Buddha Bar London
May 11, 2018
The Buddha Bar franchise has branches all over the world these days, with outposts in Budapest, Jakarta, Monte Carlo, Prague, as well as the Paris original.
This is the second attempt to create a London offshoot and this time they’ve wisely opted for the heart of Knightsbridge, which is arguably where Buddha Bar belongs.
The questionable concept of using Buddha as a short-hand for all things Asian and exotic has not really been addressed. There’s an undercurrent of thoughtlessness to the opulence, a generic quality, a disregard of cultural context.
The low lighting helps a bit, bringing the disparate elements together to create an air of extravagance and luxury. The venue is spread over two levels with an elevated ground floor lounge, which boasts a long bar decorated with birdcages, and a more formal dining area – as well as a giant floating model of Buddha
Cocktails are impeccably presented and well put together, the pan-Asian food is decent enough – seared sesame tuna, dragon scallops, venison tataki and though the prices might make you weep, chances are if you’ve picked this place for your date or your night out with the girls, you already know what to expect. If you really want to splash out, there are private booths that can be hired for the night.