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The Elusive Camel (Bar, Restaurant)

Picture of The Elusive Camel in Victoria, London

27 Gillingham Street, Pimlico, Victoria, London, SW1V 1HP
Cuisine: [Other/Unclassified]
Tel: 020 7233 9004 | Email to The Elusive Camel | Transport: Victoria | Write review

The Elusive Camel Review

Pssst, want to know a secret? Come close because this is undoubtedly one of those ‘best kept’ secrets you occasionally catch wind of. You see that Elusive Camel? Well, it’s not what you think it is. Or what it WAS, to be more precise. Patrons who previously watered at this establishment might well be inclined to opt for words like ‘trough’ and ‘den of iniquity’ when describing their erstwhile experiences. Yet, if you go down to the woods tonight you’re in for a big surprise because The Camel of yore is but a distant and elusive memory. Thank Gord!

Back in the year of our recession - 2008 - VPMG came along and changed everything, forever. If you’ve never heard of VPMG, it’s neither an acronym to describe an uncomfortable underwear situation nor the latest multi-national bank to fall foul of said recession. No, VPMG is a consortium whose primary business concern is the waving magic wands. If you’ve witnessed the swanky Pigalle Club, or the equally ritzy Bloomsbury Ballroom, you’ll understand the level that VPMG works at. With The Elusive Camel, they’ve turned what was a metaphoric Sean Bean into what is a metaphoric Sean Connery.

Gone are the estate hoodies and grubby construction workers who finally broke The Camels back. Stepping up to replace them are yards and yards of tailored-made suit, armed with company credit cards, astutely hatching tomorrow’s deals during their midweek confab.

Pre-Pacha clubbers take ownership of the weekends, posing amongst the standing-room-only tables outside, sporadically venturing back in to witness the House the DJ built. Gone are the salad days of quasi-Walkabout notoriety, when beer taps and picnic benches were the norm.

So, what would you rather do? Hang around with be-jandaled Australians shouting obscenities at a TV bracketed to the wall, cursing a sport you don’t really understand, OR sink slowly into a low-slung, leather sofa before engaging in some prime time social networking with your colleagues? If you answered the former, the Wetherspoons up the road is more suited to you, sonny, because here at The Camel you’re expected to behave and dress responsibly. If not, the enforcer will eject you politely from the premises and you’ll never be privy to such sophistication again.

This new way of thinking has filtered into the drinking, too. Beers are practically a thing of the past and The Camel proudly presents a cocktail list that speaks your language. It knows you like the classics but also knows you’re a risk taker, so promises expansion on the familiar. It’s also aware of your frugal nature, and has deals, deals, deals galore. It even knows when you’ve got an important meeting tomorrow and, correspondingly, sets aside a non-alcholic ‘Elusive’ signature drink. What a caring list. Impeccably presented every time, hardly missing a beat.

Sadly, boys will be boys and all too often the elder statesmen of this micro-society are seen ordering exotic drinks such as Grolsch Extra Cold. Wow! Chaps, sort yourselves out. Expand your horizons. Let go of the lager, embrace the veritable tome of new and enticing flavours on offer. Do yourself a favour, put down that pint and release yourself from the shackles of tradition and conformity. Stride proudly up to the bar and order a manly berry Caipirinha. You life will enriched so.

The golden hue of the Polish Martini is the dawn of a new day captured in a glass. The ginger ale of the Mango Bourbon has a soothing medicinal piquancy and so surely must be good for you. The milky Brandy Alexander is liquid Tiramisu and is easily the best way to bookend your evening.

Oh, and the wine list ain’t half bad either.

The Camel’s transient crowd slots nicely into ‘post-work’ or ‘pre-club’ categories and this isn’t a venue for ‘having a sesh’. Not unless your sesh falls between the hours of 4 and 7pm, when cocktails are £3.50 a piece. If your weekend likes to start early, then watch out for the dangerously funky Thursday nights, when it’s almost mandatory to get your groove on before 9pm.

Although the name might suggest otherwise, The Elusive Camel is decidedly easy to locate and its proximity to Victoria Station is brilliant for that last-train-home dash/stagger. Plus, the neighbouring competition poses practically no threat whatsoever, with Wetherspoons bearing the brunt of beer brigade.

The Elusive is not an upper class cocktail bar, but it certainly maintains a healthy position amongst the semi-detached, broadsheet-reading, kids-in-grammar-school upper middle classes of the libation world. more

Customer Reviews for The Elusive Camel

Average (based on 6 votes): 6 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of The Elusive Camel.

“my wife and I were treated to food & drinks all afternoon in 2014 for our birthday, we found it by chance and it looked a nice place, before going to the theatre. Staff were very pleasant, food excellent, we had good old fish& chips gorgeous, the beer was very well kept, after our meal, we all fell into a comfy sofa, listened to the music and drifted off, had a few more drinks, and honestly, none of us wanted to leave. I wish this place was closer to where we live, would be in it every day,”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
alan, great yarmouth (6 years 4 months ago)

“I worked at the Elusive Camel when it first opened and I have to say it was a great place to work. The place looks amazing now. Most impressed with the new look. Well done people.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Denise, NZ (11 years 6 months 22 days ago)

“Trust the review up above because the ones below must be out of date. I remember the The Elusive Camel of old and that is now long since dead. A new Victoria cocktail bar has srpung up in its place and wow (!), what a difference. Gone are the pub sport screens and draught lagers. Now it’s all fancy designs and post-work chatter. Much improved.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Leigh, Tooting (11 years 8 months 26 days ago)

Show all user reviews for The Elusive Camel

“Staff are friendly and helpful, pint of fosters very good.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
rob baker , cork ireland (14 years 28 days ago)

“The Camel, formly The Elusive Camel, is absolutly awesome for a night out or drink. The staff are the prettiest and service wow London i have found customer service.The food is the best i have tasted for a bar/pub and changes each month as for the cocktails and drinks great love them especially tuesday''s and thursday''s only £3 any cocktail and 241 wine. Please open more Camel bars.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Angela Smith, [ Unknown ] (16 years 6 months 27 days ago)

“This place has a personality all its own - sports screens, cocktails, no pretensions, and the best menu I've ever seen at a bar. The music is cool, gets you in the mood. Its a top mix, one of the best bars I've been to in London.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Ronnie Dullaway, [ Unknown ] (17 years 5 months 1 days ago)

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Classic and modern cocktails, great wines and spirits, refreshing beers... what more coud you ask for?

Updated 01/10/2008

Additional Information

  • Dress Code: Smart/Casual
  • Group: VPMG

Special offers, discounts and deals at The Elusive Camel

Winter Sale - All day everyday


House spirit and mixer only £2.00
Buy two large glasses of wine and get the rest of the bottle free

These offers are available all day everyday but are subeject to change

Updated 23/02/2009

Events and other great things going on at The Elusive Camel

House DJ's Wednesday to Saturday giving you all the best house and chart music to date

Updated 23/02/2009

The Elusive Camel Hire Details

A small function room with a maximum capacity of 50 people make this the ideal party place

Updated 13/02/2007

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Venue ID: 1617

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