The department store, Bentalls began as a drapery shop, founded by Frank Bentall in 1867. Since 2001 it has been owned by the private Fenwick group. The buildings of the Kingston store were opened in 1935 and designed by architect Maurice Webb (son of Sir Aston Webb) and inspired by Wren's design for Hampton Court.

As Kingston is one of the largest shopping areas in London, it is very well busy, and Bentalls itself is popular amongst many shoppers. In the days approacing Christmas, some stores in Bentalls are said to take over £1 million per day. Singer Dusty Springfield once worked at Bentalls in Ealing and singer Petula Clark gave her first public performance as a child at Bentalls in Kingston upon Thames.

The Bentall Centre's atrium ceiling is higher than the nave of Westminster Abbey or the dome of St Paul's Cathedral. Another significant feature of the centre is an escalator which travels from the ground to the second floor. It is the largest single truss escalator in the world with only a top and bottom support. On opening, the Bentall Centre was the first shopping centre in the UK to adopt a "no smoking" policy throughout.

However, is the Bentalls Centre really safe? Over the years a number of accidents have happened in the Bentalls Centre the first being on January 7th 1981, when four carpenters plunged thirty-six floors to their deaths when a fly form used for pouring concrete broke away from the top of Bentall Centre's Tower. On the 19th August 2010 a 14 year old boy was rushed to hospital after falling from the first floor to the lower ground floor. Recently, a woman, Alexis Jane Sims, committed suicide in the Bentall Centre. Some people say that there are hazards everywhere and people should be expected to act sensibly and with caution wherever they are but others disagree and say that people in charge should make more of an effort to minimize the dangers around.