A district in the city of London, England, located on the eastern fringes of the town’s West End, between St. Martin’s Lane and Drury Lane, Covent Garden is one of the most popular tourists regions in the city. It is also a wonderful place in which to quench your thirst, at one of the quarter’s many different bars, pubs and cocktail lounges.
Covent Garden first became popular as the site of the former fruit and vegetable market that was located in its central square, but it is now populated mainly by shoppers and tourists looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Central London. Covent Garden is home to the Royal Opera House that bears the same name, the London Transport Museum and the Theatre Royal, located on Drury Lane.
If you find yourself thirsty after a long day of sightseeing in Covent Garden, we’ve got you covered. Below we have listed and highlighted some of the best and most popular drinking destinations in this region, and provided a brief description of each locale.
Covent Garden Cocktail Club
The Covent Garden Cocktail Club is one of the most fashionable cocktail bars in this part of the city. Although the bar is a members-only locale, visitors can check out the Covent Garden Cocktail Club if they attend with a member, and the experience is well worth it. Boasting a vintage atmosphere and an early 20th century vibe, the lounge is especially popular among the region’s older patrons, and the wide-ranging menu of cocktails represents some of the most popular drinks of yesteryear with a modern twist—a twist that relies heavily on house-squeezed juices and fresh spices, herbs and fruits.
With its dated furniture and simple décor, the Covent Garden Cocktail Club feels more like a 1920s speakeasy than a modern British bar.
Inamo Covent Garden
The Inamo Covent Garden is a two-story bar and restaurant that is ideal for a date night or private party. On the top floor of this trendy locale is the restaurant—an eatery that truly takes advantage of modern technology. Patrons place their grub order via an electronic tablet at their table, and even “set their own tabletop projections,” in a restaurant that specializes in Asian-pan delicacies, particularly sushi and a variety of Asian-based soups and appetizers, created by head chef Jon Claro.
Downstairs, you will find the Inamo Covent Garden’s pleasant and warm bar area, with a horseshoe-shaped bar and well-dressed bartenders that definitely know their way around a shaker. Here you can enjoy a glass of wine or one of the bar’s imaginative and original cocktails, which also lean toward an Asian influence.
Be at One
If your perfect and preferred bar experience includes music and dancing, you will definitely want to make your way to the Covent Garden bar known as Be at One. Known for hosting some of the best private parties in the region, the bar might seem a bit upscale to visitors, but with its (semi) affordable drinks and cool, friendly atmosphere, a more comfortable bar you will not find in the city.
Located in the basement of one of Covent Garden’s most historic buildings, Be at One hosts one of the best happy hours in the city (5 PM to 7 PM Monday through Friday), and its juke box is always cranking out the very best tunes of the day. A small stage area occasionally hosts live music performances, during which tipsy revelers cheer on the band as they shake they stuff on the crowded dance floor.
Tropicana Beach Club
The beach-themed bar known as the Tropicana Beach Club is rapidly gaining in popularity as one of the best and most well-visited bars in Covent Garden. In what’s actually more of a nightclub than a neighborhood bar, the Tropicana Beach Club is renowned for its music, put on by local DJs as well as a variety of live bands, including a number of big name artists from London and beyond. Partiers at the bar can often be seen dancing on the lagoon-themed dance floor as the music plays, stopping only briefly to sip from one of the destination’s delicious signature cocktails or craft beers.
The cocktails at the Tropicana Beach Club are scrumptious and fruity, similar to what you might find in Hawaii or Polynesia, and the surroundings here are very laid back, with make-shift cabanas serving as booths and a long fiberglass bar that resembles a surfboard. And if you happen to visit the club on a Thursday evening, you may want to try your luck in the limbo contest, after which the top three benders receive drink prizes and a spattering of much-deserved applause from the fun, happy crowd.
Tucked away in the basement of Joe’s Southern Kitchen in Covent Garden is a little secret you just have to check out: Cocktail Baby. Cocktail Baby is an entertaining, and almost retro cocktail lounge that is always pleasant and friendly. Here you will find an all-inclusive compilation of beer, wine and spirits, served up by uniformed bartenders that are always happy and eager to lend an ear. Happy hour (from 4PM until 6:30 PM) is especially popular here, with terrific specials on craft beers, ciders and $1 off all well drinks.
On the weekend nights at Cocktail Baby, when the bar stays open into the wee hours of the morning, the club truly comes alive. Soulful blues music and a bit of disco blare over the speakers as drinkers become dancers on the small dance floor.
Top Secret Comedy Club
For a truly different—and very uplifting—experience when visiting Covent Garden, make sure to check out the Top Secret Comedy Club, which also doubles as a fantastic bar and eatery. Located in a basement below a popular Drury Lane restaurant, the two-room Top Secret Comedy Club features a medium-sized bar area, with a long, straight, wooden bar, hilarious bartenders and a décor that pays homage to the comic industry, with walls adorned with headshot photos and posters from days gone by.
In the second room of the Top Comedy Club, get ready to laugh while you sip on one of the club’s classic cocktail creations. The club features top-draw comics at least four nights a week, with names that include Jason Manford and Jack Whitehall, both of whom are very popular throughout the UK and Europe for their crazy and witty hysterics.
Covent Garden by fiach/Pixabay CC0 license