Beauty, opulence and good food are three elements that cannot be missimg from a luxury experience. Amidst today´s frantic way of life, an oasis of entertainment rises in one of London’s most exclusive areas: a building where the most renowned celebrities meet, and where fantasy is the norm.
Founded In 1963 in the basement of the 44 Berkeley Square, the private club that started as a meeting place for Mark Birley and his friends soon became a favourite space for London’s elite, and has been frequented by great personalities over the course of its years. In 2018, Annabel’s relocated to the 46 Berkeley Square and took up not only the basement, but the entire building. The 4-story Georgian mansion houses 26,000 square feet of marvellous bars, restaurants, and a wonderful garden in which the club’s members can entertain and relax, all while enjoying the delicious drinks and food that the staff has always at the ready. The redesign by the acclaimed Martin Brudnizki Design Studio focuses on creating a maximalist, decadent atmosphere; all the interior tapestries are exclusive and made to measure, and exquisitely mixed with hand embroidery, paintings, and sculptures.
Faithful to the original club’s design, the basement houses the Nightclub alongside the Jungle Bar: an underground paradise inspired by Peter Wenzel’s Garden of Eden. This magnificent nocturne space has an exotic, decadent atmosphere, with glass and brass palm trees as pillars and hand-painted mirrors lining the walls. The furniture and tapestries are hand-embroidered with colourful birds, tropical flora and animal print patterns, and the dancefloor is fitted with a hydraulic mechanism that allows it to lift from the ground and serve as a stage for musical performances.
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As one goes upstairs to the ground level, one may choose between the Rose Room and the Garden to bask in the sunlight. The Rose Room is an incredibly beautiful diner, with silver trompe á l’oleil and gold hand-painted details, chandeliers shaped like iris and tulips, and a pink onyx, backlit bar that resembles rose petals. The Garden, on the other hand, is a fresh, evergreen space covered by a glass retractable dome that is a true engineering masterpiece. It is the ideal place to relax while surrounded by nature, and delight oneself with the scrumptious appetizers that are served in here, be it while basking in the sunlight, or under a roof of stars.
Continuing upwards, on the first floor we will come upon the Elephant Bar, a sophisticated meeting and working space. It has an Asian-inspired appetizer menu, and a collection of eastern spirits to go with it. It is also a place for relaxation, with streamlined furniture, exotic fabrics and hand-painted murals that, like mirages, evoke imaginary views from distant lands. This floor is also home to the club’s two private rooms, which Annabel’s members can reserve and orchestrate private meals and reunions. The Silver Room has a view of the garden and owes its name to the Georgian silver mouldings that line its walls. Lit both with natural light and art-déco chandeliers, it has an elegant, refined atmosphere that is perfect for the most sophisticated celebrations. However, if what one wants for is an experience of beauty and fantasy, the Flower Room is the perfect choice. With double-height windows that let in the sunlight, its walls blooming with silk flowers and hand-embroidered cherry trees, this private room’s botanical theme is sure to enchant its guests with its dreamlike splendour.
The second floor houses “The Mexican”, a restaurant that is transformed by the passing of the hours. By day, it is a relaxed, informal meeting place, and also a good spot to bring your laptop and sit down to work. At dusk, however, it becomes both fiesta and a culinary adventure: Mexican traditional-inspired plates, an exotic cocktail carte and Europe’s greatest tequila and mezcal collection make a night at The Mexican into an unforgettable experience.
At last, we arrive at the top of the building, where dinner at Matteo’s, Annabel’s newest addition, is waiting for us. It spans over the whole third floor, and its decoration, inspired by the original Annabel’s, boasts a rich golden décor, with fine-wood accents and mirror walls. Here, the most delicious Italian dishes are accompanied with Italy’s best wines, of which the restaurant owns an exclusive collection of bottles from Barolo and Tuscany. Apart from Matteo’s opulence, the third floor stands out for its lavatories: keeping in style with the rest of the club, the walls and ceilings here are made into a spectacular art display. A myriad of tiny glass mosaics creates patterns that evoke scenes from the jungle. The sinks are sculpture masterpieces: a green onyx alligator for the men’s bathroom, and flower-shaped pink onyx basins for the ladies’.
Our tour at Annabel’s wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the humidor, a dignified room that has been designed specifically for the most demanding cigar connoisseurs. Here, Annabel´s members can acquire the finest, rarest cigars from Cuba, and also have access to the club’s vintage cigar collections.