Daphne’s traditional Italian Christmas 

The Grapefruit Desire cocktail at Daphne’s
The Grapefruit Desire cocktail at Daphne’s © Ben Carpenter

The restaurant’s colourful bauble installation returns to the Chelsea haunt. Expect classic Italian cuisine such as spaghetti with clams, chilli and white wine (£17/£26); or veal Milanese with lemon (£35.50) – while the festive cocktail menu is a source of joy offering a Truffle Martini made with Malfy Original Gin, Lillet Blanc and truffle oil (£18). Daphne’s, 112 Draycott Avenue, London SW3; daphnes-restaurant.co.uk


Bacchanalia Mayfair

“Worth a visit alone”: the decor at Bacchanalia in Mayfair
“Worth a visit alone”: the decor at Bacchanalia in Mayfair © Johnny Stephens

The Greco-Roman decor of Richard Caring’s new restaurant, envisaged by designer Martin Brudnizki, is worth a visit alone: five Damien Hirst sculptures, depicting mythical figures, are suspended above the dining room, appearing as if frozen by Medusa, who hovers over guests. Gary Myatt’s floor-to-ceiling murals depict scenes of pleasure-seeking and feasting – setting the tone for dining on Italo-Greek dishes such as grilled octopus with ospriada beans, wild oregano sauce and capers (£27) and mains of braised veal with saffron polenta, Barolo and fig sauce (£32). Get the party started on New Year’s Eve with dinner to live, immersive entertainment and a set by DJ Jean Claude Ades. Bacchanalia, 1 Mount Street, London W1; bacchanalia.co.uk


The Bishop at The Berkeley

The Bishop at The Berkeley in Knightsbridge
The Bishop at The Berkeley in Knightsbridge
A selection of pies at The Bishop
A selection of pies at The Bishop

Gastropub vibes are conjured on the winter terrace (from Wednesday through to Sunday): its bar filled with church pews, bar stools and beer taps, and the snug dining room set aglow by candles. Small plates include The Bishop’s Scotch egg served with vegetable slaw and tomato chutney (£12) or for mains The Bishop’s fish pie with smoked haddock, mussels and salmon served with peas and mashed potato (£27). Wash them down with a pint of draught beer handpicked from a Sussex brewery, or toast stylishly with a glass of English wine or vintage port. The Berkeley, Wilton Place, Knightsbridge, London SW1; the-berkeley.co.uk


A magical Christmas twist at Scott’s Mayfair

The parade of animal sculptures on the terrace at Scott’s Mayfair
The parade of animal sculptures on the terrace at Scott’s Mayfair

A shimmering parade of animal sculptures gather around a huge Martini glass on the restaurant’s foliage-swathed terrace. Food goes big on classics such as a dozen Lindisfarne Rocks oysters (£56) and goujons of Cornish sole with tartare sauce (£23), while the special cocktail menu invokes festive cheer: sip on the Santa 75, a mix of yuzu juice and cranberry jelly, Plymouth Navy Strength Gin and Perrier-Jouët Champagne (£22). Scott’s Restaurant, 20 Mount Street, Mayfair, London W1; scotts-restaurant.com 


The Time:Capsule Terrace at Rosewood London

Glenfiddich cocktails feature at the Time:Capsule terrace at Rosewood London
Glenfiddich cocktails feature at the Time:Capsule terrace at Rosewood London © James Thompson

Make your way to the oasis of a whisky terrace, glowing with lights, within the hotel courtyard. Hearty fare from the Holborn Dining Room ramps up the comfort factor and includes winter dishes such as handmade game pie with thyme stuffing and blackberry jus (£36) and Loch Duart smoked salmon rillettes with Exmoor caviar on an English muffin (£18). There are also Glenfiddich cocktails – for extra kick try the new Reversed Coffee: a winter warming dram of Glenfiddich 12 Year Old, evaporated tonka & coffee and Pandan cream (£20). Rosewood London, 252 High Holborn, Holborn, London WC1; rosewoodhotels.com


A Georgian Christmas at Sketch

A floral display at The Lecture Room & Library restaurant
A floral display at The Lecture Room & Library restaurant

Floral artists transform The Glade dining room and bar into a sky garden of garlands sweeping around crystal chandeliers and the three-Michelin-starred The Lecture Room & Library restaurant into a spectacle centred around a flower-festooned Pegasus sculpture. The buzzy Gallery restaurant will serve a festive afternoon tea throughout the season (£85 per person), while New Year’s Eve dining starts at £65 per person in The Parlour, rising to £425 per person for a champagne-paired gourmand experience in The Lecture Room & Library. Sketch, 9 Conduit St, London W1; sketch.com


Wagtail Rooftop Bar & Restaurant

An igloo on Wagtail’s rooftop bar
An igloo on Wagtail’s rooftop bar © @lateef.photography

A sky-high winter wonderland with twin igloos nestling between candle-lit trees and twinkling lights, offering nooks with heated seats and faux-fur blankets for rooftop stargazing. The igloos seat up to 20 people for drinks or dining (parties of six or more are recommended), which includes a Christmas feast of British seasonal produce (three courses as well as mince pies, coffee and tea for £75 per person). Toast the occasion with bespoke Johnnie Walker Blue cocktails: the Hot Butter Popcorn, a mix of whisky, popcorn, butter and nutmeg, hits the spot for seasonal cheer. Wagtail London, 68 King William Street, London EC4; wagtaillondon.com


Yauatcha City’s “Cities of the Future” terrace

The Cities of the Future terrace at Yauatcha City
The Cities of the Future terrace at Yauatcha City

The terrace here is all low-lit neon and chilled vibes. Johnnie Walker cocktails are, again, the star – the champagne cocktail pairs perfectly with the venue’s delicious dim sum. For the full experience book the one-off dinner on 19 December with cocktail pairings – £190 per person, bookings through Sevenrooms. New Year’s Eve partygoers can sample à la carte (until 7.30pm) or signature menus before joining the final countdown. Yauatcha, Broadgate Circle, London, EC2; yauatcha.com


The Winter Garden Restaurant, The Landmark London

The Christmas tree at The Landmark London
The Christmas tree at The Landmark London

The five-star Marylebone hotel dazzles with glittering trees and frost-fringed decorations under the eight-storey-high glass atrium of the Winter Garden – a fitting setting to indulge in a three-course pre-Christmas lunch or dinner, including a glass of fizz, and dishes such as shellfish bisque with Cornish crab and Thai basil (£65 per person for lunch and £68 per person for dinner). Festive afternoon tea starts with a chilled glass of Laurent-Perrier La Cuvėe champagne and ends with cakes and pastries (priced £78 and served until 4 January). Christmas day feasting can be booked for £345 per person, while a special three-course dinner will help diners wave a fond farewell to 2022 on New Year’s Eve. The Landmark London, 222 Marylebone Rd, London NW1; landmarklondon.co.uk


Number One Park Lane Alpine Chalet

The après-ski-style terrace at InterContinental London Park Lane
The après-ski-style terrace at InterContinental London Park Lane
Tartiflette
Tartiflette

Après-ski meets five-star hotel on this restaurant terrace. Snuggle under heaters and blankets while sipping Moët & Chandon cocktails: the Fireside Royale is a fizz fix of Briottet rhubarb liqueur, Cocchi rosa vermouth, blackberry, apple, vanilla and Moët & Chandon Brut Impérial Champagne. Dine Alpine-style on classic tartiflette (£26); or champagne fondue with Comté, Beaufort, Reblochon, sourdough and new potatoes (£20 per person). InterContinental London Park Lane, One Hamilton Place, Park Lane, London W1; parklane.intercontinental.com


Balthazar Parisian Chocolatier Christmas

The gold foil-wrapped chocolate bar façade at Balthazar
The gold foil-wrapped chocolate bar façade at Balthazar

The Covent Garden favourite celebrates the season in indulgent French style: beginning with the façade, which is decorated as a golden foil-wrapped chocolate bar, tied with a large red ribbon. Inside, the restaurant is wrapped in festive golden foil and dotted with wreaths. Take in the scenery while dining on dishes of steak tartare served with a side of beef striploin, egg yolk and fries (£19.25); and sweet treats such as the Café Gourmand and Courvoisier XO Espresso: a trio of miniature desserts, including a chocolate macaron, salted-caramel chocolate truffle and a dark chocolate brownie (£17.50). Balthazar, 4-6 Russell Street, London WC2; balthazarlondon.com


The Maine Mayfair

The Maine Mayfair’s prix-fixe menu offers two courses for £44 and three for £48
The Maine Mayfair’s prix-fixe menu offers two courses for £44 and three for £48

From luncheon on the winter terrace to the glitzy glamour of late-night cabaret sets, this is a hidden Hanover Square oasis. Live jazz sets the vibe at lunch on weekdays during the festive season in the chandelier-lit brasserie, where the prix-fixe menu (two courses for £44 and three for £48) offers dishes such as New England clam chowder, rib-eye for two, and sticky toffee pudding with English cream. Ring in the New Year with dinner (£250 or £125 per person) enlivened by entertainment. The Maine Mayfair, 6 Medici Court, London W1; themainemayfair.com


Coppa Club “Under the Twinkling Sky” igloos

An igloo at Coppa Tower Bridge
An igloo at Coppa Tower Bridge

Cosy igloos pop up at six clubhouses this winter, including Coppa Club Tower Bridge where alfresco dining is set to striking Thameside vistas. A walkway of fairy lights and lanterns leads the way to the giant glass globes housing a dining table and seating decked out with blankets. Tuck into a festive food menu (from £37 for two courses) and cocktails created with Diageo Bar Academy: the rhubarb & strawberry martini is a refresher but the campfire hot chocolate a must-have indulgence. Coppa Club Tower Bridge, 3 Three Quays Walk, Lower Thames Street, London EC3; coppaclub.co.uk


The Standard Isla terrace

Raissa Pardini, artist in residence at The Standard London
Raissa Pardini, artist in residence at The Standard London

Find a younger crowd on the terrace, where the fun, cool vibe is conjured by Raissa Pardini, a visual artist known for her signature use of colour and typography, which is channelled into giant bauble garlands adorning the covered deck and a series of giant neon Christmas-card installations with slogans such as “pump up the joy” – perfect for selfie snapping. Spend New Year’s Eve celebrating with the Trinidadian steel-pan player Fimber Bravo, while the restaurant Decimo will morph into a dance club with DJ Benji B dropping the tunes. The Standard London, 10 Argyle Street, King’s Cross, London WC1; standardhotels.com

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