Winter igloos are back! Back in situ, back in our lives and back on our cold-weather bucket-lists.
If you’re new to the concept then… rather than sitting in a well-heated, expertly designed restaurant, in close proximity to the kitchen (and loos), you’re out in the garden in a Perspex igloo. And, weirdly, it’s really quite cool. The igloos are generally heated and well appointed with fleecy things to cover yourself in and prettily decorated with seasonal bits. But best of all they’re your own personal space, where you can be seen enjoying yourself by all passersby from within your little cocoon. A bit like Instagram.
So here are some of our favourites that are taking bookings now – if you want to up the winter factor, book one of these light shows to visit first…
For London’s most wintry experience, look to The Dorchester and their magical rooftop transformation. This winter they have welcomed cosy igloos inspired by London’s frost fairs of old.
Dine sky high with views over the city and delight on a culinary adventure. Designed to share, look forward to Vacherin fondue; Alpine salad; venison wellington; and chestnut and mandarin baked Alaska.
Where: Park Lane, London W1K 1QA
The two signs that winter’s coming are the swallows flying south and Thames-side restaurant Coppa Club launches their famous igloos. But unlike their auspicious feathered partners, the igloos do stick around for the summer.
Coppa Club launched the igloos just a handful of years ago and yet they’ve become an institution, capturing the imaginations of Londoners with their beautifully half-timbered aesthetic and their view, overlooking Tower Bridge and The Shard.
A truffled wagyu burger that sounds completely hashtag-burger goals...
Diners enjoy table service from Coppa Club but in their own private pod, decked with foliage and protected from the elements. You can now order from their two or three-course festive menu, from parmesan croquettes and homemade tortellini to the classic Christmas pudding.
Blankets are provided, but do wrap up on particularly chilly days.
Where: 3 Three Quays Walk, Lower Thames Street, The City, EC3R 6AH
In our entirely subjective opinion, the prettiest igloos in London, Aviary match the solid build of their pods with a brilliant view of The City and they’re finished like your front room for maximum comfort.
The pods can be booked all the way until May!
The tenth-storey igloos, high above Finsbury Square, come complete with sheep pelts and blankets. They make their return for 2022 this month, with booking set to open imminently.
Where: 10th Floor of the Montcalm Royal London House Hotel, 22-25 Finsbury Square, The City, EC2A 1DX
Coppa Club Putney
Coppa Club (yes them again) also have an outpost in Putney and… it’s got dining pods!
With three bookable igloos, to the same design and standard as the London Bridge ones (they’ve also igloo-ed up their Brighton, Cobham Village, Maidenhead, Henley-on-Thames, Sonning-on-Thames and Streatley-on-Thames locations).
A short walk from Putney Bridge, it is a dreamy spot to enjoy a meal with friends.
Where: 29 Brewhouse Lane, Putney, SW15 2JX
Skylight at Tobacco Dock dramatically changes personality from season to season with no SAD lamp required. The rest of us might be carping on about curtailed daylight, and ‘coat weather’ but at Skylight everything’s jolly.
The igloos and four booths take up the top two tiers of rooftop space...
That’s because winter Skylight comes complete with igloos, along with all manner of wintery activities, like skating and curling!
The igloos and four booths take up the top two tiers of rooftop space, guaranteeing fantastic views across East London, and they come with table service, street-food snacking and platters.
Where: Tobacco Dock, Pennington Street entrance, St Katharine’s and Wapping, E1W 2SF
Jimmy Garcia’s South Bank lodges are returning! The king of pop-ups is back with his ‘snow globes’ – the unanswered question, though, is if you turn them upside down and shake them do they really turn into a blizzard?
You'll need to pony up at least £100 a head on runny cheese...
This year’s instalment is yet to be announced but we do know it’s created in partnership with Ramsbury Single Estate Spirits so we can expect some brilliant drinks on the menu, as well as some traditional Alpine fondue and mixed charcuterie.
The globes accommodate upto six guests, and the Thames-side experience is probably as close as you’ve gotten to the actual Alps in a couple of years now.
Where: Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, Southbank, SE1 8XX
Wagtail reveals its highly-anticipated winter terraces, featuring two stunning bookable igloos and a fully heated and covered rooftop bar in partnership with luxury Whisky brand, Johnie Walker Blue. With a 360-degree rooftop bar, you’re guaranteed to have unforgettable views of the city.
These enchanting igloos seat up to 20 guests and are open for Christmas parties, festive functions and intimate gatherings. Lit by sparkling lights, enjoy amazing food on the backdrop of a snowy London this Christmas season in Wagtails Winter Igloos.
Where: 68 King William St, London EC4N 7HR