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The new Players Lounge, Charing Cross - pub details

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Address: Under The Arches, Villiers Street, London, WC2N 6NL [map] [gmap]

Tel: 0871 951 1000 (ref 25331) - calls cost 10p per minute plus network extras

Nearest tube stations Charing Cross (0 miles), Embankment (0.1 miles), Leicester Square (0.3 miles)

Nearest train stations London Charing Cross (0 miles), London Waterloo (0.6 miles), London Waterloo East (0.7 miles)

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> Current user rating: 6.1/10 (rated by 8 users)
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other pubs nearby:

Villiers Bar, Charing Cross (0.0 miles), All Bar One, Charing Cross (0.0 miles), Champagne Charlie's, Charing Cross (0.0 miles), Princess of Wales, Charing Cross (0.0 miles), Gordon's Wine Bar, Charing Cross (0.0 miles) - see more nearby pubs

user reviews of the new Players Lounge, Charing Cross

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

5 most recent reviews of 8 shown - see all reviews

Came here for the first time the other week. I agree with what another poster said that its ok if its after 11pm and you have nowhere else to go. It's open until around 2am, drinks prices are "reasonable" for the area. It can be quite loud in here and when we went on the weekend it was packed with "Thespians" as they call em, who really like the sound of their own voices. Thankfully we found a quieter area away from the main crows and actually really enjoyed ourselves chatting away and listening to the bloke on the piano. Not a bad place but not somewhere I would actively seek out to return to.
Miker1234 - 19 Dec 2011 20:18
I went here last week, the main motivation was that the Ship and Shovell had closed, and was on a pretty good date and neither of us wanted to go home just yet. We arrived when a guy started off on the piano, which added to the atmosphere, and made a great talking point.

Pricey and flat beer let it down, though - as well as the patchy service and the lack of seats...
MsWiley - 16 Dec 2009 01:14
This place is OK if you've had a couple too many and 23:00 has been and gone. The staff were pleasant enough and the clientele were not the sort that you'd find in the Dog and Duck supping on an ale, but I had no problems with them even though there were a few that looked like they were about to disappear up their own backsides.

This is not a venue that I would actively seek out and I doubt that I'll ever return.
Strongers - 23 Sep 2009 10:03
Actually I`ve probably been a bit unfair on the below pub, should really deserve a 6/10, not a 5/10.
pgazz - 24 Dec 2006 16:09
Stepping into the Players provides those of us born at the “doff capping” end of the social scale to catch a glimpse of what public school life must have been like.

There is, as one would expect from an establishment that is basically an annex of the local theatre, an extremely high toff count and substantial representation from the local branch of the luvvies union (“oh Tarquin, do recite those lines from Hamlet you were quoting over the marinated poor person we simply devoured at our last supper!”). But more strikingly is the strange mix of the institutional and the stinking rich. There is undoubtedly an undercurrent of the basic, signalled by thin carpets, bare white walls and those lightweight tables that you only find in common rooms and canteens. Yet, whereas as my old school – Bog Standard Comprehensive – would have supplied deck chairs, chipped tables and walls with the word “cock” sporadically chiselled at various angles, this upper class “relaxing room” has big leather chairs, a white piano mellowing in the corner and significant lashings of polish on every surface. At one stage I actually started to worry a butler would turn up and berate me for not starting the washing up.

Whether or not you enjoy this place will therefore depend on how thick your aristocratic repellent is, although I doubt many people would find it particularly comfortable, as everything from the slightly too hard chairs to the slightly too gleaming paintwork has a harsh and artificial feel indicative of the Players’ “add on nature” (also reflected in the structure – three separate areas that weave in different sizes around the interior: the Players is designed to fit the building rather than the other way round). Moreover the drinks, served from a gleaming long bar, are in the expensive bracket (£6.80 for a small white wine and a Guinness). Yep, that little voice that cries “ouch” everytime I open my wallet had a belter of a night.

Still, the Players does have a few redeeming qualities, thanks primarily to a few nifty side steps of the area’s competition. It opens considerably later than all the surrounding pubs (2.30am most days), serves a decent pub menu at all hours, has a reasonable drink selection (Guinness, Tetleys, usual lagers) and is perhaps the only drinking hole in the area where you stand a fair chance of getting a seat after 7pm. And, while my grandfather will no doubt be gnawing angrily at his copy of Das Kaptial in his grave, I have to admit the piano and general quiet (admittedly smug) surroundings can at times create a nice ambiance. Besides, the clientele represents a mine of piss taking potential.

In the end, with these caveats included, the Players deserves a solid if deeply average 5/10

pgazz - 20 Dec 2006 16:51

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