Tim Badham
The festive season witnessed the birth of a plethora of new bars and clubs in the capital, notable amongst them was The Rose on 23 Orchard Street in Marylebone, brought to you by clubland mainstays Nick House and Piers Adam (Whisky Mist, Punchbowl, Mahiki). Their newest project houses a 300 capacity, chic speakeasy-style nightclub with a stunning high tech wall of light and a strict door policy to match.

This is just stage one, though, with the whole building being converted into a luxurious New York-style restaurant and 2000 sq ft roof terrace. Nick House has been a busy boy – from the same stable comes the newly opened club Dstrkt on Soho’s Rupert Street. The old Planet Hollywood site has undergone a stunning £25m makeover and looks prepared to hold ground with some of London’s largest and most extravagant nightclubs, with a lounge bar and restaurant for early evening. A wall opens up to reveal the club and dance floor at 11pm.

Over on Berkeley Street, famed Russian restaurateur Arkady Novikov has opened the Novikov Bar as part of an immense Mayfair establishment that also includes a very sleek Italian and an Asian restaurant. It boasts an eclectic mix of antiques, furnishings and multicultural objects with the bar itself all lacquered ebony decorated with jade belonging to Novikov himself.

Close by, nestled amongst the swanky sartorial shops of Jermyn Street, new speakeasy-esque club LOW can only be accessed through the back entrance of a restaurant down a hidden staircase. Guests can expect thousands of LED lights, plush leather banquettes and booths, studio quality soundproofing and rare VOID speakers. An ex-Brompton Club pedigree adds a touch of glamour. Also in St James’s, Ni Jû San (meaning 23 in Japanese) has been brought to London by the Hakkasan Group on the ground floor of Sake No Hana. The bar’s design is strikingly minimal with traditional bamboo-faced walls, elegant black leather seating and a glass wall. For something a little more under-the-radar, Fitzrovia’s new The Lucky Pig blends Art Nouveau elements and a shabby chic style, with sexy speakeasy cocktails to create a truly seductive hidden gem.