It’s that time again… London Fashion Week is back. From Friday 12 until Tuesday 16 September, fashion’s biggest movers and shakers will be watching the likes of Cara Delevinge and Jourdan Dunn sashay down the catwalk in the clothes we’ll all be wearing come spring/summer 2015.
But even fashion folk have to eat (yes really). So to help make life a little easier for Anna Wintour et al, Haute Time has hand-picked five fabulous bars and restaurants all within a stone’s throw of Somerset House (where the main catwalk shows are being staged)…
Located in old Covent Garden, Balthazar’s interior has been hailed by Bloomberg critic Richard Vines as being “among the most beautiful in London.” But enough of the decor, "what’s the food like?" we hear you cry. The answer is seriously good from the Scrambled eggs and Cornish crab to Sweetcorn fritters, a Gruyere and herb omelet and Hazelnut waffles. Balthazar attracts celebs (on our last visit we spotted tennis ace Boris Becker), so be prepared to battle for a booking. But if you get one, you won’t be disappointed.
4-6 Russell Street, W12
2. Holborn Dining Room
In a city that is already home to more all-day brasseries than you can shake a stick at, you might question the need for one more. However a meal at Holborn Dining Room – the new restaurant from Des McDonald should put that thought to rest. Situated inside the newish Rosewood Hotel in what was the former banking hall of Pearl Assurance, the interior design by Martin Brudunizki (the man behind the hotel’s Scarfes Bar) is a treat. Expect sumptuous ‘Routemaster’ red leather banquettes, antique chandeliers and oak finishes that reflect the site’s great British heritage.Meanwhile the well executed menu encompasses breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. This is a slick, stylish, reliable British restaurant that you’ll want to return to – it really is that good.
Rosewood London, 252 High Holborn, WC1
Located on the site of the old Marconi House, this relatively new (Radio opened during summer 2013) kid on the roof top block oozes glamour – think candles and Ibiza-esque sofas. Much like Chiltern Firehouse, getting into Radio can be a challenge but the stunning south facing views – expect to see both Big Ben and the Oxo Tower – reward any effort involved. The cocktails hit the spot too. Don’t miss the Mile High Margarita, Radio-Active and AM/FM which you can enjoy until a civilised 3am.
10th floor, ME London, 336-337 The Strand, WC2
4. The Savoy
When it comes to classic London hotels, you can rarely do better than The Savoy which, during its 125 years, has been the destination of choice for everyone who is anyone. But The Savoy isn't only a top place to sleep, it's also a great place to eat: Kaspar’s Seafood Bar and Grill, launched in May 2013, joining Gordon Ramsay’s Savoy Grill and the British institution that is Simpson’s-In-The-Strand. Alternatively take afternoon tea in the Thames Foyer or enjoy a drink in The American Bar or the new Beaufort Bar.
Strand, London, WC2
5. The Strand Dining Rooms
The Strand Dining Rooms – aka the newest addition to London’s dining scene – has many points in its favour: a central London location (the Rat Pack worthy restaurant is situated just off Trafalgar Square in the grandiose Grand Buildings), a majestic setting (all high ceilings and warm woods reminiscent of the interior of a traditional Pullman Coach), terrific service (think warm and efficient in equal measure) and first class food and drink. Highlights include the Heritage beetroot salad with Fletcher’s Berkswell and the Goats cheese croquette with Summer greens salad and raspberry vinaigrette – two delicate starters perfect for the carb conscious fashion brigade..
Grand Buildings, Trafalgar Square, 1-3 Strand, WC2