Watering Hole

Paul Von Bergen, director of The Shop Europe

This pub nestles on a corner of Greek Street and one of the  passages that twist and turn around Soho, its crown of creepers giving it the air of a bohemian birds nest where everyone is welcome to come and rest from the London streets.

Inside it's dingy and smoky and, yes, you might glimpse the odd old man occupying a corner and ordering the same tipple he's been drinking for 40 years. The traffic noise seems far away as you lean on the bar and order a double whisky, suddenly remembering that there is life outside the jollies, launches and clubs that media types normally frequent for kicks.

This is a place to spend a rainy afternoon with an old friend. This is a place to go when the media industry is getting you down, when you want to get away from the rest of your team and just have a drink by yourself, when you don't mind paying for the booze if it means not having to endure another canape.

And then you look up at the windows of Soho House and you realize you'll never be able to escape as long as you're in this city. So you leave your pint and you take to the road, and you grow a beard, and you completely disappear. Or you simply become a consultant.

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