Elsa Riley


Favorite spots in London

Published on March 13th, 2023 by Elsa

This carefully curated list is the result of years of exploring everything that London has to offer. From cozy, intimate restaurants to fine dining to tucked-away speakeasy bars; below you will find all. At the end there's a number of places I have yet to try - perhaps with you?


Chiltern Firehouse
The Connaught
Mandarin Oriental
Four Seasons
Bulgari Hotel
Hotel Café Royal
Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons (1 hour from London)
Cliveden House (1 hour from London)

Number or * denotes Michelin stars.
Ginza St James’s (Japanese)
Frog by Adam Handling (Modern) *
Bob Bob Ricard (British)
CUT at 45 Park Lane (Meats and Grills)
Helene Darroze (Modern French) ***
Le Gavroche (French) **
Chiltern Firehouse restaurant (Modern)
Restaurant Gordon Ramsay (French) ***
Wiltons restaurant (Seafood)
Estiatorio Milos (Greek, Seafood)
Launceston Place (French)
The Araki (Japanese)
Kerridge’s Bar & Grill (Modern British)
Latymer at Pennyhill Park Hotel (1 hour from London, seriously deserving of two stars)

Nightjar (cocktails and live jazz)
Swift Soho (cocktails)
Opium (speakeasy)
The Connaught Bar
Scarfes bar
Eve Bar (the *best* Manhattan)
Satan’s Whiskers (cocktails)
Bar With Shapes for a Name (cocktails)
Found (cocktails)
Disrepute (cocktails)

Live music, musicals & plays
Ronnie Scott’s
Scarfes bar (live music every night)
Jazzlive at The Crypt
Phantom of the Opera
Cirque du Soleil
The Book of Mormon
Anything Shakespeare, or classic American play

Spa & relaxation
AIRE Ancient Baths
The Bulgari Spa
ESPA Life at Corinthia
The Spa at the Mandarin Oriental
Akasha Spa at Hotel Café Royal

Want to try

A. Wong (Chinese) **
Sketch (The Lecture Room & Library) (Modern French) ***
Umu (Japanese) *
Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester (French) ***
Pétrus by Gordon Ramsay (French) *
CORE by Clare Smyth (Modern British) ***
Evelyn’s Table (French/Japanese) *
Murano (North Italian) *
Roji (Japanese Omakase)
Roketsu (Japanese Kaiseki)
Sollip (International, Korean) *
Kol (Mexican) *
La Dame de Pic London (Modern French) **
Kitchen W8 (Modern) *
The Fat Duck (Creative) *** (1 hour from London)

Viajante 87 (cocktails)
Oriole (speakeasy)
Gordon’s Wine Bar (wine)
Nine Lives (cocktails)
The Thin White Duke (cocktails)
The White Horse (wine)
Below (cocktails)

Plays & musicals
Dance of Death (16 - 31 March)
Phaedra (until 8 April)
Medea (11 February – 22 April)
The Lehman Trilogy (24 January – 20 May)
Macbeth (21 July – 28 October)
Witness for the Prosecution (until 28 April 2024)
Les Miserables
The Rocky Horror Show

Live music events
Elton John (2, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 13, 16, 17 April, 30 May)
November Ultra (17 April)
Sam Smith (19 April)
Duran Duran (1, 2 May)
Avril Lavigne (7, 9, 10 May)
Beyoncé (29, 30 May, 1, 3, 4 June)
Kool & The Gang (1 June)
José González (9, 10 June)
Wu-Tang Clan & Nas (13 June)
Hans Zimmer (14, 15 June)
Depeche Mode (17 June)
Chris Isaak (29 June)
Bruce Springsteen (6 July)
The Weeknd (7, 8 July)
The Weeknd and Kaytranada (18 August)
Shania Twain (16, 17 September)
The National (26, 27 September)
Madonna (14, 15 October)
Ane Brun (14 October)