I've always struggled to keep my distance from flashing neon lights. I'd spotted the bright pink Loungelover neon sign a couple of times in the past, and after a particularly memorable dinner at their sister restaurant Les Trois Garcons, it was time to give it a whirl.
Spotting the illuminated 'Loungelover' sign at the door is the first step. Venture inside and you've entered a parallel universe of devilish decadence and impressive levels of excess: we're talking a stuffed hippo head, a Chinese urn that could fit an adult human with ease, and glittering chandeliers - and that's not even the half of it. The space is long, and separated into three decoratively distinct areas: The Baroque, The Cage and The Gold Room, all of which have been designed to offer a different experience with every visit.
The Atmosphere and Clientele
Loungelover is a curious little spot, attracting a crowd as diverse as its dècor. Expect an eclectic crowd of seasoned cocktail drinkers, well-dressed and ready for a night of excess. With its Shoreditch pedigree, it'll come as no surprise that this kooky little haunt pulls in a stylish crowd of creative types and hip-cats, as well as those well-to-do business types who have no patience for City bars.
Emitting an elegant ambiance that penetrates the heart and souls of its guests, Loungelover is a relaxed space. Although the bar is often busy, the choice of rooms in which to enjoy a carefully crafted beverage allows for an escape within an escape - if you've had enough of Baroque, then you can head to The Gold Room for a bit of shimmer.
It may or may not come as a surprise to hear that the cocktail menu at Loungelover is as attention grabbing as its surroundings. Black-tied waiting staff arrive at your side to offer some advice on the decision making process: I opted for the Jubilation, a long blend of Beefeater Gin, freshly muddled green and red grapes, sweetened with elderflower cordial, lemon juice and topped with Rosè Champagne. Not bad. Also on offer is a sweet selection of seasonal, hot, Champange and virgin cocktails, to tantilise even the trickiest of taste buds.
There is absolutely nothing minimal about Loungelover. At all. It's overwhelming, excessive and all-out absurd - and brilliantly so. Offering glamour, quality and ambiance in equal parts, this is a cocktail bar in Shoreditch that packs more than it's fair share of punch.