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Kensington Olympia takes its name after the nearby West Kensington and the Olympia exhibition center. Olympia convention center was opened in 1886. Since then, it has housed numerous concerts, sports shows, and pageants. The first Hatsune Miku concert in the UK was held in Kensington Olympia in 2008. Jimi Hendrix, Status Quo, Rod Stewart, The Cure, Chemical Brothers, and many other famous musicians and bands played here. London Chess Classic, Pure London Salon du Chocolat, and BBC Good Food Show are some of the annual events that are held at the Kensington Olympia center. This West London convention center hosted the European Parliament election rally of the Brexit Party in 2019.
West Kensington was known until the 19th-century as North End. In 1876, two housing developers from Dorset constructed more than 1,200 houses in this area. However, they had trouble finding buyers. They’ve managed to convince the Metropolitan Borough of Fulham to rename the area West Kensington to make the settlement more appealing. Kensington Olympia railway station opened in 1844 but closed shortly. It reopened in 1862. It closed again after taking bombing damage during World War II. It reopened in 1986. One of the former platforms was redeveloped into Olympia Garden, a community garden. Another platform was transformed into a parking space for the Olympia convention center.
Notable Kensington Olympia residents include 19th-century painter John Melhuish Strudwick, rapper Estelle, activist Mahatma Gandhi who lived here while studying law, Formula 1 winner James Hunt, writer Henry Rider Haggard, and poet W.B. Yeats. Queen’s Club Championships tournament has been held in this area since 1890. This is one of the oldest male tennis tournaments in the world. Former world No. 1 tennis player Andy Roddick has called the Queen’s Club courts “the best in the world.” The nearby Ark building is another landmark. This ship-shaped building was built in 1992.