Live music is back. And how we’ve missed it. Watching live music, rock, opera and theatre via our screens may have been the norm in lockdown but with such restrictions lifted now, fans are eager to get back out into venues while performers are happy to deliver. And The Hideaway at Sloane Place is doing its bit by launching intimate live music nights on Thursdays.
Just getting out of the house to socialise is exciting nowadays but being in a venue listening to music among friends and strangers is just that little extra special. It’s that familiar cocktail of electricity of the crowd, the buzz of the voices, coupled with excitement and anticipation. And while The Hideaway – a new under-the-radar venue situated under the boutique hotel Sloane Square in Chelsea is small and intimate – the same feelings arise.
Stepping downstairs into the immaculately designed Art Deco style venue, The Hideaway in the basement is reminiscent of a time gone by that celebrates the iconic smoky New York jazz bar. Its décor is both vibrant and cosy complete with generous and covert booths for gossiping, deep velvet armchairs, geometric chandeliers, sultry lighting, dark corner tables framed by frosted mirrors and a cocktail list to impress the fussiest of palates.
The weekly sessions are performed by a variety of musicians who have toured with some of the industry’s biggest names. Mike Davies, Laura Williams and Leigh Coleman have all been playing at the venue over the last few weeks and on the night Maria and I attended, it was Mike Maddams who entertained the small crowd as they tucked into complimentary canapés. Just hearing him pull on the guitar strings while belting out country songs to the toe-tapping crowd was nothing less of being electric.
While the music sessions last two hours from 7-9 pm each Thursday, punters can take advantage of extending their stay with the newly launched Session, Supper and Sleepover package that offers the most fun one could legally have on a work night. After an evening of live music and cocktails, guests can dine at the Sloane Place restaurant for dinner, followed by a night in one of the hotel’s luxurious rooms, before waking up to breakfast in the same dining room.
Not one to do things by halves, I had accepted the offer of experiencing the whole package, and when the music stopped, Maria and I were straight up those stairs for supper. Located on the ground floor, the restaurant is a buzzy café/bar during the day and an appealing restaurant with dim lights come evening. The teal and navy-blue furnishings, parquet flooring and bistro tables with light emanating from the floor to ceiling windows facing the street.
Located in an iconic five-storey Victorian red brick building typical of Lower Sloane Street, Sloane Place has the air of continental Europe. During daylight hours, the outdoor tables are perfectly positioned for a spot of people watching. Dinner here is unpretentious; it comes in huge portions teamed with cocktails and mocktails.
The menus are created by Executive Chef Bernhard Mayer (formerly of The Savoy and Four Seasons, Park Lane) and take on a contemporary British-Javanese menu with signature dishes such as their Lobster & Prawn burger, Rose County beef tataki and bao buns.
After wining and dining, there’s nothing like scrambling just a few steps upstairs to retire. Sloane Place’s 27-bedroom hotel officially opened in 2021, with a soft opening in 2019 (pre-Covid-19). The boutique hotel boasts five room categories which feature soothing dark blue and mustard, soft furnishings and silvery grey walls. Having been booked into a suite which resembled a large flat, my guest Maria and I maximised our stay in it.
The bathroom with both a bathtub and separate rain shower was used for pampering, the dressing area to glam up, while the living space with its comfy sofa and armchair was used wisely to catch both in the evening and the morning over copious cups of tea. A great way for two independent professional women to spend some quality. And the history of this place seemed apt to do so. Allow me to explain.
Founded originally in 1922 by Princess Helena, Queen Victoria’s daughter, The Sloane Club across the hall from the restaurant was opened as the Service Women’s Club exclusively for women in the forces. With menfolk not allowed entry until the 1960s, The Sloane Club was way ahead of its time in honouring spaces for empowered women.
To this day, Sloane Place carries the baton of this heritage by being a space exuding bonhomie for people to meet and mingle in. And as we start to return to the lives we have so missed, this corner of London is a great fun place to head to with great food, music and atmosphere. And in my humble opinion, a delightful venue to head to post-lockdown that ticks a lot of boxes.
The Hideaway at Sloane Place – Where and How?
Sloane Place is a dog-friendly hotel with furry friends welcome to stay for £30 per night. With five room categories from Cosy to Suite, nightly rates start from £200 on a B&B basis. The hotel can be found in Sloane Place, 62 Lower Sloane Street, Chelsea, London, SW1W 8BP, just a two-minute walk from Sloane Place tube. For more information, visit www.sloaneplace.com/hotel.
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