Bathrooms were once a private space, where you sheepishly hurried off to do your business. These days though, like most other things, they’re plastered all over social media. Mainly because restaurants and hotels keep on designing loos which are outrageously pretty. Whether it’s the OTT-luxury of Annabel’s or the cool futurism of Sketch, we’ve rounded up the London bathrooms which are guaranteed to rake in the likes.
Why: A visit to Sketch is basically a rite of passage for any discerning Londoner, and you’ve most likely already seen these loos plastered all over your Insta feed. Aside from the dusty-pink interiors of The Gallery, or the moody glamour of Glade, the toilets are just as pretty. Here, the oversized egg-shaped white cubicles are paired with a disco-style neon ceiling, plus keep an eye out for stunning installations around Easter and Christmastime.
Where: 9 Conduit Street, W1S 2XG
Why: This ultra-luxe private member’s club underwent a £55 million makeover in 2018, with The Coral Room designer Martin Brudnizki at the helm. The 'powder rooms' here are, in a word, extra. Filled with florals and decked out in various shades of pink, as well as gold embossed taps shaped like swans, this is a little slice of Instagram heaven. If you’re lucky enough to visit (securing a membership isn’t easy), make sure to stop by the loos for a selfie…or two...or 20.
Where: 46 Berkeley Square, Mayfair, W1J 5AT
Brasserie of Light, Marylebone
Why: The main talking point of Richard Caring's Brasserie of Light has rightfully been the diamond-encrusted Pegasus sculpture with its 30-foot wingspan which looms over diners while they eat. You shouldn’t discount the bathrooms though, which are a dreamy mix of baby pink hues, marble floors and glittering mirrored surfaces. The perfect spot for a little #OOTD snapping action, but you’ll have to join the queue of smart phone wielding selfie takers.
Where: Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, W1A 1AB
The Ned, City
Why: Part of the ever-expanding Soho House group, The Ned is a mecca for City boys and girls, with a mammoth number of restaurants and bars to try out. Fancy high-end Italian? Head to Cecconi’s. Prefer to keep things low calorie? Malibu Kitchen is the place for you. Wherever you end up dining, make sure to visit the vintage-style loos on your way out to snap yourself lounging on the extravagant three-person velvet kissing seat which takes centre stage.
Where: The Ned, 27 Poultry, EC2R 8AJ
Park Chinois, Mayfair
Why: This decadent Mayfair hangout, which is supposed to be an opulent take on a 1930s Shanghai speakeasy, is built for once in a while, big-money dining. Such a grand setting requires dressing up for the occasion, and obviously all fantastic outfits must grace the ‘gram. Head to Park Chinois' loos and you’ll find streaky black marble flooring, purple and gold wallpaper and gold-plated swan taps.
Where: 17 Berkeley Street, W1J 8EA
Aqua Shard, London Bridge
Why: Firmly planted high in the sky, and boasting awe-inspiring views of old London town, Aqua Shard is already pretty Instagram-friendly. The wow-factor doesn’t end in the dining room though, as in the ladies loos you can wash your hands against that aforementioned backdrop, while in the gents, you can spend a penny at the urinals while watching over the capital's skyline.
Where: Level 31 The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, SE1 9RY
Why: Popular with the fashion crowd, this Mayfair marvel boasts a fabulously beautiful dining room – think gleaming copper, glossy monochrome tables and a ceiling studded with shiny brass discs. In Isabel's loos, things are just as pretty. You’ll find the walls adorned in intricate hand-painted De Gournay wallpaper, along with streaked black marble floors and soft hand towels (no noisy hand dryers here, thank you very much.)
Where: 26 Albemarle Street, W1S 4HY
Restaurant Ours, Knightsbridge
Why: Ok, so while pretty much everyone who visits Restaurants Ours (which counts Lindsay Lohan and Kourtney Kardashian among its former guests) posts a picture of themselves standing against the trademark flower wall, it’s not the only place in the joint which is made for the ‘gram. Check out the tropical-inspired bathrooms – we’re talking dusty pink tiles, gold-plated sink basins and palm-print ceilings.
Where: 264 Brompton Road, SW3 2AS
Why: Part of Yotam Ottolenghi’s restaurant empire (and the reason you first discovered your love of pomegranates), Nopi is the chef’s flagship site. For the most part, the interiors here are minimalist and pared-back, with plain white tiling and pendant lights. Step into the bathroom though, and you’ll find yourself in an endlessly reflective hall of mirrors which make for a rather chic selfie backdrop. Good luck finding your way out though…
Where: 21-22 Warwick Street, W1B 5NE
The Mandrake, Fitzrovia
Why: The Mandrake hotel is a buzzy spot, home to Amazonian-inspired restaurant Yopo and the much buzzed about Waeska bar. If you need to freshen up, head to the brilliant moody unisex bathrooms, which come complete with dramatic central wash basins, gold plated taps which hang from the ceiling and a vanity station should you need to fix your quiff or powder your nose.
Where: 20-21 Newman Street, W1T 1PG
German Gymnasium, King's Cross
Why: This slick and expansive restaurant from the D&D London group (100 Wardour Street, Angler, etc.) serves up brasserie-style food and its name references the venue's history, as it was originally built for the German Gymnastics Society way back in 1864. You won't find any smelly showers in the bathrooms at German Gymnasium though – instead, delight in mirrored surfaces, attractive lightning and intricate wallpaper.
Where: 1 King’s Boulevard, London, N1C 4BU
Can’t get enough of beautiful places (and snapping them for social media)? Here are the best-designed restaurants in London.