After months of wanting to visit Oxford Exchange I was finally able to go on a free Saturday morning…and it was a let down. Before I jump into my personal review I want to explain what OE is and how I love the concept and decor but not the overall execution.
OE is a building that houses a couple of shops and a restaurant, as well as space for events and meetings. I already knew of a couple of the shops that were inside like Buddy Brew, Aesop and Tebella Tea Company to mention a few, including a restaurant which I was excited to try out.
We went right around brunch time (10:30-11am) and although the restaurant was full I did see some tables open so I went over to the hostess to get in line for a party of 2 table. The wait was more than an hour without reservation – which granted, they mention reservations on the site but OE is too small to wait such a long amount of time. We obviously opted out of it and just ate a bit in Buddy Brew and got some lovely tea.
This really dampened the experience for me and made me notice that I’m just not the target audience for OE. I prefer a more relaxing Saturday brunch experience where I don’t feel like I have to call ahead or dress a certain way. The whole place gave off a very expensive vibe that just made me feel like I couldn’t touch anything. Which is a shame because the place is gorgeous and an instagramer’s dream (one I wasn’t able to fulfill sadly).
I’m not closing the door on OE yet, I feel it has a lot of potential when approached correctly. I’m talking about maybe making a reservation with a bunch of friends and making a full outing out of it in order to justify all the trouble we went through to get inside and see everything. Also, I felt like the space was too small and narrow for the amount of people coming in and out – I’ll be more aware of the high traffic times for sure!
All in all, it wasn’t a bad experience and it wasn’t a good one either. It was just a let down. To me these types of outing are to explore and enjoy and I just felt that this wasn’t the place to do so. Maybe next time!
Have any of you been here?