Shepherd's Bush area guide

Head to this bustling part of west London for gigs, shopping, bargain restaurants and bars aplenty

The vibe in Shepherd's Bush? Hectic! With its Overground and Underground stations, a spaghetti-like road network, its old-school street market and the behemoth Westfield shopping centre, the Bush is bustling day and night. Its biggest selling point is that it's home to great music venues like the Shepherd's Bush Empire and Bush Hall, original theatre courtesy of the Bush Theatre, as well as plenty of bars and restaurants from all over the world.

What are your favourite Shepherd's Bush haunts? Let us know in the comments.

Restaurants in Shepherd's Bush

Restaurants

Patio

If you miss your Polish granny, or feel life has cheated you by denying you one, repair to Patio with haste. The olde worlde charm – ornate gold-framed mirrors, upright piano, worn red carpet – of the cosy dining room evokes a grandmother’s sitting room.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Abu Zaad

Groups of teenagers, young families and couples after a quick, fuss-free meal seem to find this vast Syrian restaurant a convenient destination.

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants Book online

Sufi

Venue says: Enjoy a variety of home-cooking stews, grills, dips and traditional hearty dishes such as lamb shanks with dill rice.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Restaurants

Tian Fu

There’s no shortage of budget chop suey joints in Shepherd’s Bush, but to find a proper Chinese restaurant serving more than the usual takeaway food is a challenge.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 1 out of 5 stars
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Shepherd's Bush highlights

O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire

This former BBC theatre is a great mid-sized venue, holding 2,000 standing or 1,300 seated. The sound is decent (with the exception of the alcove behind the stalls bar) and so Shepherds Bush Empire is possibly London's best medium-sized venue with a gig roll that would put the likes of Wembley to shame. 

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Music

Bush Hall

The small (capacity around 350) but beautifully formed Bush Hall has a fantastic chequered history, having been one of three venues built by publisher WC Humdall around 1904 as gifts for his three daughters, surviving not only various incarnations as a music/dance hall in the roaring '20s, soup kitchen, bingo hall, music rehearsal space and snooker club, but also bombardment during The Blitz. 

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Theatre

Bush Theatre

A small, cash-poor champion of new writers and performers, the Bush Theatre has more than 30 years’ experience under its belt with a great record in comedy, satire and West End transfers. The Bush may not be big but it’s certainly determined: not even a leaky roof killing the lights stopped the programme in autumn 2008, it merely responded with a new, dark-themed season called The Broken Space that featured ghostly plays played in near pitch black. Time was you could look to the venue’s walls for a recommendation, plastered as they were with the high praise of international playwrights. These may have since been wallpapered over, but the long-term support of writers such as the controversial Neil La Bute (who regularly debuts and presents work here) has helped the Bush Theatre consistently sell out its shabby studio space.

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Shopping

Westfield London

Occupying 43 acres in White City, and covering nine different postcodes, Westfield London takes the crown for Europe’s largest shopping centre. The impressive location – on the site of the 1908 Olympics – cost around £1.6 billion to create and houses some 265 shops, from House of Fraser and Marks & Spencer to luxury fashion houses such as Louis Vuitton, Armani and Mulberry. Given the mall’s vast dimensions, it would be nice to be able to rock up in a pair of good walking shoes and some trackie bottoms but, be warned, the oversized-handbag-clutching clientele tend to be smartly decked out. If you find yourself in need of respite, Michelin-starred chefs Pascal Aussignac and Vincent Labeyrie can soothe away any shopping-induced stress with gastronomic creations at Croque Gascon, in the centre’s Eat Gallery. If they don’t manage to tempt your taste buds, then one of the other 50 restaurants and cafés surely will.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Pubs and bars in Shepherd's Bush

Bars and pubs Book online

Princess Victoria

We’ll return to the Vicky time and again for its scotch eggs. You could happily spend an evening knocking these back at the curving bar, along with the occasional helping of beef scrumpet and fine pints of bitter.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Queen Adelaide

Queen Adelaide feels a genteel world away from the bustling Uxbridge Road outside. Its smart, chandelier-lit dining room is separated from a buzzing pub by a large central bar, giving the dark wood-clad space a lively feel, even on quiet, midweek evenings.

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Bars and pubs

Brewdog

The characterful Aberdeenshire brewery brings its love of craft beer – there are 40 choices on tap, plus more in bottles – to this site just off Shepherd's Bush Green. There are also branches in Camden and Shoreditch.

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Restaurants

Albertine

Just down the road from BBC Television Centre, Albertine’s small bar has something of the student union about it, with closely packed, battered wooden furniture and a blackboard for wine and food specials.

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Comments

1 comments
Xavier A
Xavier A

Somali Food, Blue Ocean Restaurant is by far a great treat from east africa!