A recent study found London to be the most Instagrammed capital city in the world – take that, Paris! Whilst Hyde Park nabs the top spot, there are certainly restaurants that we consider worthy of a ‘gram, be it a dish plated up like a work of art, particularly cool interior design or just a good old brunch. Here is our pick of the most photogenic destinations in London that will have you reaching for your phone. After all, if it isn’t caught on camera, did it really happen?
Why: We challenge you to walk into the vast dining room of Berners Tavern inside the London EDITION and not mutter “wow”. It’s hard to get an original shot here so embrace the art covered walls, ornate ceiling and huge central chandelier in your viewfinder. The food isn’t bad either; doorstop-sized brioche French toast, pork belly and a generously filled chocolate eclair tend to dominate the Instagram feed. No filter required.
Where: 10 Berners Street, London W1T 3NP
Why: Mondrian's Dandelyan bar has just been crowned the third Best Bar in the World so surely that makes it worth a visit? Throw in the fact the cocktails are innovative and exotic (it won 'World's Best Cocktail Menu 2016' and the man behind them, Ryan Chetiyawardana, is 'The World's Best Bartender') and the bar overlooks the Thames and you're on to a winner. Not to mention the Tom Dixon designed interior which constantly makes it onto lists of London's best interior design. Need to chill? Head for the serene agua Bathouse and Spa. Need to eat? Sea Containers restaurant is a winner. An Instagrammers dream from every angle.
Where: Mondrian London at Sea Containers, 20 Upper Ground, London, SE1 9PD
Why: Madison St Pauls is officially the second most Instagrammed location in London (after Hyde Park), and we can see why. Suckers for a good view, tourists and Londoners alike fall for the classic shot of cocktail in the foreground, cathedral in the background. Champagne and cocktails make the perfect sundowners - obviously ideal in summer but in winter the terraces are heated. Bonus points if you catch the sun setting.
Where: Rooftop Terrace, 1 New Change, St Pauls, London, EC4M 9AF
Why: Who wouldn’t want their very own ‘press for Champagne’ button? A favourite for Dream Home boards on Pinterest, these nifty little buttons aren’t the only photogenic feature of Soho’s Bob Bob Ricard. Ever seen videos of imploding chocolate bombs on Facebook and wondered where you can sample such a delight? Bob’s your uncle. And the location of your next ‘gram... or two.
Where: 1 Upper James Street, Soho, W1F 9DF
Why: Describe Sketch in one word and it would obviously be ‘pink’. The marshmallow coloured seats and walls will have you reaching for your phone, but the woodland mural in The Glade Bar and egg-shaped loos and are pretty cool too. Bet you never thought you’d actually pee in a pod.
Where: 9 Conduit Street, London, W1S 2XG
Why: Bleecker Street is the King of Instagram burgers, and actually the King of burgers full stop. Pure filth (in the best way), the stacked patties are oozing with melted cheese, sandwiched between a sesame bun. They’re two-handers so sacrifice the selfie and pass your phone to someone else if you want an action shot.
Where: Spitalfields, South Bank and Canary Wharf
Why: The Churchill Arms is another of those famous venues you’ve probably seen dozens of times and not necessarily noted the name of - mainly because it’s hidden behind a dense array of flowers in hanging baskets, replaced by mini Christmas trees for the festive period. Technically you don’t even need to go inside to get the perfect shot but the Thai food is worth a sit down, as are the proper ales.
Where: 119 Kensington Church Street, Kensington, W8 7LN
Why: Dim lighting is ideal for date night anyway but add in the fact that you’re dining under a canopy of blossom and the romance factor just went through the roof. It’s worth noting that the famous conservatory makes up a small section of the restaurant so if considering for Valentine’s Day, forget it. Staff are polished, tablecloths are crisp and the wine list extensive.
Where: 33 King Street, Covent Garden, WC2E 8JD
Why: Michelin-starred Lima is a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach. The most prized dish of all? Octopus Olivo; octopus braised with white quinoa and botija olives, dotted with perfect polka dots of lilac sauce. Every dish is delicate, colourful and flavoured to perfection and even though the former doesn’t count in a photograph, it makes it all worthwhile.
Where: 31 Rathbone Place, Fitzrovia, W1T 1JH
Why: You probably feel like you’ve been to SushiSamba even if you never have. The second venue on the list of most Instagrammed places in London, SushiSamba serves sushi and cocktails *almost* as photogenic as the view - well, London from the 38th floor is pretty spectacular. The fairylit red tree on the terrace is the most popular photo, although the restaurant itself is pretty spectacular, especially at night.
Where: 110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY
Written by: Fran Hazell