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Pods and capsules: the rise of London’s budget hotels.

by Laura on September 12, 2014

Tune Hotel Westminster Double Room

Many of the capital’s new hotel openings recently (as well as upcoming openings) are budget hotels. Some, like Z Hotels and citizenM, already have properties in London, while others, such as German brand Motel One, are just breaking into the London market. But whether they’re a new brand or an established one, it’s clear that the trend towards budget hotels is continuing.

Most of these brands are stylish, well-located, aimed towards a younger market and, most importantly, relatively affordable. Of course, in order to bring prices down and remain in the centre of London, something has to give. And the first thing to go in these budget hotels is extra space. It makes perfect sense; no one books a hotel room hoping to be able to do a bit of gymnastics or break out their yoga mat. The only rooms where extra space is absolutely necessary is in accessible bedrooms and communal areas.

The market for these hotels is guests who return to their room in the evening, or perhaps the early hours of the morning, and want a bed to sleep in. A desk isn’t necessary – anyone who wants to work will do so with a laptop or tablet on the bed or in a common area. Although, that won’t stop Z Hotels from squeezing a small desk in.

Check rates at Z Hotel Piccadilly

z hotel inside queen

They might want to watch TV or listen to music, but you don’t need any extra furniture or space to move around for that. If being able to walk from the door to the bed in one stride is the compromise for a hotel room in Central London at under £90 a night, most people would be willing to take the compromise.

Among the hotels swapping room to swing a cat for prices that save you enough to feed the cat for several weeks are Qbic, Z Hotels, Tune Hotels, citizenM and The Hoxton. The Hoxton Holborn, the brand’s second London hotel, opens later this month on September 25th 2014, with prices starting at £99. Z Hotels, Tune Hotels and citizenM continue to expand across London, though citizenM appears to be lagging slightly in its growth plans.

Meanwhile, a 600-room pod-style hotel is planned for inside the Trocadero in Piccadilly Circus, although when it will open is unclear. German Motel One will add another player to the game, Bloc provides economy-sized rooms at Gatwick, and Marriott’s Moxy brand will soon reach London, now that their first property has opened in Milan.

Visitors to London will soon be unable to move for budget hotels. All this choice can only be a good thing for people who are trying to save a few pounds, but will it have an effect on the middle-range hotels they might otherwise have stayed at?

Search for a London hotel – Book Now, Pay When you Stay

Photo credits: Tune Hotel Westminster, Z Hotel Piccadilly.

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