The Hoxton Hotel, ShoreditchPosted in Where to Sleep
Imagine New York in the 1950s. Merge that mental picture of speakeasies and jazz clubs with open fire places, exposed brick work and avant-garde mood lighting and you're halfway to envisioning the Hoxton Hotel.
It may be touted on its website as an ‘Urban Lodge’ with rooms available for as little as £1 (if you book in advance), but this swanky abode has about as much in common with the derogatory connotations of a Travelodge as American football has to do with soccer.
Sure, the Hoxton absorbs a few innovations from the ever popular domains of Ryan Air or Travelodge in the sense that booking in advance will cost less, but this doesn’t mean that you’ll end up paying for invisible essentials. It’s just an admirable technique that allows the debonair facilities of the Hoxton to be accessed widely. The result? A hybrid hotel that prides itself on an appeal to those on a budget just as much as those with six figure sums in their bank accounts. It sounds like a tricky task, yet the Hoxton pulls it off with ease.
Located in the gritty, upcoming area of Shoreditch the Hoxton Hotel blends into its surrounding area with all the prowess of a stylish chameleon. If the Banksy riddled streets of the east end signify London’s raw underbelly then the Hoxton Hotel makes for an apt retreat for the cash-strapped London artist on the hunt for elegance that doesn’t hold back on the rock ‘n’ roll factor.
Above: The Lobby @ The Hoxton Hotel
The decor in the spacious lobby area revels in all things shabby-chic. Exposed brickwork, hardwood coffee tables and leather divans set the scene with panache. The stone floors are complimented by open fireplaces that wouldn’t look out of place in one of Harry Potter’s adventures at Hogwarts. Oversized glass panels face out onto the street and make it possible to people-watch while you sup on a coffee. With free wifi available throughout the Hoxton, the lobby area makes for a sociable spot for checking emails or even, heaven forbid, writing an article.
Before you make it to your room, check out the funky mood lights that transform each corridor into surreal backdrops reminiscent of science fiction movies past. I half expected to be chased to my room by one of those ant-like aliens from the 80s. One thing was a dead cert though, if an alien were to creep up behind me or appear out of nowhere I’d be a lamb to the slaughter. Where was Sigourney Weaver and her flamethrower when you needed them most?
Above: The Corridors At The Hoxton Hotel Make Science Fiction A Reality
Futuristic decor aside, the rooms at the Hoxton are immaculate. The bed linen is made from frette cotton, there’s a king sized bed with duck down duvets, air conditioning, a flat screen television and a bathroom complete with Pears soap and Aveda Hair products. I especially liked the ‘paper’, ‘scissors’, ‘stone’ cushions that were laid out on my bed as they made for great late-night amusement after a few drinks; I guess small things really do please small minds.
Bathrooms at the Hoxton are adorned with black ceramic tiles and white grouting. The power shower is blissful and is blessed with plenty of elbow space so you don’t have to worry about knocking your arms on any soap dishes when you’re washing your hair.
Above: The Bathrooms @ The Hoxton Are Spacious And Stylish
My room sported views over the cityscape of the east end, with its grandiose monuments and graffiti strewn streets. I thought it a nice touch that my bed was positioned to face the windowpanes, so I could lie on my bed and watch the world outside spin manically round on its financial axis without having to crook my neck left or right. Sunsets are great to watch from a vantage point so if you’re planning a romantic excursion with a partner or are partial to sunsets then ensure you book a room on that’s located on the highest floor possible.
The Hoxton really demonstrates its marketing quirks come breakfast. Included in the price of your room (which could be as little as £1) is a small prêt bag that includes a banana, orange juice and a yogurt. However, if you feel the need for something a little more substantial then the Hoxton Grill on the ground floor boasts a decent enough breakfast menu.
Phone calls to landlines are free from your room for up to an hour, this includes international calls to the USA, western Europe and Australia; although it would be wise to check if this offer is still in operation before you touch base with your long lost relatives in the southern hemisphere. The latest movies are available from the box office service assessable through your television, these cost £7.50 per view but can be utilised at any given time.
On a different note, the Hoxton is the first hotel I’ve ever visited where every room is endowed with fresh milk in the fridge, ready and waiting for that first brew. It doesn’t take much time or effort to supply guests with a choice as opposed to subscribing to the backwards, lazy logic of forcing sachets of UHT on a nation of tea drinkers who find UHT milk repulsive.
In short, the Hoxton kicks the overpriced and ostentatious into submission with a pair of Dr. Martins embellished in bold white print with the words ‘Rational Thinking’. Potential hoteliers take note: this is the way of the future.
Top Tip: If you’re thinking of hosting a meeting but stuck for a venue, then why not hire out one of the Hoxton’s seven meeting rooms? There’s even the option to hire out a ‘Day Office’ for £19 from 10:00am to 4:00pm. The ‘Day Office’ basically equates to a fully functioning bedroom with all the vital amenities, kettle, fresh milk, drench shower, wireless internet and a king sized bed.
81 Great Eastern Street,
London, EC2A 3HU