Despite the fact that when I uploaded my Instagram photo I was immediately followed by an account called ‘Cuckold Escorts’ (err, no ta), Swingers, which you can find in the city of London behind the Gherkin building, has nothing to do with keys in bowls and everything to do with crazy golf. I had heard of it, looked it up and seen it was sold out, and promptly forgotten all about it until this weekend when my sister-in-law and her husband came to stay and he wanted to go.
Even then I have to admit I was a bit reluctant. Not to be all ‘I’m a proper Londoner,’ but these pop up type places appear all the time and they can be a bit gimmicky and rubbish. Not to mention that going into the city at 12pm on a Saturday felt like a bit of an effort. But for our guests, we decided to give it a go – and honestly, I am so glad I did.
Firstly, Swingers is BEAUTIFUL. I know that sounds odd about an underground golf-themed bar, but honestly, it’s lovely – it’s based on a 1920’s golf club, and it’s all lush greenery and artful wood panelling. I didn't take too many photos so I've stolen one from their website to show what I mean:
There are multiple bars, and the main one reminds me of a New York, art deco cocktail bar, with high powder blue leather stools and dark wood and men serving in tuxedos. The staff at reception were super professional, we got a reservation for 40 minutes later, and the cloakroom is free. Little details.
We’d done a park run in the morning and therefore had heartily consumed a fry up prior to arriving, but if you’re hungry you can eat in Hoppers, Pizza Pilgrims or Patty & Bun. We just headed to the bar (you know me – any excuse for day drinking) where I ordered an absolutely beautiful espresso martini. It was £11, which you know, isn’t cheap, but really isn’t bad by London standards, and it was delicious.
We headed over to the golf course and were handed our clubs and balls. There are two courses and you just follow it round like you would at normal crazy golf – we did the ‘Windmill’ course. They’re both 9 hole courses, which is about right, I think, and the idea is that you get six shots each before you move on. Nobody’s there to police that, but it did help stop the frustration you inevitably feel when you’re on a course and keep hitting your ball from one end to the other again! It also meant there weren’t long queues of people waiting, which was nice.
Whilst playing, the bar staff regularly checked in to see if we wanted more drinks and brought me a glass of beautiful cold white wine right to me and found our group straight away, even though we’d moved on a hole.
I came third…of four. But one of our group turned out to have had golf lessons, which I think is a slight unfair advantage! Either way it was brilliant fun and I absolutely couldn’t recommend it more for a day out in London.
Find it here: http://swingersldn.com/contact/