Diary of a London Student

Tamarai Restaurant & Bar, Covent Garden, London

The launch of my friend's new club promotion company was at Tamarai, a restaurant/bar in Holborn, 5 mins walk from Covent Garden Station. I'd been to the restaurant before and wasn't really sure how the tables would be moved around to create a 'clubbing' kinda place where there was a dance floor and 'VIP' tables for those willing to splash the cash.

Tamarai Entrance to the main floor

We didn't really pre-drink, my friend Jess came over to pick me up as she was driving and I had three mini bottles of champagne in my cupboard, so we just brought those along and decided we could drink them before we went into the club. I know that sounds ridiculously cheap (even if it was champagne, it came free with a chocolate gift), but drinks inside were £6.00 for a double spirit and mixer. Being a London student, I'm used to £2.00 doubles, any more than £3.50 and its pure robbery. Most shockingly of all, Jager bombs were £9.50! Disgusting price.

Tamarai looks really small from the outside, with a tiny doorway from the street. You then head down corridor, which turns to the right where there are toilets (which ended up being closed all night - far from ideal), and a cloakroom. There's some stairs that lead down to the main floor , which looked really cool for the event. The walls are black, which makes for a really moody/cool atmosphere, and there was a small dance floor. The bar is long and flanks one side, which meant the queues weren't too bad and scattered around the central floor were tables for those who had reserved a VIP table.

Tamarai bar flanking the side of the venue

Jess brought two friends with her; Sanjay and Aaron. Sanjay hadn't been out in 6 months (lord knows why; that's really quite despicable) and Aaron who doesn't dance€¦ and I also don't think I spoke a word to him because he's very very quiet. Luckily it was my friend's launch night so I knew 50% of the people making it more of a 'friendly piss-up' rather than a club night. Or so I thought€¦

It turns out my friend brought my ex and all my ex's friends with him. As you do in such a situation, I decided to drink as much as I could (I only had 52p in my purse so Sanjay bought me drinks) and to dance as much as I could to make it look like I was having MAXIMUM fun! What I thought would be a sober night, ended up being the exact opposite. Don't get me wrong, I wasn't sorrow drinking (though if you are reading this having drunk your sorrows away at one point, I'm not judging because I reckon we've all had a cheeky cry while drinking), my ex and I are actually really really good friends. But he likes to make fun of me and tell me I'm lame so 'maximum fun appearance' was needed.

Chill out lounge areas in Tamarai


God this has turned into one of those posts where I'm like ranting about my ex and pretending that I don't care (which I actually don't). There were lots of people I knew which is always nice because towards the end of the night people were popping lots of bottles of champagne and I had a few people walk up to me and pour some down my mouth. Extremely classy, I know. I reckon Tamarai is a stylish and cool restaurant/bar but I really wouldn't recommend it for students as the drinks are splash the cash€ prices. If anything, it would be perfect for a smaller more intimate event like a corporate event or an engagement party.

As well as the high prices, I have to mention the tiny toilets. There was just no space for someone to walk in and out at the same time and for a classy€ venue I expect the toilets to match . OH and also the bouncers weren't the friendliest and were very restrictive about letting people into the smoking area. At one point we were told to come back in 30 minutes even though we could see the area was practically empty! Don't get that!

Dance floor full at Tamarai, London

All in all, the night was pretty good. Tamarai is clearly a venue of high quality, compared to some of the restaurants/bars around it.  You can expect critically acclaimed€ pan asian food and a DJ bar that is open until 3am on weekends. However, I think I need to be a tad older and a lot richer before I head back there - not a place for London students (especially those who only pre-drink on three champagne minis!) 


167 Drury Lane, Covent Garden

London WC2B 5PG