When I think of flower boxes in London, two variations come to mind.
First I think of Freddie’s Flowers boxes. Of course. What kind of man would I be if I didn’t?
And second I think of pubs. I repeat: ‘What kind of man would I be if I didn’t?’
Drinkeries all over the capital are in full bloom, as is the summer. So let me take you on a flowerful pub (and hotels oh, and restaurants and bars) crawl/tour/ trip around London to whet both those floral visuals and thirsty tastebuds.
1) The Culpeper, Aldgate
Let’s start at the top. Welcome to The Culpepper. Named after Nicholas Culpeper, an English herbalist and astrologer who popularised herbalism in the 17th Century, I’m sure you can guess why this pub is on the list.
The Culpeper’s roof terrace offers a view of East London’s skyline that is simply stunning. Surrounded by a true urban garden, you can sit back and see London at it’s best, glass of white wine in hand. City dwellers’ herbal haven? I think so!
If that’s not quite enough to get you there, they even have gardening workshops to sign up to. A little more creative than green fingered? How about a botanical drawing class? You could put your newly acquired skills to good use when arranging our flower boxes in London!
Or maybe you’ll just stick to the ice cold cocktail? Whichever you’d rather, there’s clearly something for everyone here.
2) Bourne & Hollingsworth, Clerkenwell
Forget our temperamental British weather, when Bourne & Hollingsworth is concerned it’s summer all year round.
The sense of beautiful abandonment is exactly what Bourne & Hollingsworth are going for in this little jungle gem:
Very aptly named ‘The Greenhouse’, don’t you think?
I love the light that pours through the enormous windows whilst the creepers clamber up the drain pipes. Even the furniture is upholstered in tasteful floral patterns. The combination resonates with a big old countryside conservatory that’s aged ‘juuuuuust right’. Absolutely fairytale worthy.
3) Mr Fogg’s, Mayfair and Covent Garden
Want a pub brimming with charisma and doused with flowers? Welcome to Mr Fogg’s. You’re in for quite the ride.
In honour of Phileas Fogg, the main character of Jules Verne’s Around The World in Eighty Days novel, Mr Fogg’s has a magical ability to transport you out of London and into all things wonderful and botanical.
Within the magical walls of Mr Fogg’s, you certainly don’t find the usual pub flower boxes in London. Think more along the lines of ‘crashed’ hot air balloons, Penny Farthings dangling from the ceilings and bird cages for lampshades.
But what we’re after is a floral atmosphere and a good old slurp on a tasty cocktail. As you can imagine, Mr Fogg’s won’t offer the bog-standard usual drinks menu. Thanks to the flower filled balcony out the back of the pub that’s sponsored by Hendricks Gin, Mr Fogg’s really has nailed it in all areas. Cheers to that!
4) Sky Pod Bar, Sky Garden, The City
I couldn’t write about London’s best flower fuelled drink spots and not mention the mother of all flower boxes in London: The Sky Garden.
The Sky Garden is basically an enormous greenhouse that permits the most phenomenal 360° views of the city in a setting like no other. The assortment of flora and fauna is quite astounding; the majority of the plants are of South African and Mediterranean species that are resistant to drought. Architectural landscapers, Gillespies, have created a space that works harmoniously in order to flower all year long. But I certainly haven’t ventured into a greenhouse that has 5 different bars or restaurants, let alone one that sits 155 metres above the streets of London before.
Onto the booze, I suggest heading to the Sky Pod bar for a cocktail as pretty as the setting:
London’s highest garden is inside the ‘Walkie-Talkie’ building and was designed in 2004 by Raphael Viñoly. Well done Mr. Viñoly, nice work!
5) Ham Yard Hotel Roof top, Soho
I think of this place as the stately home of Soho. We all love to wander around a stately home garden every now and then. Nothing better than admiring a box ball trimming quality and the extensive vegetable garden.
Well, this is an urban accomplishment! A country estate has been plonked right into the heart of the capital thanks to the Ham Yard Hotel.
‘A place like this in London? No. There has to be a catch’. Well there certainly used to be. This heavenly place used to be exclusive to hotel guests. Not anymore! The roof terrace at the Ham Yard Hotel has opened it garden gates to the public for numerous events this summer.
6) The Holly Bush, Hampstead
Pretty as a picture, right?
Unlike the rest of the drink spots I’ve spoken about, The Holly Bush is spilling over with traditional flower boxes in London. And that’s exactly what I love about it.
Tucked away up a narrow little street in the heart of Hampstead, it’s the type of place you stumble upon purely by accident. But this is no bad accident.
You’ll be hard pressed not to go for a good old traditional cask ale here, I would know.
Flower Boxes in London
They may not have pansies in them but our flower boxes are just as eye-catching! See what I’m rambling on about and try it for yourself for £24 a pop!