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Written by Luke Bull

September 23, 2022

Our favourite Leicester Square bars

Gomorrah. Dis. Pandæmonium. Leicester Square. Few places strike fear into the heart of the humble traveller more than these loci of hell and despair.

Okay, that might be an exaggeration, but the advert-drenched, heavily populated churn of London's hectic heart can be bewildering at best. Ask us, and we say there are few better ways of getting out of the crowd than perching up on a cosy bar and swirling a well-made drink slowly in your hand.

For all the many sins of Leicester square, it is blessed with a litany of great drinking spots. From quiet dens of vice to uproarious music bars that offer private hire, here are some of our top picks of Leicester Square's best bars.

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1. Step out of Leicester Square to taste some 1920’s Shanghai, ‘the Paris of the East’ at Opium’s themed Cocktail Bar and Dim Sum Parlour in the heart of London’s Chinatown.

Leicester Square, London

Step out of Leicester Square to taste some 1920’s Shanghai,at Opium’s themed Cocktail Bar and Dim Sum Parlour in the heart of London’s Chinatown,

This wonderful venue is split across two floors, housing three oriental-themed cocktail bars-within-a-bar. The Academy bar is located on the top floor and is split into two sections, the ‘Attic’ which has a more lounge feel with lower coffee tables, sofa seating and quirky booths and their signature ‘Bartender’s Table’ where you can drink around the bar and enjoy watching their bartenders.

The Apothecary bar is located on the second floor, with higher tables and chairs on one side facing the Tea Parlour. There’s also their hidden Peony bar located behind the red curtains on the second floor. The space is perfect for private functions accommodating up to 30 people seated and standing.

Each bar serves cocktails designed by Julia Sprenger who, together with the support of Campari and Mangrove, helped create their menus showcasing some classics with a distinct oriental twist. So if you’re into Pornstar martinis or Pisco Sours then it's worth checking out the ‘Bittersweet Harmony’ or our favourite the ‘Clarified HK Punch’ – a hit of rum, gin, vermouth, coffee, and peat, of all things.

2. Escape into a world of glamour & incredible performances at Circus

Leicester Square, London

Circus is a unique experience. A fusion of modern pan-Asian dining with jaw-dropping performances at the cocktail bar. Situated in the heart of London’s beautiful Covent Garden you are sure to stay entertained with every meal and if you like a cheeky brunch on the weekend then look no further.

Guests are kept guessing as the details of the performances are kept under wraps but be assured to see nothing short of extraordinary from acrobatics, burlesque, contortionists and fire-breathers. A great experience. Open every Wednesday - Saturday for dinner and Saturday brunches.

3. For the lovers of live music come to The Piano Works West End

Leicester Square, London

If you have a song you just can’t get out of your head and your are looking for something more rich than just the version on your phone then head over to The Piano Works.

Located near London’s Leicester Square and with non-stop live music, cocktails and bottomless brunch you can grab yourself a request slip and scribble down that song which has been on your mind.

Sit back and watch the 6-piece house band bring it to life. Enjoy the 2 piano vocalists and accompanying musicians play a non-stop repertoire of music decided only by you the audience.

4. Hey big spender: the Horizons Casino is calling

Leicester Square, London

Feeling lucky?

Then try your hand at the games Horizons has to offer. From roulette, to baccarat, blackjack and three-card pokes. There's a plethora of options.

You'll find a premium bar (with premium prices) packed with all the drinks you could wish for, alongside a dinner menu offering red and white meat, fish and vegetarian options.

Found in Leicester Square, the home of nightlife, Horizons is a place which caters to everyone, so don’t be shy. Gamble responsibly, obviously.

5. Leicester Square's mixologist bar: The Alchemist London - St Martins Lane

Leicester Square, London

The bubble bath, the cherry poppins, the popsicle and lightbulb moments: just a few of the eye-popping cocktails you will see smoking away at The Alchemist at St. Martin’s Lane.

Get in on the act with the ‘Bath Bomb’. Drop a concoction of dark fruits into a fruity medley of rhubarb and apple gin. Watch as your drink fizzes away and takes you back to your chemistry class. T

The venue provides an all-day dining experience with an Alchemist touch on classic dishes. So, the next time you’re in Covent Garden head over to The Alchemist you are sure to be bedazzled, then drunk, very drunk.

The best bars near Leicester Square

If you're looking for a bar to hire in one of London's most iconic areas, you're in the right place. Leicester Square isn't just home to famous cinemas and theatres, it's full of a variety of bars with private hire options for your next event. Find your perfect bar near Leicester Square today.

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