If you’re heading to London this Spring, here are my tips on where to visit for a drink – whether you want a rooftop bar near Trafalgar Square with sublime views or a decadent Champagne bar in the form of the historic The Grill Room or a hidden bar with a detectives’ agency as a front, London has it all.
The Grill Room at London’s latest luxury hotel, Café Royal, has been restored to its original Louis XVI style and it looks stunning. The opulent room has seen its share of history and scandal, and is now, thankfully, open again with a great location on the fringes of Mayfair and Soho. Visit for Champagne, cocktails and a light menu at one of London’s best new bars.
A 1920s detectives’ agency that’s a front for a hidden bar? With the push of a bookcase, a secret door opens into a beautifully designed Prohibition-style bar that’s low-lit, mysterious, warm and filled with delicious smells. Visit Earl’s Court to learn more.
Opium Cocktail and Dim Sum Parlour is a new addition to London’s bar scene, nestled appropriately amongst the hustle and bustle of Chinatown. The bar features nooks and crannies spread over three floors – a relaxed lounge style seating area, an intimate boudoir drinking den and an open plan bar for drinks and dim sum.
Reverend JW Simpson is a new cocktail bar on Goodge Street in Fitrovia – it’s an intimate space with the cocktail list focusing on Fizzes, Flips, Cobblers, Smashes and Sours. The bar retains the original room dividers, wall coverings, flooring and tiles of the apartment that originally occupied the site.
Vista on the rooftop of The Trafalgar Hotel re-opens in April for the season with glorious views of London’s landmarks and statues, with Nelson’s Column almost at eye level. The rooftop bar serves a selection of tapas plates, salads and sharing platters.
Emyr Thomas is the Founder and Director of Bon Vivant.