Behind the Scenes: Astrid Elsen
Monday, September 22, 2014 by Douglas And Gordon
Tell us a little bit about yourself. Where did you grow up? Whereabouts do you live now?
I was born in Germany and brought up in Belgium. My father is Luxembourgish and mum is from Scotland. We moved around a lot until I was about 16, so I have a wide experience of the continent and its culture. I moved to London in the new year, but our current family home is in Gloucestershire and I still enjoy going back there at weekends.
How long have you been an estate agent for?
I got the property bug whilst on my year abroad from Durham University where I studied Modern Languages; I worked at Daniel Feau in Saint Germain des Pres in Paris for a few months and was hooked. I had to go back to university to finish my course but I have been with Douglas & Gordon since April.
How long have you worked for D&G? What’s the greatest thing about working for them?
The best thing about Douglas &Gordon is the people who work for the company, as well as the support the company offers each employee. I could not think of a nicer company to work for.
When you’re not in the office or showing people around, what do you do in your spare time? Any interesting hobbies we should know about?
Before I started working full time at Douglas and Gordon I was a volunteer at the RDA at Knightsbridge Barracks, unfortunately the sessions are on a Thursday afternoon so I had to give those up. I love going home on the weekends and spending time with my dogs; they need a lot of exercise so I take them riding with me - they follow behind the horses. I also go reeling in Parsons Green every other week and once a month on Pont Street; it’s a great way to catch up with everyone and let off a bit of steam.
What questions do you most commonly get asked by clients/customers?
‘So how much is this one per month?’
‘When did you say it would be available?’
What advice do you have for people looking to buy or rent in Kensington?
Make sure the property works for you and your lifestyle as you are going to be the one living in it.
What do you love about Kensington? What are your favourite hangouts? Where do you grab your coffee in the morning, or take a business lunch?
I love going to Mr Christians for lunch; their salads are just the best. I go to The Kitchen Pantry for coffee; they also do really good fresh juices, carrot and ginger are my favourite.
What would you say to anyone looking to move into the area?
The area has a mixture of different cultures and nationalities, offering a good quality of lifestyle to suit both new and old, traditional and modern tastes.
If you could wave a magic wand and change one thing about the property market, what would it be?
I would generate more stock for our agency on Kensington Church Street.