Providing caffeine-based relief to thirsty Fitzrovians is a new coffee shop that recently opened in a former Victorian toilet.
Attendant is housed in the subterranean gents lav on the corner of Foley Street and Great Titchfield Street. Built in the late 19th century, the toilet closed in the 1960s, leaving only an ornate ironwork shell at ground level. Until this year, when it re-opened in its current guise.
At a reported cost of £100,000, the interior has been elegantly transformed into a cafe, with a raised bar and stools placed at the urinals, which remain in situ (albeit after a damn good scrubbing, one would hope). The coffee is provided by Caravan; on our visit it was a single-estate El Salvadoran bean, which tasted smooth and pleasingly bitter, even if the citrusy notes promised didn't quite reach our tastebuds.
Attendant also serves cakes and pastries from Bittersweet Bakers and sandwiches for lunch which, if other reviews are anything to go by, are excellent.
Attendant is at 27a Foley Street, London W1W 6DY.
Other repurposed London lavs:
Cellar Door is a toilet-turned-burlesque and cocktail bar in Aldwych
A one-bedroom apartment in Shoreditch
Public Life was a club in a toilet beside Christ Church Spitalfields. It closed last year.