The Best Private Dining Rooms In St James’s
The streets of St James’s, so near to the corridors of power, are awash with places and spaces to hold meetings, networking events and even political plotting sessions!
But whether you’re embroiled in discussing the current political furore or, like us, just bemused bystanders who want to have a good time, here’s a rundown of the best places & spaces for hire around St James’s for the powerful – and not so powerful – to hold private events.
Eight Hidden Gems – St James’s Restaurants & Brasserie’s with private rooms
Wiltons’ old school charm never loses its appeal – the elegant private room for up to 20 has its own cloakroom and is always a winner for fabulously classic food that’s impeccably sourced.
Nearby Franco’s is equally well-established and hosts regular breakfast, lunch and dinner meetings in its two adjoining private areas – which can be hired separately or together for larger events up to 55.
More brasserie style options for private dining include the light and airy Avenue with its glass fronted private room (for 20) and rear windows flooding the room with natural light. There’s also the raised balcony in the main restaurant for semi private events for up to 24.
Villandry also boasts two private rooms for between 12 and 36 – with all IT-necessities as well as their deliciously moreish Mediterranean menu. Quaglino’s two private rooms for 14 and 40 are on the mezzanine level, but the whole restaurant is also available for exclusive hire and the venue undoubtedly has the best staircase in The Capital for a bride & groom to make an entrance.
Another great hidden gem is Boulestin’s classically elegant private room which comes complete with all audio visual equipment and space for up to 40 seated guests (70 for a standing reception).
The grade II listed Balcon’s double height ceilings and two oak spiral staircases provide a fabulous ambience for private events up to 16 guests and is separated from the main restaurant by stunning silk curtains.
For Japanese influence Sake no Hana offers the main bar for canapé receptions up to 60, as well as the sushi bar for 13 or exclusive use for up to 110 guests. As well as an extensive sake selection and Japanese inspired cocktails, sushi making & sake masterclasses can also be arranged.
Four Fabulous Wine Cellars
For events in wine cellars – well why not?! – Berry Bros & Rudd has a veritable warren of rooms perfect for gala dinners (for 70) in the original cellars to entertaining tastings (for 40) in their new state of the art Sussex Rooms or even an intimate dinner in their plush Georgian townhouse for 14.
Amongst its other, more usual private dining options, The Stafford Hotel has a fabulous cellar room for up to 44 guests. The candlelit space with bottle lined cages, is truly atmospheric and hosts the largest wine cellar in London bar Buckingham Palace.
The stunning surrounds of One Whitehall Place are idea for all manner of meetings and social events and also features a cellar room for up to 70 guests (previously the intelligent services HQ during WW1 &2), while their other rooms, with beautiful oak panelling, library settings and river views, cater for parties up to 250.
Meanwhile, Davy’s of St James’s boasts the original arches of champagne vaults in its largest private rooms for up to 25 guests, while there are also two smaller spaces for parties of 8 and 16.
Hotels & Banqueting spaces
We love the Royal Over-Seas League for its timeless gloriousness. With beautifully elegant décor throughout, the seven private rooms range in capacity from 12 – 100 and cater for everything from the smallest meeting to large banquets and wedding receptions.
The six private rooms at One Great George St are discrete and ideally positioned for out of office governmental debriefs, briefs and meetings as well as more informal dinners for between 14 and 260 guests.
The Cavendish Hotel’s five private rooms cater for parties up to 77 and are ideal for meetings and dinner events with packages starting at just £59 per person including dinner, wine & coffee, room hire, placecards, VAT and service charge.
Nearby St James Hotel and Club has a further five private rooms available for hire from a stunning penthouse to a library and boardroom, while St James’ Court (Taj hotel group) boasts a staggering 17 different event spaces – ranging from a delightful terrace to modern conference rooms and beautifully refurbished banqueting suites.