Winter is coming. And we don’t mean it in the Game of Thrones sense – we mean it in the literal sense, that winter is actually coming, and hugging a hot water bottle at night in the place of a person just won’t do. Whether you’ve got something long term going on, or you’re starting off an epic journey of love – first stop being Tinder – here are London’s best date night bars to help you on your way.
The Bloomsbury Club Bar is a decadent cocktail bar nestled in The Bloomsbury Hotel, and it’s got plenty of charm up its sleeve. Decked out with hundreds of glowing fairy lights and comfy seating – their alfresco space speaks volumes. But if you feel like moving your night indoors, you’ll discover a slick drinking den with a broody atmosphere. If your date doesn’t manage to sweep you off your feet on the night, this place will.
Keeping secrets never was our forte. So we don’t feel too guilty about filling you in on one of London’s best kept secrets: Ruby’s Bar and Lounge. In its former life, this clandestine spot served as a Chinese takeaway, but now it’s one of the coolest bars around, with a mish-mash selection of furniture, stripped paint walls and funky lampshades. Unique in its own right, this place sports an electric atmosphere for a hot and heavy date night.
If you want to impress someone on date night – or be impressed yourself, make sure you slip in a few good words about Demon, Wise and Partners. Located on Liverpool Street, this basement bar is anything but ordinary. It’s got a killer cocktail menu and it’s got an exclusive air about it with only a handful of booths to settle into. The bartenders know their stuff too; anything you want – they’ll knock it up within a couple of minutes.
Victorian Bath House? You can be waiting up to three months for a reservation at this ‘by appointment only’ hangout. Housed in a former Turkish bathhouse, it’s one of the most opulent places to drink in the city. Plush interiors include: red velvet upholstery, original features from its previous lifetime, and a white bathtub packed with ice and magnums of champers. If you’re looking to celebrate something big, look nowhere else.
Somewhere with cosy corners? Check. Somewhere with boozy cocktails? Check. Somewhere where you can have your cake and eat it too? We’ve got just the place. Basement Sate is a dessert and cocktail bar in Soho that’s hidden below central London’s bustling streets. Look out for a red door on Broadwick Street and get ready to descend into a night of guilty indulgence.
Sick of the same old cocktails at the same old bar? Grab your boo and fall deep down the rabbit hole at Little Bat. This Islington based bar takes its name from the Mad Hatter’s poem, and projects itself as a quirky little hangout, made up of retro lamps, glistening chandeliers and gilded mirrors.
The Gibson might be smaller than your average bar, but for what it lacks in size – it makes up in intimacy and atmosphere. Plucked straight from the 1920s, stepping into this Old Street watering hole is like jumping into a time machine. You can forget about getting lost in your lover’s eyes when you visit here by the way – you’ll be way too busy staring at the bar’s insane cocktail list.
A wine lounge and a secret cocktail bar? 68 & Boston is a brilliant date night spot if you’re after something a little bit different. You don’t need to splash the cash at this place either – pretty much every bottle of wine at 68 will only set you back £20. If that’s not ‘grape’ news, we don’t know what is.
A bar that’s as handsome as your date? Scarfes Bar is a Holborn hotspot that gives off the impression of a modern-day gentleman’s club, with low-slung armchairs, mahogany bookshelves crammed with antique books and a roaring fire. With live entertainment on certain days of the week, and a blinding selection of drinks stocked behind the bar – it’s an ace spot for a proper get-to-know-you date.
It doesn’t matter if you visit Boundary Rooftop Bar in the midst of winter or on a sunny summer’s evening – this sky-high plot remains charming all year round. It has its own heated orangery that doubles up into a garden come warmer months, and the views of London are stunning. Cuddled up beside their open fire, or soaking up some vitamin D – this rooftop is guaranteed to take your breath away.
For more info on the best bars in London, visit DesignMyNight and follow them on Instagram and Twitter; @DesignMyNight.
By Leighanne Bent