Date Night in London
If romance is on the cards then the capital is absolutely the place to be. Blessed with beautiful parks and gardens, breath-taking views and amazing nightlife entertainment, there’s no shortage of great places to take a date in London. We’ve narrowed our favourites down to the following recommended date-night bars, packed with interesting choices offering something for everybody when looking for fun date ideas in London.
Last updated on 27th February 2017
With one successful Islington bar already under their belts, Simon Bastable and Andrew Green have taken their Four Sisters name to the St Paul's area. The wood panelled floors, beautiful wall hangings and quaint antiques provide the new city-based venue with the small amount of edge that it needs to succeed. However, it's the cocktail list that really steals the limelight. Really making their drinks stand out, the team of bartenders make use of a range of homemade bitters and syrups.
Some date nights need to be extra special and The Symphony is offering you absolute wow-factor as they cruise the Thames. The glass-encased boat offers views from every angle, perfect watching Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Tower Bridge float past. As well as three outdoor decks, the boat also has a boat which serves up lavish four-course meals.
Based in Central London and pushing every convention it faces, the Smith and Sinclair teams latest pop up bar, The Flavour Room, takes cocktail making to a completely different level. With Tanquery Gin as a partner, the venue features a basement experimental basement bar that takes traditional recipes and remoulds them into interesting dishes and drinks. Have you ever eaten an old fashioned pastille? This March event is definitely something that won't be forgotten anytime soon.
Kitty Hawk fuses New York style with the coolness of London set over two floors. With wooden furnishings setting a homely tone juxtaposed against industrial flourishes creates one of the coolest places to drink in the city. Their wine list is extensive and even features selections from the Rothschild Estate, and there’s a wonderful list of craft beers and cocktails as well.
Brought to London by the team behind the multi-award winning Nightjar, this is a sumptuous bar of global influence. Designed to tease all of the senses and take you on a journey of discovery, settle in at the Oriole and enjoy cocktails mixed with the finest exotic ingredients going. There’s similarly delightful grazing plates, and live entertainment comes in the form of live jazz, swing and blues music throughout the week.
Nothing beats date night in London like a secret drinking hideaway unbeknown to the general population. If you're looking to impress, Found is the key to your success (no rhyme intended). Once you've discovered this coveted cocktail club in Shoreditch, you'll return for a piece of the top mixology over and over again.
This fancy joint is the perfect spot to get cosy with your sweetheart. With elegance and style, this joint will welcome those intimate conversations, those intertwined legs under the table and the candle lit hand holding of a romantic evening.
Nestled beneath an arched brick ceiling and a quiet gem in amongst the hustle and bustle of the city streets sits Copa de Cava, a still relatively unknown bar in Blackfriars, dedicated to the beauty of Cava. With 25 different variations on offer, you can treat your special someone to a glass or two of bubbly, a great way to impress on a date night in London. What's more, the glass-panelled floor is a sure-fire way to get heart beats racing, allowing guests a sneak peek of the ageing bottles of bubbly that lie below.
When it comes to date night in Shoreditch, there's plenty of pop-up and street food options, but what about something more bespoke for that all important evening? Join Tonic and Remedy for fine dining in style as they present stunning dishes alongside a roster of high-end cocktails.
Wanting somewhere snug in the heart of the city for an after-work date night? Meet Old Tom’s; an elusive gem in Leadenhall Market with 19th century wall tiles and bundles of charm. Find yourself a cosy corner and settle in for an evening of cheese, meat and wine, or just prop up the bar where the first-rate choice of craft beer needs checking out.
Hilarious comedians, talented musicians and budding young artists are all on display at Camden's lively Forge venue. Always looking to host the next big thing, you can always find some of Camden's best up-and-coming artists performing here. Perfect for anyone looking for something a bit different for date night, you definitely won't forget a night out at the Forge.
Amp up the atmosphere dial on your date night by heading to one of London's most atmospheric cinema pop-ups. Temple Cinema takes place in a former Masonic chamber complete with marble columns and leather seats. This season they're screening classic horror including Psycho and The Babadook, turn it into a proper date with a two-course dinner.
In a nutshell; Ruby’s is one of our favourite subterranean spots in the whole of London town. Offering something completely different in Dalston, this is a positively charming cocktail bar serving delightful drinks with table service in an atmosphere that just oozes with intimacy. A must-try if you’re looking for a cosy date night destination in east London.
Boasting a visionary design and an exceptional menu, the Restaurant at Sanderson is a true show-stopper for date night. A great choice if you’re toasting an anniversary or birthday, come by this swish pad inside this glamorous hotel for dinner and drinks featuring top-of-the-range seasonal fare and artisanal cocktails.
For an evening stocked with gasps of awe, roars of laughter and whoops of excitement, it’s got to be Cabaret Des Distractions. This is a spectacular fusion of cabaret, musical theatre and circus acts that draws inspiration from the Féeries of 19th century Paris. Held at Café De Paris’ opulent 1920s ballroom, mezzanine level tickets are a steal at £15.
A charming space designed around the theme of 'Gangster Tequila Paradise', this one serves up spectacular cocktails in a sweet, urban setting. Plus, with the launch of their Flat Pack Cocktails offering, you can craft delicious cocktails at your table, Ikea style! Alternatively, book in at one of their cocktail masterclasses, and you two lovebirds can learn from the very best!
From a first-date cocktail to an anniversary dinner Brooksby's Walk is the perfect spot for a date. Sit downstairs in the cute and cosy bar as old movies flicker on the wall, or head upstairs to their Bedouin-tent style restaurant which serves hearty dishes such as lamb ragu or beef cheek.
Stay up late and wander round Kew's gorgeous Princess of Wales conservatory as the gardens put on an adults-only event. Orchids Lates are a unique opportunity to visit the beautiful gardens, learn from hoticulutural experts and enjoy traditional Indian food, drink and music.
Perched on a red leather stool in a stylish and intimate basement bar. Who could ask for a better date night location? And if things take a turn for the worse, never fear. These guys have got A LOT of gin. We mean A LOT. There are over 50 types of gin and a myriad of classic and more experimental cocktails to ensure the night goes smoothly.
The search for a solid date night in London can sometimes prove to be quite long and arduous. Put an end to the headache, and settle in for a drink or two with your beau at Soho's The Arts Theatre Club--a Prohibition-style speakeasy complete with dazzling vintage touches such as private tables and a constant flow of classic crooners coming from the DJ booth.
East London's Map Maison bar are hosting a series of cocktail masterclasses this February, each focusing on a particular spirit. From gin to bubbles, guests will be taught a number of different techniques and recipes used by London's most famous bartenders. At the end of the event, guests will be given an e-recipe of their favourite cocktail on the day, so that they can continue improving their blending skills. Impress that someone special with your flairing skills on your next date night in London.
Surreptitiously tap in a secret code to gain entry to The Chelsea Prayer Room, then lead your wide-eyed date up to this most exclusive Chelsea cocktail bars. With George Moorland inspired mural fades on the walls and leather Chesterfield sofas beckoning you inside, who couldn't be impressed? Book via DMN for entry to this normally members-only haunt.
Get ready for some seriously smart date night moves as you clamber aboard Tattershall Castle to cruise down the Thames and enjoy some of the best views of London. To top it off there will be a smooth jazz band playing, and if you're feeling plush, get dinner and welcome Prosecco.
You can’t go wrong with two tickets to one of the most respected comedy clubs in London, can you? The Covent Garden Comedy Club are all about bringing the biggest names to the stage in a friendly and chilled out setting, and you’ll take in a line-up of 3 utterly hilarious comedians and a compere while you’re here. As if that wasn’t already enough, you’ll get 15% off at the Lulivo restaurant for dinner and free entry to Opal Nightclub if you fancy heading out afterwards.
Serving up a menu of Modern European dishes, Yoshiaki is your go-to for vibrant plates of fine seafood and prime cuts of meat with a section of small plates to encourage a shared dining concept, perfect for a glamorous and high end date. Impress with this West-End beauty and discover the oh so stylish split-level innards of Yoshiaki's subterranean kitchen.
Megaro is a basement bar in Kings Cross that's created a reputation for itself thanks to its stunning cocktail menu and quirky decor. The venue's expert mixologists have really let their creative side shine, curating a menu of signature creations and spirit infusion. Treat that someone special to a Borsh Mary, made using the venue's homemade hot sauce, or perhaps a sweet tea and tequila infused Lost Steps cocktail.
Wringer & Mangle is a London Fields restaurant with bags of charisma. Showcasing plenty of kooky artworks and one of the best open-air terraces in east London, the casual neighbourhood dining concept offers the perfect vibe for a relaxed date night. Enjoy some wholesome (and, more importantly, absolutely delicious) plates, then go for some classic Collins cocktails at the bar before home time.
The self-proclaimed Three Wine Men - Oz Clarke, Tim Atkin MW and Olly Smith - will be showing off their impressive sparkling wine knowledge at a drinks tasting event in the middle of Canary Wharf. Moving around the room and discussing different flavours and facts with each guest, the tasting offers unlimited samples of great prosecco, champagne, sparkling wine and franciacorta.
Urban Coterie Sky Lounge is a intimate and relaxed bar in Shoreditch, found on the 16th floor of M by Montcalm. The bar serves an excellent variety of Champagne and wine, has sharing boards if you're peckish and some incredible views of London. Watch the sunset over the City, pop the bubbly and get ready for one cracking date.
Try something new for date night in London as The Gibson bar is a venue dedicated to the creation of the Edwardian cocktail. Expert mixologists have been experimenting with the recipe to create a list perfect for the dark, intimate and extravagant East London bar.
Head to Diciannove Italian Restaurant & Wine Bar in Central London and take part in a drinks tasting that revolves around the finest Italian wines and proseccos. To accompany each glass, the chefs have created a menu of Italian small plates, including fresh calamari, cheeses and crispy zucchini. Perfect for a romantic date night in London with that someone special, this event will leave you with a crimson smile and a head full of wine-based facts.
With its impressive drinks and food menu, cool and elegant interior and seriously impressive 360 degree views of London, The Attic at Pan Peninsula is a prime location for a date night. The perfect space to eat, drink and socialise, any date will be impressed by your choice of destination.
When it comes to a date night dinner in London, it's important to find somewhere cool, somewhere charming and somewhere downright delicious, and that's where Coin Laundry come in. Join them for Shoreditch-esque interiors, international plates, classic 70s inspired chicken kievs and plenty more.
Get intimate on a vintage sofa in a venue with beautiful bare stone walls, floral curtains, paintings and old trinkets to surround your deep conversations and flirtatious flattery. Stare into each other's eyes over luscious libations, filled with unique mixes of anything from mustard to coriander to Marmite. Impress your date in a gorgeous bar with a seductive edge this weekend.
Head to Chancery Lane for a taste of authentic French cuisine and clean cut lines as Cigalon present the perfect date night in London for you. Inspired by the finest Provençal dishes, Cigalon has suppliers in the South of France to keep their food offering classic, seasonal and fresh.
Treat your partner to something spectacular this date night, as Cirque de Ville brings together the best circus, burlesque and cabaret the city has to offer. One moment you could be watching jaw-dropping contortion, the next you’ll be spell-bound by the best magicians, jugglers or spectacular gymnasts in town, all while you tuck into a delicious three course meal.
Try something a little different this date night with SEA Life After Dark, where you’ll be able to traverse the wonders of the London Aquarium after hours. Travel at your own pace, sip your complimentary prosecco and take in the wonderful conservation and all the nature it contains.
Bringing a refreshing new twist to your standard speakeasy-style bar, Proud Cabaret is sure to be a date you won't forget. The 1920s-themed venue will provide an entertainment experience like no other - keeping you intrigued the entire time, you most definitely can expect the unexpected. Brilliant entertainment accompanied by exquisite food and drink, you're guaranteed to impress you date!
There's a lot more to Shoreditch than first meets the eye, you know. Found somewhere amongst the countless trendy hangouts and quirky pop-ups is the Whistling Shop - a seductive cocktail venue featuring vintage seating, table service and all of the charm of a Victorian gin palace.
If you’re really out to impress, The Punch Room is a charming reservations only bar tucked away in the London Edition Hotel. Handsomely adorned with oak panelling and with a playlist of vintage soul, ragtime, doo-wop and blues filling the air, cosy up with one of their signature punch bowls for two and embrace an atmosphere evocative of a nineteenth century private club.
Based in Hackney, Machine No. 3 is a charming cocktail bar and restaurant that's based in what was a dilapidated laundry shop. Serving a selection of cocktails, craft beers and delicious Yard Sale pizzas, it offers a cosy spot for London's young couple to swoon and unwind in.
Want to have a special date you know you won't forget? Then Cellar Door's High Tea & Tease night is for you. On every Saturday night, it's a racy affair that's full of surprises and thoroughly entertaining. Amaze your date with a truly unique night that includes live performances, gambling, cakes, tea and of course, an abundance of alcohol!
Leather sofas, warm lighting, interesting artworks lining the walls; The Den certainly ticks a lot of boxes when it comes to creating a romantic ambience. Bring your loved one to this hidden hotel bar and take in the relaxed yet sophisticated vibe; they serve up a divine Afternoon Tea experience or there’s a bespoke G&T menu to sample if you’re just coming for drinks.
Whoever thought of pairing the world's two most loved indulgences is an absolute hero. Leading the craze of dessert bars in London, Basement Sate plates up Parisian chic interiors to a backdrop of patisserie desserts that are quite literally melt-in-the-mouth moments. Get your fix of exquisitely crafted cocktails and divine desserts for your London date night.
The masterminds behind the successful Nightjar bar have now their attention towards Covent Garden, offering London's many young couples a great date night in the form of Swift bar. Using an arsenal of international spirits, fruits and spices, and promising a quick turn around for each drink, the expert team of mixologists serve both classic and inventive cocktails to its guests.
You know, they say chocolate is the most romantic food in the world. So next day night, why don’t you and the one you love get down to a MyChocolate event, where they combine creative, charm and great service to create a truly unforgettable night. Did we mention the event is all about chocolate?
Set in what was a former public conveniences, The Bermondsey Arts Club is as stylish and suave as cocktail bars come. Designed with art deco gumption and a contemporary persuasion, you'll find a bespoke space of unique furniture pieces where you can experience their hand crafted liquid extravagances in the form of their cocktail list.
One of Soho's more secret spots, The Light Lounge is a contemporary-cool cocktail treasure den featuring that members only bar feel for utmost exclusivity. Chuck together a few chums and shoot down to this glam go-to and peruse through the fruity, fun cocktail mix as you revel on the d-floor to the upbeat assortment of disco-funk tunes.
A bit of a schmoozing playground where expert sommeliers are on hand serving fine bottles of wine and top rated mixologists blend top class cocktails behind the bar. 68 & Boston is the answer to all of your where to go for date night in London qualms. Check in for intimate drinks, a relaxing yet cosy atmosphere and bartending of every measure.
Oozing intimacy and serving a first-class choice of tiki cocktails, Trailer Happiness is a winner for romance on Portobello Road. Head underground to uncover this exotic wonderland of delectable dim sum, flamboyant rum cocktails and a quirky, off-beat vibe.
The Brunel Science Museum are inviting in professional pianists for a series of incredible live concerts. Set in their Grand Entrance Hall, the concerts will play composers such as Rachmanov, Tchaikovsky and Chopin, all in a completely unique setting.
Cruise down the River Lea with the person you love and maybe have a few cocktails along the way with Sunday Drunch Cruise. The bar is packed with cocktails, wines, spirits, CRATE Brewery beers and cider while the kitchen will be serving up a variety of brunch options. With an up-beat mix of music on the background and wonderful views, this is a great way to spend Sunday with someone you care about.
Let those smokey aromas waft you into a romantic bubble in this Arabic haven of cosy cushioned booth seats and ornate lanterns. With fine food to choose from and the best in classy cocktails, play footsie under the tables and lean over the table tops in sultry surrounds.
For a lavish date night in London that won't be forgotten anytime soon, the Three Wine Men (Oz Clarke, Tim Atkin MW and Olly Smith) are hosting a wine tasting in at South Africa House and will be educating guests all about the different making processes and flavours produced by 30 of South Africa's best wine makers. Suited for both beginners and self-proclaimed sommeliers, this drinks tasting will be full of great wine facts and will leave a huge crimson smile etched on your face.
Sometimes, there’s so much hype surrounding a bar that the experience fails to match your expectations. With Nightjar that is absolutely not the case. Constantly celebrated as one of the best drinking dens in the world, it’s the irresistible set-up combining beautifully mixed drinks with soothing, serenading live music that makes this prized bar so good if you’re pulling out all the stops for date night.
Draped in purple velvet curtains and filled with atmospheric tea lights and Venetian mirrors, Purple Bar is well known for being one of London's hottest and most intimate meeting points. Hidden just off the main reception in the Sanderson Hotel and with room for only 20 seats, the bar is self consciously intimate making it the ideal date destination.
Inspired by the lavish lifestyle and illicit activities of the age of the Bright Young Things, this is one stunner of a spot for cocktails with a view in London. Make your way to the 12th floor of Mondrian where you’ll uncover a rooftop bar with bags of style, promising masterful drinks and a playlist that fuses jazz age favourites with a sweeping vantage point of the skyline.
As well as a collection of more than 200 types of rum, Burlock serves up a menu of authentic Cuban and Caribbean food to complement its cocktails. This is a cavernous cocktail bar promising a great atmosphere in Marylebone, with a unique happy hour offering deals from open until close and a Grasshopper Challenge donating £1 from each sale to human rights organisations.
Angel’s neighbourhood cocktail bar is a sure-fire way to impress on date night. To start with, it’s from the same guys as Callooh Callay, so you can expect a banging list of cocktails made with great skill and imagination. The place offers a super chilled out vibe with cosy seating and attentive staff, and with Alice in Wonderland themed quirks never too far away, this is a must-try for date night close to Islington’s buzzing Upper Street.
The Bloomsbury Hotel harbours secrets behind hotel rooms galore, but their bar also harbours a treat too. Twinkled in lights, propped up by comfortable seating and washed down with some of the finest cocktails in the business, this romantic date night in London will be hard to beat.
Located on the 17th floor of the fashionable M by Montcalm Hotel, Urban Coterie brings sophisticated drinks and stunning views to your date night agenda in Shoreditch. It’s an open space with light colours and impressive views from nearly every table, and the expertly mixed drinks and Michelin-standard food makes it one of our favourite tips for romance in east London.
It doesn’t really get much more romantic than enjoying a quality glass of wine at a cellar in the heart of the historic Smithfield Market, does it? That’s exactly what’s on offer from Cellar Gascon; the relaxed yet suave wine bar next door to the Michelin-starred Club Gascon restaurant. There’s smaller plates to share, a chilled out atmosphere and over 200 bottles - many are UK exclusives!
Putting all other trap bars and hidden liquor parlours to shame comes The Luggage Room. Somewhere behind an inconspicuous black door, you approach, knock, confirm your booking with a voice on the other side and in you go... who doesn't love a bit of tense mystery as you take your date night in London into the unknown?
Try something a little different this date night in London and see David Tennant perform in a modern update of the classic Don Juan. He plays the titular character, a cruel seducer who lives only for pleasure, and follows his final, debauched adventures. A tragedy, comedy and superbly written play.
It’s time to get intimate in ways you never thought you would at Milk V. This exclusive night is packed full of X-Rated burlesque, sexy live music and DJs all hosting one of the most debauched events in London. Not for couples with a faint heart, the others should dress to impress.
Hidden away above Bedroom Bar in amongst the bustle of Shoreditch, NOLA is a love note to the culture and history of New Orleans. Jazz and blues tunes fill the air as a divine list of cocktails are mixed with great skill and imagination, seek out NOLA for that intimate feel and keep your eyes peeled for the secret cigar terrace while you’re at it.
Yep - that's a wall filled with ornamental teapots right there. Opium is one of London's true hidden gems, discretely tucked away behind an otherwise unassuming green door in the heart of bustling Chinatown. Come for seasonal Oriental themed cocktails and dim sum plates in a quirky speakeasy styled bar - it's basically got the ideal set-up if you're really looking to impress someone with your nightlife knowledge.
Step down from the hectic City streets into the cool calm of Ember for a perfect date night of nibbles and classy cocktails. The Pan-Asian-themed bar has leather booths, deep velvet chairs and low lighting, creating an intimate atmosphere which is perfect for sipping on their extensive cocktail menu.
Experience the exclusive setting of the Victorian Bath House for a date night in London with a difference. Visits are made by appointment only so book your place and discover this decadent restaurant bar of Victorian excess and rich interiors inspired by period glamour. This one will be sure to turn heads if you're looking to make an impression.
Nothing quite says a date night in London like the theatre. Found at the heralded Shaftesbury Theatre, join Motown: The Musical for a stunning night of classics hits, romantic tunes, roaring production sets and some of the best acting in the business.
London’s famous Ice Bar is simply something you’ve got to experience. It’s the UK’s only permanently frozen cocktail bar, where everything in sight is carved from the purest of ice sourced from the Torne River in Northern Sweden. Wrap up warm and enjoy something unique next time out, there’s ice-cool cocktails followed by dinner and drinks to enjoy in the downstairs restaurant.
Want to impress your date with one of London's best restaurants? This steakhouse and bar by Marco Pierre White is located within the sophisticated DoubleTree by Hilton Islington hotel, and promises a mouth-watering menu of delicious cuisine, plus a massive range of wines, cocktails and spirits.
Laughter makes the bonds grow stronger and poetry is the language of love, right? Well, what if those two things not only intersected but also competed to find out which is the best, as Stand-up and poetry go head-to-head at Stand Up and Slam! Six different acts will compete for you to see who is the best, and you’ll get to choose the winner.
For a long time, the Top Secret Comedy Club has steered clear of the radar. Delighting crowds in the know with their utterly hilarious - but very elusive - comedy nights, we felt it was time to bring this end of the week comedy extravaganza to the masses. Bring your date if they’ve got an awesome sense of humour, you’ll be laughing all night long and there’s wallet-friendly drinks flowing from the bar.
Whether you or your partner are Welsh or you’ve always wanted to dive into the culture, The Lady Ottoline are inviting everyone to celebrate St David’s Day. They’ll be offering a four course meal of Welsh cuisine, with drinks pairings from Wales’ premium spirit producer, before a performance from the spectacular choir.
Fragrant cuisine and Indian delicacies define Cinnamon Kitchen. Plating up award-winning food, this Liverpool Street joint is a certified champion when it comes to innovative flavours, cooking and dining experience. If you're looking for somewhere to impress and engorge your taste buds then this is a home run in the dating field.
Step into the world of Jay and Daisy as The Great Gatsby comes to life at this roaming supper club. Taking place at various locations along the canal. the evenings will be a mixture of fancy dress, three courses and cocktails.