The West End in London is known the world over as somewhere you go to have fun. Wether it is to eat, drink, dance or see a performance, there is sure to be the right bar, restaurant, club or theatre for your group. Once you've booked which restaurant your group will eat in, you may be looking for a something a little livlier, to get a party started. The party bars in the West End, whether it's in Soho, Covent Garden, Mayfair or further afield, have plenty to offer.
In this squaremeal.co.uk list we've compiled a collection of the top bars, restaurants and nightclubs that central London has to offer. If you've read our quarterly magazine, you'll know that there are a whole host of venues that are either new to the market or recently refurbished in the West End. However, if you're looking for a party bar that immediately impresses, you'll be interested in those famous-name venues on offer. All the party bars in the West End you see have VIP areas available for hire, for a private party or an informal dinner or meeting.
If you're based in the Square Mile, in East London, you may be interested in looking at the Party Bars in the City we have to offer and there's even a number of private members' clubs that take group bookings, should you be looking for something a little more exclusive.
Max Standing 400
47 Whitcomb Street, London, WC2H 7DH
From live-music specialist The House of Song, this is the Leicester Square sister to The Piano Works. The concept is this: write your request on a napkin from one of the light-changing tables, and the two piano vocalists and their accompanying musicians will play it on the large stage during their non-stop set. The Blue Room, with its own grand piano, can be hired exclusively for groups to take part in ‘Can’t Sing Choir’ singing lessons or cocktail masterclasses.
More about Studio 88
Max Standing 20
Max Banquet 20
2-24 Kensington High Street, London, W8 4PT
Min Jiang continues to win plaudits for its authentic cooking and all-round appeal: the Chinese restaurant’s lofty position on the 10th floor of the Royal Garden Hotel affords sweeping views over Hyde Park. Groups should check out the Chong Qing room as a space for private dinners and drinks. The room is shielded from the main space by a glass wall and shelves decked with elegant Ming vases. Don’t miss the kitchen’s speciality: wood-fired beijing duck.
More about Min Jiang
The Cinnamon Club Bar
Max Standing 80
The Old Westminster Library, 30-32 Great Smith Street , London, SW1P 3BU
The Cinnamon Club’s award-winning bar is a clean-cut, contemporary space, with a full-length glass wall and projectors playing scenes from Bollywood films. Standing birthday and anniversary parties are popular here, as are product launches and canapé receptions. An imaginative cocktail list is the basis of refreshments, with house signatures such as Long Island Spiced Tea. Moreish party platters feature king prawn skewers and stir-fried swordfish.
More about The Cinnamon Club Bar
Max Standing 500
Max Banquet 300
Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX
In the Royal Festival Hall on the South Bank, Skylon makes the most of its position with floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over the Thames. The spacious venue’s mid-century look echoes the building’s 1950s architecture. It’s divided into three sections, with a raised bar separating the relaxed brasserie from the fine-dining area – both are popular for semi-private dining. The space can also be be hired exclusively for large dinners. Expect modern British menus.
More about Skylon
The Scotch of St. James
Max Meeting 0
Max Standing 200
Max Banquet 200
13 Masons Yard, London, SW1Y 6BU
In swinging 60s London, The Scotch of St James was the Mayfair hideaway of choice for the musical elite. Today, it retains the old cachet. Up top, a copper bar dominates a lavishly attired main room, and there’s a flexible breakout space next door. Downstairs is the nightclub where Clapton and Hendrix once performed – its dancefloor now supported by the latest AV. A late licence means events today can still go all the way through to 5am.
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100 Wardour St
Max Standing 900
Max Banquet 250
100 Wardour Street, London, W1F 0TN
100 Wardour St once hosted the Rolling Stones’ first London gig. Today, the venue has the feel of a ‘refined living room’: a plush spot for daytime business and making merry by night. Beyond the light-filled atrium lies a cavernous main space dominated by an island bar. At the far end, a well-equipped private room has a smart pool table that can be flipped flat for meals. Downstairs, there’s a stage for live performances, and assorted private and semi-private spaces.
More about 100 Wardour St
Max Meeting 300
Max Standing 450
Max Banquet 300
Novus Leisure, Clareville House, 26-27 Oxendon Street, , London, W1D 7ER
A name for the event organiser’s little black book, LatenightLondon’s knowledgeable team operates a free party-planning service for 34 venues in the West End and City. All of its bars and restaurants are open late and provide attractive backdrops for a spectrum of private events, from small office parties to product launches, corporate dinners or drinks receptions for up to 1,720 guests. The venues all have different styles and atmospheres, ranging from the sleek Jewel Bars in the West End to the unashamedly kitsch Kanaloa in the City. Private dining facilities are available at Grace and Amber, while all of the group’s sites are available for exclusive private hire.
The Bloomsbury Ballroom
Max Meeting 500
Max Standing 570
Max Banquet 300
Victoria House, Bloomsbury Square, London, WC1B 4DA
The 1920s home of the London Cabaret Club is well set up for large-scale private events. Cars can pull right up to the Grade II-listed building and Holborn tube is close by. The main Ballroom has a built-in stage beneath tall ceilings and art-deco windows, and AV is included (six large screens and projectors). The adjacent Rose Room can stand alone with its own large bar, while the Long Bar is much as it sounds, and a useful breakout space or green room.
More about The Bloomsbury Ballroom
Max Standing 180
18 Greek Street, London, W1D 4DS
Zebrano stands tall as a straight-up, no-nonsense party venue, comprising a bar, restaurant and late-night club. The food is all-American, and the bartenders are known for their skills with a cocktail shaker (guests can also try their hand at some mojito mixology themselves). The ground-floor bar can be hired exclusively, while the Balcony bar, which doubles as a screening room for more serious events, is a natural spot for drinks receptions.
More about Soho Zebrano
Max Meeting 60
Max Standing 270
Max Banquet 115
31-33 Heddon Street, London, W1B 4BN
Many venues claim to offer something unique; few actually do. This really is the UK’s only permanent icebar, where groups of up to 60 people are invited to enjoy a 40-minute drinks reception at -5°C (capes and gloves provided!). The venue’s three other – more temperate – spaces can be used in conjunction or independently for events spanning Christmas parties to product launches. Ice-sculpting classes make for a fun teambuilding add-on.
More about ICEBAR London
Tropicana Beach Club
Max Meeting 160
Max Standing 600
Max Banquet 180
New London Theatre, Parker Street, London, WC2B 5PW
Tropicana Beach Club’s theme and decor are hard to miss. New to the market in 2017, this ‘rum-soaked tropical oasis’, with 30ft palm trees and a beach party-style atmosphere, is ready-made for a memorable event. Exclusive use is the obvious choice, but smaller groups can book one of 12 VIP beach cabanas. Parties can then head to the ‘lagoon pool’ dancefloor or take part in beach games like surfboard limbo. Semi-private hire is also welcome in one of two areas, each with its own bar.
More about Tropicana Beach Club
Café de Paris
Max Meeting 280
Max Standing 715
Max Banquet 286
3 Coventry Street , London, W1D 6BL
Expect luxurious spaces and Moulin Rouge-esque interiors at this Grade II-listed, West End institution. A first-class sound system makes it suitable for awards ceremonies, parties and live music events – though it’s also popular for dinners and receptions. The main Ballroom impresses with its grand chandelier and sweeping staircases, while three additional private rooms can be used as breakout areas or for more intimate occasions. Cabaret nights are a speciality.
More about Café de Paris
Inamo Soho – The Games Room
Max Meeting 62
Max Standing 120
Max Banquet 62
134 -136 Wardour Street, Soho, W1F 8ZP
Well-known for being trailblazers in the world of tech-savvy restaurants, Inamo Soho lends its digital prowess to its exclusive-hire Games Room. Guests can expect to find a pair 150-inch wall projections, which can be used for work or play (games console and sports screenings, say). When that’s done, there are private dining options that centre around the street-food inspired menu. Note, the room is booked in two and three-quarter hour slots.
More about Inamo Soho – The Games Room
Max Standing 175
Max Banquet 90
6 Poland Street, W1F 8PS
Tapas and tequila are on the menu at this two-floor Soho cantina, which brings a riot of Latin colour to Poland Street. Downstairs, the Basement is the best spot to host private parties. If you’re after a space big enough for your immediate colleagues, check out the single-table Love Shack. A DJ booth and stage can be taken over for live entertainment, and cocktail masterclasses add a fun teambuilding element to events.
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More about Barrio Soho
Mews of Mayfair
Mews of Mayfair
Max Meeting 28
Max Standing 150
Max Banquet 70
10-11 Lancashire Court, New Bond Street, London, W1S 1EY
Set around a courtyard, four-floor Mews of Mayfair showcases the best of British produce, letting fine ingredients do the talking. The top-floor private dining room is adorned with antique maps, and hides a 50in screen. La Cave is a wine shop that transforms into a private dining and tasting space, while cocktail bar Cartizze is available for masterclasses or receptions. The subterranean Mews Lounge Bar is a livelier spot set up for DJ-led festivities.
Max Standing 300
Max Banquet 55
14-16 Ganton Street, London, W1F 7BT
A party haven spread over two floors, Carnaby Zebrano offers guests a chance to ease into their late night out with something from its brasserie-style menu. Groups can book private areas, and the restaurant or lounge bar can be hired exclusively. The cocktail menu mixes classic with creative, helping guests get their groove on as DJs spin funk, soul and Ibiza house. In summer, evenings tend to begin on the outdoor terrace before everyone dives into the club.
Max Meeting 30
Max Standing 500
Max Banquet 24
4 Winsley Street, London, W1W 8HF
The Primrose Hill set have settled down, so the Made in Chelsea crowd have taken their place in Chinawhite’s VIP room. State-of-the-art AV, an on-site kitchen and full waiter service make Fitzrovia’s favourite celebrity club a sleek venue for large-scale functions. Its main space, Libertine, suits fashion shows and all-out parties, while The Code’s modular furnishings make it a prime spot for seminars and private screenings. The Reason and Mankind lounge is the place for more intimate gatherings. And that legendary VIP space? It can be hired in conjunction with the Libertine.
More about Chinawhite
Drama Park Lane
Max Meeting 0
Max Standing 300
Max Banquet 0
35 Hertford Street, Mayfair, London, W1J 7SD
This high-end nightclub and cocktail club secretly opened within the London Hilton on Park Lane a few years back. Today, it’s a celebrity hotspot (Rihanna, Usain Bolt and Leonardo DiCaprio have all visited) which also doubles up as a venue for product launches, fashion shows and dinners (Monday-Wednesday). It’s run by the people behind Cirque Le Soir, so those planning a party at the venue can rest assured it’ll be memorable.
More about Drama Park Lane
All Star Lanes White City
Max Meeting 80
Max Standing 350
Max Banquet 100
Ariel Way, White City, London, W12 7FU
Opened in April 2018, All Star Lanes White City has already starred in A Question of Sport. Designed with art-deco Miami in mind, the venue’s Babylon 305 private room is a lavish setting for events. As well as a couple of lanes and a cocktail bar (with mixologist), it’s got two karaoke booths, a Nintendo Wii and an up-to-the-minute projector and big screen. Canapés can be delivered and, if all of that’s a bit overwhelming, personal party planners are available.
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All Star Lanes Holborn
Max Meeting 90
Max Standing 170
Max Banquet 90
Victoria House, Bloomsbury Place, London, WC1B 4DA
A filming location for both Made in Chelsea and TOWIE, All Star Lanes Holborn exudes mass appeal. Its main hall offers timed games, cocktails and US comfort food in a suitably American setting. For prize tournaments, unlimited games and their own bar (with mixologist), groups should take over the recently refurbed Lodge. Vintage bowling memorabilia vies for attention with a karaoke booth, a Nintendo Wii and, of course, a couple of private lanes.
More about All Star Lanes Holborn
The Directors Lounge
Max Standing 100
44 Doric Way, London, NW1 1DA
This Euston newcomer does exactly what it says on the tin. Accessed via a suitably discreet entrance, it offers an opportunity for company men and women to unwind in private. Velvety furnishings lend the space an easy-going vibe through the evening. Available to hire seven days a week through to 1am (and later, by arrangement), it’s well set up for blowout parties. A stage makes entertainment easy – and is handy for product launches.
More about The Directors Lounge