If you’re staying at the five-star Montcalm Royal London House Hotel in Finsbury Square and fancy heading out for the evening to explore the UK capital’s nightlife, you don’t have to leave the luxury of the hotel behind, as the city is home to some brilliant exclusive nightclubs.
You’ll find cocktail bars and private clubs galore in Soho, Mayfair, Chelsea and Marylebone, which are some of London’s most high-end areas where the rich and famous can often be seen relaxing with a drink or letting their hair down at the end of the day.
Here’s our pick of the best luxury nightspots that London has to offer:
This year marks half a century since the famous Raffles nightclub first opened its doors on the King’s Road in Chelsea, with everyone from rockers the Rolling Stones to fashion designer Vivienne Westwood and the late Princess Margaret having partied here in the past.
It’s a members-only club, but you can get onto the guest list or turn up with a member to get inside if you aren’t one yourself.
There’s a strict dress code to make sure everyone inside is looking their absolute best, with t-shirts only allowed under jackets and only dark jeans to be worn.
Once upon a time, dinner was served to customers before the partying began at Raffles, but the decision was made to take food off the menu a few years ago in order to create a bigger dance floor.
The Hamptons Bar
The Hamptons Bar at St James’ Court is another great nightspot, particularly if you’re a lover of cocktails.
Throughout 2017, the bar’s mixologists are theming their special cocktails each month around Shakespeare classics, with March’s drink named ‘The Othello’ thanks to its ‘strong and serious’ combination of Bacardi, cherry liqueur and grapefruit juice, emulating the character’s personality.
Customers can also enjoy a glass or three of the Hamptons Bar’s exclusive wine, as St James’ Court has its own vineyard, where all grapes are matured in French oak barrels for at least 13 months before being made into the beautiful beverages on offer at this luxurious bar.
Home House London
Situated on Portman Square in the Marylebone area of the city, Home House London is another private members’ club, but if you’re lucky enough to know someone who is a member, you should be able to visit as their guest and enjoy all that this club has to offer.
Home House fuses 18th century interiors with a 21st century cocktail bar to create a unique ambiance that makes for the perfect surroundings for an evening out.
Highlights from the cocktail menu include the Lady of Mayfair, which features vodka, champagne, elderflower syrup, lemon juice and lychee puree, and the Queen of Hell, made from Bacardi, apple schnapps, lime juice, fresh apple and a drizzle of chilli syrup. Alternatively, go all out and order a bottle of fine champagne.
If you’re feeling peckish, the bar menu is as high-end as everything else about this bar, with caviar, oysters and sushi all available as bar snacks.
Fifty9 Bar in Mayfair is another luxury cocktail hotspot, with a smart leather-heavy interior that makes it an ideal setting to relax and unwind with a drink or two after a busy day exploring London, before it gets a little livelier as the night goes on.
If you’re a lover of all things sweet, the Bakewell Fizz is a must-try, made from vodka, Chambord, vanilla flavouring and prosecco, incorporating the flavours of a classic Bakewell tart. The Johnnie’s Orchard featuring apple, elderflower, lemon and rosemary flavours is designed to evoke the English countryside.
There are more exotic influences across the rest of the cocktail menu, however, including the Mexican Soiree, which includes tequila, ginger beer and a dash of lemon juice, and the Thai Garden, featuring vodka that has been infused with lemongrass and basil, before being shaken with lime juice, honey, apple and pomegranate juice.
Reason and Mankind
If you’re a long-time follower of London society, it’s likely that you will have already heard of Chinawhite, which used to be located in the Soho area but relocated in 2009 to its current location in Fitzrovia, close to the West End, with a rebrand as the Reason and Mankind Bar following shortly after.
Over the years, Chinawhite was frequented by names including Kate Moss, Jude Law and Leonardo DiCaprio, so keep a lookout for famous faces while you’re visiting, as the name change doesn’t mean that the original spirit of this venue has been lost.
The Reason and Mankind Bar is described as a multisensory cocktail lounge with a 1920s theme, so expect swing music and projections of Charlie Chaplin while you’re sipping your drink.
In keeping with more modern trends, you can expect drinks infused with salted caramel and cherry wood smoke and you’re bound to see a blowtorch being used at least once during a visit here.