London may not have snowy mountains, but it has plenty of fabulous après-ski bars! A flurry of alpine ski lodges have been popping up all over the city this winter. Here are a few of our favourites:
Picture the scene: pine trees, falling snow, reindeer, snowmen, ski racks, piste maps, strings of fairy lights and lanterns. But this magical ski lodge isn’t up a snowy mountain in Switzerland; it’s in the heart of London’s Bloomsbury at The Montague on the Gardens Hotel. The bar offers a choice of 12 festive beverages, including Schnapps, flavoured vodkas, mulled wine, winter Pimms, hot spiced cider and Jagermeister. Keep cosy by snuggling up under big woolly rugs while sipping mugs of steaming hot chocolate and munching on candied pecans.
Open until 30 Jan
Lined with rich green foliage and decked out with vintage ski props, furry blankets and snow-globe-style jars, this après-ski-themed bar serves up a range of indulgent cheesy holiday favourites like tartiflette, fondue, and raclette. Yum! Warm up with a hot toddy or a mulled wine while soaking up the convivial vibe of this festive lodge, which boasts a heated terrace for drinkers to escape the wintery chill.
Open until end of Feb 2015
Curl up under a blanket high above the city on the rooftop of Selfridges, which has been transformed into a candle-lit alpine chalet, prettily dotted with pines. Feast on winter warmers like raclette, deep-fried frog’s legs and strudel, while sipping on one of a delectable choice of choctails (booze-infused hot chocolate), which range from Double Choc (Courvoisier Exclusif, white chocolate and hot chocolate) to Hazelnut (hazelnut, almond liqueur, dark chocolate and hot chocolate). Festive puds include eggnog snow egg and black forest cheesecake.
Open until end of Feb 2015
Nestled in the basement bar of Soho cocktail lounge Archer Street, this elegant drinking hole is all wood flooring, beamed ceilings, reindeer fur and comfy sofas, while walls are decorated with antique skis and snowshoes. There’s a roaring fire to cosy up to and you can soak up a view of the snow-capped Italian Alps through one of the bar’s custom-made “windows” while supping the fruity and festive Apricot and Cinnamon Bellini or knocking back a shot served on retro skis.
Open until 20 May
Popular pub The Gun has transformed its terrace into an alpine ski lodge with comfy armchairs, fur rugs and walls plastered with mountain scenes. Vintage skis and sledges, a model of a polar bear, and animal heads mounted on the walls help to set the wintery scene. Festive tipples include classics like mulled wine and spiced cider, while hearty food includes game pie and venison stew. The Christmassy cocktail menu features delicious creations, such as the festive Glow Plough, which blends Grey Goose, homemade mulled port syrup, fresh lime, cranberry juice, egg white and is strikingly garnished with a glow stick!
Open until March 2015