I had some reservations from the moment I watched the promo video on the Hoxton's website. Sleek decor framing her thin frame, a polished single woman appears to pick up a chic guy in a dance club, after which they both go back to her room at the Hoxton, hang up the Do Not Disturb sign, and do whatever they do in there until the morning Yogurt Pot arrives on the handle by her room door. "This place is waaay too hip for us," I told my husband as we watched the promo together. We're forty somethings, live in the Southern U.S., and I drive a minivan.
The skill and hospitality of the hotel, however, quickly eased our doubts. When we showed up rumpled and sketchy from a long flight and a trying negotiation with the Tube, the check-in desk clerk welcomed us gracefully and did not appear to judge my chic Target travel wear. Sneaking a glance around the hotel lobby, I noted the twenty-somethings with their fitted suits and cosmopolitan updos.
Based on another tip from a TripAdvisor review, I had requested a room on an upper floor, and I was pleased to find they honored that request. Our cozy, comfortable, clean room looked out on the alley behind the building, the rooftops ala that scene in Mary Poppins with the chimney sweepers, and the city skyline beyond. One morning we spotted a roof walker, a young man with a tweed jacket and a worn messenger's bag, trekking across the roofs, hands jammed in his pockets, wearing an intense look of artistic concentration.
We slept well in the soft comforter and ample pillows provided. The free morning yogurt pots amused us. What is the British fascination with bananas? We loved having these easy, fresh treats from Pret to get us going in the morning until we could find a good place in the city for elevenses. We also ate at the grill downstairs once; the shrimp burger earned high marks.
On another trip to London (perhaps for 2012?), I would love to stay here again and spend more time exploring the area. Our brief strolls around the neighborhood revealed more of that lovely mix of older, established neighborhood and youthful, hip, vibe. Every night of our stay, arriving at the Old Street Tube station, we followed giggling groups of girls in ridiculously high high heels, making their way to the local clubs along Greater Eastern St. One night, as we walked home in the rain, two ultra hip girls leaned on each other for support in their slippery stilettos. I thanked the heavens for my comfy Ecco sandals, and appreciated being not quite so hip.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- We've been on the Shoreditch scene for a while now, and like the area we occupy, our style has developed and evolved over time, literally from the ground floor up. With 210 cleverly designed bedrooms, The Hoxton Grill restaurant run in partnership with the Soho House group, a destination bar and The Apartment, our meetings and events space, we have everything you might need all under one roof... ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hoxton Hotel London
- The Hoxton, Shoreditch London, England