What is it about a holiday where you sometimes just talk a little more? Or how while on holiday you might be a little bit extra outgoing, a little more friendly and inquisitive of strangers? I didn’t always notice this strange travel habit, but during my most recent weekend in London, I found myself confident and outgoing in just about every encounter. And especially so at the hotel I found myself in for the weekend: arguably one of London’s most hipster hotel brands, The Hoxton.
I’ve been to the Hoxton at Holborn before. I’d heard it was a good place to work and since I’m pretty much writing wherever I can these days, I’d stumbled into the hotel lobby looking for a place to get some work done. If you haven’t been to the Hoxton before, you’ll know that this was a fruitless endeavor.
The Hoxton is literally one of the best spots in London to work from, and because of that, the lobby is often crowded. When you walk through the simple sliding glass doors (so chic!), the first thing you see are a set of couches—crowded with people of all ages, either hunched over their laptops or engaged in conversation (probably a business meeting).
To the right, a bar. To the left, more tables, couches and bookshelves. In the back corner, the hotel check-in. You’d almost think this wasn’t even a hotel. The check-in desk is buried in some far off corner.
The Hoxton has two locations in London—one in Holborn and the other (the original) in Shoreditch. I’ve now stayed in both hotels and, without question, it’s my favorite place to stay in London. Room prices can be pricey (prices from about £120/night), but I booked my last visit on the HotelTonight app for a last-minute discount (for less than £90!).
I’ve praised The Hoxton hotel brand countless times before—it’s one of my favorite brands because of a number of reasons. I can’t speak for all their locations (there are new hotels in Amsterdam and Paris, and they’re apparently soon launching hotels in the USA). Here are my top reasons for why I just really love The Hoxton London hotels…
Why I Love the Hoxton hotels in London
This is generally my number reason on how/why I choose a hotel, and The Hoxton wins with both their London properties. The Hoxton Holborn location is right in the heart of the trendy Seven Dials shopping district, steps away from Soho with all of its gay bars and theaters.
The Hoxton Shoreditch is just down the street from the Old Street underground location and walking distance to Shoreditch High Street (again, near plenty of gay bars and some of London’s trendiest restaurants—not to mention the East London markets on Brick Lane, Broadway, and Columbia Road.
Gay, gay, gay, gay, gay!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—the best gay hotels are those that are in the best gay-friendly locations. Because of The Hoxton’s perfect recipe for a hotel—from location to price to design & decor—these properties just attract a good crowd, many LGBTQ travelers included.
Design & art & color
As an independent hotel company, the brand utilizes its location to impact its design. The Shoreditch location has a huge fireplace in the main lobby (which doubles as a café and bar) which seems to be older than the building itself. You’ll find local photographers’ works on the walls and rooms are all well-designed for their space with pops of color amid fun and funky patterns. It’s simple but stylish and just what you’re looking for when you need a place to crash in London’s coolest areas.
While the Hoxton is more upscale than many hotels, if you plan it right (and use hotel comparison sites like hotelscombined.com or even last-minute booking apps like HotelTonight), you can usually score a relatively decent deal. For a hotel in downtown London, it’s relatively affordable and the perks of the location and style make it well worth the spend.
Okay, who doesn’t love a good mirror? I can’t tell you how many selfies I took in front of these things in the rooms—because, well, you know. It’s just another touch to the design and it makes the space really feel more-than comfortable.
Takeaway breakfast bags
Like any good one-night stand, one of The Hoxton’s signature moves is its breakfast game. In your room, you find a small door hanger which lets you check off how many breakfasts you need (one or two), any special requests, and what time you want it delivered. It shows up outside your door on a hook at the pre-determined time and you can enjoy it at your leisure. Easy.
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Listen, I don’t gush over hotels very often but The Hoxton is just so good for what you pay. You can check prices here or visit their website for more about their story.