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Ladies & Gentlemen

The best quirky bars in public toilets in London

Find sweet relief in London’s best bars and drinking spots located in former public toilets

By Laura Richards
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London is now fit to bursting with bars in former public lavatories. Whether it’s above-the-ground toilet blocks made into surprisingly sunshiney drinking spots or subterranean bogs transformed into moodily lit speakeasies, London has a fair few bathroom boozers to discover. And you know what, they’re actually all pretty fragrant. So when you next get caught short of ideas for a quirky night out, look to our list below for something out of the ordinary. 

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London’s best bars in public toilets

High Cross
Photograph: Andy Parsons

The High Cross

4 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Pubs Tottenham

The best things come in small packages – particularly when they’re micropubs. And squeezing into Tottenham’s diddy boozer The High Cross feels even more thrilling given that it used to be public bogs – the ladies and gents signs are still lit up on the outside of this 1920s toilet block. Sneak in for the two Ps – pints and pies. 

CellarDoor

Nightlife Nightlife venues Covent Garden

One of the grubbiest toilets in town but for all the right reasons, CellarDoor is a seditious little cabaret and cocktails club just off The Strand. The former public convenience even has a feature restroom of its own. Should you forget to lock the door behind you, the whole bar will catch a glimpse of your bathroom antics. So keep it clean.

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chiringuito
Photograph: Chiringuito

Chiringuito

Bars and pubs Tapas bars Bethnal Green

Less taps, more tapas. What was once a toilet block just beyond Bethnal Green station is now the home of a Spanish spot with a beach bar theme. It even has its own cutesy roof terrace for cava-sipping up above east London’s comings and goings.      

Venue says Our terrace is perfect for your spring or summer parties. We have a range of menus to suit your needs. Beat the rush, get in touch today!

quirky bars and pubs in london, ladies & gentlemen
Photograph: Kim Lightbody

Ladies & Gentlemen

4 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Cocktail bars Kentish Town

They’re always shaking things up below Highgate Road in the appropriately named Ladies & Gentlemen. The signage is playful, the setting is moody and the cocktails are mostly on the money. All meaning it’s as popular as the ladies' loos in the interval for ‘Mamma Mia!’.

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Ladies & Gentlemen Camden
Andy Parsons

L&G Camden

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Cocktail bars Camden Road

Not content with one dive bar in the bogs, L&G Camden is bar number two for the team behind Ladies & Gentlemen (see above). Camden Road’s old lavvies have been transformed into a 45-seater room serving twists on classic cocktails plus CBD-tinged drinks. We’re sure the space has seen similar antics across the years. 

Attendant

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Cafés Fitzrovia

This Victorian toilet was given a new lease of life back in 2013 as a petite place for a daytime drink. Perch up by the porcelain for an espresso or fight for a space at the urinals for brunch or lunch.

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WC - Wine & Charcuterie

3 out of 5 stars
Bars and pubs Wine bars Clapham

Desperate for a Pinot? Make a beeline for WC, which in this case stands for Wine & Charcuterie. There were 450 bids to redevelop this plot next to Clapham Common tube station, surely making it one of the best-loved toilets in town. The WC concept ruled out, cubicle doors were turned into tables and Victorian fixtures and fittings were employed to make the most of the theme. 

Bermondsey Arts Club

Bars and pubs Cocktail bars Bermondsey

Bermondsey Arts Club helped kickstart the trend in public toilet hipster transformations when it opened its doors in spring 2014. Its groomed art deco look means it's more than bog-standard, though, all dreamed up by fashion photographer and bar director George Garnier. Head along on Wednesday night for live jazz – it’s a toilet jam that doesn’t need a plumber.  

Find more surprising spots for drinking in London

The best secret bars in London

Bars and pubs

So you’ve been with your mates to the best bars in the city. You’ve already taken your significant other to the most impressive date night spots in town. Now how to show off? What about a night out on the inside track? London is swimming in secretive bars shrouded in darkness, beind hidden entrances and with plenty of surprises in store. Don’t worry though; we’ll let you in on our favourite little secret bars for a big night out under the radar.

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