchase the incredible MinaLima art online.
The house definitely welcomes little people although there are no facilities such as toilets. The building also has restricted access because it’s in a conservation zone. Our five year-old was entranced by lots of the features but I’d say it’s better for kids aged 7+, especially if they’ve seen the Potter films. Apparently the displays change fairly frequently so there’s always something new to see. The next time we’re in London we’ll definitely visit The House of MinaLima with a bigger bag and more money!
12-7pm every day.
Weekends can be very busy so you may be allotted a timed entry (recommended to visit on Mondays, Tuesdays or Thursdays)
26 Greek Street, Soho, London, W1D 5DE – https://goo.gl/maps/yKtT13ZCWsn
Nearest Tube Stations:
Leicester Square, Covent Garden, Tottenham Court Road and Piccadilly Circus