Just off the main city centre drag of Eastgate Street towards the Roman Amphitheatre. There’s a nightclub across the road and noise can be an issue, ask for a room towards the back of the hotel if you’re a light sleeper.
The four standards of room - classic, executive, feature and suite - are traditionally-styled with classic lamps, dark wood and earthy tones, plus nice light bathrooms. The hotel is a warren of rooms behind the impressive pavement façade; this means rooms are of different shapes and sizes, some with tiny windows, some with external views of the busy surrounding streets – state your preference when you book (I’d ask for a large window – preferably with an external view – as the rooms with smaller windows are naturally dimly lit). There are two other negatives to mention here: the rooms can get hot – though fans are available, and the lift is regularly out of service. But if you want to be located centrally and can get a deal, this hotel is a good choice.
The dark décor continues in the maze of public areas such as the fairly quiet bar and lounge.
Eating and drinking
The large and open space of St John Street Restaurant is open in the evenings and hosts breakfast every morning.
None on site; spa facilities are available at nearby sister hotels.
Friendly, though there never appears to be enough staff on duty.
Who stays there
Leisure visitors and tour groups.
Deals, especially last-minute, can be found. Breakfast, if not included, is £10 (Continental) or £13.50 (Full English). History comes at a price and in this case it’s parking. The hotel has no dedicated car parking and advises guests to use the local NCP car park in Pepper Street. While this is only a few minutes' walk away, it costs £10 for an overnight stay and access to the car park is only available between 7am and 10pm.
- Culture vultures
- Mature travellers
Pros & Cons
- Often heavily discounted rates
- Prime central location
- Noise from nightclub
- Not enough staff
- Lift regularly not working
- Lack of parking