Piccadilly is a famous street in London, and is home to many of the capital city's most well known landmarks and buildings, such as the Ritz Hotel, the Royal Academy of Art, Fortnum & Mason, Hatchards (the oldest bookshop in the UK) and the Japanese Embassy as well as the Embassy of Malta, and many more. One of the widest and most straight running streets in the whole of London, Piccadilly is nearly a mile in length from one end (Hyde Park Corner) to the other (Piccadilly Circus).
Piccadilly is believed to have got its name from a prosperous 16th and 17th century tailor by the name of Robert Baker, who earned his vast wealth by making and selling high quality piccadills - stiff collars with broad lace borders that were fashionable at the time. In 1612 he used some of his riches to buy a large piece of land in west London, and built a house there, which soon became known as Piccadilly Hall (after Roberts profession). Just half a century later, the areas around Piccadilly mansion (which includes the area we now know as Mayfair), started to become a very popular and esteemed place to live, and as such the area saw the erection of some of the most spectacular mansions in London.
Piccadilly is also the setting for many well-known and well-loved novels, including P.G. Wodehouse's 'Jeeves & Wooster' stories, as well as Bram Stoker's classic novel 'Dracula' (in which Dracula actually owns property on Piccadilly).