My ears always prick up at the mention of the Hop Exchange on Southwark Street – what actually goes on behind those doors? The grand interior of what used to be – perhaps unsurprisingly –the centre for hop trading for London’s brewing industry, seems to me to be one of London’s most underused treasures. The Grade II-listed building mostly houses offices and hosts special corporate events. The only way to enjoy the building has been to head to Katzenjammers Bierkeller & Restaurant (‘London’s coolest Bavarian bier keller’), but then you’re stuck in the basement.

Now you can hang out above ground in the Hop Exchange, at the brand new and very cool Buster & Punch showroom. Buster + Punch is a London-born interiors brand for those who want to ‘live with conviction’, through their distinct style of daring lighting, furniture and limited edition pieces, which range from motorcycles to leather jackets and jewellery.

And now, for the very first time, all their products are housed under one roof, including the critically acclaimed Rockstar Bar, Hooked lighting and the recently launched Electricity range. Visitors will have access to never-seen-before limited edition collaborations and pre-launch prototypes hot from their East London workshop, including the highly anticipated LED Buster Bulb set to launch on 18 March.

And soon you’ll have even more reason to visit The Hop Exchange – Smiths of Smithfield is set to open its third branch here (the second is located in Spitalfields). The new Smiths will be spread over four floors in the west wing of the Hop Exchange. Open from 7am, the ground floor will be a kind of ‘posh greasy spoon’, with the experience becoming more high-end the higher you go.

Words by Victoria Purcell