They say New York is the city that never sleeps but London’s certainly not in bed by 8pm either. To put your night tube journey to good use, here’s a roundup of all the best drinking spots in London for night owls.
The name VQ – vingt-quatre in French (meaning twenty-four), is a subtle hint at the venue’s opening hours. If you fancy yourself a fro-yo or cocktail in the wee hours of the morning, pop into VQ for your chance at living your best life. Whether in Chelsea, Bloomsbury or Aldgate, VQ has you covered with everything from ice teas to chai lattes.
Locations in Bloomsbury, Chelsea and Aldgate are open 24/7
Hippodrome Casino, Leicester Square
Perhaps not everyone’s first idea of a late-night drinking scene but the Hippodrome Casino and its bar are open 24/7. Worried about sticking out like a sore thumb? Don’t be. The casino’s guests are often found evenly divided between the bar and the poker table.
Cranbourn Street, WC2H 7JH Open 24/7
Duck & Waffle, City of London
If you’re a fan of heights and sights, you’ll find Duck & Waffle, located on the 40th floor of Heron Tower total bliss. Discover the glory of London spread out before you with a glass of something cold, perhaps the pine needle lemonade or a fig and chestnut Manhattan (perfect for Christmas). With a nice glass of any drink from their extensive list you’ll be thanking your lucky stars we led you here.
110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY, Open 24/7
Polo Bar, Liverpool Street
A stone’s throw away from Duck & Waffle lies the Polo Bar which dates back to 1953, when Bruna Inzani opened a cafe serving proper British cafe food. Over 65 years nothing’s changed apart from its addition of a 24-hour alcohol licence. In the early hours of the morning, you’ll find an interesting cast of characters about, filtering in.... well, not the door as Polo Bar doesn’t have one. Proving just how truly open it is.
176 Bishopsgate, EC2M 4NQ, Open 24/7
Balans Soho Society, Soho
To say Balans Soho Sociey is open all day and night would be a bit of a fib. Opening times depend on the day but in the early hours of Saturday and Sunday it closes for an hour and a half between 6am and 7.30am. A bit of a nuisance for those seeking an absinthe at 6.30am.
60–62 Old Compton Street, W1D 4UG Times vary, but it’s open until at least 5am (excluding Sundays)
Canavan’s Peckham Pool Club, Peckham
Peckham’s Canavan is a beautiful amalgamation of pool club and night club you never knew you needed. One: it’s affordable, not a guarantee in Peckham these days (thanks, millennials). Two: as the name suggests it is a pool club, so feel free to do your best impression of Jonny Archer in a soundproof bar with bullet proof glass. Don’t ask us why we know this.
188 Rye Lane, SE15 4NF, Open 6pm–4am daily
Bar Italia, Soho
Coffee? Of course, But it serves booze until 5am too: our perfect night/morning at Bar Italia consists of Aperol spritz at 2am, Negronis at 4am, and a cappuccino at 7am for breakfast. The spirit of Italy is alive and well in Soho. Oh, and a little trivia: the upstairs room hosted John Logie Baird’s first public demonstration of television.
22 Frith Street, W1D 4RF, Open 7am–5am (excluding Sundays)
By Harry Rosehill
Londonist Drinks: A Spirited Guide to London Libation (AA Publishing, £16.99) is out now
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