It’s Wednesday 12th February, which means you’re on the final countdown to find one hell of a venue to while away your Valentine’s Day with your loved one. And, if you’re like most, you’ve not got the faintest clue where to head. Lucky for you though, The Handbook has prepared quite the romantic list for you last minuters. Here’s our top 20 romantic bars to head to for the ultimate date night.
Helping to ignite a little fire and passion into your night is Fitz’s at Kimpton Fitzroy London. Dressed in flamboyant 1920’s details and plush furnishings, Fitz’s provides the perfect backdrop for any romantic night. Add in their signature cocktail, the Vesca Negroni, a combination of Ford’s gin, Luxardo Bitter Bianco, Dolan Blanc, woodland strawberry, rosehip, aloe and coconut, and it’s the perfect date night remedy.
It doesn’t get more bougie than a night of fine dining Michelin star style, and where better to celebrate such an occasion than at The Franklin Restaurant by Alfredo Russo. Finish off your elaborate night by pulling up a pew, nightcap in tow, at The Franklin bar. Surrounded by gilded mirrored walls, grey velvet seating and elegant finishings designed by interior designer Anouska Hempel, find yourself a secluded spot and revel in all of its beauty.
WHERE: 24 EGERTON GARDENS, KNIGHTSBRIDGE, SW3 2DB
If you’re looking to seriously wow away your date, Amazónico is exactly what you’re looking for. With ceilings draped with lush green rainforest-inspired shrubbery and hanging palms, pretty peacocks adorning the bar tops, and dim lighting, you’ll literally feel as though you’ve been thrusted into the middle of the Amazon Jungle. The cosy corners and dreamy cocktails will sure make this one date to remember.
WHERE: 10 BERKELEY STREET, MAYFAIR, W1J 6BR
Shh! Nuzzled inside Le Méridien Piccadilly, you’ll find their hidden bar, littered with glistening decorations, jazz undertones and astounding cocktails. And, as with all good bars, Maskelyne & Cooke is home to an array of tempting cocktails that’ll no doubt wow you way. Each cocktail is inspired by the two famed magicians the bar is named after too. Expect floating glasses, fire lit cocktails and a whole lotta fun. It’s the perfect spot if you’re looking to impress on a first date.
WHERE: 21 PICCADILLY, MAYFAIR, W1J 0BH
A personal favourite of mine for seriously cosy date nights is The Gibson Bar. Slightly off the beaten track, The Gibson Bar has some serious speakeasy vibes and will see you thrusted back in an Edwardian time machine to the 1920s. The bar itself specialises in the infamous cocktail The Gibson, so order yourself a couple and cosy up in a corner for a sweet-sweet date.
WHERE: 44 OLD STREET, EC1V 9AQ
Entirely inspired by a ‘special’ deck of Tarot card back in 1910 by Pamela ‘Pixie’ Colman Smith, The Bloomsbury Club has built quite the name for itself. On the menu you’ll find 14 cocktails designed to replicate 14 different states of mind or being. Try your hand and see what you’re dealt.
WHERE: 16-22 GREAT RUSSELL STREET, WC1B 3NN
Hidden by day, wild by night. Victorian Bath House is seriously seductive and incredibly hard to locate unless you’re in the know. Originally a Turkish bath house, the bar is still in its natural element, with its original features and ornate tiling. It’s definitely a spot if you’re looking to wow away your date.
WHERE: 8 BISHOPSGATE, EC2M 3TJ
Florals are in full force over at South Place Hotel and, quite frankly, we’re all blooming for it! Our favourite boutique hotel has partnered with the world’s very first French elderflower liquor, St-Germain, to create one very special ‘Mystical Garden’. Enjoy a cocktail or two under the blooms and while away your time.
WHERE: 3 SOUTH PLACE, FINSBURY, EC2M 2AF
If you’re thinking it’s time to take your romance to new heights, the Iris Bar at The Gherkin will sure help you do so. Cosy up with your partner amongst the clouds and enjoy one of their cocktail or two off their mighty drinks list.
WHERE: THE GHERKIN, 20 ST MARY AXE, EC3A 8BF
Cabaret and cocktails? Oh, go on then! Liven up your date night with a little help from fire-breathers, acrobats, aerialists and contortionists at Circus. Begin your night with one of Circus’ sharing cocktails or a bottle of Champers and let the entertainment glide your night along.
WHERE: 27-29 ENDELL STREET, COVENT GARDEN, WC2H 9BA
For a truly sensational cocktail experience look no further than Smith & Whistle. Hidden inside Mayfair’s Sheraton Grand London Park Lane hotel, Smith & Whistle provides the perfect backdrop to any date night. A personal cocktail of choice is the Cambreeze, a mix of Cambridge gin, cherry, Limoncello, cachaça and rosewater lemonade. It’s simply divine.
WHERE: SHERATON GRAND LONDON PARK LANE, PICCADILLY, LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
One skyscraper that’s simply sensational is The Shard. It’s bewilderingly tall so you can only imagine how astonishing the views are sky-high. For your next date night dress to impress with a cocktail in the clouds at the GŎNG Bar at the Shangri-La Hotel at The Shard, London. For a special Valentine’s treat, your front row seat to the city skyline comes with a bottle of Bollinger Special Cuvée, chef’s sushi platter for two and guaranteed window table.
WHERE: 31 St Thomas Street, London SE1 9QU United Kingdom
Away from the hustle and bustle of Mayfair sits Jak’s Mayfair, a four-storey quirky townhouse awaiting your discovery. Settle in for a cosy night of fruity cocktails downstairs in the underground cocktail bar, it’s sure to be a great spot.
WHERE: 43 SOUTH MOLTON STREET, MAYFAIR, W1K 5RS
If you’re looking to score serious date night points, settle in for an evening at The Piano Works and have the wonderful singers and band play your dates favourite tune. Paired alongside a glass of bubbly, a few nibbles and good company, it’s sure to be a night to remember.
WHERE: FARRINGDON / WEST END
Red is the colour of love so where better to head for a truly romantic date night than The New York Bar at The Rubens hotel. Led by Silviu Stan, the talented team will be ready to mix up your favourite bitter sweet cocktail in no time.
WHERE: 39 Buckingham Palace Road, Victoria, SW1W 0PS
One bar that’s guaranteed fulfil your romantic needs is The Leaf & Cane. Expect to be thrusted into 1920s Latin America as soon as you step inside and uncover the wild era that brought us fine cigars and smashing rum. Cosy up in your very own den, grab a rum cocktail and see where the night takes you.
WHERE: 19 New Bridge Street, London, UK
Think plush velvet seating, rose gold finishes and seductive cocktails, and you’ve got Manetta’s Bar tucked inside Flemings Mayfair. For an extra special Valentine’s treat, enjoy their romantic cocktails ‘Wild Romance’.
WHERE: 7-12 HALF MOON STREET, MAYFAIR, W1J 7BH
Arguably our favourite rooftop bar in London, Savage Garden continually serves up mystifying cocktails, savage food and picture-worthy views over the city. Currently the bar is serving up Austrian Après ski vibes in their Savage Schloss pop-up. It’s the perfect spot to cosy up with a loved one, boozy hot chocolate in tow.
WHERE: FLOOR 12, 7 PEPYS STREET, EC2N 4AF