With a flurry of exciting new London venues making their debut, we have shortlisted the three that should first be at the top of your must-visit list.
The Cross has made an extravaganza of a comeback as it reopens its legendary doors, having closed them for good in 2007. With its revival comes a bang of splendour through dining, lounging and dancing in a grown-up setting and its newfound home in the heart of King’s Cross.
The club’s founders in its former glory, Billy Reid and wife Gemma, remain at the helm of this opulent hideaway which spans six floors, each playing its own soundtrack centred around dance, electronic and house music from globally renowned DJ’s.
You enter this immersive space onto the horseshoe bar, an intimate lounge space with mixologist-blended cocktails, luxe chandeliers and plush red curtains – photos are strictly off-limits throughout the club, so be prepared to have a sticker placed on your phone as you walk in.
There’s a real sense of hedonism here, as you enter a carefree yet stylish place with a trendy crowd reliving their heydays of former visits to the club back in its earlier days – and the music just elevates the experience whether you’ve come to have an intimate drink, dine or dance the night away.
Upstairs on the first floor is The Cross’s main restaurant, seating up to 54 covers; it serves a contemporary menu of seasonally changing dishes with a sharing concept in mind. Think scallop Crudo, octopus carpaccio and lamb cutlets as standout plates. Try the chips which are indulgently topped with parmesan and truffle oil, and the salads make for a delectable light dish also with options ranging from a baby kale salad to a heartier apple, cucumber and fennel salad.
As you continue your exploration of this too-cool-for-school haunt, you’ll want to check out the red room for an intimate cocktail amongst lavish surroundings of velvet and textured wallpaper before making for the roof terrace to take in the gorgeous views, and Tulum beats – end the night in the basement club, open until 4am on Fridays and Saturdays for a curated programme of DJs, cool beats and dancing into the early hours.
A firm favourite with the royals over in Saudi Arabia, Lusin already counts three successful outposts across Saudi Arabia in its portfolio, and its Mayfair branch is its first internationally.
Translating as ‘moon’ in Armenian, Lusin is the brainchild of food entrepreneur Dr Mazen Amulgbel and serves authentic Armenian cuisine in a contemporary setting situated on the iconic Hay Hill in Mayfair.
Seating 100 guests, the restaurant is set over three floors and is entered via a glitzy entrance centred around three pillars adorned with hand-made carvings designed to resemble the Armenian signs of eternity and the tree of life.
With its modern décor, Lusin airs a breath of elegance throughout, and the low lighting gives a stylish ambience to the buzzing space. Armenian influence is also echoed through the walls, which feature Armenian tuff stone sourced from the mountains in uplifting pinks, violets, anti-tobacco and black.
For the London branch, 2-Michelin-starred chef Marcel Ravin has curated a menu featuring some of his signature dishes, notably including his famed Cherry Kebab, a delectable kebab skewer charcoaled and lightly coated in cherry source made with the sour cherries grown in Armenia between June-July each year.
The menu showcases traditional cooking techniques across meat, fish and salad dishes, all prepared with a real gastronomic flair and other signature dishes on the menu include the Lusin Kibbeh made with mixed daily fresh meat and the Lusin salad, which is a hearty dish of aubergine, fresh vegetables and topped with shredded Armenian cheese.
Not quite a newcomer anymore but still noteworthy as it marks its first anniversary, Colonel Saab has transformed the former Holborn Town Hall into a celebrated Indian restaurant and, to commemorate the occasion, has launched an exciting tasting menu.
Primely positioned within the old town hall; the restaurant has become best known since its opening for its lavish décor adorned with an array of Indian artefacts and artworks which have been collected over the years by the restaurant’s owner Roop Partap Choudhary during his travels across India with his mother and as a homage to her and his father Binny Choudhary, otherwise known as Colonel Saab, a name lending itself to the restaurant too.
Ornate grand doors welcome you on entering, diners going downstairs are greeted with a pure silver door taken from a Gujarat temple, and those upstairs can take in the intricate detailing of a carved temple door from South India. The theme of majestic India is continued throughout the restaurant, and other luxe touches include a large drinks bar crafted by Asprey for the Maharaja of Patiala, which takes pride of place in the private dining room.
Foodwise, Colonel Saab doesn’t disappoint; the Memsaab tasting menu, launched as part of the restaurant’s first anniversary, is a culinary journey across innovative cuisine served across six courses and has been created by Chef Sohan Bhandari to give a taste of the signature flavours at the heart of his cooking and Indian flair.
You’ll enjoy hero dishes, including Chilli Mogo, a dish of crispy-fried cassava in tamarind, lotus stem koftas, and the delicious Ajwaini fish tikka that everyone raves about.