Ministers and health chiefs put the capital into Tier 2 in an apparent borderline decision which means restaurants and many pubs and bars will be able to reopen.
Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove reportedly strongly advocated at a crunch meeting last Wednesday that the whole capital should go into the most draconian restrictions.
However, other Cabinet ministers made the case for Tier 2 for London which has not seen cases rise as fast and high as many cities and towns in the North and Midlands during the second wave.
Boris Johnson suffered a major backbench rebellion over plans to push the measures through the Commons during a crunch vote on Tuesday.
But the restrictions were approved after Sir Keir Starmer called on Labour MPs to abstain on the vote.
We look at exactly what Tier 2 means for the capital:
Home No mixing is allowed with other people indoors apart from your household or bubble but up to six people can meet outside in private gardens or public parks.
Hairdressers/beauty salons Can open but will be expected to operate in a Covid-secure manner or risk closure.
Pubs and restaurants Pubs can only open if they serve substantial meals. No household mixing is allowed indoors except for business meetings, though groups of six can meet outside. Last orders will be called at 10pm but venues can stay open until 11pm.
Shops All shops can open but must operate in a Covid-secure manner.
Theatres and cinemas They can open with distancing but the Society of London Theatre has warned capacity constraints of 50 per cent or 1,000, whichever is lower, will cause financial problems. They can also stay open beyond 11pm to conclude performances that begin before 10pm.
Work Advice remains for people to work from home whenever possible.
Travel Official advice is to limit travelling as much as possible and do not travel into Tier 3 unless necessary.
Education All nurseries, schools, colleges and universities will be open.
Hotels Can open.
Overnight stays You can stay overnight except in Tier 3 areas but only with people in your household or social bubble.
Places of worship They are allowed to be open but people must stick to their own household or support bubble.
Weddings and funerals No more than 15 guests at weddings, receptions and wakes. Only 30 guests at funerals.
Amateur sport and exercise Organised adult sport can take place outdoors but not inside if it involves social mixing. All organised sport for children and elite athletes is allowed.
Professional sport Spectator capacity is 50 per cent or 2,000 outdoors, whichever is less, and 1,000 indoors.
Live performances Audiences again limited to 50 per cent capacity or 2,000 outdoors, whichever is less, or 1,000 indoors.
Gyms and pools Can open but must be Covid-secure.