Celebrity Spotting: London's Top 10 Best Bars, Clubs & Restaurants to visit if you want to snap a celebrity or grab an autograph.
The celebrity: an elusive species, usually only captured on film by their primary predator, the paparazzi... until now.
More exciting than bird watching, but not quite as dangerous as deep sea fishing, the sport of celeb spotting can quickly turn habitual, with a sighting of Kate Moss or even Chantelle Houghton (gasp) ensuring that even the worst of days turns into a exquisite memory.
To help you on your hunt, we’ve compiled you your very own safari trail of watering holes including pubs, clubs, bars, and restaurants around London to increase the chances of catching a glimpse of this mysterious and curiosity provoking beast. Fanny pack, binoculars and tranquilisers optional; camera phone essential.
Image courtesy of Flickr user Free-ers.
Marylebone / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Eclectic
Marylebone?s very own home-away-from-Hollywood for London?s rich and famous (both visiting and local) is Chiltern Firehouse. There are few spots in the city where you are more likely to spy famous faces eating and drinking alongside us mere mortals. A favourite haunt of Kate Moss, Jay Z and Prime Minister David Cameron, this elite restaurant is located within London?s first ever purpose-build fire stations, an imposing Grade II listed building that still retains much of its gothic Victorian charm, despite the heady opulence of its interior. Needless to say, advanced reservations are a must.
The Ivy London
West End / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: British
We've all heard of this notorious venue and it's probably the place which first springs to mind when thinking of celeb haunts. However, it's not the first place you go when you need a last minute booking. Book well ahead (if it's for a special 30th birthday think about calling when you turn 25) but the preparation - and the wait - will all seem worth it when you're rubbing shoulders with Tom Cruise (or at least rubbing your hip to his shoulder), the Beckhams and Elton John.
Mayfair / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Moroccan
You may be out to celeb spot in London but it'll feel like you're in North Africa at Momos. Choose between the traditional North African Momo restaurant, the relaxed Mo Cafe terrace or the buzzing Kemia bar and then sink into the luxurious surroundings and keep your eyes peeled for sightings of celebs such as Madonna, Shakira and Stella McCartney.
Cafe de Paris
West End / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: International
Basement nightclub, glamorous restaurant and chic bar; put your hands together and you have Cafe de Paris. Cafe de Paris encompasses elegant, stylish and romantic which is probably why it's been a favourite with famous types since the 1920s. Your toosh could be sitting on the very same seat that once played host to Mick Jagger, Geroge Michael, Ronan Keating, Robbie Williams or Martine McCutcheon, all of whom visited in the past.
Soho / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: Bar
The Groucho Club opened in 1985 as "the antidote to the traditional club" taking its name from Groucho Marx who remarked that he would never join a club which would accept him as a member. Members of Groucho tend to be those writing the news not making it, as well as kids from the art and fashion industries.
The Met Bar
Mayfair / Bar / Hotel / Cuisine: Bar
Like your drink with a shot of celeb ruckus? Then the Met Bar will satisfy your thirst as it been the scene of many a drunken celeb brawl including the bust up between Sadie Frost and former Hollyoaks actress Davinia Taylor.
Mayfair / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: American
This place, founded by Piers Adam and Nick House, is as notorious as the celebs that walk through its doors. Well known for its celebrity clientele, it's named after the Polynesian path to the underworld. Fans of this journey to the other side include Princes Harry and William, Jay Z and Beyonce, Rihanna, and Girls Aloud who can all be regularly seen having a drink whilst awaiting judgement. It's usually delivered the following day via The Sun.
City of London / Bar / Club / Cuisine: Pan Asian
Mahiki's younger sister, this time Piers Adam and Nick House joined forces with Sarah Harding from Girls Aloud to create a Polynesian themed tiki bar that transports guests to a far off exotic paradise. In light of this, there is a large cocktail list and staff donning Hawaiian print shirts, straw skirts and coconut bras serving Sarah's pals Beyonce, JLS, Cilla Black and the Sugababes.
Soho / Bar / Restaurant / Club / Cuisine: Bar
A favourite with the JLS boys, this venue is definitely a sparkling gem in the crown of celebrity crawling venues. Jewel is renowned for being one of the most beautiful bars in London, which means the crowds tend to be beautiful and the likes of the Beckhams, Tom Jones and Elton John (ok, not so much Elton) feel right at home.
The Hawley Arms
Camden / Bar / Cuisine: Eclectic
The Lock Tavern
Camden / Bar / Cuisine: Pub
Samantha Morton and Rhys Ifans are the brand of celeb you'll find at The Lock Tavern, a place with red ceilings and old fashioned decor and a pretty roof terrace to get some air if the celeb infiltration gets too much. If you like music to accompany your celeb watching (because let's face it, they're nice to look at but not always so nice to listen to) then The Lock Tavern is for you. Thursday to Sunday there is live music and, better yet, you can get your kicks for free as there's no entry fee.
Mayfair / Bar / Restaurant / Hotel / Cuisine: Japanese
Who knew fish could be so glamorous. Kate Moss, Brad Pitt and George Clooney have all graced this restaurant with their superior presence and you could too, but to sea-food (sorry couldn't resist) you'll have to remember to bring a lot of 'clams' as it's not as cheap as chips. If you're at Nobu on Old Park Lane, you can move on to the Met Bar after dinner without leaving the hotel.
Mayfair / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: British
Guy Ritchie's pub in Mayfair isn't exactly the same as your local boozer. Although the venue itself is typically pub-esque, the clientele are far from the usual lager downing crowd that is seen country over. Instead, the likes of Princess Beatrice, Sting and Clint Eastwood are the ones who are likely to be ordering two pints of lager and a packet of crisps.
Tufnell Park Tavern
Kentish Town / Restaurant / Cuisine: Gastro
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