The Fox and Anchor - A Genuine Pub with Rooms in London26/02/2020
I had discovered the unique Fox and Anchor through Stay in a Pub a website that offers accommodation in pubs throughout the UK and includes details of more than fifty unusual public houses that offer accommodation in London. Although it is tucked away down a side-street in the Farringdon district of London it is still very much a part of London life and a favourite haunt for workers from the nearby Smithfield Market and city financiers on their way to and from work. It occupies a tall, narrow Victorian building with a splendid façade featuring Art Nouveau tiling and grotesques, a popular feature of this style.
The Bar at the Fox and Anchor in London
Although the Fox and Anchor has a narrow frontage it stretches back a long way accommodating a bar and a dining area. The décor in the bar is reminiscent of its earlier days but it has been refurbished in the style to which it was accustomed. One would almost expect to see characters from a Dickens novel standing at the elongated bar. Leather covered benches line the wall opposite the bar interspersed with wooden tables creating a very cosy atmosphere. The bar leads into a dining area featuring several wooden booths ideal for secluded dining.
As the rates do not include breakfast guests are free to take this meal in one of several cafés and restaurants nearby. However, I do recommend the breakfast here – a hearty feast designed to keep a worker going all day – the menu features both substantial meals and healthy options. But where else would you be able to enjoy the banter of an eclectic mix of local workers taking advantage of the traditionally early opening hours? The Fox and Anchor is open from seven in the morning on weekdays and eight-thirty at weekends to serve the market porters at Smithfield’s Market.
The Rooms at the Fox and Anchor in London
The Fox and Anchor has five bedrooms and one suite on the three floors above the pub. The suite has a separate bedroom and a sitting room with a small terrace outside. It also features a large, claw-footed bath in the bathroom. I was in St Barts bedroom on the first floor. After checking in at the bar a friendly young man carried my case up the narrow wooden staircase lined with black and white images to my room on the first floor. Due to the age and design of this building it does not have a lift.
Once inside my room I was insulated from the street noise outside by opulent velvet curtains from ceiling to floor. The room was colourfully sophisticated with all the amenities I needed. But there was no time to linger and enjoy a soak in the claw-footed bath located in the passageway outside the bedroom. That would have to wait until after the event I was attending in the pub’s function room next door.
The Vestry at the Fox and Anchor in London
The Vestry, both a cocktail bar and a function room is ideal for special occasions and small events and presentations. It is right next door to the Fox and Anchor. The Gallery is a private area at the far end of the cocktail bar where meetings and presentations can be held. The food that was provided at my event was delicious – a variety of little canapes, goujons of battered fish and miniature beef burgers accompanied by chips and followed by a cheeseboard.
Getting to the Fox and Anchor in London
Situated close to the two mainline and underground stations of Farringdon and City Thameslink the Fox and Anchor is easily accessible to visitors arriving from outside London. It is also an ideal base for exploring the main London attractions by public transport using an Oyster Card.
This review is based on the personal experience of Valery, an ExperiencedTraveller.
Written by Valery Collins at The Experienced Traveller.