As a young journalist, I was invited to meet an interviewee at a hotel bar. He was a regular there, so I assumed it would meet the requirements for an interview.
It all started off fine—nice ambience, quality bottles of water, friendly unobtrusive staff. However, just 20 minutes into our very serious discussion, the blinds went down, the room darkened, and the music pumped up. Uncomfortable to say the least…we had to get closer to hear each other. The interview rushed, I left praying my loyal dictaphone had caught most of the conversation.
We know how important it is to choose the right venue for even a casual meeting. Whether you are meeting a client or colleague, here’s AWM’s pick of the best meeting spots in the Capital.
There couldn’t be a more fitting location for a business meeting than one of the world’s most iconic centres of trade. The Fortnum’s Bar & Restaurant enjoys a striking location in The Royal Exchange’s majestic central courtyard. Available for both table or counter dining, the ambiance is one of understated sophistication and intimacy. The seasonal and contemporary menu serves breakfast through to dinner, or you could have a trademark cup of Fortnum’s tea, specially blended for exclusive sale at The Royal Exchange.
The Royal Exchange, London, EC3V 3LR
Another level of meeting space. Located 155 metres high, the spectacular Sky Garden is a gourmet, garden oasis with show-stopping views across the capital and beyond. Spread across floors 35, 36 and 37, the destination restaurants Sky Pod, City Garden Rooftop Bar, Darwin Brasserie and Fenchurch Restaurant offer all-day dining and drinking in the sky, together with the highest rooftop gardens in London.
Monument, London, EC3M 8AF
Timberyard was designed for remote workers to have somewhere to meet people and develop their businesses. In contrast to a regular coffee shop, Timberyard encourages creative people to come together and stay as long as they like. There is a good range of food and drink from high quality, artisan producers.
Soho, London, WC2H 9DL
The Ned’s historic former banking hall is home to a number of restaurants separated by verdite columns and rows of Grade I-listed walnut banking counters. With its beautiful pink booths and marble tables, British restaurant and bar Millie’s Lounge makes a grand setting for a business meeting. You can’t reserve a spot at Millie’s just for drinks, so if it’s too busy consider Café Sou which operates on first-come-first-serve basis.
Bank, London, EC2R 8AJ
Fun, flamboyant and magical! Each element of Sketch is unusual and wondrous and will leave a lasting impression on a potential client. From the surroundings, to the quirky style of service, guests can’t fail to be wowed. The lively and colourful Parlour is great for breakfast business meetings, or for a more intimate setting, choose Glade, a quiet, calming venue for a meeting over lunch.
Mayfair, London, W1S 2XG
The world’s oldest museum restaurant, The Garden Café is a hidden oasis in the centre of the V&A. The opulently decorated period rooms reflect the eclectic tastes of the Victorian era. Seating operates on a first come first served basis, so for a business meeting, avoid school holidays and opt for early in the morning or late afternoon, as it can get very busy.
South Kensington, London, SW7 2RL
With light wood panelling, quirky lamps and seating and fantastic semi-circular bar area, the Rail House Café is a good venue for a laid-back business meeting. Open from breakfast through to dinner, the international menu is dedicated to seasonal ingredients, with lots of healthy options.
Victoria, London, SW1E 5DJ
The Orangery & Shade Bar (part of Ham Yard Bar & Restaurant) is great for small, informal meetings. The light and airy space is decorated in Kit Kemp’s individual style and features handpicked works of art. The room is filled with sunlight through the lofty glass ceiling, making it the perfect spot to enjoy a morning coffee or a delicious afternoon tea.
Soho, London, W1D 7DT
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