Umbaba

15-21 Ganton Street
Soho, London
W1F 9BN
Tel: 020 7734 6696 Oxford Circus 0.2 miles

A small part of tropical Africa re-locates to the West End. DJs play from a large cauldron on the dancefloor and The Republic of Umbaba also features four bars, including the Colonial VIP safari tent.

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Went to their Greek-Arabic event on Wednesday and loved it! The music was great, the drinks yummy. There should be more events of this kind taking place there!

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 by unknown444, 28 Jan 2008
New Year's Eve at Umbaba this year ROCKED! The staff were great, the venue cool, very busy with a good crowd (more girls than guys). The manager is quite new to the venue, having come from running Funky Buddha, and he's doing a real good job. Look out for this club being HOT HOT HOT in 2008!

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 by rk1, 05 Jan 2008
WORST CLUB EVER. The staff asked us to leave because we weren't the right colour for the VIP. The excuse was that whoever was promoting for that night did not want people of colour in VIP. When we complained their bouncers grabbed us and pushed us out, and then refused to give us a refund. Thinking of going through legal proceedings for battery and racism.

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 by Alex3607, 28 Dec 2007
Never even made it in. The bouncers were so rude and power-mad that I refused to walk in. Absolute waste of energy!

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 by bunnysezmiaow, 07 Jul 2007
Went here on a Thursday night. I'm part of a hostess group of playmates (we dance to promote clubs). Every club I have been to, the staff have been really nice and polite - after all, I'm there to promote it. But this place I was totally disgusted with. The doormen are rude, the staff don't talk English and are really up their own arses. The club itself is so average, though the actual layout isn't that bad, a bit cluttered perhaps... Anyway, girls, if you're looking for action don't go here, and boys, the closest you'll get to a pretty girl in this place is the toilet attendant.

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 by Ruby1, 25 May 2007
I had a great time at Umbaba when I went with some friends several weeks ago. We went on a Friday, so it wasn't that busy. We didn't have to queue for long and everyone was respectful and courteous. One of the girls even let us sit in a reserved area when the party who was supposed to show up didn't. The drinks are a bit pricey, but what isn't in this area? If you're looking for a good time, you have to be ready to spend the cash. I'd definitely like to see the club on a busier day... maybe I'll come back on a Saturday.

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 by AimeeStar, 18 Apr 2007
A hell hole. Like an overpriced, overdressed student union. Music is of course generic and commercial (though to be fair, it appears the clientele here aren't exactly the most musically aware people in the world), drinks are overpriced and made with mid-range spirits, and the venue looks like bedrock. Who on earth would queue for hours to get in here?? A better (and substantially cheaper) time to be had at your local Wetherspoons.

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 by Anonymous, 13 Apr 2007
We had a horrific experience in this night club, which made me (for the first time) take time to write a review so that well-mannered people might be spared a similarly humiliating experience. I would rate the place as -5 if it were an option.

We were booked through the concierge of the five-star hotel where we were spending our weekend in London. An hour and a half after our arrival at the club a waitress came and abruptly told us to move as the the table we were sitting at was booked. We were horrified, since there was no reservation sign on it, and we asked where we could move to. She said, "I don't care - move anywhere you can find space!"

Naturally we refused to move, so she brought along a bouncer who started screaming and cursing and physically pushed my fiance out of the club. I got hold of my purse and our jackets and followed them upstairs to demand a refund. The bouncer physically pushed me out using extreme force, although I kept on shouting, "Do NOT touch me!"

I do appreciate the fact that bouncers sometimes have to use force in such places, but I have always thought it would be for the violent drunk clients. I class this as an assault, as we did not swear, attack or use any violence.

Our very special weekend was absolutely ruined, as I kept on arguing with my fiance about calling the police or calling the press. I eventually promised to not do either, since it was a special night for us and I want him to be happy. However, I think people should be careful about going there, since that kind of behaviour can be absolutely traumatising.

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 by xena, 10 Apr 2007
I went for my birthday and had an excellent night! The people were really friendly and the venue is great, a bit small but still spacious enough to have a dance.

Drinks are quite expensive, but when you come to London you expect high prices! Plenty of girls in there for guys and vice versa. Has a great mix of characters. I had one of my best birthdays there, and we are always looking to go back. I recommend it to everyone.

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 by woo woo, 04 Apr 2007
Fun night overall - good music, good people, good drinks. I'd come again.

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 by Mike24, 29 Mar 2007
Security and bouncers are quite arrogant and rude. Otherwise good flair and brilliant music.

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 by Anonymous, 24 Mar 2007
Honestly, why do these places bother to have DJs?? Since when do 25-year-olds (most of the clientele) dance to Justin Timberlake and Beyonce? If you're going to play this at least mix it or make it interesting! Anyone can play a set-list off of an ipod. If dancing to horrible music and overpriced average drinks is your thing, then welcome to Umbaba!

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 by Anonymous, 22 Mar 2007
Umbaba is brilliant. The decor is really chilled compared to other intense, over-modernized clubs, which is nice. All staff, from the toilet attendants to the bar staff, are very pleasant and helpful. The music varies throughout the night, which means that everyone leaves the club feeling satisfied.

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 by Carlotta1, 19 Mar 2007
I always have a good time here as I know what to expect. The music is good - makes you want to dance, the drinks are a bit pricey but worth it. I honestly don't see what all the fuss is about. Door staff are pretty much the same at every club, and I've never really had any problems wih the ones at Umbaba - they do their job and keep the sleazebags out. I enjoy the atmosphere, and my friends and I always have an excellent time. I'll keep going back.

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 by JDonnor, 14 Mar 2007
We had a wonderful time at Umbaba last Saturday night. We didn't have to queue for very long and everyone was very nice to us. They even let my friend's boyfriend in. There was a good mix of people, music, and drinks. It's 20 quid at the door, but definitely worth it for a great night out in London.

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 by Jen5, 09 Mar 2007
I had such a great time at Umbaba with some girlfriends last Saturday. It was a friend's birthday so we were on the guestlist and we got in after a 5-minute wait (the queue wasn't long at all). I'd say it was reasonably priced - you're not going to find a cheaper club in the area - PLUS, it's fun. The music at Umbaba is a good mix, not just straight techno blasting all night. I'd definitely go back.

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 by Mallory, 07 Mar 2007
You can't go to Umbaba and expect to be in the most amazing place on earth - you're in a night club, for god's sake! All good night clubs are pricey, and sometimes you have to accept the atmosphere. If you want bad, repetitive techno music then this isn't the club for you. The DJ actually plays fun, RnB music (mostly) that you can dance to. It is crowded, but I thought that that was part of the appeal - it's great partying with so many people. My friends and I had the best time and can't wait to go back!

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 by Something Good, 06 Mar 2007
You might as well drop 1000 quid in someone's badly decorated basement. The staff are awful, the crowd (tarty girls scamming on men for drinks and men who think they are gods) similar to what you get in other overpriced table clubs with not much to offer, and the music is cheesy commercial r'nb.

Umbaba has no place on the London club scene. It seems it's suffering a fate similar to Tantra... I give it 3 months.

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 by Anonymous, 27 Feb 2007
Didn't want to believe the negative comments about this place, but they are all true. Disgusting staff at the front entrance who aren't afraid to dish out a bit of physical abuse!

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 by filing for assult, 25 Feb 2007
After reading some of the reviews I didn't have high expectations for Umbaba but, trust me, don't let them scare you off because I had an AMAZING time! The staff were very courteous, we didn't wait THAT long, the music was great and the people were beautiful. If you're looking to get decked out and have a great night on the town, Umbaba is definitely the place to be!

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 by Michelle Wonby, 23 Feb 2007


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