Shaka Zulu

Nightlife Primrose Hill
  • 2 out of 5 stars
(54user reviews)
16 Love It
Save it
Shaka Zulu

This extravagant restaurant, bar and club in Camden Market pays homage to the nineteenth-century reign of the King of the Zulus, Shaka. Imposing statues of the warrior king himself stand 20-feet high, their eyes surveying an opulent interior of mosaics, carvings, African patterns, intricate murals, water features, zebra prints and paintings. It's nothing if not bounteous.

There's a South African slant to the food menu, with dishes ranging from biltong, boerewors and bobotie to South African game meats such as zebra fillet, crocodile steak, springbok loin and zebra. Seafood platters, lobster with caviar, cuts of beef and racks of ribs also feature.

Many visit just for drinks. The cocktail selection proves popular, with classics alongside signature drops such as a simba (white grapes muddled with raisins and served with Monkey Shoulder whisky, lemon, chestnut and egg white balanced with sugar) and a pappayedura (Herradura Reposada tequila with fresh papaya, thyme, lime juice and agave syrup). The wine list celebrates South Africa's wine making heritage. 




Venue name: Shaka Zulu
Address: The Stables Market, Chalk Farm Road
Do you own this business?
To improve this listing email:

Average User Rating

2.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:8
  • 4 star:7
  • 3 star:4
  • 2 star:7
  • 1 star:28
1 person listening
Maddy R
1 of 1 found helpful

SIMPLY TERRIBLE RESTAURANT - rather annoyed I couldn't give it zero stars! Empty apart from Friday and Saturday night, when they cannot deal with the amount of people they let book tables. The service is appalling and I have never experienced such rude, arrogant, unhappy and incompetent staff. Booked a table for 9:15 and was only seated at 10:30 and then waited another half an hour for any food. The excuse we were given were that the group on the table before us were late and slow in ordering and eating. This is despite a warning on the booking form that if you do not arrive by 15 minutes after the time you booked for you will not get your table, and you can only have the table you booked for 2 hours. Ruined the evening for everyone involved. Advice: if they offer you a refund on the night when you complain, insist they refund you right there and then. I am still waiting for a refund of £500+ 9 weeks later, even though I have rung the restaurant numerous times and sent over 15 emails. They have quite happily ignored me - seems the incompetence, arrogance and rudeness continuous once you have left the restaurant. I agree with every complaint in these reviews, including the bland and unspecial food. Please do not go here if you do not want your night ruined - in contrast Gilgamesh upstairs has the most pleasant staff and lovely food too. 

Wayne B

Mothers Day nightmare, food cold sent back, waitress taking half the orders putting them through so that some get there food half hour before the others.

An extremely bad experience. One that I won't be repeating.

Lynsey F

I visited this restaurant using an amazon voucher offer that worked out at £50 for a 3 course meal for 2 plus a cocktail. A pretty good deal I thought. First let me say that the food was amazing, really good but with the deal the set menu didn't really include any of the more interesting foods such as crocodile. Bit disappointing as obviously the point of going to Shaka Zulu is to try some of the more obscure African foods that you wouldn't normally find in your average restaurant. But what I did get was amazing. Very rich but very good.

The decor at this site is also very impressive. Huge statues that tower above the customers and lovely African masks and beading covering the walls. Its worth popping in just to take a look at the interior of this venue to be honest.

This is a seriously pricey restaurant though. Obviously I was there on a bargain deal but just getting some wine and a cocktail each set us back an extra £50. Woah!

Essentially this is a gorgeous venue with food that doesn't disappoint but price wise it's not exactly worth it. Yes it's interesting and different to try a bit of Crocodile for your dinner but not really worth the price they charge. Only go there if you can get a deal like me I vote and save it for a special occasion too

Natalie T

I visited Shaka Zulu in Camden on the weekend with my mum and did the Virgin Experience offer (which was great value for money by the way!).

The décor of Shaka Zulu is extremely impressive with loads of carved wooden sculptures and ambient lighting. We had African performers playing traditional African instruments and singing which was fantastic and really set the atmosphere. I found this extremely enjoyable and made me want to get up and join in.

We were seated immediately which was great but the service as a whole was rushed. We were seated at 7pm and were ready to leave by 8ish. For a three course meal I feel that there was no time to relax in-between courses which deterred a bit from the enjoyable experience. We had one cocktail which was lovely! But we were not offered any other drinks which put us off buying another one as it almost felt like we shouldn’t.

The food was lovely and tasty but the menu we had to choose from was limited and contained no exotic meats (crocodile, zebra etc.) which was disappointing as that was part of the reason I chose Shaka Zulu. The food that we ordered was however tasty so this made up for the lack of African exotic meats.

I would recommend Shaka Zulu, even if you go once. It’s worth it just to see the beautiful décor, have a few cocktails and try some exotic meats (if your menu allows it).

Nadia I

After an amazing day and evening with family which finished in #shakazulu - A full day's highs were unfortunately brought to an end by the unwarranted and shocking actions of a member of staff who has a duty to ensure the safety of club patrons and allow them to enjoy themselves at the club.

I simply don't understand why it's deemed as acceptable for another human being (especially one in a position of power) to act in an absolutely repulsive manner to a patron.

When my sister was trying to care for our cousins and ring a cab due to no reception downstairs - why did you - Mr Doorman - think it was okay to speak to her in utter disrespect?

Instead of you telling her "move" out the way - could you not have asked her nicely to "step aside"?

What followed on from that was beyond believable. A string of verbal abuse with things that should never ever be said to a woman. I hope your sister or mother is never ever spoken to in the way you spoke to my sister.

My sister who was shocked and quite rightfully upset by your lack of respect, abuse of power and bullying tactics tried to defend herself against your onslaught of distasteful comments.

Shaka Zulu - I'm outraged at your staff and their lack of help when trying to speak to someone to report your horrid doorman.

I'm also outraged at your establishment that took a lot of money from our party of eight.

I'm outraged because you have a reputation to uphold.

I'm outraged because you have a duty to employ the right people to represent your brand.

I'm outraged because you have a duty to protect your patrons and treat them with respect and ensure they enjoy their night - because we support your establishment.

This is not a one-off incident as searching online reveals a lot and not surprisingly there are many bad reviews regarding the "rude" doormen.

You are obviously aware of this yet have failed to act which makes you just as bad. Your continuation to employ people who disrespect your patrons is absurd and obviously supported going by the reactions of your other staff.

All that followed last night when trying to report the incident was a succession of staff trying to sweep it under the carpet - sending us on a wild goose chase. Several people were told last night - reception, other security, bar managers etc and no one seemed to really care - it was as if this was the norm.

When telling the bar manager - he laughed when I told him what the doorman had said - which says it all! I then asked for the formal complaints procedure to which I was told that I should send an email and when quizzing who the general manager was- I was then told that I couldn't be told that information and to direct the complaint towards him.

My sister tried to get a picture to identify the bouncer as nobody would divulge his name and then he slapped her hand and her phone onto the floor and continued the verbal abuse.

So Mr Doorman - not only have you verbally abused my sister and caused damage to her property but you've actually physically assaulted her and committed an offence under section 39 of the Criminal Justice Act.

Shaka Zulu - I'm fed up of bullies in this world - we have far too many of them. The reason we do is because many things are brushed under the carpet by establishments like yours and then people don't make a stand.

They don't think they will get anywhere and give up. When has it started to become acceptable for people to be walked over, disrespected and treated unfairly.

I certainly don't go out and spend money to be treated in such a way. Why should my sister or anybody else?

I'm not going to shut up or keep quiet when people are walking around abusing their power and treating people like animals.

Amanda C

I recently booked the venue for a big birthday celebration after hearing good things. Our bilking was for 9.15 but weren't seated until 10.15. We were escorted to two separate tables which I said was not good enough, as I didn't want to split our group of 10. Then were taken to another table which hadn't been made up. When we were finally seated we got our food at 11.30, and finalised the bill at 1.00. The place closes at 2. This was supposed to be a late dinner at 930 and then dancing but we had an hour until closing! The staff did try to make this up by providing two complimentary bottles of wine and 25% off food bill. They also offered a VIP table downstairs for free of charge. When your in the bar however the bar is closed and you have to order drinks upstairs. Over all a bit of a let down, but they were professional in attempting to make up for everything.

Vieve W

I've been Shaka Zulu many times now and I personally love it.

South African cuisine, the menu offers everything from Zebra to Crocodile to Kudu (look it up!) I'm a fan of their fillet steak, which is usually very good and their peri peri fries. Whichever main you go for, I always recommend those fries with their house leafy green salad...simple but tasty! They have a good list of cocktails which include non-alchy for non drinkers like myself. I recommend the 'Mixes Like Fruit' as it's really good! Desserts aren't as varied but you can't go wrong with their Passion fruit crème brulée which is delicioussss!

The atmosphere in Shaka Zulu is absolutely buzzing on a Friday and Saturday night but if you want a quieter evening then Thursdays can be quite nice as they sometimes have live music. Request a table downstairs, if you're here on a saturday night as that's where the fun is. Weekends are busy and performers are all over including acrobatics and the like.

Agreed, the security staff can be a few job worth's and take things way too seriously. I would say if the whole doorman and queuing night out isn't your style, avoid Shaka on a Saturday but otherwise it's absolutely fine.

Even if you go at least once, do it!!! Whether it's just to see the beautiful decor or to have a few drinks, go go go! It's definitely an experience!

Sarah R

Shaka Zulu! What hides under this exotic name? Hidden in the mid of Camden Lock, behing Gilgamesh, lies this special place. A bit cringe and cheesy, but fun. The decor itself does the trick, you simply forget you are in London. I personally gravitate towards more modern and young kind of places, but I loved visiting Shaka Zulu because it is so different to what I am used to.
A restaurant, that on the weekends transforms to a r'n'b kind of club downstairs with typical r'n'b all-time top 50 hits music.
I would say, come here, if you want something different. Break from all the East London coolness. Just relax and go with the vibe. You will probably find it enjoyable for the evening.

Adrian P

Extremely rude amd abusive security stuff. I've paid a lot of money for my Christmas dinner. I went out for having a fag and the security guy doesn't let me in cos I don't have a fucking stamp.... i finally talked to the management and they let me in to continue my dinner. When i left thr same guy approached me again only for calling me a "cunt" and a "fucking idiot" I would definitely not recommend this to anyone !!!!

Luisa G

Everything about this place is 'fine'. The food was fine. The ambience was fine. The service was fine. The value for money was fine (with a voucher). I wouldn't come back. 

Poppy L

I went to Shaka Zulu in Camden expecting to try South African food and just something a bit different. The venue was massive and ornately decorated with animal sculptures and murals - there were even indoor escalators to get around! I had king prawns to start, which were cold and with a Marie Rose sauce, then an exotically described dish which turned out to be chicken and sweet potato mash. I  finished with the best dish of the night, a coconut panna cotta. We quickly realised that the food was very basic, inauthentic and that the service was really quite poor. It became clear that the restaurant doubled as a bar/nightclub and that was their priority. Unfortunately I wouldn't go again, but it's worth sticking your head in to see the elaborate design. Toilets were an eccentric 5/10!


This place is incredible. In the heart of the weird and wonderful Camden Stables this place is absolutely exploding with character. The magnificent African decor is crazy fantastic, the interior alone is enough to turn any night into a tasteful one. I celebrated my 21st here and it was definitely one of the best venue choices I've made. A perfect place for anyone who wants to party in style. #TOTastemaker


I have been here once for a birthday occasion as soon as you walk in you see the beautiful decor and the food was just fantastic. I would recommend the crocodile cigars for starters. It is especially good if you want to try and get out of your comfort zone and try new food. It was my friends birthday and they really made the effort and brought out a slice of cake with sparkles (its definitely the little things that count!). We also ordered a special desert drink which was made at the table!. Great place i would definitely go back,

Amit S

Been here twice, once for a birthday and once on a company xmas party. Enjoyed it both times, doesnt get busy until really late, but its very pricey in terms of entrance and drinks. Music is ok, has a mix of everything but not consistant

Jennifer G

We have been there twice now. 

The first time was in the evening with a group of 8 of us for my birthday. It was amazing.  The décor was really special, the service was great and the food, out of this world.

The waiter brought me a glass of champagne and a pudding with sparklers when he heard it was my birthday and I have to say they were all very courteous indeed.

This is what prompted my husband and I to return the next year.  It was just as magical then and everyone was still as courteous. 

I have read some of the bad comments and have to wonder if they went to the same place!!!

It is a bit expensive but it's probably the same as anywhere else if you are paying for quality food, for example: I had a rump steak that was absolutely delicious. There was a little pile of grated potato with it, 2 small vine tomatoes and a little bowl of sauce for £23.00. That was sufficient for me but for hungry people you would have to have a side order which is obviously extra. Mind you, there are some delicious side orders and so much choice.

Obviously, lunch times would be quieter than the weekend evenings when it has music and dancing etc.

I am weary about comments on sights like this because it has been known that rival companies can post as well, quite easily.

Take it from me, we had a great time on both occasions and we will be returning.

shoushou k

I think there's a recurring theme the restaurant should address.. every1 gets TERRIBLE service that ruins the evening.

We went to Shaka Zulu for a friend's bday dinner. The atmosphere was wonderful, the decor unique and the live South African band made the whole night one to be remembered.

Unfortunately, the service ensured that we remembered the evening for all the wrong reasons. Our waiter took his sweet time getting us anything when we asked for it, from cutlery to napkins. At one point it took so long to get his attention to get cutlery when our food had already arrived that I got up and got it myself (this at a restaurant where you pay £70/person without drinks). As i got the knife from another member of staff our waiter came to me and asked what i was doing and when I said I'd been waiting for cutlery since the food arrived and he had ignored me again and again, he said he'd.. carry the knife back to the table for me! WHY? I took it back myself and enjoyed my friend's company. We paid £40 in tip that night ... I hope the money was given to the live band, they made the evening for us!

At one point, when we wanted to order more food we were told: you can order but we are unsure as to when it will arrive as the kitchen is busy and they won't have time to make the food at the moment.

this is a restaurant!!!! what do you mean you cannot make food because you're busy. It's a very large restaurant and a Saturday night surely they should be sufficiently staffed!

When I went home and sent and email to complain about the terrible service I received no reply, in spite of the fact that i followed up numerous times over a period of 2 months! So it seems service is shoddy front and back end!

It really ruined the evening for us... what a shame!

Diane M

I'd seen some quite bad reviews for this restaurant and hadn't particularly been wowed by it the first time I went a few years back. I was joining some friends recently and therefore had to go again. Firstly, I am vegetarian so it was never going to be a first choice for me but they do have a vegetarian/ gluten free menu in the restaurant which I don't believe is shown online. The food is hit and miss as described previously which wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't quite as expensive as it is. There's nothing special about this place except the grand decor which I personally liked, along with the live drumming/ music, although it might not be to everyones taste. I do feel that I have to speak up on behalf of the two waiters that served our table who were extremely helpful and attentive all evening despite the restaurant being very busy. I wouldn't rush there again on account of the food but it's perhaps worth a try if you want to experiment with some unusual meats and have money to burn :-)

Dewi Pritchard

I'm annoyed with this place for wasting a night of my life. I went to a friend's birthday party. The managment staff on the floor were the rudest I've ever encountered in London, especially to one of my friends who was stuck at the bar and couldn't find the others. We waited over an hour for a booked table, with no apology. Drinks are astonishingly over-priced. Half the group had to leave before the set meal finished. You might like the gawdy decor, the food is OK and the waiting staff civil but I'd avoid if you want to be treated like a human being, let alone a paying customer. Possibly the worst dining experience ever in London.


We had our Christmas party here and definitely not worth the money we paid for it. They change menu option last minute, and order us to pay a service charge on top 1 week before the party. Then during the night tried to charge it again. They had also promises us a area after our meal which was a complete lie and then got annoyed at us for staying in general area were we ate but another party also joined. They also sold us drink tokens which didn't get you a lot. Meaning some drinks were cheaper to buy without the token than with and also on some of the size of the drinks were reduced by half. So my overall impression of Shaka Zulu that they were trying to make as much money as possible without providing a good meal, service or experience. Shocking.


COMPLAINT! My partner now has FOOD POISONING, and will miss a few days off work unpaid thanks to you! I have really been disappointed at your service and hygiene in this club shaka zulu! Me and my fiancé' came to the front door, and was pleasantly surprised by the front door lady who let us in, even though there is only admittance through guest list which we wer’nt on? So we felt privileged and started to feel like this night, 16 November 2013(birthday night), was going to be a night to remember…. However, we were found some seats by your hostess holding a iPad, who seemed to have the floor under control, but after waiting for more than 45 minutes for drinks, and the hostess still assuring we would be served shortly, even though the venue was not even half full, we still hadn't got drinks yet. So, I took it upon my self to get up and serve ourselves… I went to the bar(south west,1st floor) which was totally empty except for one customer, and waited patiently until being served. Th barman was very helpful but I did notice the glasses he had set aside for the cocktails I had ordered where dusty, so i asked him to replace them and clean the replacements, which he did so kindly. Then I witnessed him make our cocktails, one Madiba & one Free Spirit, but i must say, I did not see him use any utensils to handle the fruit, he just simply used his hands, even when he cut a ball of paw paw, and dropped it into my drink I thought " God mate, i hope you have washed your hands before touching the fruit like that"…. so I paid for the drinks and went back to our table. But shortly after finishing our drinks me and my partner agreed to go out to another club with better service and more class. we left disappointed, felt that we had made a bad choice to visit your venue. to add to our disappointment, once we had left the club, just only five minutes walk away, my partner began to get sick all over the place, so much so that it spoilt her outfit and we cancelled the birthday celebrations and went home. Now we are really even more disappointed!! as she has now improved slightly and can walk around the house a little but she is still not fit for work, and won't get paid for the days off. we are very unhappy with this experience. I was really looking forward to the night out, on my birthday, but now thanks to your venue, we have spoilt an entire weekend, and now will be at a loss of income in our home thanks to your hygiene standards. Avoid Avoid Avoid!!!


The drinks are very very expensive £5 for shots!! music was okay but the bouncers were very very rude not worth the journey

Mei Suen

Stylish and amazing ambiance. Food is hit and miss, drinks pricey unless it is happy hour. But go if you want a night of good music and dancing into the early hours of the morning. Thoroughly enjoyable, Check out their upcoming events for special occasions, with entertainment and live bands. A memorable evening whichever way you look at it. Will be back during the day to try their offers.


I decided to celebrate my 40th birthday in this place for two reasons, one because the decoration of the venue is really unique, secondly because of the reviews that I had read in some websites. My experience there was so much different from what I read in the reviews. The service is absolutely terrible, from the bouncer at the entrance to the waiters at the bar, going through the waiters at the tables, the girls that organize the areas; all of them where extremely rude and unhelpful. The people that visit this place by night is anything but classy and beautiful. It was my mistake not to check out the place by night before choosing it for my birthday party.

Lily T

I don't understand the bad reviews- my boyfriend and I were turned off my them but I'm so glad we decided to come anyways. The inside of the venue is absolutely amazing, and is an experience to see in itself. The ambiance is one of elegance as well as fun. Even though our table was placed in a busy throughway, we still felt as if we had privacy. Our meal was delicious- no complaints. Our drinks were pricey, but still reasonable considering the area of London in which the venue is located as well as the classy atmosphere of the bar. As it was a friday night, we stayed for the club and danced all night. The music was great and the crowd a great mix of elite youth and young professionals. We met a super nice couple at the bar before sitting down to eat and ended up spending the whole night with them. The staff were all beautiful, and extremely attentive. Overall a great night. We plan to book a table for our next celebration!


I do not know why this place is seen as exclusive. It was empty yet they keep you waiting for ages whilst they check you have your reservation and ask you questions, thank god it was happy hour because after that the drinks become so expensive. Service is terrible very hit and miss ( you cannot order happy hour drinks from the restaurant you have to go upstairs bar then bring the drinks downstairs yourself even though the place was almost empty staff just standing around but when you get to bar your told you have to go sit down to be served so you go sit down next to bar order get served then pay then go back to bar as for tray to transport your drinks downstairs complete madness right ? ) and people are quite rude if you ask someone a question its like you have really inconvenienced them. As for food its so overpriced and the meat was very dry and portions small if you like your food dont go here you will leave hungry. Just dont go here.. if you can afford these type of prices there are a million better places to go.


a group of us went to Shaka Zula last night for my sis 21st birthday and also to see if we wanted to book it for nye 2013. Lets just say we wont be booking anyhing with this club. We booked a table for 15 people and stood in the que for 30 min whilst people who had not booked and didnt have any booking just walked through. The blond lady at the door was extremely rude to us, she said the price of the tickets where a lot higher than what was promised to us over the phone and then said she would reduce the price for us as a favour- the price was still a lot more than promised. Obvously my sis was annoyed so she looked annoyed, the lady at the door then rudly said- dont roll your eyes at me your lucky im giving you a discount. Then when we finally got in, our drinks lady told us to hurry up whilst we where counting the money- rudEly tapping her wrist. A fight broke out in the dance floor and it turned into a mini riot. It took about 5 min for a bouncer to come (not like it was difficult to see there was a big fight going on). the venue is amazing but customer service was so so bad that i would never go there again. All i can say is waht out for the blond lady at the door never seen such rudeness she will piss you off.

R Redrup

Quite possibly the worst restaurant I've ever been to with regards to both the food and customer service. The set menu was a complete let down and not worth the money, even at the reduced price they offered that evening. In my starter were 2 long sharp bones which would have caused a lot of damage had I ingested them. In the main I found hair in my vegetables and the pork was bone dry. The only good thing about the meal was the chocolate tart dessert, which I couldve eaten again. The whole party left hungry as portion sizes were small. All the staff were rude except our own waitress. We were not accommodated as a party in the bar following the meal so had to leave fairly promptly and were told not to hang around the exit to wait for the whole group to arrive by the very rude security guard. I have since complained to the restaurant about the whole experience and to date they have failed to provide me with a response.


Had a wonderful time at Shaka Zulu. First of all we sat at the bar while we waited for our table, unfortunately the waiter brought drinks meant for another table. To say sorry they gave us a free cocktail, very nice as he "knows what it's like when someone brings something nice and then takes it away!" The venue was stunning and so was the food. Presentation was really good and the service was top notch with really friendly staff. Had a great time and really enjoyed it. Get the smoked salmon starter for, quite simply, the most amazing presentation I've ever seen of a dish!!


Oh no! what a bad night out. Wine on the list but not in stock. Beer on list but not in stock. Asked for Hunters Dry to be told they don't do that as its been replaced by Savanna. Order Savanna only to be told its not in stock. I now know why the place was empty but still no service. Food came no sauce. asked for rice got chips and so on and so on the whole night. Refused to pay the service charge. They are lucky that you have to give 1 star as I would not even give them that. Rude staff over priced and a rip off!


Terrible. Good points - Cocktails, Decor Bad points - Service, quality of food, temperature of food, price, reaction when complaining.


After being a regular here for the best part of a year i thought i'd check in to Time Out to see what others have reported about my favourite London venue. I must say i am astonished to read the reviews, past and present about Shaka Zulu. Granted a lot of the complaints appear to have been about the inadequacy of Bruno Mars rather than the venue. Not being originally from London I have lots of friends come to visit me here. I would imagine I have taken in the region of 10 groups of friends here ranging from small parties of 3 to big groups of 20. Never once have i or my friends had anything to compain about. The venue is pure theatre which really blows you away and creates the spectacle of what an evening dining should really be about. The food has always ranged in quality from good to great. Admitedly the price is in the upper end of the scale where the expectancy really should be great at all times. Even when i have classed the food as merely good however I can still say that the venue itself topped with first class cocktails has more than made up for it. The waiting staff admitedly could up their game with some being of a highly attentitive standard and others merely order takers. As the restaurant experience blends in to the night life scene the place comes alive with zebras and antelopes. Really I could not think of a better place in london to spend a Saturday evening. I have booked to visit again this weekend with a friends parents, they are in their 50s but nonetheless of a fun loving nature. I have no hesitation in taking them here and fully expect their verdict to be the same as the 100+ other people I have dined with at Shaka Zulu-Magical! Keep entertaining guys


Absolutely rubbish - poor quality and preparation of food, poor service and high prices... Definitely wouldn't recommend this restaurant and definitely won't be going again!


Beautiful, almost magical, decor. Thats where it stops. Food took an hour and 15 minutes to arrive, very expensive and quality did NOT match the insanely expensive prices....a total rip off! Rude and unexperienced staff, apart from one waiter. Apart from that, will NOT bee going back anytime soon...unless I marry a footballer or win the lottery because the place is stunning. A shame the food and experience didn't match :(


I had a great time at Shaka Zulu the food was really delicious and unusual...I love trying new things. The staff were very friendly and helpful when explaining the menu and the atmosphere was great. I will definitely be going back and bringing my friends!


What can I say that would sum up our experience of Shaka Zulu ? POOR, POOR, POOR. What a disappointing experience not to be repeated. It started off with the confused message my nephew got when booking (should have rung alarm bells). He was told when first booking that Bruno Mars was performing and our table was situated near the band would that be a problem. Must admit I thought this was a bonus until the second phone call that advised us that we would have to pay £17.50 to see Bruno Mars. As this was a family birthday celebration with age ranging from 18 to nearly 80 we didn't feel that this was something we wanted to do as we were unsure how long we would stay. By the third call my nephew was told that if we didn't pay we would be asked to leave the restaurant by 9:30pm. As our booking was for 7:45 I didn't feel this gave us enough time and not forgetting they took our booking to start with. I decided to call the restaurant as it was turning into a bitter expirance for my nephew. I finally got through to one of the managers and explained my disappointment. He apologise and said that he would talk to the staff and we would not be asked to leave at 9:30 instead we could stay until 10pm - how generous when there voice message and web site say they are open until 2am. He said we could call and ask for him if there were any other issues or inquires (shame they didn't answer their phone on the day). Once at the restaurant things didn't improve. It took them a long time to seat us which was an issue as we were on a restricted time scale. This was followed by a bouncer being very roud to my nephew and poor quality food (the saving grace was a really nice waiter).   I asked to speak to the manager I spoke to on the phone which surprise, surprise was once again disappointing. Although he listened to my concerns his response when I said the food was below average he side " it not for everyone" - what is that  meant to mean? Odd, arrogant response. They served our deserts with the bill (which we hadn't asked for) and were very keen we left. My other concern was the amount of people they were packing into a very small area to see Bruno Mars - due to the amount of people you couldn't get off the escalators, causing a bit of a pile up - luckily there wasn't a emergency. In my opinion, as the manager said "it's not for everyone" , I think Shaka Zulu is all hype and no substance - what a shame.   


Went there last Tuesday supposedly, as advertised, to an event hosted by Bruno Mars it turned out to be an absolute fiasco. We ended up waiting around for four & a half hours to see him, drinking over priced drinks whilst being lied to the whole time by the staff & bouncers that he would be 'performing' shortly. He finally turned up at gone 12 promptly ignored everyone there whilst he sat with his mates drinking & then left after about 20 mins. Shaka Zulu are now treating everyone who has complained about the evening terribly. Awful place with rude aggressive staff, definitely not recommended

Carol Clements

I also attended the Bruno Mars event on Tuesday 8th November at Shaka Zulu and it was absolutely appalling. If it is possible to give this venue a minus score, I would give it minus 100. Since attending this event (at which Bruno was supposed to perform), I have complained and requested a refund. The venue is only offering a voucher (to be spent there of course!) and is simply not listening to the complaints of the hundreds of people who attended and spent vast amounts of money on the night. The staff were rude, one female guest was physically assaulted by one of the bouncers, and it was clear the management had no clue how to handle the situation (then or now in fact). I have reported this venue to Advertising Standards for misleading and false representation of this event, and have also written to Camden District Trading Standards. Do not visit this venue, your pocket will suffer, and you will leave with a bitter taste in your mouth (whether or not you eat and drink there). I have complained on the Facebook site for this venue and my complaints have been removed. This company is appalling.


I attended a Music Box night at Shaka Zulu where they advertised that Bruno Mars would be hosting. We were treated abominably by Shaka Zulu. The event was supposed to start at 9pm. Everyone was crowded around the escalators at eight-thirty because we were told we weren't allowed downstairs, where the stage was. The servers and customers had a hard time getting through and we were uncomfortably packed together - security did nothing to organise the situation. After that, while we were all packed behind the VIP area from nine o'clock onwards, security personnel and performers on stage kept reassuring us every half an hour that Bruno Mars would be on stage soon. If anyone at Shaka Zulu had made an effort to keep us correctly informed (that Bruno Mars would not arrive until after twelve a.m., that he would not be going on stage and was simply going to have his own table inside the VIP area) then we would have left early enough not to have to be standing there for three hours straight, unable to move from our spots, get a drink or a bite to eat, dance, or go home at a decent time. However, the case was that we stood there from 9pm to 12.30 am. Bruno Mars arrived at 12 and headed straight for his table and only sat there drinking as the crowd of 100+ people looked on. There was no live performance from him as they stated on their Facebook page ("Shaka Zulu: This is his last and ONLY performance in the UK before flying back to the US on Wednesday evening!") The way that Shaka Zulu dealt with the negative feedback the day after this was horrendous as well. After deleting evidence of their having stated Bruno Mars would be singing and performance and only reinstating the original posts after criticism about their ignoring the situation, they sent out a mass email to dissatisfied customers (and there were a LOT, just look at their Facebook page to see the complaints!) offering a voucher as a 'gesture of goodwill', as well as repeatedly emphasising that Bruno Mars was only 'hosting', and that he did 'host' at his table. I replied and said that they stated he would be singing on their Facebook page, and that I would like a refund of my tickets, as I would not have attended if they hadn't falsely advertised that Bruno Mars would be performing on stage. All I got as a reply was that my comment would be passed on and no acknowledgement of my complaints. False advertising and misrepresentation, as well as unprofessional customer service and way of handling a situation that resulted from their irresponsible advertising and actions. All they are after is a quick way to make money, with no regards for integrity or customer satisfaction.


This is the most Awful place I have ever been too. The staff (if they are not rude) are either extremely stupid or one sandwich short of a picnic. Unhelpful and they have NO idea what is going on. A group of us wasted £20 to watch Bruno Mars host and by 12:00 he had still not arrived, we heard one bouncer saying to the other that they assumed he "might" be there at 2 (the place closes then anyway) How is it possible that they are allowing people to spend money on tickets and drinks when they knew Bruno Mars might not even pitch up (which is exactly what ended up happening) This place is Absurd and I am embarrased to call myself a South African if this is who is representing our culture. PATHETIC is all I can say. WASTE of my time and money and energy


An extreme disappointment. The food was mediocre and bland with a lack of the characteristic spices in most African food. For the price, I was expecting something extrordinary and delicious. It's been over a month since I visited, had written a complaint to the restaurant as well as via Groupon where I'd purchased a voucher for one of our meals. Regardless of the voucher, we still spent over £70 with one drink and one meal. Ridiculous. Avoid it.

Lauren Rosica

Just visited Shaka Zulu for the first time. It was the one year anniversary with my boyfriend and we wanted to celebrate by doing something special. The food was great and the staff made us feel very special when we told them the occasion! THe wood carvings everywhere made us feel like we actually went on a mini-vacation or something. It's definitely worth the visit. We'll be back again soon.

Mandeep Sandhu Randhawa

We went there for my husband's birthday dinner. Got a deal out of for £25 for 3 course meal per person. It was an amazing romantic experience. The staff were ok, just doing their jobs well and the food was great. I don't know why many people don't have good comments on the food but basically the food is full of flavours, exotic spices... and I guess some people can find it different and not seem to understand much about the cuisine. However, the only problem I would say is a problem was that the food gets cold quite quickly. I guess the tables are made of marble and the food is not served on heated plates, so the heat disperse rather quickly. I am a slow eater and my mains which was the ostrich fillet gone cold half way thru. The ambience was great, the decor was great and the food was great.. Would definetly go there again and perhaps with a group of friends this time.


I visited Shaka Zulu for the first time, last Saturday (6 August). I must admit that I was put off by the price but thought that we should give it a go as a friend recommended it. I had a passion fruit martini - it was lovely. Our food was delicious (I had a red mullet to start with followed by an ostich fillet) and desserts were lovely (I had a passion fruit creme brulee and I tried my boyfriend's dessert - a chocolate trifle I think). The only thing that put me off was the fact they asked for the table at 11pm (I didn't make the booking so I didn't even look at the time / was aware they needed it back by 11 - we booked a table from 9pm) but we stayed until around 11 20 and nobody said anything afterwards.

Stephanie Brown

I was so looking forward to taking my Canadian friend to Shaka Zulu restaurant to experience South African cuisine. We went on a Sunday evening in August 2011, quite early. I was asked by a Hungarian at reception if we had booked. We had not and he said we had a half hour wait and whisked us through to a very empty bar for a drink. The decor was fantastic! We tried to get a south african beer but the closest we got was a west african beer and the other two choices were from Germany. I went to the toilet which was a walk past the restaurant area downstairs. It was practically empty. When I went back up stairs I asked the waitress why we were waiting for half an hour when it was empty. She said that was their policy and it was so that we could enjoy the "experience". She was Polish. We asked to see the menu while we waited. A chicken Bunny Chow, which is chicken curry in bread, was priced at £32.50!! I had been warned by reviews and friends but I thought that they were exaggerating. We then asked if we could look at the bar menu. The prices seemed a little more reasonable until we went to order. The waitress said, "oh so you have decided to settle for a snack then?" We hesitated and asked what size the portions were. She gestured the size, indicating very small. We got up and left. I travel the world for a living and am accustomed to paying for a reasonable meal and service but this place has to be the most over priced restaurant, with the rudest staff I have ever come across. They rely wholly on the fantastic decor. I guess that they do not have much repeat business and that customers are passing tourists who do not know any better. Considering I visited in August, the busiest month of the year for tourism in London, I now understand why the restaurant was so quiet. I hope that they have a change in management and employ more south african staff with cheerful dispositions. This place has great potential as an event venue but is currently so lacking in true african spirit. I will look out for reviews to see if it improves before I choose to cross its threshold again. Sorely disappointed of Blackheath


Being a South African, I am ashamed that this restaurant associates itself with my country. I initially went to the restaurant around when it opened and was not thoroughly impressed, however this I thought could have been attributed to the fact it had just opened and gave it a chance. I recently decided to go back with a group of friends to give it another chance. Its gotten worse. The staff had a serious attitude about them and were generally unwilling to help, besides our waitress who was actually very pleasant. The salmon starter was decent, but the meat (something which South Africa prides itself on) was atrocious. All of the meat was completely over cooked and had little flavour. Incorrect drinks were brought to us (Hunters confused for Windhoek, phonetically not similar at all...) and we waited about 40 minutes for our dessert! Our waitress came to apologise a few times for the delay saying that 'she was fighting with the kitchen'. Funny thing is, we were about 1 of a few tables dining on a Sunday afternoon... We all opted for the set menu, at £42. I wouldn't even pay half of that for this place, it was that bad. My feeling is that if the proprietors had spent more time, money and effort on the food instead of on the decor (which is fantastic, I have to give it that) then this all could have been avoided. Something needs to be done to turn this around in a hurry, otherwise this 'restaurant' isn't going to be around for much longer.


i was at shaka zulu on a sat night. the ambience is nice and relaxed, the crowd a bit mixed but cool. the food was average. we ordered a sharing game of african meat but were told that zebra was not available. asked for drinks 4 times before we got them. ordered a wine on the list and were told it was not in stock. bad service with no specific waiter assigned to the table. the staff was apologetic after we said we would not pay for a 12.5% service charge. at least they recognize the need for improvment! i'd recommed it for drinks after dining somewhere else.


We went to Shaka last weekend and the décor was AMAZING! The details in the carvings and lighting added to a beautiful atmosphere. I’ve never seen such a beautiful South African venue or heard of another place serving Zebra or Ostrich. They def went all out on creating a very memorable experience. Although the food was expensive, we used a groupon voucher and found it was quite affordable. After dinner we stayed for drinks to experience the night club. We enjoyed the diversity in music and I got my girlfriend to actually dance with me. (a rare event I must say) Def worth experiencing and had a great time! A must see!


amazing food, amazing service, extremely kind and willing staff, and it looks absolutely spectacular! I would recommend this to anyone, the whole experience is one to remember!

Show More