Thursday, 12 August 2010
Vista, St James's
On the one night when the heavens elect to open, weeping buckets like Lindsay Lohan in an orange jumpsuit, which eejit is marooned on a rooftop, exposed to the snarling elements? That’ll be me. Fortunately, the staff at Vista at The Trafalgar Hotel, magic up umbrellas and, as it turns chilly, blankets too. Teeth chittering, ‘drookit’- as they say in Scotland where such inclement weather qualifies as ‘a bonnie summer nicht’ - and swaddled in our hastily styled, impromptu ponchos of scratchy greige wool, the date and I are one set of pan pipes short of channeling the Peruvian entry at The Pan-American Song Contest, our damp dishevelment in stark contrast to our chic surroundings. Newly enlarged and reconfigured with lounging areas, a smart alfresco bar and parasols (are they having a laugh?), this five star eyrie is, on any other night, one of London’s best legal highs. Even if I begrudge the fiver cover charge punters must fork out before being allowed to spend a further £14 on a flute of Pommery, the views are ace and the tapas and ‘herb garden ‘ cocktails - an Absolut Vanilla-based-based Watermelon Cooler (£10) - not too shabby either. Its clever PR lady even manages to lay on dual rainbows, perfectly synchronised against the glowering night sky. I'm told that the terrace is set to expand even further next spring and that a ‘winter dome’ will turn Vista into an all-year round gig. As London’s weather turns ever more capricious, hopefully they’ll provide beach towels, a pool and Piz Buin Factor 30 at Christmas.
Trafalgar Hotel, 2 Spring Gardens SW1 7870 2900