2012 was an amazing year for the London nightlife scene; so it will come as no surprise that competition was tougher than ever for the annual DesignMyNight.com Awards 2012. We scoured hundreds of London's Clubs, Bars and Pubs to decipher who really deserved these most prestigious of accolades, and we're very happy to announce our 2012 winners!
Drum roll please...
Best Bar of 2012 - Archer Street
Approach along Archer Street to find an elegant, almost Hotel bar like lounge, with a gentle but sophisticated buzz upon entry. We always like a bar that offers you something no other can, and by this rationale there was no competition for Archer Street. Unbelievable house cocktails can be sipped whilst being serenaded by the all singing waiting staff. A fantastic choice for dates, mates, catch-ups, office parties, birthday parties… and not to mention the stunning basement hideaway. This vast versatility and unique experience surrounded by beautiful décor and spread over two floors put Archer Street above the rest. Read more.
Best Pub 2012 - Paradise By Way Of Kensal Green
Best pub easily goes to Paradise By Way Of Kensal Green. After the extensive refurbishment restoring this beautiful pub back to its former splendour, it has to be one of, if not the most stunning pub in London. The highlight of this gorgeous building is its vintage charm full of beautiful chandeliers, quirky antiques and hidden nooks and crannies. Every week Paradise hosts live music, DJ’s, karaoke, comedy, vintage clothing sales and much more. A pub for all occasions and a worthy winner. Read more.
Best Club 2012 - XOYO
XOYO is a mind blowing, convivial club in East London and is one of a kind when it comes to live music. The huge venue has an 800 person capacity, that has allowed this club to become a social hub brimming with both party and music lovers alike. Hosting live bands throughout the week and top name DJs from the House, Dub-step and Progressive music stables that continue to break the mold, this is our Best Club of 2012. Read more.
The Top User Rated - Mayor of Scaredy Cat Town
With its secret entrance and guest list only exclusivity, it’s understandable why this bar is the Top User Rated for 2012. Entrance is gained via a fridge door and opens up to a world of food, fun and drinks. The drinks list is eclectic with a selection of great spirits behind the bar and a small but interesting cocktail list. The Mayor of Scaredy Cat Town is a heart-stirring night out, not to be missed and loved by the people! Read more.
Most Viewed Listing 2012 – Floripa
It’s no surprise that Floripa London was 2012’s Most Viewed venue on DesignMyNight.com, after all, the electrically vibrant club is a bright and enticing Brazilian beach bar full of convivial spirits looking for a great night. The anomalous intertwining mix of Brazilian cuisine and the clubs spectrum of music genres makes this club easily one of the most captivating in London. From British Indie Rock to Floripa’s mid-week ‘Tropical getaway’ including soul, hip hop, afrobeat, reggae, there is always something for everyone. Named after the party island off the coast of Brazil, Floripa is a Shoreditch bar and club with a hedonistic bohemian cultural fusion, with arms wide open ready to greet the party people of London. Read more.
Best Buzz 2012 - Bounce
Bounce is a clear winner when it comes to ‘best buzz’; Bounce combines sport, entertainment and socialising with a large dose of madness. This place is THE place for a good ol’ mingle and social and of course, to play ping pong. The colossal hype Bounce initiated on opening has far from ended, if anything, this bar is more popular than ever! Read more.
Best Experience Bar 2012 - Evans & Peel Detective Agency
If you’ve been to Evans and Peel Detective Agency then you know why this bar has won best bar experience…hands down. The boom in speakeasy bars last year goes without saying, but Evans and Peel Detective Agency still managed to outdo every single one of them. The stunning bar and restaurant in Earls court is sure to give you the best experience ever, as not only do they serve up the best of 1920’s food and drinks, the décor allows you to really envelope yourself in everything, you will honestly forget it is in fact the 21st century. And to add to the magic of it all, to enter you must find your way to the secret Entrance where you will meet the detective in the agency room before gaining entrance to this unique drinking den in London. Read more.
Best Happy Hour 2012 - The Roxy
Are you looking for a great night out without having to splurge? Well The Roxy hasn’t won ‘Best Happy Hour' without a reason. At the heart of the West End, The Roxy offers New York style and ambiance but on a budget. With plenty of seating for those early evening drinkers, The Roxy hosts ridiculously generous happy hours and promotions all through the week, earning The Best Happy Hour of 2012's DesignMyNight Award deservedly. Read more.
Best All In One 2012 - Bunga Bunga
Winning the ‘Best All in One’, Bunga Bunga isn’t shy of a good party. Bunga Bunga offers everything you want in a great night out where you just want to let your hair down. Come for dinner, drinks and dancing in The Europop style club. It has karaoke, loud music, a huge dancefloor as well as table length pizzas to share! So work your way through the cocktails and then head on upstairs to the club where DJs bring out the party tracks. Read more.
Best Party Bar 2012 - Drink Shop Dance
If you’re looking for the party: Drink, Shop & Dance is where it is at! This place is unmistakably the best party in town so prepare yourself for a night of dancing, because here the party is nonstop. Drink, Shop & Dance brings you some serious cocktails, disco balls & peep holes for an unrivalled good-times night out Read more.
Best New Bar 2012 - Ruby's
Ruby's Speakeasy Bar in Dalston, London, is set in the basement of Ruby House, underneath the cinema sign at 76 Stoke Newington Road close to Dalston Kingsland Station. Look out for the classic Cinema sign with "Fortune Favours the Brave" and a little door below will lead down to this true 21st century speakeasy. The bar focuses on quality drinks and works hard to carve out an intimate yet buzzing atmosphere. Bars will always come and go in London but it takes something quite special for a new bar to excel. It would seem that Ruby's has found the right formula and executes it with class, originality and style; making it our Best New Bar of 2012. Read more.
Best Cocktail Bar - Oskars bar at Dabbous
Step down into Oskar’s Bar, hidden beneath world famous restaurant – Dabbous, and you will be pleasantly surprised to find a speakeasy style bar setting, exposed brickwork, warehouse style furniture, moody lights hanging above the bar, with plenty of space to sit, chat and drink to late night DJs at the weekends. We sent one of our more critical reviewers, Bar Hopper, to Oskar’s in 2012 and the full marks it received was just an indication of the extraordinary treats on offer at this bar. Oskar’s very rarely receives bad reviews, the guests we send always have a brilliant time and if you’re feeling puckish, there’s only a Michelin starred restaurant upstairs. Oskar’s, take a bow. Read more.
Best Rooftop Bar - Golden Bee
Arriving gloriously in time for the summer last year, Golden Bee provided easy-going rooftop drinking and dancing possibilities. With views across hipster-ville Shoreditch and a late-night cocktail bar and DJ's, this was a hot booking last year. Read more.
So there you have it! The official DesignMyNight Award Winners. Be sure to try them all out!