Checking In and Checking Out

A Cool London Love Shack Available by the Hour

by Liza Foreman
The The lobby of The Hoxton Holborn. All photos courtesy of The Hoxton Holborn.

The Hoxton is a hipster-chic and quixotic hotel for day-users, businesspeople, and tourists alike in the heart of Holborn, London.

CHECKING IN

Overview

Japan has short-use "love hotels" and now an increasing number of cities in Europe and the United States are offering hotel rooms to use during the day, for both work and pleasure.

Innovative travel company is at the forefront of this trend. Specializing in providing rooms in conveniently located hotels with top facilities, they have now expanded into London at in Holborn, one of the city's hippest new hotels and one of the first to offer day rates.

I checked in from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. to see what they have to offer guests requesting a room for daytime hours. I spent some time in the lobby, then ventured upstairs for an afternoon whose details will remain unwritten.

Claim to Fame

Situated a stone's throw from the West End Theatre District and Covent Garden (and close enough to Oxford Street), Hoxton is a hotel that doubles as a bustling meet/work space popular with young entrepreneurs and men in suits. The glass-fronted lobby reveals tables and sofas filled with those chatting up meetings and tapping away on laptops. The more leisurely paced brunch at earthy wooden tables and drink at the designer bar in the lobby.

The Hubbard & Bell restaurant at The Hoxton Holborn

Comfy booths and a Brooklyn aesthetic at Hubbard & Bell inside The Hoxton.

On Site

The Hoxton has everything a girl could need from a ho a really helpful check-in desk, a nail parlor, a coffee shop called , a restaurant in the basement, and a Brooklyn-style grill called .

A guest room at The Hoxton Holborn.

A guest room at The Hoxton Holborn.

The Rooms

The hotel has 174 rooms in all shapes and sizes. The lobby has a Scandinavian design sensibility, hot on wood of all kinds and very minimalist. It's rich yet understated. There are four room categories: Shoebox, Snug, Cosy, and Roomy. The rooms are all different but include free WiFi, an hour of phone calls, tea and coffee, water, and a breakfast bag drop.

My room was a compact, womblike, and luxurious space decorated with retro items like an old radio, lamps, and a small fold-out table where I made tea with the smart set provided. It was an excellent spot for a seductive afternoon liaison. A h bed dominated the space — a large circular mirror covered one wall, an armchair occupied a corner. This is a space designed for spending time in bed. (Ahem. You can fill in the blanks, day use friends.) The bathroom was equally designer, an immaculate and lovely compact space with a glass shower and white wall tiles. The corridors leading to the rooms are sleek and dark, with room numbers next to the floor mats — an extra designer twist.

This Place Is Perfect For

Those having meetings in the city who want a private space to meet. Lovers. Visitors wanting to stay somewhere with an especially lively and hip vibe.

But Not So Perfect For

Those who like old-school, quiet haunts.


CHECKING OUT

Neighborhood Vibe

Holborn is in a bustling location at the intersection of offices, the theater district, and shopping galore on Oxford Street. During Fashion Week, the area is filled with the fashion flock heading to nearby venues. This is an urban hotel on a busy street that feels as mad and anonymous as London gets.

What To Do Nearby

For shopping, stroll Oxford Street for mega stores like , and roam side streets like New Bond Street and Brook Street for posh shops and galleries like the new boutique and . is a stone's throw away; one could spend days here exploring looted antiquities from the Empire. Opposite the museum's main entrance on Coptic Street is one of the most beautifully designed Pizza Express branches which is a buzzing spot for lunch. (Yes, really, Pizza Express.) Other nearby art options: for exhibitions, cool coffee shops, and light dining options; and the nearby in Bermondsey, a newly renovated neighborhood of warehouses gone designer. Good dining options near the hotel include , , and in Covent Garden. Or head for cocktails at in One Aldwych Hotel to catch London's after work vibe.

Good To Know

There are tons of theaters nearby, so look for half price tickets.

BOOK IT

from £99 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Of course, the Hoxton is first and foremost a regular hotel, so if you like your room, rates start at £179. .

BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE

Popupla's London Guide
Traveling Solo in London
London for Business Travelers

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