Now usually when we head on a weekend adventure we like to find hidden Airbnb gems or try out quirky hostels – you often get incredible insider tips that you otherwise wouldn’t at a run-of-the-mill hotel, but every once in a while a chain takes you by surprise… have you heard of CitizenM Shoreditch?
It might not yet be on your radar but with locations in London, Amsterdam, Glasgow, Paris, Rotterdam, NYC and even Taipei, CitizenM is quickly creating a name for itself on the boutique hotel scene. The concept is simple: create a destination of affordable luxury for the modern, international traveller – the ‘Mobile Citizen of the World’.
With rooms starting at £99 a night, it’s not massively unaffordable (even by London standards). CitizenM Shoreditch is in a fab location just a short walk from Brick Lane and its host of graffiti, fashion and foodie spots. The hotel ‘ambassadors’ will also give you all the details you need to get around, advising on where’s best to eat, drink, rave, wander aimlessly, whatever you’re looking for from your stay!
It’s worth checking out if Brick Lane food hall is open, you can grab a worldly bite to eat before heading off into the Big Smoke. Otherwise, you’re only 10 minutes’ walk away from Old Spitalfields Market – the choices are endless here! Breddos Tacos would be our recommendation…
Walking into the hotel entrance it’s almost like you’ve stepped into the lobby of an art studio with its spiral staircase and mismatched hanging shades. Upstairs you’ll find the reception which has a row of self-check-in screens and an ambassador on-hand for any technophobes. Your living room away from home, the communal zone is complete with 24hr bar and food area, coffee table books, lounging zones (for business or laziness – free wifi, by the way!) and quirky art.
Great impression so far, but what about the bedrooms? Now don’t expect to walk into a huge room with multiple armchairs and a clunky desk – the bedrooms are compact and kitted out with functional furnishings and the latest tech. The XL kingsize bed stretches the width of the room and sits under a wall-to-wall window, offering great views if you’re high enough up. There’s an iPad which allows you to control every aspect of the room’s gadgets, from the blind, TV, ambient lighting, music – everything! It also welcomes you by name which is a nice touch.
The bathroom is cocooned inside a standout cube on one side of the room, again compact but with a great waterfall shower – what more could you need anyway! The sink inside the room provides enough surface space to act as a getting-ready-to-go-out-out station (if the night is taking you that way).
The vibe here is effortlessly cool, CitizenM has built an impressive, global brand not based on frills and fanciness but on simply great service, affordable pricing and damn good design.
We’d definitely recommend staying at CitizenM Shoreditch if you’re booking a London weekend – failing that, you could try out the Bankside or Tower of London spots!
Now when can we get ourselves to CitizenNYC…