Been a while since you’ve made it to a ski resort or stayed in a ski chalet in the mountains? Fear not, because you can still get cosy with firepits, fondue, and warming cocktails at one of London’s après ski pop-ups.
From twinkling lights and mulled wine, to firepits, oozing raclette and s’mores, strap on your ski boots and swoosh on over to these après ski lodges this winter. Ski you at the bar…
The seasons have dramatically changed at Fulham’s Winterland. The Neverland riverside destination has morphed from Balearic isle-themed white sands and day beds into a full-on Alpine experience. From forest igloos and alpine lodges to winter chalets and Bavarian tents, the whole place has been given an impressive mountain makeover. You can even dine in a ski lift!
With resident DJs, seasonal serves and plenty of igloos, this is the ultimate après ski retreat.
Forget après-ski; at Somerset House this winter you can experience après-skate. The annual skating rink plays centre stage at the iconic venue, dominating the famous courtyard. But stage-left, you’ll find an equally compelling draw with Chalet Suisse.
Brought to you by Jimmy’s Pop Up, the West Wing has been transformed into a chalet experience with a seasonal menu of cosy winter favourites, including four different kinds of fondue (traditional, wild mushroom, black truffle, or vegan); ‘The Swiss Burger’ with raclette, beef short rib bourguignon, celeriac remoulade and homemade pickles in a brioche bun; and the ‘Winter Swiss Mess’ made up of meringue, whipped cream, blackberry gel, fresh winter berries and toasted almonds.
Where: Strand, Greater, London WC2R 1LA
Haugen in Stratford is basically a year-round ski chalet, and we are here for it. A hidden East London gem, the restaurant is named after an unsung hero of the first Winter Olympics in 1924 and takes inspiration from Alpine dining in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and France.
Mirroring the après ski atmosphere on the Alps, the food and atmosphere will transport you slope-side, whether it’s Tignes, Matterhorn or Val d’Isère. Sip Alpine-inspired cocktails on the rooftop bar, or cosy up inside over their Haugen Brunch on the weekend. They also host Alpine Fondue Nights, where for £20pp you’ll get a choice of five Swiss cheese flavours, served with fresh bread and new potatoes.
An oasis in the heart of the city, The Corinthia’s Winter Garden was made for warm and comfortable alpine dining. Flipping from their summertime, Mediterranean garden theme, they’ve now switched to a seasonal wintery offering complete with elegant planting, festive lights, warm blankets and hot water bottles, as well as two cosy fireplaces.
There’s also a new Alpine menu, with Raclette, Beef cheek bourguignon, Bakes spâtzle with wild mushrooms, and Tarte flambé among the dishes. Drinks-wise, there’s hot cocktails like a 3 Mint Toddy, mulled wine, and our favourite – boozy hot chocolate.
Where: Whitehall Pl, London SW1A 2BD
Jimmy Garcia’s South Bank lodges are returning for 2022! The so-called king of pop-ups is back with his stylish riverside venture nestled along the Southbank.
New for this year is ‘Fire and Fromage’, a homage to the unbeatable mountain hospitality, celebrating the best food The Alps has to offer as you cosy up around fire pits with unlimited raclette and toast-your-own s’mores. For £35pp, you’ll get a Ramsbury Candied Lemon Collins or glass of mulled wine on arrival, followed by unlimited Savoyard raclette with sourdough baguettes, new potatoes with confit garlic, mixed leaf salad, cornichons and mixed charcuterie. For dessert, it’s s’mores – home-baked cookies, chocolate and marshmallows to toast over your own campfire.
There’s also Jimmy’s famous igloos to cosy up in, of course. Accommodating up to ten guests, the famous globes sit right on the banks of the Thames, with stunning views across the river and quality food, which surely makes the £650 minimum spend per snow globe worth it.
The Montague on the Gardens is back with their Ski Lodge for another year, and it’s looking better than ever. Just steps from Bloomsbury Street, the hotel has transformed their terrace from a summer beach bar to an alpine lodge complete with ski racks, snowmen and pine trees. There’s even falling snow!
But between the reindeer, piste maps, and strings of fairy lights forming the décor, you can also enjoy a taste of the mountains too, with après-themed drinks including 12 different flavours of schnapps and chilled vodka. Ski snacks will be plentiful, with candied pecans, mulled wine, hot spiced cider and mugs of steaming hot chocolate cocktails free-flowing.
Available for exclusive hire, or for hotel residents (although, you might get lucky as a walk-in), guests will get to indulge in alpine nibbles – think mini turkey schnitzel, bratwurst sausage and deep-fried camembert. Stay warm with blankets, snuggled by the fire in a true chalet-like experience.
Where: 15 Montague St, London WC1B 5BJ
Lilly’s has introduced its Winter Terrace this month, located on Covent Garden’s pretty piazza and complete with a brand new fondue and hot cocktails menu worthy of a ski slope. The menu includes an indulgent Swiss Gruyere Fondue, created by foreigner Claridge’s executive pastry chef, Kimberley Lin. It’s everything you could possibly want from a melted pot of cheese, made up of a gooey blend of Swiss Gruyere Cheese, Swiss Emmental, white wine and a touch of brandy, served with cubes of bread and warm new potatoes.
There’s also mulled wine on offer, as well as sparkling Christmas cocktail, the Sleigh Ride, made with cognac, Cointreau, orange and cranberry juice, topped with Champagne and garnished with rosemary. Heated seats and blankets will keep you warm and cosy as you people-watch on the piazza.
Where: 3 Henrietta St, London WC2E 8LU
Bringing the spirit of alpine hedonism to London this winter, Pergola Paddington will transform into Pergola On The Piste this winter, a stunning ski lodge for après-style partying with DJs and live entertainment.
Get your ski boots on and head down for an evening of alpine-inspired food specials – we’ll see you on the piste.
Where: 5 Kingdom St, London W2 6PY
Archer Street’s underground beach bar totally flip themes come wintertime and embraces the alps in all their glory. Its annual transformation takes the bar from beach shack to après ski lodge for a boozy party mountain-style, and of course, they call it ‘Piste’.
Out with the palms and coconuts, and in with the antlers, fur-lined loungers and winter cocktails for a dreamy alpine escape – not to forget the delicious cheese and charcuterie plates. It’s the perfect après-ski atmosphere for all those missing the slopes.
Where: 3-4 Archer St, London W1D 7AP
Want to après all year round? Heritage Soho’s got you sorted, with a modern and contemporary dining experience that’ll transport you straight to the Alps. The kitchen uses the highest quality ingredients, sourced by local farms, producing contemporary sharing plates, prime cuts of meat, seafood and Alpine-inspired desserts.
Fondue is a mountain-must and these guys take it very seriously, with two delicious option to choose from. Go simple with traditional cheese fondue served with bread, baby potatoes and pickles, or try out their classic fondue with rich black truffle. Their sweet fondue is a must. Think melting chocolate with homemade marshmallows, fresh fruits and donuts.
Where: 18-20 Rupert St, London W1D 6DF
View this post on Instagram