Eco-friendly travel is quickly gaining an unstoppable momentum and hotels are taking measures to ensure they fit the mould. Do your part with a stay in any of these sustainable hotels in London.
London has its fair share of weird and wonderful hotels who are now taking it to the next level with eco-conscious additions that reduce their carbon footprint. Inspired by the actions of passionate eco-warriors such Greta Thunberg, sustainable features are cropping up in all shapes and sizes. Boreholes, solar panels and bamboo toothbrushes are just some of the ingredients that make for a truly green stay in the UK’s capital.
With an ethos set on working towards a sustainable future, My Bloomsbury leads with in-room recycling, enlightening literature on eco-friendly initiatives and Air One ozone machines that purify and clean the air without the use of chemicals. The Georgian townhouse’s decor is all about minimalism with bold ebony furnishings and pale olive walls in the rooms – a soothing setting to enjoy one of the complimentary Penguin classics. Sustainably sourced and natural Pure Lakes products are provided in the tiled bathrooms, while downstairs Gail’s Bakery works their magic to produce a variety of artisanal breads to tear into.
Moments from vibrant Soho, Charlotte Street Hotel oozes elegant eccentricity with a combination of stylishly mismatched interiors. The colourful abstract walls of the Oscar Bar and Restaurant are an exciting backdrop to your afternoon tea, while patchwork sofas and curtains are a bohemian contrast to the rows of atomic orange chairs in the screening room. The hotel also preaches an eco-conscious approach in every aspect – recyclable RikRak products from the mind of Kit Kemp sit in the bathrooms, disposable cutlery is made from biodegradable ‘Vegware’ and even the coat hangers are fashioned from reclaimed wood.
The London EDITION exudes contemporary luxury, pairing violet neon lighting with emerald velvet sofas and ornate ceiling coving. In a move that would make David Attenbrorough proud, the sleek establishment has taken steps to reduce its carbon footprint by stocking rooms with eco-conscious amenities such as bamboo toothbrushes, paper straws and compostable coffee cups. Decor is similarly rustic and refined thanks to panel-wood walls, faux-fur throws and forest-green rugs. Evenings can be enjoyed inside the art-clad Berners Tavern, where library-style shelves (stacked with booze rather than books) are lit by lemon-yellow lights – a fitting setting to sip on a Neoclassic Martini.
Situated in the artistic hive of East London, QBic Hotel’s ethos is fuelled by a green ideology, while its energy-efficient lighting is fuelled by rooftop solar panels. Further steps are taken to ensure a sustainable stay, as they encourage minimal water usage with aptly named (and environmentally friendly) Stop-The-Water-While-Using-Me toiletries. Crashpad rooms are decorated with revitalised objects such as tangled hosepipe lampshades, while sun-yellow walls add an element of warmth and organic super-king-sized mattresses provide starfish-friendly comfort. Love an evening tipple? If you stay more than two nights your first drink is on the house – but you’ll have to go green and skip a room clean on one day to claim it.
Built in the image of a classic 19th-century townhouse, The Lanesborough’s decadent setting has proved a magnet for A-listers and was the backdrop for Stanley Kubric’s star-studded vehicle Eyes Wide Shut. At the heart of the gilded hotel is an eco-conscious mentality: a fleet of hybrid vehicles reduces emissions during airport transfers, a ban on single-use plastic resulted in an influx of sustainable amenities and there is the option to book a green stay and have a tree planted in Hyde Park on your behalf. There’s an equally thoughtful approach in Michelin-star restaurant Céleste, where you can peruse extensive vegan menus under diamond chandeliers, and in the decadent gold spa which uses completely natural and all-organic treatments.
Sitting near the banks of the Thames, this hotel puts a creative spin on eco-centric style with soothing sage walls, flourishes of greenery and sleek marble detailing. The exposed industrial features of co-working spaces are strangely reminiscent of a desertscape – blanketed by a sandy palette and dotted with cacti. This naturalistic aesthetic reflects their green initiatives, which include ordering only 100% recyclable paper, minimising plastic usage and partnering with Green Tourism to continuously strive to be more sustainable. Mornings are best spent tucking into New York-style bagels at Deli Cat & Sons, before connecting with mind and body at one of the regular yoga classes in the riverside fitness studio.
Standing tall in Central Soho, Ham Yard Hotel has wholeheartedly embraced the blossoming green movement. Commended for its excellent sustainability, they have implemented energy-saving solar panels and insulation, alongside a living rooftop that is home to a bucolic vegetable garden and beehives. A terrace bar is infused with elements of English country – arched branches are draped with low-hanging lights over wicker furniture – a snug setting to enjoy a hot G&T in the winter months. Kit Kemp-designed rooms have diverse themes that are fittingly pastoral: stormy clouds roll across the wallpaper of one, while another pairs persian rugs with autumnal art.
This elegant Georgian townhouse is a short amble from the famous pigeon-lined pavements of Trafalgar Square and can name the Theatre Royal among its well-to-do neighbours. Every floor of Haymarket Hotel welcome in floods of natural light through floor-to-ceiling windows, illuminating upholstered plinth sofas, raspberry-red cushions and embedded shelves lined with honey-stained vintage literature. Endeavouring to be eco-conscious, designer Kit Kemp has created a sustainable collection of products that are used throughout – recyclable paraben-free RikRak toiletries appear in bathrooms with bamboo toothbrushes, sewing kits are made from bioplastic and the laundry bags are created from reused plastic bottles.
Retreat into the (reclaimed) wood walls of this cloud-brushing bolthole and you’ll encounter a green paradise in every sense of the word. Rooms are a portal back to childhood – silver birch tree trunks pierce through bathroom tiling, endearing sloth toys sit on organic bedding and cushioned window nooks are perfect for sipping tea while gazing at views of cinematic city landmarks. Fabricated around the concept of sustainability, Treehouse London has minimised single-use plastics and committed to a recycling and composting scheme. Locally sourced products are also dotted around the rooms, while Mexican restaurant Madera lives up to the eco-conscious hype with an array of organic ingredients.
Fuelled by a green and generous mindset, The Good Hotel seeks to do their part by providing sustainable funding for their charity partner, Ninos De Guatemala, with a portion of every booking going towards education for low-income families. Fresh and minimalistic, rooms stick to sleek wooden furnishings and crisp, white bedding with prismatic mint-coloured throws. Breakfast made from locally sourced food is served in the Living Room, a contemporary social and workspace furnished with communal tables and trendy neon signs. On London’s (rare) sunny days, order a craft beer or two on the roof, or work up a sweat on the Victoria Dock Parkrun that starts right outside the hotel entrance.
In a contemporary contrast to its whimsical storybook interior, this Georgian townhouse hotel has taken forward-thinking sustainable steps: a borehole under the building provides water, recycling schemes are followed to the letter and bicycles can be hired for an eco-conscious day of exploration. Sustainable credentials aside, rooms at The Zetter Townhouse are brimming with old-world furnishings and eclectic curiosities such as antique trunks and four-poster beds canopied by vintage British flags. The expansive apartments take you on a visual voyage – an intricate model ship sits below a pair of elephant illustrations, while bottled Townhouse cocktails, Roberts radios and an immersive SONOS sound system are the perfect ingredients for a great night in.
Sitting pretty between the ice cream-coloured Chelsea townhouses and the regal streets of Westminster, Artist Residence is making sustainability stylish with an enchanting collection of reclaimed furniture such as revitalised chocolate-leather armchairs and countryfied tweed headboards. Further cementing their sustainable approach, the hotel runs recycling initiatives, uses eco-friendly cleaning products and stocks minibars full of local treats. If you’ve got the budget, the neo-romantic suites come with luxurious extras including freestanding cast iron bath and bespoke emerald sofas. Meanwhile, its restaurant is all about seasonal produce and you can dine on parmesan truffle fries or stacks of pancakes under the candy-striped canopies of the terrace. Descend afterwards into the bewitching depths of the cocktail cellar to sip on literary-inspired concoctions such as the divinely smokey Alice in Wonderland.