Disclaimer: While some people may judge, not incorrectly, that it is discriminatory to exclude advice for guys and all people who are not hot when they venture out to London clubs I must remind you all that I can only discuss the experiences I have had. And in the interest of specificity and accuracy these distinctions are important because if you are male and/or less than hot then there is basically zero chance that you are going to walk into a London club for free, as my ‘hot girl’ friends and I did on all of the occasions we ventured down the streets of Piccadilly Circus and Kensington High St.
Getting on with it, London clubs are really, predictably, very club-like. And though all club owners and habitual club visitors will assure you that they are dramatically different in very important socially dividing ways (oh, London, and your antiquated class divisions) they are all dark, stuffy, slightly too loud, and populated by individuals a few notches skeezy-er than anyone outside of the club. This is because, unlike you, they have paid large fees to get in and they have decided this entitles them to partial ownership of everything inside- most notably, everything your teeny tiny cocktail dress covers up. And you thought it was going to be such a classy joint when there was no sign outside and you slipped in past the chain smoking Kate Moss wannabes waiting outside in the rain.
With the consideration that a hot girl expects a measure of uninvited groping when going out anywhere, there are perks to the club experience worth mentioning. First and foremost- free drinks. Not that you couldn’t get free drinks wearing jeans in the pub around the corner, but at Cuckoo you suddenly find yourself attached to a table with an endless supply of exactly the drink you want without any expectations, because everyone is too rich and wasted to keep track of anything under a ceiling with very distracting color changing lights. Other good things to remember about Cuckoo: the hot guys are downstairs so bring your drink from upstairs, be nice to the coat check girls, and you will meet the coolest girls in the loo. The 2 litre bottle of Belvedere vodka looks pretty awesome with a sparkler on top, too.
Then your life starts to follow the plotline of mob movies- but that can go different directions as movies will tell you. (Want to mention that being kidnapped and forced into sexual slavery at the service of a mob is not likely, but still a possibility, so please do not go to clubs alone. Bring a buddy and stick with her, your first grade teacher knew what she was talking about. ) On one occasion I was following my friend up a staircase in Boujis with our unbreakable chain of handholding when a man stopped me. There was some nonsense about my smile teasing him and beautiful eyes, but he became a problem when he leaned forward and licked my neck. Not a seductive nibble, a full on tongue bath from shoulder to ear. Eww. This was obviously not okay, which is why the hand holding was so important. I pulled on my chain of safety and was quickly pulled out of range. I’m not sure how one goes about preventing neck licking, but I don’t recommend it if the situation is at all avoidable. Beyond that Boujis is lovely, if you have excellent timing you might spy a royal or two, and it’s in a nice part of town for drunkenly stumbling down the pavement in your four inch heels chasing down a cabbie.
The opposite swing of the pendulum manifested itself in the form of young, wealthy, drunk, European gentlemen inviting us to San Tropez. The thing about this is that he was very likely serious. Apparently there was a private plane leaving the next day. There was a fair amount of debate about this between my friend and I, but ultimately we decided work and not being potentially abducted was the better choice. Won’t tell anyone else what to do, but at least google him or something before you pack your Brazilian bikinis.
Chances are that there will be celebrities. You may or may not know who they are, I mostly didn’t because there are lots of “famous” British people who were on Big Brother or East Enders and I just don’t care. You can’t count on Prince Harry going out exactly when and where you do (rumor has it he asks girls what knickers they’re wearing before talking to them- so wade that mine field forewarned), so brush up on your cricket and football if you want to know when it’s appropriate to gush. One night at Amika I met a famous American basketball player, which likely would have been more thrilling if I watched basketball. He went by Mike and we talked about living in California, so it was fun, but this scenario will probably be more exciting for you if you find someone you actually think is awesome. Amika features an elevated dance cage, every Lady Gaga remix known to man, and sporadic confetti explosions, but watch out for the handsy admirers. Most are so intimidated by all the girls to even speak to you, but being dragged over the booth backwards into some random’s lap once is one time too many.
Then there are the guys who think they are famous or otherwise deserving of your fawning and groveling. Personally I’m not for the fawning or groveling under any circumstances, but don’t let me spoil your fun. At least make sure he is not the scruffy, foreign, smoker man telling you all about his top secret something (mission, movie, or millions) in hopes that you’ll plop down on the light up table in front of him and…yeah. Sketch, with different themed rooms to suit your pleasure, always has a few of these hopefuls. The dining room is magical if you can get a table in the back, but don’t get stuck in the egg room for too long or you will drown in the pool of preppy.
While I encourage you to wear only what makes you feel unstoppably sexy I found it very funny to wear satin dresses and feel hands quickly slip off as they try to grab your ass. It’s a small kind of victory, but if they’re going to do it anyway then you might as well get your kick out of it. I don’t think any of this could fairly be considered advice, but knowledge is power, and maybe if you know the neck licker is coming you can save yourself. Otherwise, just say yes to the crack baby shots or a redheaded slut if it’s that kind of night…