A fun, colourful bar in the heart of Soho, Freedom is definitely worth a visit if you want to unwind and let your hair down.
Sister venue to The O Bar across the road, Freedom too combines a cocktail bar and nightclub and is similarly glitzy, though a little busier. Though this Soho spot no longer touts itself as a gay bar - rather listing 'those working in media and fashion' as its key clientele - it did start life as one of the first gay venues in the area. It remains close to its roots in decor and atmosphere, and it's definitely somewhere to go if you're in the party mood.
Freedom offers a long but narrow cocktail bar with plush striped sofas, dark floral wallpaper, chandeliers and even an ornate wardrobe at the entrance, which adds to the bar's charm. Downstairs is a nightclub with pink crushed velvet furniture, crystal chandeliers, dark walls and mirror balls. There are also a couple of poles in the middle of the dance floor - do with those what you will. It's perfect for a fun night out and is a great setting for the regular cabaret nights they hold, although there is a touch of the garish about it.
This is a party bar and there's a real buzz as groups of friends chat, couples get cosy and after work drinkers get ready for a big night out. Background music creates a nice vibe but it's not too loud to talk over, and there's always a big crowd to keep the atmosphere electric. Punters are mostly in their 20s and working nearby. Though no longer specifically a gay venue, there is still a large gay customer base, but Freedom certainly makes everyone feel welcome. Staff are friendly (and all rather attractive) and there's table service so you don't even have to queue at the bar.
There's a small cocktail menu with a few classics, like Long Island Iced Tea (£8.90), Cosmopolitan and Mojito, all £8.90. A glass of house wine goes for £4.95, a bottle £18.95. Bottled beers include Becks, Corona, Fosters, Guinness and Kronenbourg 1664, all £4.50 each.
The Last Word
This is a fun choice for a party, after work drinks or a night of dancing. Staff are friendly and the crowd's lively but generally on good behaviour, plus there are plenty of bottled beers available for the non-cocktail drinkers out there.