Basement-level facilities aren’t uncommon in London hotels. Claridge’s has big plans to add on to the hotel underneath the service. Now, for the first time, an entirely underground hotel has gained approval in the capital.
Plans for the hotel, which will be converted from a car park, were recently given the green light. They have been controversial, to say the least. The hotel will have no source of natural light and all rooms will be windowless. If this sounds a little suffocating, the hotel may not be for you.
The hotel in Bloomsbury will have 166 bedrooms and be 50ft underground. It will provide budget accommodation for travellers on levels four and five of the car park. The plans were previously rejected earlier this year due to concerns for safety. Local residents also had their concerns about, among other things, disturbance from guests. However, an appeal in October dismissed these issues and the hotel is to go ahead after all.
Being entirely underground might sound odd, but basement locations aren’t unusual. Plenty of hotels have clubs or even bedrooms in their basement and the space has already been used as a car park.
The lack of windows will be solved by mechanical ventilation, ensuring that everyone gets high-quality air to breathe. Windowless rooms certainly aren’t uncommon. Many hotels offer them, including Tune Hotels.
The hotel is near to Tottenham Court Road tube station, underneath St Giles Hotel. Despite being subterranean and aiming for budget prices, images for the hotel show that the aim is for stylish, clean rooms. The hotel will also create new jobs and use space that is underused.
While sleeping underground might not be for everyone, the new hotel can provide another accommodation option for budget travellers. It will be an interesting choice to consider for anyone visiting London in the future.
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Photo credits: Ian Chalk Architects.