Are you considering Birmingham for your hen party? Birmingham is a vibrant city full of fabulous independent restaurants and bars, fun places to party the night away and interesting activities. It’s also conveniently located in the middle of the country – easy for everyone to get to! We asked our Assistant Editor, Zoe Burke, who is a Brummie at heart, to share her top hen party ideas...
Bars and Clubs
There’s plenty to do in Birmingham when it comes to the nightlife. You’ll see familiar chains such as Walkabout, Vodka Revolution, PopWorld and Pryzm, but we’re going to focus on some of the more unique places.
The Jekyll and Hyde
Hidden away just off the top of Corporation Street, you’ll find the Jekyll and Hyde. This quirky cocktail bar specialises in gin in a big way – you can enjoy a gin themed meal before taking advantage of an amazing cocktail list. The cocktail selection includes drinks flavoured like your favourite retro sweets – love heart or lemon bonbon cocktail anyone? Or bigger cocktails for sharing that come in unusual receptacles, such as a miniature bathtub or a teapot. If the bride to be is a lover of gin, don’t miss this.
Image credits: instagram.com/jekyllbham
Hen parties looking for a glamorous night out should consider Mechu - it's sophisticated and stylish. You can book a private leather booth as you sip champagne, or dance the night away with a delicious cocktail in hand. It's the most sensible choice for discerning partygoers.
Image credit: instagram.com/mechuvip
You’ll hear many a true Brummie talk fondly of Snobs. This nightclub is an institution within the city and a quintessential element to a proper Birmingham night out. It’s a bit of a trek from the bright lights of Broad Street but it’s close to Hurst Street and the Arcadian. The décor had remained unchanged for decades, but a recent relocation has given the venue a new lease of life. The faces in the wall (which were in place in the 70s) still remain though. This club is the perfect choice if you love to party to the Arctic Monkeys and want an affordable night out where heels aren’t an essential, but jumping around is.
The Arcadian is a great choice if you want to dance the night away, but the mile-long strip of clubs that is Broad Street leaves you feeling a little intimidated. Located in the city’s China Town area, the Arcadian is a cluster of bars and clubs all within tottering distance of each other. There’s a variety of places to choose from, which means if you’ve got different tastes within the group there will be something for everyone.
If the hen party is taking place in the summer, Brindley Place is pretty unmissable. It’s a cluster of bars and restaurants overlooking the canals, just off Broad Street. You’ll recognise the names of the places, including Pitcher & Piano and All Bar One. It’s the perfect place for al fresco drinking before the night really gets started – crowds spill out onto the brick paved courtyard and sip their drinks under the fairy lights as it gets dark.
Image copyright Brindley Place
The Lost & Found
This unique Victorian parlour style bar is perfect for the bride-to-be who loves to keep her Instagram up to date with her latest cool exploits. Enjoy afternoon tea, dinner, a lazy Sunday lunch or the extensive cocktail list. There's also a hidden speakeasy at the Lost & Found which can host a party of up to 25 - will you be able to find it?
Image credit: twitter.com/hettiegwatson
The Jam House
The Jam House is a one-stop destination for food, drinks and dancing! Owned by Jools Holland, this beautiful red-brick building in the heart of the Jewellery Quarter is the place to go for live blues, jazz and rock music.
Not for the faint hearted, Birmingham’s Broad Street is a mile-long strip of bars, clubs and fast food joints. There’s something for everyone, especially if you like drink deals and post-party food. At the very top of the road is Pryzm, a chain club you might recognise. It has several floors to explore and various club nights so you’re bound to find something to suit the bride-to-be, particularly if she’s a party lover. There’s also the Grosvenor G Casino and comedy club Jongleurs.
If a spa hen party is your idea of heaven, then Birmingham could be the city for you. There are plenty of spas to explore and you can avoid paying the higher prices.
The Hyatt Regency Birmingham
The Hyatt Regency Birmingham is situated on Broad Street, the liveliest place in the city. The luxurious hotel offers facials, manicures, pedicures, tanning, massages and more, making it a great place for a pre-partying pit stop.
Wroxall Abbey Estate
If you don’t mind heading out of the city, the Wroxall Abbey Estate in Warwickshire is a tranquil escape. The four star hotel is set within the countryside and offers relaxing treatments, including massages, body wraps, holistic treatments and facials.
Just 13 miles from Birmingham Airport, you’ll find Chesford Grange. Why not enjoy a rejuvenating spa break with your best girls to relax before the big day? You can enjoy a range of treatments and make full use of the luxurious facilities.
Afternoon tea is a great choice if you’re planning a vintage hen party, and luckily for you, Birmingham is full of gorgeous places where you can devour scones, tea and even something alcoholic, if you fancy it. Here are just a couple of them...
Looking for a luxurious location for afternoon tea in the city centre? The Clayton Hotel offers a champagne afternoon tea package which includes finger sandwiches, scones with jam and cream and a selection of sweet treats. This is served with a choice of tea or coffee and a glass of champagne. You can stay at the venue and enjoy this experience for £85pp – if afternoon tea isn’t for you, switch it for go-karting, a fancy dinner or chocolate making.
Hotel Du Vin
Hotel Du Vin is an elegant hotel within the city centre, but a little out of the way of the hustle and bustle. You can enjoy a traditional afternoon tea with tiers of cakes, sandwiches and scones accompanied by tea or coffee, or upgrade to a champagne afternoon tea and start the hen party in style.
The Jekyll and Hyde
As mentioned above, the Jekyll and Hyde is the perfect place for quirky cocktails, but it also offers an amazing afternoon tea deal. You can have a maximum of 30 guests per party so this is great if you want to get a huge group of hens together. It starts at £13.95 per person, with a £5 additional charge to upgrade to the ‘Prosecco Party’.
Image credit: twitter.com/Jekyll_n_hyde
Plough & Harrow Hotel
The Plough & Harrow Hotel is a country hotel in the city, perfect if you want a tranquil setting for your afternoon tea. Champagne and Prosecco is available in addition to tea and coffee, as well as all the usual treats that make afternoon tea so popular – all in the quaint surroundings of this red-brick Victorian building.
Got a hen who’s a bit of a foodie? No worries, you’ll have plenty of amazing restaurants to enjoy in Birmingham.
Did you know Birmingham is host to five Michelin-starred restaurants? Purnell’s is one of them. This contemporary restaurant serves up amazing dishes and incredible flavour combinations. You can take advantage of the tasting menus frequently on offer too, so you can enjoy haute cuisine without blowing the budget.
Chung Ying Garden
Fancy Chinese food? Head to Chung Ying Garden on Thorp Street. It’s authentic Chinese food with pages and pages of dishes to choose from. The crispy duck and pancakes is out of this world, as is the deep fried calamari with sweet and sour dip. It’s competitively priced too, so if there’s a group of you sharing dishes it’ll work out well. There’s also a dim sum bar on the other side of town, near the town hall – if you fancy cocktails and light bites before walking to Broad Street, Chung Ying Central is the one is for you.
The Pickled Piglet
If you want to line your stomach before hitting the clubs, consider the Pickled Piglet on Gas Street. This restaurant does decent food at a reasonable price point, and is perfectly location just a few minutes’ walk from Brindley Place and Broad Street. They have an ever-changing set menu and it’s great for cocktails too.
Image credit: instagram.com/the_pickled_piglet
Carters of Moseley
Another Michelin-starred gem, Carters of Moseley is (surprisingly…) located in Moseley, a vibrant, bohemian area of Birmingham with plenty of independent bars, pubs and restaurants to explore. There’s a range of menus to choose from and you can enjoy a fancy three course meal from £35 per head.
The Custard Factory
Hen parties looking for something quirky to do will love the Custard Factory. Described as ‘Birmingham’s creative quarter’, you’ll find vintage clothing fairs, cool bars and fun places to eat. The Custard Factory is located in Digbeth, where you’ll find a few more venues perfect for a more alternative night out.
Whilst it’s not quite the West End, Birmingham has a few theatres dotted about so whether your bride is a hard-core musical fan or prefers grittier drama, you’ll find something.
The Hippodrome is located within the city’s Chinese quarter and often plays host to big-name, touring shows. It’s conveniently located for a pre-theatre meal and is close to the Arcadian if you want to head out for drinks after.
There are a few theatre spaces within the REP, so you can usually choose from a few different shows. This contemporary space (which is also an unique wedding venue) is closely located to Birmingham’s iconic new library, and is just a short walk from Brindley Place and Broad Street.
Got a group of hens who love to shop til they drop, but don’t fancy trekking for miles across a vast shopping centre? Welcome to Birmingham. A girly shopping trip is the perfect hen party day activity.
Birmingham’s famous Bullring is three levels of high street shops, bars and restaurants. Whilst there’s plenty crammed in there, it doesn’t feel overwhelmingly big and you can easily explore it in a day. The large Selfridges, housed within a striking, metal disc-covered exterior (which was inspired by a Paco Rabanne dress) is a real highlight. We recommend an energy boost in the form of a warm Krispy Kreme doughnut, fresh from the icing conveyor belt.
If you have expensive taste and are dying to burn plastic, head to the Mailbox. This is a select shopping centre which includes Harvey Nichols, amongst other high-end stores. There are also lots of bars and restaurants overlooking the canal which is the perfect place for a lunch pit stop on a sunny day.
The recently opened Grand Central caused much excitement in Birmingham – there’s a John Lewis! There are plenty of places to shop, eat and drink, including a champagne bar. As it’s right above New Street Station, it could be the perfect place for all the hens to come together to start the weekend in style.
Image credits: twitter.com/atgrandcentral
Just a short train ride away from New Street is Resorts World, an outlet shopping centre that is perfect for bargain hunters. You can shop ‘til you drop, enjoy dinner and drinks from a range of bars and restaurants or relax in the spa onsite.
Image credit: twitter.com/rw_birmingham
If you’re still looking for things to do, we have 47 amazing hen party ideas to inspire you.