July 2022 will see the first Pride parade in London since before the pandemic and, with the movement also celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, it's going to be a big one. Alongside the main extravaganza, which will see the colourful celebrations begin at Marble Arch, travel past Hyde Park, down Picadilly and end in Trafalgar Square, many London institutions will also be holding their own Pride events. From cocktails and drag brunches to art exhibitions and special edition menus, all created in honour of the LGBTQ+ community and its contribution to society, here’s where to celebrate Pride 2022 in London.
Pride at Harrods, Knightsbridge
Looking to master the perfect Pride make-up look? Harrod’s Beauty Hall is pulling out all the stops with a range of Pride-focused events and masterclasses across the weekend. First up, MAC, which has long worked with charities such as Positive East and its own Viva Glam campaign to raise money for LQBTQIA+ causes, will be hosting an intimate Pride panel chaired by global senior artist and Positive East ambassador Dominic Skinner.
Meanwhile, Charlotte Tilbury will be holding an exclusive masterclass showing attendees the power of make-up to transform, empower and help you express your inner self. Tickets include a tote bag, deluxe samples and a Pride-themed cocktail. Finally, visitors to the Bobbi Brown Beauty Hall counter on 2 July will be treated to complimentary 15-minute makeovers. Five Pride-inspired looks, from rainbow lips to colourful eyes, are on offer, setting you up for a day of revelry ahead.
Aqua Pride at Aqua Kyoto, Soho
In celebration of Pride, the mixologists at Regent Street’s Aqua Kyoto have devised a limited edition Aqua Pride cocktail. Blending Chase Vodka with pomegranate and elderflower cordial, lemon juice and egg white – and finished with a splash of colour – 50 per cent of net profit from the cocktail will be donated to Pride in London.
Pride Weekend at The Bloomsbury
Located just a few moments from the epicentre of Pride – Soho – The Bloomsbury hotel will be hosting a series of must-book events across Pride weekend. The celebrations begin with an At The Ball Pride brunch in the Coral Room where guests will be entertained by master of ceremonies Busola Peters, alongside performers, dancers and drag artists, while indulging in an all-day dining menu accompanied by a one-day-only menu of disco-inspired cocktails (with £1 from each donated to LGBTQ+ mental health charity London Friend).
When night falls the Bloomsbury Club will transform into an immersive cabaret bar playing host to The Pride Late Show. Expect old-school glamour, sophistication, delicious nibble and two special cocktails: the Swizzle the Night (yellow Chartreuse, raspberry cordial, lime and white grapefruit vodka, mint, lime and soda) and the Lady Marmalade (gin, rhubarb marmalade, orange tincture, sparkling wine and sprinkles).
Yauatcha, Soho and the City
If you need to take a break from the parade for a quick pick-me-up, head over to Yauatcha which will be serving up limited edition rainbow-hued dim sum at its two locations in Soho and the City. Fillings include chicken and chive, pork and prawn, seafood and garlic spinach, and truffle sweet potato, with £1 from each platter donated to the Micro Rainbow International Foundation to fund safe housing for LGBTQI asylum seekers and refugees.
Faces of Bankside
Bankside will be marking the 50th anniversary of Pride with a number of cultural events celebrating its local community. Opening on 29 June at the Omeara music venue, Faces of Bankside is a photography exhibition by Eve Milner showcasing the diversity and uniqueness of the local LGBTQ+ community through a series of portraits. The exhibition will be accompanied by a Queer History of Bankside walking tour on 2 July led by Mr Londoner. Celebrating the rowdy, counter-cultural history of the area, the tour will take in the famed ‘Clink’ prison and the Shrine of the Outcast Dead at the Crossbones Graveyard. This is Pride – but not as you know it.
Little Scarlet Door, Soho
If you’ve yet to make it down to Soho’s newest drinking den, Little Scarlet Door, Pride month is the perfect opportunity. It’s partnered with the Queer Brewing Project to offer a special beer menu with £1 from each can going to LGBTQ+ youth homelessness charity AKT. There will also be live DJs and sharing cocktails to get the party started.
Another lively spot for Pride celebrations, Louche Soho will be shaking up frozen margaritas available either to drink in its opulently decorated three-storey townhouse or to takeaway as the ultimate parade accessory, with £1 from each going to the Pride in London Unity Fund. Post-parade, Louche will be throwing a fabulous after-party in the form of the House of Burlesque, an immersive night of vibrant entertainment soundtracked by DJ Tony Coote.
Pride Brunch at the London Edition, Marylebone
Lavish Marylebone hotel the London Edition has teamed up with Ugg to host a special Pride Brunch at Berners Tavern in aid of the Albert Kennedy Trust and Switchboard, supporting LGBTQ+ young people experiencing homelessness and mental health issues. Hosted by Henry Holland and Aimee Phillips, along with guest appearances from Gigi Goode, Symone and the House of Avalone, guests can expect a three-course extravaganza with dishes including salt beef salad, Dingley Dell bacon sandwich and poached rhubarb with yoghurt mousse. We highly recommend adding bottomless bubbles to your booking.
The Regent Street flags
From Christmas to the Queen’s Jubilee, Regent Street has long been known for celebrating major events in the capital with a multitude of flags. Moments from the heart of the action during Pride weekend, recent visitors to Regent Street will have noticed the 100 Intersex-Inclusive Pride flags currently flying above the street. An evolution of the Progress flag originally designed by Gilbert Baker in 1978, it represents the most inclusive representation and celebration of the LGBTIQ+ community to date.
St James Bar x London Friend
The lavish St James Bar at the Sofitel London St James Hotel has created a suitably chic new cocktail in celebration of Pride. Mixing Boatyard Double Gin with clementine, passion fruit, white port, kaffir and champagne, the Ray is served in a rainbow-striped coupe with £1 from each drink donated to London Friend.