Best Christmas party venues in London
20th November 2017
Whether you’re seeking an opulent restaurant for an intimate evening, or an epic venue for an unforgettable celebration with your team, London is full of exciting Christmas party venues. In this article we look at a range of outstanding options, from bars with crazy golf courses to fine-dining boats.
For a party with a twist, head to Swingers – a venue based on a 1920s English country golf club with two 9-hole crazy golf courses, five bars and three street food restaurants. The venue is truly unique and perfect for those in legal jobs wanting to let their hair down. The team at Swingers told us more about this special venue:
“Swingers is perfect for Christmas parties as there really is something for everyone. Nowhere else in London can you find three famous street food vendors (Patty & Bun, Pizza Pilgrims and DF / Mexico), delicious cocktails served by expert mixologists and crazy golf, all under one roof.
“With an array of private areas to book, a dedicated events team and nightly live DJs, Swingers will ensure your guests keep talking about your festive celebrations for a long time to come. There’s nowhere quite like it in London, or indeed the world. We’re geared up to provide the most fun possible in a totally unique setting, leaving even the office Grinch wanting another round on and off the course.”
Admire London’s most iconic architecture from the water on a Bateaux London cruise. These impressive fine-dining boats are perfect for a magical Christmas party. To find out more about this remarkable venue, we caught up with Bateaux London Cruises marketing manager Gareth Brown:
“Bateaux London is the capital’s leading restaurant cruise on the Thames,” said Gareth. “Our repertoire includes lunch, Sunday lunch, afternoon tea and dinner cruises as well as exclusive hire, private dining and festive parties. We combine delicious food, exclusive views of London and live entertainment to create a truly momentous and memorable way to enjoy the city. We have two vessels in our fleet, ‘Symphony’ and ‘Harmony’, with capacities of up to 220 and 300 guests respectively.”
As well as Symphony and Harmony, which lead guests down the Thames in the heart of London, Bateaux London now has an equally stunning vessel in Windsor, which launched in April 2017. Gareth added: “’Melody’ is a smaller vessel, with a capacity of up to 40 guests – a more intimate offer to our larger London boats. We are excited to be running a variety of festive themed Windsor cruises this December.
“Bateaux London is a stunning venue for Christmas parties because it allows guests to sit back and watch London’s sights unfold before their eyes. Our Christmas dinners and evening receptions are particularly festive, with the bridges lit up to reflect the magical time of year. Throughout December our boats are decked out in decorations, including a Christmas tree and festive music. On select dates, we run ‘shared festive cruises’, which run a little longer to normal cruises and include some extra treats – including a Christmas cracker! We also have some spaces left for New Year’s Eve, which is a luxurious five-hour cruise that takes you into 2018.
“At Bateaux Windsor we are running a variety of festive cruises too; including festive lunch, supper and dinner cruises. We are also running cruises on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
“What sets Bateaux London apart from other venues in the capital is the fact that it brings together three key elements into one experience; great food, live entertainment and striking views. With kitchens on board our boats, our food is freshly prepared and cooked on the vessel. We call ourselves ‘London’s Moving Restaurant’ for a reason – we are one of the few London boats our size that boasts on board kitchens (kitchens on the premises is what defines a restaurant).
“Our entertainment is of a high standard and we have an entertainment director who carefully selects our singers and musicians and creates our playlists. There is nothing quite like eating delicious food with live music as you look out of the window at the changing iconic skyline.”
Bleeding Heart, Farringdon
For indulgent French cuisine, Bleeding Heart should be at the top of your list. This elegant restaurant, housed in a historical building in the centre of London, doubles up as a fantastic Christmas party venue. As well as its attractive décor, the building has a fascinating history. “It takes its name from the yard where it is located which, according to the history books, was named after a 17th century beauty, Lady Elizabeth Hatton, who was found murdered there,” said marketing and communications manager Michael Calderbank. “The warm, wood-panelled restaurant is an ideal venue for both an important business lunch (customers cross the City of London for the famed cheeseboard) and for a romantic ‘diner a deux’ – it was voted by The Times as the most romantic restaurant in London.”
Bleeding Heart offers charming and atmospheric private dining rooms, seating from 12 to 120. So, whether you have a large or small legal team, you’re guaranteed to find the perfect space. According to Michael, they all offer “warm hospitality and impeccable service”. He added: “For over 30 years, the private dining rooms at the privately-owned Bleeding Heart Restaurants in historic, cobble-stoned Bleeding Heart Yard have been the city of London’s first choice for client entertaining, business meetings, banquets, weddings, wine tastings and any event that calls for a celebration.
“Perfectly situated, midway between the City and London’s West End, Bleeding Heart Yard is but a three-minute walk from Farringdon Station, from where it is one stop on the underground to both Barbican and Kings Cross, or a five-minute walk from Chancery Lane Station and Holborn.”
We asked Michael what makes this venue the perfect choice for a Christmas party: “Bleeding Heart really know how to do Christmas, they have been serving up festive fare since 1982. If you haven’t sampled our Christmas hospitality over the past 34 years, now’s the time to try, so book now, before all the best dates are taken.
“It’s always special for us, and we’d like to make it special for you, too. If you are one of our army of regulars, you’ll know that we know how to organise a proper Christmas party. Choose from a fine selection of Christmas menus to suit all tastes and budgets.”
In the heart of London, The Brewery occupies a beautiful grade two listed building in period architectural style. This spectacular venue is recognised for hosting corporate events and, according to the team, creating “out of this world” Christmas parties.
The Brewery told us that their previous themes, inspired by the Northern Lights and the masquerade balls of renaissance Venice, have been a big hit. In 2017, they’re planning something even more opulent. “Every year The Brewery creates a completely standalone brand for its Christmas party run,” said the team. “This year’s theme, ‘Journey to the Moon’, will sweep guests back in time to a golden era of vintage glamour as they witness the dawn of Hollywood.
“Nothing is off limits and to ensure guests have parties devoted to their team and its needs, The Brewery offers three different packages at Christmas. Whether it’s exclusively taking over the Porter Tun (the venue’s largest space), utilising one of its smaller rooms, or enjoying a shared party, the packages are all inclusive so organisers know exactly what they are getting, and how much they are paying in advance. All services are provided in-house, allowing the team to maintain the highest levels of production at fantastic value for money, resulting in an exceptional level of service through every part of the event experience.”
Embracing technology and creating mesmerising displays are what sets The Brewery apart, according to the team, as well as its top-quality cuisine: “One aspect which truly sets The Brewery apart from other venues is the standard of its catering. The young, dynamic team of chefs have created a culinary offering that goes far beyond what was previously considered possible to achieve for larger audiences. The plates are refined, colourful and demand attention. Executive chef Steve Connell and his brigade create bespoke Christmas menus, at restaurant standard, regardless of whether a party is 40 or 1,000.”
This year’s packages at The Brewery feature immersive entertainers on arrival, a live band and an after-dinner DJ along with the Journey to the Moon venue design. For more details, visit their website.
The Magic Roundabout
In the middle of Old Street roundabout, this venue is truly one of a kind. The Magic Roundabout can only be accessed via a secret staircase in Old Street station, offering award-winning food and music. Sarah Holgate, creative director at this amazing venue, told us what guests can expect at their Christmas party:
“Magic Roundabout is a 500 capacity venue made up of four bars, three food traders and a dance floor. It changes décor each season to offer a totally quirky, heated, covered winter space, ideal for Christmas parties!
“This year they are doing a ‘decades’ theme with areas paying homage to the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. You’ll literally never know that you are right in the middle of a traffic roundabout, above a tube station. The venue offers bookable areas for groups of 5+ and has two semi-private areas for groups of up to 125 guests. They offer top-notch party packages starting at £60pp for unlimited drinks and a three course meal.”
Other unusual Christmas party venues
As you’d expect, everything inside the ICEBAR is made of pristine ice, gathered from the frozen Torne River in Jukkasjarvi, Sweden. While we in the UK rarely experience a white Christmas, choosing ICEBAR for your party venue can help to make this dream a reality. The venue transforms into a winter wonderland in the festive season and offers groups the chance to take part in ice sculpting, carving, mixology masterclasses, vodka luge and hugs from huskies. ICEBAR welcomes parties from 25 to 270 guests.
Mr Fogg’s Residence
Themed around the fictional eccentric British adventurer, Phileas J. Fogg from Jules Verne’s novel Around the World in 80 Days, this venue will leave a lasting impression on its guests. Spectacularly decorated all-year-round, Mr Fogg’s Residence is a unique place to spend your Christmas party. Old fashioned decorations adorn the tables, walls and ceilings, and beautiful cocktails are served along with a festive feast. The venue welcomes groups of up to 150 guests.
Christmas parties are a great way to help teams bond and unwind. If you’re in a legal job and looking for the perfect party venue for your colleagues, we’re sure any of the above would be an excellent choice.
Image credits: Bleeding Heart, Swingers, The Brewery, The Magic Roundabout, Bateaux London Cruises