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Hoxton Hotels has officially gone international this week: The Hoxton Amsterdam is now open. We hope one of you had a chance to play that online fruit machine and win a free stay, which would mean you’d be lucky enough to lounge around these lovely public areas right now. These photos will probably be the only time you get to see them this empty before the millennials and digital nomads set up camp permanently in the vintage chairs and leather sofas.
As we type this, a Shoebox Twin is still available for this coming Friday at an outstanding €139 ($155) a night. Split between two, you’re getting a chance to be one of the first to stay here for the equivalent of a bunk bed in an eight-bed hostel dorm – quite the no-brainer. More photos below.
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How is that for a surprising headline? Gleneagles, the luxury golf resort in Scotland that hosted the G8 summit and the Ryder Cup last year, was just bought by Ennismore, the group behind Hoxton Hotels. Yes, those Hoxton Hotels: the original in Shoreditch, last year’s addition in Holborn, the new opening in Amsterdam next week, and future hotels in Southwark, Paris, and Williamsburg.
Before you think that means the 232 rooms and suites will go all affordable chic and the two-Michelin starred restaurant will be replaced by a Chicken Shop, don’t worry – that won’t happen. It will be run as a “standalone” business, but will be at the receiving end of “significant sums” of investment.
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Every month, we tell you which hotel openings you need to know about (and which, inevitably, miss their deadlines). While we have a healthy list of arrivals around the world, there are a few places that are either consistently popular or having a bit of a hotel moment, so “new hotels for…” gives you a rundown of the openings you will want to know about for a particular destination. Paris, ma chérie… We do love you so. On a breezy May day when it’s warm but not hot, the sun shines from a bright blue sky, and the stunning architecture sparkles, you’re alluring as can be. But your hotel rates make our head spin, and not in a good way. A stay in a palace, something we should all be able to experience at least once, was never really affordable, but now a long weekend can cost as much as six months’ rent – in a very expensive city. Nonetheless, more extravagantly priced rooms are coming, along with a glimmer of hope for most of us. Here are eight hotels on their way to the City of Light.
In yet another sign that SE1 Waterloo/Southbank/Southwark has become "a postcode you pay for", as we’ve been told on more than one occasion (London, raise your hand with us if you feel like you missed that memo), Hoxton Hotels is expanding to a triple-threat in the city’s hotel market with the announcement that their third hotel, The Hoxton Southwark, is in the works.
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Every month, we tell you which hotel openings you need to know about (and which, inevitably, miss their deadlines). While we have a healthy list of arrivals around the world, there are a few places that are either consistently popular or having a bit of a hotel moment, so “new hotels for…” gives you a rundown of the openings you will want to know about for a particular destination. Even on our Master List of Hotel Openings we highlighted Amsterdam as enjoying a bit of a renaissance – and so much has happened since then. Last year, Waldorf Astoria was the talk of the town, which followed the likes of Andaz and the Conservatorium. But in 2015, and the next few years, the Dutch capital is picking up steam, adding a range of interesting hotels. Tallying them up quickly took us to 12, and there will be more:
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Is Amsterdam on your travel itinerary this summer? You may want to reconsider your hotel choices, as there will be something new to try: The Hoxton Amsterdam beat our estimate of an opening in September (along almost-neighbor W Amsterdam) by unleashing reservations from July 13.
Officially, rates start from €89, which currently comes out to a clean $100. Playing around with dates in the second half of July, a Saturday night seems most expensive, with rates from €159 ($178) a night, while on Sunday, we even spy a “Shoebox” for €69 ($77) a night. We’ve heard of dorm beds in an Amsterdam hostel going for more than that. All in all, depending on the size of the room you pick, you should be able to get an average of around $150 a night, which is outstanding value.
We said last week that Amsterdam was having a hotel moment, and the race between two of its biggest arrivals this year, only a few minutes’ walk between them, is officially on. The Hoxton was first with a select few photos of some its very handsome rooms projected for “summer” this year. The W countered with a slew of renderings and a “September” opening.
Both have been withholding reservations so far, but The Hoxton has gone out and put the countdown right on its website, with now less than 50 days until bookings open. In fact, unless our math is way off, reservations should open on April 1. We’ll assume that’s not a joke, and further assume that The Hoxton will open first and at cheaper rates, unless the W pulls a rabbit out of a hat (on the rates front, we don’t think that will ever happen).
Q: Which hotel group expressed solidarity with the Paris terror attacks by adding its name to the #jesuischarlie campaign?
A: Probably lots of them.
Q: Which hotel group tried to piggy-back into people’s minds on the back of the Paris terror attacks by tagging photos of its new hotel with #jesuischarlie in an attempt as clumsy as it is offensive to use a global movement of solidarity as a marketing tool?
A: This may surprise you – it was everyone’s favorite East London hipsters at The Hoxton.
Yesterday, as the eagle-eyed Evening Standard noticed, the Hoxton posted a couple of photos of its forthcoming Paris property to its Facebook page. They looked pretty wonderful, actually. But the caption was less so:
Talk about our prayers being answered: when we looked at the canvas Hoxton Hotels would be working with for its Amsterdam hotel, we said no one would regret the departure of the awfully bland rooms of the former Rembrandt Classic Hotel.
Not only did a recent walk by the canal-side hotel confirm that gone they are, with the interior stripped down to its bare bones, here are some photos of the seriously good-looking rooms Hoxton will have for us come summer 2015. It’s a very masculine mix of dark herringbone floors, exposed beams, what looks like appropriate Vermeer blue on the walls (like we saw at Waldorf Astoria, further south on the same canal), solid wooden desk, a bit of leather on the chair, and a pop of mustard on the stool. If Hoxton can give us all this at the right price, it may knock out both the Waldorf Astoria and the equally-hyped W Hotel.
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Shoreditch High Street from the Ace rooftop
Introducing our handy hotel guides--HotelChatter's Must Stay Hotels--where we pick four hotels for four different types of travelers in a particular neighborhood of one major city. We’re rounding up the last few weeks with a stop in east London. Got a question about where to stay and when? Email us.
Looking for a hotel in London? You can troll online review sites, crowdsource on Facebook and comb through endless “Best Hotels” lists but why do all that when we’ve done all the work for you already?
Here are four different hotels to try in east London. So whether you’re going for pleasure or work and whether you’ve got cash to throw around or have pennies to count, these hotels will fulfill your needs. One common thread running through these hotel picks? They have all free WiFi. So during your stay, you can write us a thank you email for the recommendation.
Yesterday, we told you how to find Chicken Shop, the new underground restaurant at the Hoxton Holborn. Today, we’re talking what to order (apologies in advance for the photos, it's very, very dark underground).
In a way, there’s not much advice to give, because the menu at Chicken Shop is limited. Very limited – your options for your main course are:
· A quarter chicken (£4.50)
· A half chicken (£8.50)
· A whole chicken (£15)
To jazz it up, there are sides, which all cost £4. These are:
· Crinkle cut fries
· Corn on the cob
· Butter lettuce and avocado salad
There’s no wine list – your choices are “house”, “decent” or “good” – by the glass or jug. There are four beers on draught, and four (plus a cider) in bottles. Food is served on enamel plates, wine in battered jugs. The whole thing sounds overly simple, and it is. But it is one of the best overly simple meals you’ll have had in ages.
The chicken is free range, from a named farm (Banham’s) in Norfolk. It’s marinated overnight, steamed, then stuck on a rotisserie spit and cooked over charcoal. They chop it up with machetes at the open-plan kitchen, hurl on some extra seasoning as they plate up, and bam, it’s on the way to your table. This is very fast (almost too fast) restaurant food – ours arrived within a couple of minutes of ordering.
You might have heard of Chicken Shop, the ever so trendy (but tiny) restaurant chain owned by the people behind Soho House. You might have heard that its fourth London outpost opened this weekend in the Hoxton Holborn. You might pop along to the Hox, and stride confidently past the people flooding the open-plan bar and lobby area, towards the restaurant at the back.
“Is this the Chicken Shop?” you might ask the perfectly made up, beautifully dressed ladies looking you quizzically up and down at the restaurant entrance. And they will say: no.
You see, the restaurant in the lobby is Hubbard & Bell, “dishing up Brooklyn grill style grub”, as the website says. Chicken Shop, on the other hand, is an underground restaurant. As in, it’s actually underground. And unmarked. And the closest to a secret restaurant you will get in the London hotel scene.