Perhaps the best thing about London is that it is a populated by people from all corners of the globe, who all contribute to the city’s gloriously vibrant and constantly evolving cultural expression. Londoners with Middle Eastern roots have the advantage of being able to provide a truly authentic shisha experience, so without further ado; here are the best shisha lounges in capital.
Bar, Cafe, Turkish, $$$
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Cafe Cairo | Courtesy of Cafe Cairo
Combining the vibes of a café, a bar and a club into one distinct entity, Cafe Cairo offers guests live music, talks, films and events during the week; alongside a menu of sweets, puddings, teas and cocktails, as well as books, chess and backgammon. Customers can cosy up by the fireplace or head outside to the shisha garden, complete with a tent that was made specially in the bazaars of Cairo and furnished with comfy cushions, blankets, tables and, of course, a shisha bar.
Located in Park Royal, North West London, Beirut Nights is a Lebanese restaurant that caters Middle Eastern delicacies alongside some great shisha. Enjoy a meal, polished off with a milkshake, crepe, cake or waffle and followed with a smoke on the heated outdoor seats.
Offering two venues in prestigious London areas Knightsbridge and Mayfair, Mamounia Lounge is a relaxed restaurant serving Lebanese and Moroccan cuisines by day. At night, however, the venue transforms with belly dancers and traditional Middle Eastern musicians who bring the vivacious spirit of Marrakech to the heart of London.
Serving up Indian cuisine and cocktails, as well as 180 whiskies from around the world, plus cocktails, Salt Whisky Bar and Dining Room can be found on Edgware road, less than a five-minute walk from Marble Arch tube station. The calm contemporary interior here leads out to a pleasant exterior shisha patio.
Drunch is another chain making a splash on the shisha scene with three European venues, in Mayfair, by Regent’s Park and on the Greek island of Mykonos. Besides shisha, the Regent’s Park restaurant offers international food, cocktails and wine. The Mayfair site opened in 2013 and offers a boutique gastropub format with juices, homemade teas, home-baked desserts and modern American comfort foods, while the shisha garden is heated and covered.
Opened in 1997 by Parisian-Algerian restaurateur Mourad Mazouz, Momo is a stylishly original slice of North Africa in Central London. Momo’s MoCafé offers customers afternoon tea, Moroccan mint tea, mezze and cocktails, while a shisha pipe can be enjoyed on the terrace. Everything in sight is on sale, from CDs, books and antique jewels to the lamps that dangle from the ceiling.
Catering traditionally Moroccan cuisine in the hustle and bustle of Edgware Road, Dar Marrakesh keeps visitors comfortable with its indoor electric shisha pipes. Entertainment here consists of belly dancers, live DJs and live sports, covering all the bases.