Bars in Central London
Positively brimming with atmosphere every day of the week, visitors from across the globe continue to flock for a night out in central London in their droves. And who can blame them? Piled high with cool cocktail bars, elusive speakeasies, bars with views and late night dancing joints, there's never a shortage of things to do here. Our list of the best bars in central London is as follows...
Moments from Holborn, Tropicana Beach Club is the hottest new bar in Central. With more than 50 types of cocktails, a huge selection of rums and plenty of fun and games, the bar and nightclub is perfect for a quick dinner or a night of dancing away. Hire a private cabana, get down on the lagoon-style dancefloor or try your hand at surfboard limbo.
Drinks in Central London aren't hard to come by, but it's all about picking the right spot for you. If you're heading to Holborn this evening and chasing down a top selection of affordable drinks, then why not try Balls Brothers Shoe Lane on for size? Classic and contemporary with an affordable stance, this charming haunt is just the place to grab a bevvie in the evening.
Not only does Quaglino's put on a incredible array of European inspired cuisines mixed with Middle Eastern flavours, but it's host to one of the City's most opulent bars. Stocked with all manner of potent liquors, the talented bartenders will see you through your spirit cravings with their list of crafty concoctions so all you need to do is perch at the art-deco styled bar and take in the decadent surroundings.
68 & Boston is the latest drinking destination to arrive on Soho's thriving Greek Street. Run by three richly experienced wine and cocktail bar experts, the venue serves £20 bottles of wine sourced from right across the globe. Bring your closest mates and enjoy a glass or two of something different, or head upstairs to the 'Boston' lounge if it's late-night cocktails you're after.
Just moments from Waterloo station is a 600-capacity rooftop island paradise. Based on the tropical island that Napoleon spent 300 days with his mates, expect bright colours, block lettering and a summer cocktail list that's 20-strong with a handful of frozen mixes.
When it comes to bars in central London, you can always count on Soho for a good time. Head to The Den, which is hidden within 100 Wardour Street and you'll find classic cocktails from Negronis to G&Ts, as well as, quirky sips like Catcher in the Rye and The Leprechaun.
This is a real West End favourite, welcoming an eclectic bunch through the door with a charismatic and familiar approach. There's fresh food, plenty of beers and an eye-catching selection of cocktails to work your way through.
Just steps away from the National Gallery, Chinatown, and Piccadilly Circus is All Bar One Leicester Square. If you're looking for a fun bar in Central London, serving up British pub food classics, cocktails and wine, you've found the right place.
Taking inspiration from the 1920s Havana heydays, Burlock is a cavernous rum bar with a mighty selection of over 200 bottles of the spirit to its name. Dabble in a couple of cocktails complemented by something from the authentic menus of Cuban and Caribbean food - a continuous happy hour offers great deals from open 'til close and there's even a Havana-styled barber shop that doubles as a secretive drinking den to discover.
Hit this hot spot in Soho for a bit of late night decadence. Gobble down a delicious dessert plate and taste some of the best cocktail concoctions around in a speakeasy bar with the plushest of leather armchairs, polished wooden surfaces and a Parisian lick to the interior that will have you chilled out and indulged.
For a bar in Central London with a unique twist, head to Nordic Bar which celebrates all food, drink and party vibes hailing from Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland. Just a stone's throw from Oxford Street, this party bar boasts ping pong tables, shot wheels and fun DJs spinning the freshest tunes until the early hours of the morning.
Simmons always promises a memorable night out in Central London. Head down to this eccentric spot and you'll be greeted by a charming space, decked out with an assortment of quirky ornamentation - it probably looks a bit like your nana's house. But unlike her gaff, Simmons boasts an awesome late night atmosphere with tasty tipples and great music.
Swift is a new cocktail bar in North London that's forever changed the way we think of a 'quick drink'. With years of flairing under their belts, and an eye for infusing different flavours together, the master mixologists offer a stunning range of crafted cocktails. And better still, the venue's mantra of casual cocktails drinks means that each beverage is served with the usual long wait.
Based just seconds from the water's edge, Mulberry Bush is a trusty gastropub popular with locals and visitors alike. Comfortably kitted out with inviting sofas and a selection of bookable private spaces, you can expect a lineup of stellar beers alongside a rotating guest ales list from this popular Young's pub.
The Bloomsbury Club Bar is an utterly charming bar that sits pretty in the city. Step inside and you'll be greeted by a breathtakingly lavish interior - the perfect blend between classic sophistication and contemporary style. To round off the enviable location and stunning decor, The Bloomsbury Club Baroffers up a truly exceptional selection of wines alongside a mouth-watering menu of classic British dishes.
Close to Piccadilly Tube, and a stone throw away from the bustling streets of Oxford Circus, the Be At One Soho is fantastically placed for Central London clubs and bars. Start off your night here and pick whether to stay with the wild crowd on at this party bar all night, or head to Leicester Square for the cool London nightclubs and bars there.
Canoodle down to Covent Garden for a bar in Central London that's brimming with fun-time attitudes and a gnarly happy hour. Not only boasting an extensive cocktail menu alongside fantastic 2-4-1 drinks deals, Be At One in Covent Garden's Lyceum is a treasure of DJing and rampant bar staff.
From after-work drinks through to a cute date night, Bourne and Hollingsworth are the perfect pit stop for something a little different. Find them in Fitzrovia in a discreet basement bar as they pour tipples such as a Fitzgerald - rose petal vodka, fresh lime, pomegranate and topped with bubbles.
A hidden gem amongst the often crazed and crowded bars of Central London, Soho's Arts Theatre Club serves as a romantic relaxation destination with a little extra vintage flair. With luscious seats, sips, and sounds, this member-only speakeasy will knock the socks off of any date in true Prohibition-era grandeur.
Nestled in the heart of Victoria, this bustling eatery is only minutes from the station. You'll find some of London's finest musicians on the stage, bringing you soul, jazz and more alongside a menu of superb seasonal cooking and British ingredients.
Just on the cusp of Soho is the Perception bar, designed to reflect the multiple faces of London and made to entertain. This stunning bar is perfect for great interiors, amazing cocktails, delicious food and a music programme perfect for the socialites of London.
Hidden away in the heart of Soho is a speakeasy filled with old school charm. Spend the night on their velvet decked sofas or dance the night away to amazing live bands and DJs. Meanwhile, you can enjoy delicious small plates and a wonderful selection of cocktails for you to enjoy.
Whether you're looking to have an after-work drink, client meeting or date night, Anthracite's dark interiors and menu of unique martini creations make it one of the coolest bars the City has to offer. Stop by the King's Cross haunt and experience their menu of curated martinis, gin, vodka and more.
Doused in creative mixology from some world class bartenders who know their bourbon from their whisky, Cartizze Bar is a luxuriant hideaway just off Bond Street. Crystal glassware hangs behind the bar, there's wooden panelling and chrome finishes to the bar with leather furnishings offering the perfect place to perch for some cocktail supping.
Maintaining the same quality as its sister venues Dirty Martini Covent Garden and Bitter Sweet, Dirty Martini in Oxford Circus. An elegant interior, it's ideal for much needed after-work drinks, stylish late night drinks or pre-drinking before a big night out. A generous and popular happy hour, you definitely need to swing by.
Sway sits just a stone's throw from Covent Garden and Holborn, made of three bars, a nightclub and a restaurant in one place. They ooze New York cool, with the food being all pizzas and tapas plates, and the drinks are cool cocktails perfect for sipping before raiding the dancefloor.
In terms of value for money, few are in the same league as Zebrano. Stop in during their daily happy hours for some discounted drinks, or there's a menu of international treats if you're peckish, and a thriving party atmosphere a little later on.
A cross between a gastro pub and a boutique events space, The Driver is a Kings Cross favourite for relaxed drinks, after work socialising and pub-style dinners. There's plenty of hire options available should you wish to host a private party, celebration of corporate event here as The Driver can cater to whatever fits your needs.
Located in the heart of the West End The Roxy is perfect for all your night out needs, from classy cocktail lounge in the early evening to party-pad and nightclub come later on. Taking inspiration from New York, the bar has exposed brick work, plush leather booths and bare bulbs hanging down for a truly metropolitan feel.
Located in buzzy Covent Garden, Circus puts on all the glitz and glamour of a stellar show as they serve incredible entertainment alongside cocktails and Pan-Asian cuisine. The stylish venue has a lounge bar for sipping cocktails, or sit down in one of their themed rooms for the full dinner experience.
From the futuristic blue bar through to the golden tones throughout, May Fair Bar is a smart cocktail spot moments from Green Park. The stylish space is part of the May Fair Hotel and puts twists on classic options, including the likes of a Mayfair Mojito, which comes with a smooth hint of vanilla.
Purl in Mayfair is a secretive gem of a cocktail bar, shaking up some of the best cocktails in Central London. The venue is small and unassuming, and booking ahead is essential, but once inside you're transported back into a world of great drinks, top bartenders and a fabulous, welcoming atmosphere.
Discover this hidden den beneath a restaurant on Drury Lane and have your pints, your tasty tipples and your masters of comic performance all in one place. Big names including Jason Manford and Jack Whitehall have tickled funny bones in this very bar so expect top notch jokes and the greatest of gags in Covent Garden's hidden jewel.
Central London is lively, stunning and quite frankly - thirsty work. Just a stone's throw from Oxford Circus, Be At One Wimpole Street offers a fun retreat from the busiest street in London, serving up spectacular cocktails with buckets of enthusiasm. Good for a cheeky tipple after work and an ideal spot for welcoming in the good times over the weekend, Be At One Wimpole Street is one of the best bars in Central London.
Overflowing with beautiful cocktails and majestic French wines, Baranis brings a dash of Provencal opulence to Chancery Lane. A hideaway of intimate booths and seductive vibes, head round for dinner and drinks and have a few games of indoor boules at the UK's only indoor Petanque court.
A gangster's tequila paradise, the London Cocktail Club in Oxford Circus is a fantastic venue that's a great repose from the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street. Inspired by downtown LA, the venue is covered in graffiti, depicting gun-toting clown figures and cityscapres, whilst the staff wear bandanas and lumberjack shirts buttoned to the top.
Escape to the slice of Latin-inspired heaven sitting right in the heart of London, Vinoteca Farringdon. This Central London bar and restaurant serves up a selection of 300 fine wines and a menu full of fresh breads, cheeses, meats perfectly reminiscent of the sunny coasts of the Spanish Mediterranean.
Wahaca may be one of the biggest eating out names in London thanks to their roaring Mexican plates, but did you know that their bars are something pretty special too? Brimming with Mezcal, Tequila and a whole host of cocktails, this contemporary haunt promises a little something for everyone in Central London.
Located round the corner from St Paul's is Core; a fun-loving, fresh hangout where you can eat, drink and dance your way through to the early hours. Sup on one of their truly unique cocktails, enjoy an expertly made coffee or craft beer and survey a strong menu filled with lighter snacks and wholesome feasts alike. Available to hire at the weekends, Core is perfect for celebrating that special occasion.