This year we’ve complied the perfect spots to slink away too, wherever your office party is at – be it for a sharp Martini, a bracing Manhattan or a shot of tequila.
Booked into one of the clubs around London’s theatre land? Luckily the best bars of China Town and Soho are five minutes away. Once the dad dancing has started, and the bar tab is drained, take yourself off to ECC on Gerard Street for some sophisticated cocktails, cosy corners and some serious French style. Perfect for those keeping secret an office affair. Or walk down to London Cocktail Club on Shaftsbury avenue to shoot rum and swing lights with people who won’t be there to remind you of it on Monday. In need of something sharp and cold to obliterate the memory of your boss twerking with Judith from HR? Make a beeline for Swift on Old Compton street where the Martinis are strong and the whisky is endless.
There’s plenty of places in walking distance from the more soulless venues around the City of London. With the opening of the brand new LCC opposite the station, you’re guaranteed a party with a circus twist, swinging lights and tasty cocktails away from the office politics. Walk up into Shoreditch for a more toned-down drink at the vibrant Callooh Callay or the basement vibes at Happiness Forgets.
Out west? Escape the mess of the office bash with some Spanish-sized G&Ts at The Distillery on Portobello Road. Once you’ve wiped the visual of the sales guys with their ties around their head, descend the stairs to Trailer Happiness for some rum-laced Tiki fun. Order one of their Dominos for a stirred down drink that packs a punch.
South of the river isn’t all clubs and trance nights these days and if you find yourself wishing for a stiff drink away from the accounts team, we’d recommend hotfooting it to the Blues Kitchen where the Old Fashioneds go down a treat and the excellent live music will restore your faith in your fellow human. For snacks and cocktails go keep the guys at Three Eight Four busy for Manhattans and sticky ribs.
If you’re lucky enough to be partying in Fitzrovia with your team then you’re spoilt for choice when the time comes to make a swift exit. This area is surrounded by two LCC’s, so you know they party isn’t far away. Looking to duck out and play some pool? The London Edition is here as well, with it’s spectacular lobby bar, with pool table, and Punch Room where the drinks come flowing from ornate bowls. If darts are more you thing, Bloomsbury’s Flight Club is nearby and perfect for unleashing a little anger at the bosses – just remember to untack their picture from the dart board once you’re done.
Sick of the 80s tunes on repeat? Who let Fiona from marketing DJ anyway? Grab your pals and hit up Be At One Oxford Street for a dance or head to Burlock’s basement for rum cocktails and DJ parties late into the night.
By day Islington may be all plush chairs and cafes but by night you have the delights of 69 Colebrooke Row with its live music and 1920s soiree-vibes, or head to Barrio North’s heady mix of colour and Latino flavours. Perfect to run away from the forced office fun.
Out among the bankers, popping bottles and acting atrociously? Head to Merchant House of Bow Lane for great drinks and an award wining lists of both gin and rum, the perfect basement to hide from the chaos. If you're out late, take the elevator up to Duck and Waffle to watch the sun rise over London with drinks and food served 24 hours. Fancy a boogie? LCC Monument is the bar chain's sexiest outlet, open till 2am come the weekend and serving 2-4-1 cocktails all Monday night and from 4-7pm the rest of the week.
Stuck out among the skyscrapers of London's newest banking district? Head to Dr Kluger's Olde Town Tavern, a secret bar beneath Canary Wharf's Breakfast Club, open till Midnight, with a chalet-meets-disco theme serving up delicious cocktails.