House of Fun...Kettner's is back and here's why it's even better than before
I will always have a special place in my heart for Kettner's having spent a large portion of my 20's getting up to no good in the Soho institution. My girlfriends and I would meet in the packed champagne bar on a Friday night and make like Daisy Buchanan...only louder and less sophisticated. It wasn't about the food, which was pretty average to be honest, but some places just guarantee you a fun evening and Kettner's never disappointed on that front.
So I was sad when I heard it was closing it's doors in 2016 after 149 iconic years hosting the likes of Edward VII and his mistress Lilli Langtry, Oscar Wilde, Robert De Niro and...me. But I was encouraged by the fact it had been acquired by the mighty Soho House group. Because if ever there was a match made in hospitality and interiors heaven, this is it. And the food was bound to get considerably better as well. Winning! And don't worry, you don't need to be a member to join the fun, it's open to everyone. And it hasn't gone ridiculously upmarket either. Kettner's was always about affordable glamour and Soho House owner Nick Jones has promised to uphold that legacy. After a full refurbishment, the newly named Kettner's Townhouse opened its doors to the public yesterday so I thought I'd take you on a little tour.
Here's the revamped champagne bar where you'll find me in a couple of weeks, you know, purely for research purposes. The original art deco mosaic tiled floor has been restored to it's original glory and a series of lost murals in the bar, partly uncovered during the restoration, have been turned into silkscreen prints that now decorate the walls.
Art deco chandeliers oversee proceedings in the dining room where the original cornicing and mirrored panels of the Georgian building have all been retained. Furnishings are an inviting mixture of claret velvet and faded florals, and the walls have been given the new neutral treatment. I won't call it beige because that would be to do it a disservice. Let's go with biscuity taupe. Any paint companies out there, I'm available for naming consultations, so just give me a call ;-)
Perhaps the biggest change that has been made to the building is that the warren of private dining rooms upstairs have been turned into bedrooms, furnished in 1920's French boudoir style with the signature Soho House twist.
I am very much into the unashamed pattern clashes in this suite. I think Oscar Wilde would approve of the transformation to his former playground. And if you didn't want a burnt orange velvet sofa with a fringed pelmet before, I bet you do now.
No pattern clashes here, just the green velvet scalloped headboard of dreams, enjoying its star attraction status.
Of course, now Soho House have launched their Soho Home range, you no longer have to book yourself in for the night to get your interiors fix. I've had my eye on the cut crystal Champagne Coupes ever since the range launched, perfect for creating that roaring 20's vibe in the comfort of your own home.
Rooms at Kettner's Townhouse start from £170 a night and you can book a room or dinner here.
Will you be checking it out? See you at the bar!
All images owned by Soho House Kettners Townhouse