Pubs with incredible interiors in Nostalgic London
1) The Prince Alfred
Welcoming punters since 1856, The Prince Alfred is a stellar example of how the Victorians liked their pubs. Inside you’ll find pristine glass and timber ‘snob screens’, which split the bar up into separate areas for different social groups, all with their own external entrances. Check out the colourful original tiling and mosaic floor – or head down into the basement to find intimate tables in a space originally used for storing coal.
2) The Warrington Hotel
Stunning tiled columns and a mosaic floor welcome you to this opulent Victorian boozer. First built in 1858, this pub with five rooms is elaborately decorated, with stained-glass windows, art nouveau friezes and a beautiful marble-topped bar. Go to gawp at it in all its glory, and stay for the elegantly done, classic pub grub.
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3) Crocker's Folly
This grand pub is astonishingly pretty. A recent restoration has brought the building’s late-Victorian features back to life. The saloon bar features around 50 types of marble, with ornamental pillars and delicate plasterwork ceilings, while original chandeliers twinkle throughout. If you can keep your eyes off your surroundings long enough to peruse the menu, you’ll find classic cocktails and Lebanese food.
4) The Blackfriar
There’s something surreal about this slim, wedge-shaped pub, standing solo near Blackfriars station. It’s a beacon of art nouveau style, built in the 1870s on the site of a Dominican friary (hence the name) and remodelled in 1905 by arts and crafts sculptors Frederick T. Callcott and Henry Poole, who we have to thank for the pub’s unique and lavish interiors. Spot jolly-looking friars dotted around the place, alongside great swathes of marble, glittering mosaics and witty friezes, depicting the life of monks and titled with phrases like ‘Don’t advertise, tell a gossip’ and ‘Contentment surpasses riches’.
5) Cittie of Yorke
Expect bargain beer and bags of character in this mock-medieval pub. Stepping inside is like walking onto the set of a period drama, and for good reason. Though made to look like the kind of pub Shakespeare would have drank in, the Cittie of Yorke was actually built in the 1920s. Head straight to the rear bar, which masquerades as a Tudor hall with a cavernous roof, enormous wooden vats and seats in sought-after ornately carved booths.
6) The Churchill Arms
No surprise that The Churchill Arms is big on patriotism. Renamed in honour of the former Prime Minister after WWII (its only connection being that Winston Churchill’s grandparents used to drink here), the cosy pub is stuffed to the rafters with wartime memorabilia – first aid boxes, lamps, pots, medals, models and tankards hang from the ceiling. But, really, it’s the Victorian pub’s exterior that draws the crowds. Draped in blooming greenery during the summer months and swamped by nearly 100 glowing Christmas trees in the winter, this quirky pub is always a looker.
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