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Hoop & Toy

#10,518 of 18,396 Restaurants in London
€€ - €€€, British,
34 Thurloe Place | South Kensington, London SW7 2HQ, England
+44 20 7589 8360
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  • Excellent17%
  • Very good34%
  • Average22%
  • Poor12%
  • Terrible15%
Travellers talk about
“sandwich” (3 reviews)
Open Now
12:00 - 23:00 Hours
Bar, British, Pub
€€ - €€€
34 Thurloe Place | South Kensington, London SW7 2HQ, England
All Details
Write a ReviewReviews (235)
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1 - 10 of 187 reviews

Reviewed yesterday

This bar/restaurant, right outside the South Kensington tube stop, seems like your typical English Pub. Good beer selection, professional service and typical English pub food. It does get crowded at times but that just makes it more lively. If you are in the area, it...More

Thank Glenn H
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Very rude staff. Cold food - no apology given when we asked for it to be warmed up. Told to move from our table after half an hour as we were apparently sitting in the staff area (although there was no sign to indicate that...More

Review collected in partnership with Greene King
Thank Joe M
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Staying in Kensington, you don't have a ton of choices for a local. The Hoop and Toy serves a diverse menu (though we stuck to classics like bangers and mash) and a few cask beers along with full bar. They were running a low-budge comedy...More

Thank Allison A
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

We poped in here at lunch time for a bite to eat as it is oposite the museum's lunch was good also very welcoming and friendly great value for money will be returning when we do other museum

Thank xxxshanxx
Reviewed 5 weeks ago

We popped in to kill time before our ticket time for an exhibition at the V&A. The pub is only a few minutes walk away, so was very handy for a quick drink. There are a few draught beers on tap, and I chose the...More

Thank Ken W
Reviewed 17 March 2018

I found the staf here truly helpful and friendly. They did exactly what they said they would do and I really enjoyed the food and the wine. Great, relaxed atmosphere in a really pleasant environment. Recommended.

Thank Milatsou
Reviewed 16 March 2018

Popped into this pub before heading to royal Albert hall. Pub was very busy with tourists and corporate business. My hubby had to queue to be served as there was only 1 young lady serving drinks. The queue was 6 deep. You couldn't get drunk...More

Thank sandra r
Reviewed 25 February 2018 via mobile

Went for some food after a visit to the Natural history museum and this was the first place we came across. We wanted some lunch but didn’t eat because but I heard the bar man staring it was an hours wait for food. If a...More

Thank nomes64
GeorginaHT, Manager at Hoop & Toy, responded to this reviewResponded 26 February 2018

Hello, Thank You for taking the time to review the pub, we are very sorry it didn't meet up to the standards we expect it to. Could you possibly give us some more details like the date you visited and a description of the bartender...More

Reviewed 19 February 2018

Booked a table for dinner at 5pm last Friday for 6 people. Was called earlier that day to clarify if it was for food or just drink, so were surprised that when we turned up for our booking, we were advised that it would be...More

Thank scotsbluebell123
Reviewed 19 February 2018 via mobile

We managed to find a table for two on a very busy Saturday afternoon. Ordered food, 45 minute wait. We didn't mind as we wanted to get out of the rain! The pie was nice, but small portion for what we paid. My partner enjoyed...More

Thank RandRH
South Kensington
With its ivied mews, row upon row of Poppins-esque
white washed mansions, and placid garden squares, it's
easy to see the charms of South Kensington. And with
superb access to Hyde Park, Holland Park and
Kensington Gardens, as well as the largely
child-friendly and mostly free Museum Quarter (not to
mention more major attractions like Royal Albert Hall)
such charms are easy to make the most of. As welcoming
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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
  • Value
Average prices
US$20 - US$21
Bar, British, Pub
Lunch, Drinks
Restaurant features
Television, Buffet, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wine and Beer, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Digital Payments, Free Wifi
Good for
Bar Scene
Open Hours
12:00 - 23:00
12:00 - 23:00
12:00 - 00:00
12:00 - 00:00
12:00 - 00:00
12:00 - 00:00
12:00 - 00:00
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 34 Thurloe Place | South Kensington, London SW7 2HQ, England
  • Location: Europe  >  United Kingdom (UK)  >  England  >  London>  > South Kensington
  • Neighbourhood: South Kensington
  • Phone Number: +44 20 7589 8360
It is the oldest established pub in this area of Knightsbridge dating back almost 500 years with it being licenced premises since 1760, formerly called the Hoops and Grapes. It has played host to royalty and film stars alike as Lord Rothschild entertained both George III and George IV and the pub itself featured in a Roman Polanski film. When the first London congestion charge came into force in 1796, the owner built another pub just 1 mile up the road in Knightsbridge called The Bunch of Grapes, and as such changed the name of the pub. The renamed Hoop and Toy now had an added stable to look after commuters’ horses for the day, to avoid the daily charge levied at the Brompton Gate where the Victoria & Albert Museum stands today. The 'Toy' is symbolic of a rum soaked leather bound peg which could be placed in a horse's mouth to stop it grinding its teeth or biting its gums. The original building suffered fire damage in an incident that started at a bakery just three doors east of the pub, and was re-opened at great expense by the new owner Lord Rothschild in 1885. It had many high class patrons including two King George's. The current building dates back to just after World War II as much of this area suffered damage from bombing raids as can be seen from the museum walls along Exhibition Road. The Hoop and Toy’s basement is claimed to be haunted. The story goes that it was formerly part of a grave site. The bodies of Priests were said to be bound and entombed in the underlays of the building. When the tube stations were built, the railway workers disturbed their graves, and subsequently their route to the monasteries and Churches in London were obstructed. As a result, the souls of the priests wonder the pub, creeping up and down the stairs as they attempt to find an alternative route to their places of worship. In later years, the pub was featured in several brief scenes in the classic 1960’s film ‘Repulsion’. The traditional decor is enhanced by old books, rustic ornaments and framed prints and cartoons. The Hoop & Toy offers a comfortable, relaxing and friendly place to have something to drink and eat for both locals and tourists. It is so convenient for all the museums in the South Kensington area you can even view the domed façade of the Victoria & Albert museum from its doorstep. The area has also been home to well-known people from the past included Howard Carter who discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun, poet T S Elliot and renowned film maker Alfred Hitchcock.
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