London Reviews: The Mandrake Hotel Bar

There’s a buzz-worthy new hangout in town and it’s the perfect bolthole if you’re looking to escape the ordinary on your next night out…

Situated unprepossessingly on Fitzrovia’s Newman Street, the alluringly-elusive Mandrake Hotel takes its name from a hallucinogenic plant, which was lauded by Mediterannean mystics back in the day.

The botanical inspiration finds root in the hotel’s striking aesthetics too, with hanging gardens of jasmines and passion vines encircling the central courtyard. There’s even a glasshouse brimming with medicinal flowers (tucked away on the first-floor terrace), while cocktails feature plant-based twists such as the rhubarb cordial and sea buckthorn tincture lacing my Campari-based concoction. More adventurous ingredients include truffled vodka and lobster essence.

As for the air of mysticism, well it practically permeates from the weird and wonderful artworks filling up the space (the likes of Peter-John de Villiers and Jeff Koons feature). It’s almost unsurprising to belatedly learn that the entrepreneur responsible for the hotel’s concept and construct, Rami Fustok, is the son of the surrealist sculptor, Bushra Fakhoury.



The entrancing experience is heightened by a crackle in the air. Less than a week into its opening, and The Mandrake is already an open secret among London’s stylish set.

Come to think of it, the setting is not unlike the haute Hotel Costes in Paris: beguilingly seductive and wildly hedonistic… And it comes to bear that the restaurant at The Mandrake, Serge et le Phoque, is helmed by one of the co-founders of Le Chateaubriand – the iconic Parisian establishment which fostered the trend in neo-bistros.

Eliciting the final seal of our approval, is the oh-so-Instagrammable loo tucked away in the hotel’s basement. You know you’re on the right track when you stumble on a selfie station, perfect for capturing all that fabulous fun.



After all. If you don’t Instagram it, did the evening really happen?

Mandrake Hotel 20 – 21 Newman Street, London W1T 1PG

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