Weekend (Pre-)Drinks for kicking off THE night!

Why not start your weekend with drinks at a nice bar, followed by a fancy dinner and some crazy dancing in London’s hottest nightclubs?! Apart from the bars mentioned in the post about after work drinks, there are a few more spots in Chelsea and Mayfair (Shoreditch and Covent Garden) that are worth your attention!

1.       Eclipse (Chelsea and South Kensington):

You like watermelon? Then this is your place to be! Eclipse has two bars in London’s hottest areas Chelsea and South Kensington and their Watermelon Martini (their signature drink) is as excellent as the venue itself. They have the cutest and most charming bar tenders and people coming here are all up for a cheerful night out! Though it can get too crowded at times the atmosphere compensates it. Best on Thursday/Friday/Saturday (DJs get you in the mood).

Good for: People watching, after work drinks as well as pre drinks before going to Boujis (same owner)
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh, loaded and young crowd, age range 20-35

Opening hours: Walton Street – Mon-Sat 5.30pm-1am, Sun 5.30pm-12.30am, Old Brompton Rd – Mon 5pm-12.30am, Tue-Wed 5pm-1.30am, Thur 5pm-2am, Fri-Sat 5pm-3am, Sun 5pm-12am
Eclipse Homepage

2.       The Connaught Hotel Bar (Mayfair):

The Connaught Hotel is one of London’s many 5 stars hotels and has two excellent bars, the Connaught and the Coburg Bar. Without being antiquated, this traditional space is decorated in metals, marble and leather with art deco detailing and creates a classy atmosphere. They offer a large selection of champagne, fine wines and cocktails. Great place to go on a date, have some nice drinks and look at the water installation by Tadao Ando located in front of the hotel, which  looks stunning at night when it is all lit up.

Good for: Taking a date, having a drink in an elegant atmosphere
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh, loaded and older crowd, age range 30-open end

Opening hours: Connaught Bar: Mon-Sat 4pm-1am, Coburg Bar: Tue-Sat 8am-1am, Sun-Mon 8am-11pm
The Connaught Homepage

3.      Sketch Parlour (Mayfair):


Sketch made its way into a lot of books and guides about design restaurants and luxury lifestyle. Having dinner either in the Gallery or the Lecture Room costs a fortune (French wunder-chef, Pierre Gagnaire and Mourad Mazouz, proprietor of Momo), so going here for drinks is much smarter. The Gallery has recently been re-designed by Turner Prize-winning artist Martin Creed, with installations, wall paintings, crockery and glassware and the overall look of this venue is a mixture of art and kitsch: You will find huge eggs in the bathroom, LED installments and Louis-XIV-Interior.
Go to the Parlour Bar to sip some cocktails and enjoy the diversity and particular kind of this extraordinary place.

Good for: People watching, something diffrent, cocktails
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posha and loaded, age range 23-45

Opening hours: The Parlour: Mon-Fri 8am-2am, Sat 10am-2am, The Glade: Mon-Thu 1pm-2am, Fri-Sat 12pm-2am, The East Bar: Mon-Sat 7pm-2am
Sketch Homepage

4.      Nobu Bar (Mayfair):

Sushi Lovers and Mayfair peeps love this place. If you are going out in the area Nobu is a must, either for a drink at the stylish bar on the ground level or for some delicious sashimi and nigiris. The prices they charge are high but the service (12,5% service charge as almost everywhere these days) is very attentive. At some of these posh places the waiters have a slightly arrogant attitude – not at Nobu. Why would anyone want to spend a fortune at a restaurant that doesn’t treat its guest appropriately? The sexed-up bar offers some good drinks to sip on before heading somewhere else. However, keep in mind that sushi isn’t the best ground for having a lot of drinks…

Good for: Taking a date, go with the girls, having a drink before going to Mahiki
People: Mixed bunch of locals/VIPs/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh, loaded crowd, age range 28-45

Opening hours: Mon-Wed 12pm-1am, Thur-Fri 12pm-2m, Sat 6pm-2am, Sun 6pm-12am
Nobu Homepage

5.      Aqua Spirit (Mayfair):

Three minutes away from Oxford Street you find a not soooo touristic place (for the area) above the roofs of London. Aqua consists of two restaurants, Aqua Nueva (Spanish) and Aqua Kyoto (Japanese), and the bar Aqua Spirit. Pass by the red curtains at the entrance and take the elevator to the 5th floor. Once upstairs, you go to the round bar or sit down at one of their niches. Aqua Spirit hasn’t got the best cocktails but the location is nice. Especially if you want to go out at Chinawhite (just around the corner) or Mo*vida (directly opposite of Aqua). Though, the best thing to do is to go on one of their two roof terraces. You have an amazing view over the city centre and they also host special events and themes on their outdoor spaces. The service can be a bit annoying and inattentive sometimes so it’s best to get a drink at the bar instead of waiting for someone to come to your table.

Good for: Having a drink before going to Chinawhite or Mo*vida, great roof terrace
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, age range 28-45

Opening hours: Mon-Sat 12pm-1am
Aqua Spirit Homepage

6.      Sanderson Hotel Long Bar (Mayfair):

You like pool parties or a nice drink at Sky Bar at the Mondrian Hotel in LA? Or you prefer the sister hotels in NY or South Beach? Then you will also like the Morgans Group’s two London hotels, Sanderson and St Martins Lane. Trendy, hip, posh and a real eye for design make these ventures extraordinary. Come here for a pre drink and enjoy great drinks and a relaxed atmosphere.

Good for: Taking a date, having a drink
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh, loaded crowd, age range 28-45

Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11am-close, Sun 12pm-close
Sanderson Long Bar Homepage

7.      Light Bar at St Martins Lane (Covent Garden):

You went to the Royal Opera House or just did some shopping in the area? Like Sanderson, this hotel stands for extravagant design and creativity. Have some tasteful drinks at Light Bar and try their restaurant Asia de Cuba for dinner. You won’t be disappointed.

Good for: Taking a date, having a drink, having dinner at Asia de Cuba
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh, loaded crowd, age range 28-45

Opening hours: Mon-Thurs 5.30pm-close, Fri- Sun 3pm-close
St Martins Lane Light Bar Homepage

8.      The Botanist (Chelsea):

In the heart of Chelsea right at Sloane Square you will find a restaurant and bar called the Botanist. Don’t worry, if you think you will meet with plant lovers dressed up like being ready to explore nature you are totally wrong. Expect a fashionable crowd with men in suits and women in high heels. The perfect place to start the night. It is always crowded but mostly promises being a great destination after a tough day at the office or for kicking off a Friday or Saturday night if go to a club in the area.

Good for: People watching, (after work) drinks, dinner
People: Chelsea crowd, mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh and loaded, age range 25-45

Opening hours: Mon-Fri 8am-11.30pm, Sat and Sun 9am-11.30pm
The Botanist Homepage

9.      Lounge Lover (Shoreditch):

Shoreditch is not Chelsea, Mayfair or Kensigton. BUT, apart from the fact that the whole ‘We are so hip and trendy scene’ moved further away towards the East of London, there are still places that are worth a visit – only if you happen to be in the area by coincidence. Lover Lounger is a great place for cocktails and the design is…well, you should explore it yourself! Let’s just say it is a mixture of kitsch, fantasy and creativity. The bar gets quite crowded on weekends and if you want to have a seat you should book in advance.

Good for: People watching, cocktails
People: Mixed bunch of locals/visitors/expatriates, mainly posh, loaded and young crowd, age range 25-39

Opening hours: Mon-Thur 6pm-12amT, Fri 5.30pm-1am, Sat 6pm-1, Sun 6pm-12am
Lounge Lover Homepage

10.      Callooh Callay (Shoreditch):

Callooh Callay is different – Menus folded in cassette covers (they had Ikea construction manual ones before), hidden bars behind closet doors and very creative and strong cocktails (try one with egg white). They do take the art of cocktail making very serious and their member’s bar Jubjub is open not to the ones with a lot of money but to those who honour a great drink. Get the key and open the secret door to cocktail heaven. Make a reservation on weekends!

Good for: Different kind of cocktails
People: Shoreditch crowd,  age range 2339

Opening hours: Sun-Wed 6pm-12am, Thurs-Sat 6pm-1am
Calloh Callay Homepage