I’ve just checked into the Green Rooms Hotel in North London, trundled up the two flights of stairs to my floor and entered my room – bright, white and comfy.
The evening rush-hour traffic is gradually dispersing outside my window, whilst downstairs the soulful voice of Ennie Kah Loud is just audible through the building’s historic frame.
It’s then that it all strikes me. I won’t just be spending the next three nights at your stock-standard hotel. No, I’ll be staying at the UK’s first arts hotel which doubles as a venue, a bar/café and a place to hang your hat after a day spent in the embrace of London – and it’s bloody awesome, and bloody affordable too.
Located just opposite (like, literally) the Wood Green tube station in North London, Green Rooms Hotel is just 12 minutes from King’s Cross and 20 minutes into Central London on the Piccadilly Line.
Just outside the front door you’ll find a local pub, bars, shops, cafes and plenty of food options – including awesome Turkish grub. The area is totally safe at all times of the day and night (London’s tube network is 24 hours).
A big comfy bed forms the centrepiece of the room, winged by two side tables with lamps and power plugs within easy reach. Each room has its own heater that can be dialled to suit (my room stayed remarkably warm even when it was switched off – it must be the good insulation).
For those who like to unpack their bag upon arrival, there’s a big wardrobe/drawer that can be used. The Wi-Fi signal was super strong in the room, and the speeds were fast. Although I didn’t stay in an en-suite room (I stayed in a standard room instead), the clean and spacious toilets and showers were just down the corridor.
Back in 1925, the art deco building that Green Rooms now occupies used to be the HQ of the North Met electricity company. Since being restored and transformed into the UK’s first arts hotel, the building still retains most of its original features, injecting character into the space.
All up, the hotel boasts 20 double rooms, two studio apartments and two dorm rooms, as well as a lobby bar, restaurant and plenty of seating space throughout its spacious ground floor. A rehearsal space for musical acts and theatre performances is also located inside.
Speaking of the restaurant, Green Rooms Hotel, being the social enterprise that it is, runs a chef residency program which gives budding chefs the opportunity to take the reigns of the kitchen and dish out mouth-watering menus inspired from every corner of the globe. During my stay at Green Rooms, Pop’s Kitchen was in the house, dishing out a contemporary take on Caribbean cuisine.
But it’s the energy of the place that makes a stay here so worthwhile. The vibe is funky and creative, and it wasn’t uncommon to see what I can only imagine to be freelancers hard at work on their laptops in the reception/bar/café area.
Since opening in June 2016, Green Rooms has also built up a reputation of brewing some of the best coffee in Wood Green. And as a coffee aficionado, I give them top marks.
Green Rooms is perfect for solo travellers keen on staying in a non-touristy part of London. As it’s only a 15-20 minute tube ride away from the centre (and literally across the road from the station), basing yourself here gives you the best of both worlds: you’re still super close to all the main sights, whilst away from all the crowds to get a sense of what London is like for the locals.
The spacious ground floor with plenty of desks makes Green Rooms especially suited to digital nomads who may need to work for times during their stay. It’s also ideal for art and music lovers as the hotel hosts regular events.
My stay would have been a little more comfortable if I had stayed in an en-suite room. But the standard rooms were more than comfortable and if you’re travelling on a budget and would like to use that money for something else, it’s not a major inconvenience at all. Some travellers may also be disappointed with breakfast as it wasn’t buffet style (instead guests can choose from croissants, toasts, muesli and fantastic coffee). But honestly, I’d trade a good coffee made from an espresso machine over a buffet spread any day of the week.
All in all, this hotel appeals to solo travellers keen on staying somewhere a little different and within budget. Highly recommended.
Green Rooms Hotel
Standard singles start at £66.00 per night including breakfast with shared bathroom. Check out is at 11am.
Click here to learn more about Green Rooms Hotel and to make a booking
The writer stayed courtesy of Green Rooms Hotel during March 2017.