I hadn’t been to The Bloomsbury Hotel for some years but on a recent visit there I couldn’t believe the transformation.
The historic 153-room property underwent a multi-million pound refurbishment last year masterminded by interiors pro Martin Brudnizki, who has worked on iconic London venues such as The Ivy and Scott’s.
The place now oozes sex appeal, with luxuriously warm interiors enveloping you from the bustling concrete world outside.
A few of my friends had mentioned the Coral Room, which is an impressive bar located on the ground floor but I ventured to the hotel on a Monday night to visit the lesser-known Bloomsbury Club bar.
Located in the basement, this bar has an old-school New Yorky vibe about it with a dark wood and racing green colour scheme.
Adding to the convivial feel, there was Jazz music playing and the waiters were smartly dressed and super swift on the service front.
Taking a cosy spot in the corner, I dipped into the lovely little menu.
The cocktail list at the Bloomsbury Club has been beautifully curated with libations inspired by the literary crowd / schmoozers who lived in the area during the 20s and 30s.
To start, I went for a Lady Ottoline Morrell (inspired by the late society hostess), which featured a nice clean mix of Hayman’s Old Tom gin, Hayman’s Sloe Gin, and orange bitters.
Meanwhile, my friend Peter opted for a Cafe Megroni, which is a Mexican twist on the Italian negroni with shake of Dangerous Don Mezcal, Lustau Vermut Rojo, Campari and coffee liquor.
The bar also features a nice concise food menu, with everything from burgers to truffle sausage roll to tickle your fancy.
We went for a pretty eclectic mix of edamame beans, Dorset crab on toast and a ploughman’s board.
While we waited for our main food orders, the waitress brought over a tasty nut and olive selection with our drinks.
The Lady Ottoline Morrell was spot on with a deliciously clean / smooth finish.
My friend Peter also loved the punchy negroni which had a seductively smokey flavour.
Just as we polished off our first drinks our mix of morsels arrived.
I would highly recommend the ploughman’s board with a moreish mix of creamy treats from London’s top cheesemonger La Fromagerie.
The edamame were good, if a little oily, and the crab so tasty I didn’t even get a look in before Peter had gulped it down.
For my second drink, I went for my favourite, a dry vodka olive martini.
The drink was perfectly prepared, with a nice plump olive resting in the bottom of the dainty glass.
Peter went for a more exotic concoction inspired by the author Leonard Woolf with a blend of rye Bulleit, Courvoisier V.S.O.P., Sri Lankan pineapple, coffee syrup, lemon juice, Kaffir lime leaves and plum wine foam.
We spent a good few hours at the Bloomsbury Club bar, grazing and sipping away.
It’s the perfect little London hideaway, which I encourage you to burrow down to.
For a date /catch up / place to unfurl after a tough day – it ticks all the boxes.
There’s also a cute heated outdoor terrace area which I spied on my way out.
A good reason to return.
Oh, and for the cigar aficionados, there’s a special menu, with six different smokes to choose from.
The Bloomsbury Club bar is located at 16-22 Great Russell St, London WC1B 3NN
To book a table call +44 20 7347 1222 or visit