“ Metropolitan Hotel, Park Lane, W1. +44 (0)20 7447 1000. „
The Met Bar is located inside the Metropolitan on Old Park Lane, by Hyde Park Corner, squeezed between the Inter Continental and the London Hilton. During the day you can stop in for lunch with drinks, or coffee. Prices aren’t too obscene for this part of town, but if you are on a budget, keep on walking. Expect to pay £50 for burgers and beers for two. They do, however, offer a wonderful range of freshly squeezed fruit juice cocktails, again not cheap, but delicious and actually good for you. At some point in the early evening all the un-cool kids are kicked out. I have never been around for this ceremony, so I don’t know whether they get asked to leave or whether anyone with the cash, the nerve, and the bladder for it can hold a sit in from mid afternoon until the club crowd kick in. Once the Met Bar door police decide it is evening then it is virtually impossible for non-members to cross the threshold. There are exceptions: famous people, beautiful people, and the occasional big tipper can get past the Donna Karan clad bouncers. Another option is to join Puff Daddy’s entourage for the evening, he’ll never notice a couple of dozen extra hangers on. Hotel residents are granted temporary membership, and although this does not guarantee entry, it is usually a fairly safe bet, provided you don’t turn up in a home knitted vest. If you can sneak in really badly dressed expect to see a rash of ‘it’ people wearing granny’s wardrobe next week. Sadly once inside at night I realised I’m either very old or very un-cool. It’s tiny, it’s dark, it’s loud and the clientele are so preoccupied with being in the right place, doing the right thing with the right people that it is really no fun. I have no problem with paying over the odds for a top night out, but I expect to have a laugh, and enjoy my weekends, not worry about exactly what shade of black will go best with Zoes new Jimmy Choos. Give the Met Bar a miss, and head to your favorite club safe in the knowledge that you would not want to be a member here, especially if they let you in!
What a load of b****cks! With a door policy stricter than a mother superior with the decorators in, just to get into the Met Bar is an achievement. two drinks down £12 spent, what a rip off. Full of poseurs, pricks and flouncy, flaunting so-called pop stars - Sophie Dahl, whoooow! it has a clientiele that induces instant vomit. No atmostphere, crap tunes - just nose candy junkies trying to be in the right place at the right time. If you get the chance go, burn it down and forever be a hero.
Now, there are not many times that you turn up to a bar and can honestly say that the atmosphere has HONESTLY ruined your night. I walked into the Met bar and saw a man in skin tight leopard skin trousers rubbing himself in a most lascivious manner and then thrust his sweaty palpy arm around his 'lady' and licked her cheek. Some welcome. Not that this would have put me off necessarily, but I have rarely been confronted by such a collection of self important 'toffers' in my life. I had heard about this bar. Very exclusive, very high profile, very you get the picture. However, I have never been so let down in all my days. It looked like the 151 club on a bad day (i.e everyday) and yet people admit that the 1 dive 1 is pants (it just opens late and allows people in red jeans and brown suede brogues to talk about their salaries into the early hours). The Met bar has adopted this level of pretension but without any of the honesty, all of its customers seem to strut around trying to persuade each other that it is the best place on earth. Maybe, for them, it is, but I have rarely enjoyed myself less. Sure, you may bump into someone famous, but you will probably be stopped by their bodyguard before you get to see the whites of their eyes, which would be an achievement in itself, because I think there must have been a power cut the night I went... oh sorry.... it was meant to be atmospheric. I was lucky to see Sacha Baron Cohen, the alternative Staines 'chief', but only because I prevented him from getting into the lift. Maybe I saw it on a bad night, maybe I am a miserable bugger, but maybe the Met bar has been living off its reputation for too long. I have no doubt that it rocked once, but it reminded me of George Foreman coming out of retirement, overweight and failing to live up to the hype.