Victorian gin places in Nostalgic London

1) The Viaduct Tavern

The late Victorian decor inside this pub is enough to distract you from your drink. Look around to spot etched glass panels, tall mirrors and paintings of Pre-Raphaelite-style figures, all topped with a rich, red decorative ceiling. The pub first opened as a Victorian gin palace in 1869 and is staying true to form with a lengthy gin list and a menu of convict-themed G&T serves, inspired by the pub’s proximity to the Central Criminal Court.

bottles of quality gin at the Viaduct Tavern

2) The Queens

Built around the turn of the 20th century, this grand pub is still proudly intact, complete with art nouveau stained-glass windows and a mosaic floor at the entrance. The space is split up by decorative partitions – a throwback to the Victorians who liked privacy while they drank – with a huge original bar at its heart. These days the punters are a lot more sociable. You’ll find groups playing board games, eating sharing platters crowded around tables or in the pub’s pretty beer garden.

The Queens gin bar in London

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3) The Salisbury

Busy with theatregoers and local workers, this enormous pub in Covent Garden gleams with pretty etched glass panels. The richly decorated ‘turn of the century’ interiors and sweeping mahogany bar date from around 1900. Look out for the original candelabras, made to look like women holding glowing flowers.

exterior of the Salisbury bar in London
Matt Brown

4) Princess Louise

You can’t help but be impressed by the original tiles, mirrors and intricate mosaics that adorn the inside of this Holborn pub. The interiors have survived since the 1890s, along with a real sense of the building’s Victorian past. Don’t leave without taking a peek at the men’s toilets – even the marble urinal in this pub is Grade II-listed.

old-fashioned interior of Princess Louise bar
Reading Tom

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