The West End technically covers:-
Bloomsbury, Covent Garden, Fitzrovia, Holborn, Marylebone, Mayfair, Seven Dials, Soho, St James and Westminster.
That is a pretty large area, so I am going to focus on the centre of the West End or Tourist Central, i.e., places around Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus. This is mainly because finding a decent restaurant or bar in this area is a bit like finding a needle in a haystack.
So here are recommendations, in no particular order.
- Thai Square, Trafalgar Square – it’s not the best Thai restaurant in London by any means, but it is part of a reliable chain. (It has recently won an award to say it is the best – so judge for yourself). It is also a good location for larger groups.
- The Portrait Restaurant, in the National Portrait Gallery – reliable food, good for an inexpensive “Afternoon Tea”, great views over Trafalgar Square. Can get very busy at peak times, so I would also recommend reserving a table here via their website.
- Asia de Cuba, St Martins Lane Hotel – Very stylish and expensive venue, food is specifically designed for sharing, so ideal for groups of 4 or more.
- The Mint Leaf, Piccadilly – a stylish, Modern Indian Restaurant and Bar. Good Pre Theatre venue.
- 5th View Bar & Food, Waterstones, Piccadilly – For a book store cafe, this place is great, it does good reasonably priced cocktails and the food is way better that you would expect (limited choice though). Nice selection of cakes – the carrot cake is particularly good.
- The Wolseley, Piccadilly – European Style Brasserie, very popular, stunning room – great for people watching if you can get a table.
- Atheneaum Hotel, Piccadilly – The restaurant focuses on British style food. The hotel also does a really good “Afternoon Tea” and has a bar that is both cosy and stylish (and expensive!).