Gymkhana is a Michelin Star Indian restaurant and bar in Mayfair, London. Designed by award-winning restaurant designers, B3 Designers, its interior takes inspiration from the Colonial Indian gymkhana clubs, set up by the British Raj, where members of high society came to socialise and play sport. The LuxPad takes a look around…
The aesthetic for Gymkhana is drawn from the sports seen at India’s gymkhanas such as cricket & polo and integrates these with crests and ornate detailing. The menu features a cricket ball triple-stitch border and the sectional dividers are reminiscent of the ornate detailing of traditional Indian jewellery and henna patterns. The menu’s colour palette combines nostalgic sepia tones with textured, vibrant blues, greens and reds to reference the restaurant’s sporting inspirations.
B3 Designers created the interior with a strong mix of Indian and British cultural and design references. Featuring dark, stained oak flooring, high ceiling fans hung from a dark lacquered oak ceiling, low-cut glass wall lamps from Jaipur and hunting trophies from the Maharaja, it evokes the age of the British Raj India.
Brass edged tables and rattan chairs fill the main dining space which is adorned with Punch sketches, Indian sports prints and Air India postcards whilst mottled sheets of framed glass offer ambient screening throughout the space. At the very back of the ground floor, the large bianco carrara marble top bar stands before an antique window mirror panel and provides a theatrical backdrop to the room.
The lower ground floor is a modern day interpretation of a 17th Century East India punch house, with a grand aged brass bar at its heart with solid timber front regency style panelling. The room features slatted oak wall panelling, porcelain chequerboard floor tiles and inky blue leather booths whilst two secluded, sunken vaults provide seating for large groups.
Gymkhana’s menu is modern Indian with a focus on the tandoor oven and sigri charcoal grill. Featuring their signature club-style nashtas (Indian all-day snack fare) including a duck egg bhurji with lobster and a Punjabi samosa, it’s their show-stopping dishes such as the Tandoori Masala lamb chops with pickled onion, turmeric and ginger which sets it apart from other Indian restaurants in the capital.
The bar is stocked with a range of spirits, tonics and mixers from the sub-continent including Old Monk rum, Amrut whiskey and arrack produced from coconut sap. Signature punches are served in wax-sealed glass bottles and to top it off, absinthe is served using the traditional ritual of an absinthe fountain, which steadily drips water over a sugar cube into a glass of absinthe and spices below.
An effortlessly stylish meeting space with a convivial spirit, Gymkhana is open Monday to Saturday and reservations can be booked through the website.