A travel journal
to London by AllenBarton
Quote: A few highlights, and survival tips for Europe's largest City
Restaurant | "The Ivy"
The restaurant is situated in a quiet street just a few blocks from Leicester Square. Once inside, you will quickly adjust to the busy atmosphere, created by a contented patrons enjoying their food. The Ivy is known to be a hangout for celebrities, although I've never seen anyone remotely famous there.
The service is excellent, and the food is top drawer - its modern British, with a European influence. That means you can still get fish and chips, or a burger, as well as your posh French nosh. As with most restaurants, it has a menu outside the door. For desert, though, I must recommend the Baked Alaska - warm meringue on the outside, with cold ice cream on the inside ... delicious!
To get an evening table at an exact time, you generally have to book months in advance; but if you can be flexible, and particularly if you can make a lunchtime at a weekend, you shouldn't have any problem.
It's a great restaurant, one of London's finest, and is worth going to for a treat.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 29, 2002
1 West St
London, England WC2H 9NQ
+44 20 7836 4751
Restaurant | "The Sugar Club"
I think its fair to say that on the menu its unlikely you'll recognise anything. You'll find buffalo alongsides kangaroo, and totally weird combinations of spices.
I went with 3 friends; we each had 3 courses, and we each had something different for each one. I tasted all the dishes at some point, and I wasn't disappointed by any. The food is simply outstanding, and I can't wait for an excuse to go back.
21 Warwick Street
London, England W1B 5NF
+44 20 7437 7776
The setting is cavernous, with the first bar at street level, the restaurant and second one under, and the nightclub one below that again. The music at weekends is a mix of modern dance music, and cheesy classics from the 70's and 80's.
The clientele are a well-behaved crowd of reasonably affluent, 20-something Londoners - note, when I say Londoner, though, I mean people from all over who live in London, not necessarily from the city so visitors will have no problems blending into the mix.
The bar even has its own website (www.theloopbar.co.uk), which has pictures you can check out before you go.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 29, 2002
The Loop Bar
19 Dering Street
London, England W1R 9AA
0871 075 1612
Assuming you make it to the first bar, you'll be charged (rather steeply) for your drinks. The first disco is on the same floor, but is a small pokey affair, but plays a good mix of 90's and 00's music. The main disco is underground, and is much larger - it plays an excellent mix of modern dance / house music, if that's your kind of thing.
There are further bars on the floor above the entrance, and a large restaurant with a side entrance - note, if you dine there you can go staight into the club without paying the cover charge, though the food is nothing special.
The club attracts a lot of tourists, due mainly to being located between Picadilly Circus and Leicester Square, and because of its size can be a bit impersonal. Having said that, it's a club I always seem to be drawn back to, mostly because it's a cool place to hang out.
Have a look at its pictures on www.tigertiger-london.co.uk.
29 The Haymarket
London, England SW1Y 4SP
+44 20 7930 1885
Head downstairs, where you'll be amazed to see that the bar stretches out before you. The decor is lush, with plenty of comfy seats and couches, and great soundtrack every night. They also specialize in cocktails, which aren't cheap at £5 a throw, but are great fun.
The bar stays open until 3am every night from Monday to Saturday, and couldn't be closer to the tube. I would definitely recommend it for a quick drink before heading on somewhere else (its free after all) but bear in mind, like everywhere in the West End, it gets really busy on the weekend.
Have a look at it on their website here.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 16, 2002
Hungerford House Victoria Embankment London, WC2N 6PA
London, United Kingdom