Clerkenwell is a hub of interior design, great food and historic buildings. Thanks to the many furniture shops, independent restaurants and pretty church greens, once you step onto its cobbled streets, you’ll get a distinct feeling that you’ve entered a bookishly artistic area of the city. Close to Old Street, Shoreditch and St Paul’s, it’s also an ideal location from which to explore East and Central London. Still not convinced about staying? Take a look at the best hotels in Clerkenwell, and you soon will be.
The Clerk and Well Pub and Rooms
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The Clerk and Well Pub and Rooms has all the amenities you need | Courtesy of The Clerk and Well Pub and Rooms / Hotels.com
With all the cosiness you’d expect from an inn and the sleek service of a top hotel, The Clerk and Well Pub and Rooms offers the best of both worlds. It has all the hallmarks of a great British pub – hanging flower baskets outside, a delicious seasonal menu and an ample selection of ales – as well as the quintessential decor. Rooms are decked out in a country style but with mod cons like Nespresso machines and king-size beds. Right on Clerkenwell Road, it’s just a short stroll away from the Barbican and Old Street.
As the cooler sibling of The Zetter Hotel, The Zetter Townhouse Clerkenwell has just 13 bedrooms. Overlooking St John’s Square and just across the road from one of London’s best brunch spots, The Modern Pantry, this boutique hotel has the kind of quirk and character that’ll keep you talking for weeks after your stay. Enter through the cocktail lounge and you’ll be greeted with an eclectic collection of trinkets and treasures that could rival the apartment of Sherlock Holmes. The bedrooms are equally eccentric. Four-poster beds are canopied, surprisingly tastefully, with Union Jacks, and walls are painted in bold colours and dotted with unusual artwork. Far from being old-fashioned, each room has a flat-screen TV, free Wi-Fi and a Bose speaker. It’s also stocked with free drinks, snacks and REN toiletries.
A converted Georgian townhouse certainly makes for an atmospheric stay, especially when stylishly kitted out with antique furnishings and plush fabrics. Each room at The Rookery Hotel has its own character, so whether you’re after the dramatic elegance of the bright red Mary Lane or the Edwardian-themed quirkiness of The Rook’s Nest, there’s a guest room to suit every taste. If you manage to drag yourself out of the roll-top tub or four-poster bed, you’ll find some of the area’s best restaurants and bars on your doorstep.
The Bryson Hotel’s location is perfect for popping in and out of town as it’s just a five-minute walk from Chancery Lane and Farringdon stations. Directly opposite the world-famous Hatton Garden, it’s also ideal if you’re lucky enough to be in the market for some diamonds. The bedrooms are moodily lit with a dramatic colour scheme of charcoal and scarlet, giving them a sophisticated night-time vibe.
While it’s slightly farther out (about a 15-minute walk from Clerkenwell proper), The Hoxton Shoreditch is too good not to mention. It is an East London institution, becoming something of a trailblazer for boutique hotels since opening in the area more than a decade ago. The open-plan lobby and dining area is kitted out with power sockets and serves excellent coffee, making it an excellent spot for remote workers, though you shouldn’t pack up for the day without trying one of the moreish but bitter Soho Negronis. Creative couples will appreciate the parquet floors, leather Chesterfields and huge, circular backlit mirrors in the rooms upstairs, but for something unique, you should hunker down in one of nine Concept Rooms, all designed by local artists. Equally loved by Londoners and visitors, this hotel epitomises the effortless style that’s made Shoreditch so popular.