The run up to Christmas is a great time to get social and meet up with your network. Video calls will never beat meeting face-to-face and really connecting with someone. As headhunters, we meet up with comms professionals all over London and we like bars with great table service, excellent coffee (and cocktails), tasty nibbles and close to a tube station of course! You could even say that we are pros when it comes to great bars for meetings.
The Works Search MD Sarah Leembruggen shares a few personal favourites scattered around town.
Kings Cross is fantastic since its major redevelopment and there are options! My top choice, and somewhat unknown, is the bar (and restaurant) at The Standard. It’s a pretty hideous looking hotel from the outside just across the road from Kings Cross Station but when you get in, there is a lovely velvet seated, comfortable, lounge-like bar. The restaurant is also tasty and has a great covered garden terrace with a retractable roof to still be able to enjoy al fresco evenings now the weather is turning.
Green Park – I really like The Donovan Bar at Browns, as once again, it feels plush, the lighting is great, the bar is beautiful and the cocktails and service are superb. The nibbles are also excellent. It opens at 4pm and you need to book. The other bar I often choose around Green Park is at The Connaught. Like Browns it’s not cheap and you need to book a table at both. What I appreciate about The Connaught is that it’s comfortable, beautiful, has great service and a rather fun martini trolley. Beware of ordering anything which starts with the word ‘vintage’ as it instantly adds £100 – I won’t make that mistake again!
Bond Street – Mr Fogg’s Apothecary. I was kindly invited to drinks by a corporate comms agency here the other day. Somehow, Mr Fogg’s has passed me by and it’s great! They had hired out the whole bar and it was perfect for a client drinks event. There are a few bars scattered around London and this particular one only opened recently. It had a great feel to the place, great décor, a little quirky too and the cocktails were very tasty.
Holborn – Around the corner from Holborn station is the lovely Scarfes Bar
at the Rosewood hotel. Lots of low, soft seating areas and quiet corners. It’s quite dimly lit so better for informal evening drinks with someone you know rather than a meeting for the first time. I especially like it in the winter as they have a fire so it feels cosy. Olives and tasty cashew nuts were on offer the last time I was there, and a super ‘Off The Wall’ creative cocktail list featuring their hilarious framed caricatures as names of enticing drinks.
London Bridge – I have a soft spot for Quarter Bar in The London Bridge Hotel. It’s open from 10am, the service is great, the café lattes are large and the shortbread is tasty! Great for meetings of two people and there is one fairly private area where a group can meet, though be sure to reserve a spot. In the evening the space transforms into a fab cocktail bar and they use fresh local produce from Borough Market – literally a taste of London!
Piccadilly Circus – less than a five minute walk from the station and an oasis from the tourist hustle and bustle outside, Ham Yard Hotel has a great bar to meet people during the day. They have quite a few tables and comfortable chairs set up for just one or two people which is really helpful and they feel quite private too. Great ‘homemade’ biscuits. In the evening it’s a bit noisy for a business chat, but a great atmosphere if you are looking for somewhere a bit livelier for a slightly less official work meeting.
Victoria – my favorite bar by far is The Goring Cocktail Bar and Lounge as it’s beautifully old school, it feels relaxed and comfortable, and you can find a seat which feels private. The ‘homemade biscuits’ are irresistible, and they have an excellent cocktail menu for the more adventurous.
Bank – I’m always on the hunt for new places in The City (do let me know if you have any suggestions as an alternative to the ever-popular Ned which is always so busy!). We would love to hear your ideas..
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