Opposite Granada Studios and the set of the most famous street in Manchester, and around the corner from Manchester Opera House, the hotel is on a quiet street in the city centre. Castlefield, the Museum of Science and Industry and some of the city’s most stylish shops are just a short walk away.
The toweringly high ceilings of the old schoolhouse allow each of the 30 bedrooms to be duplex with huge windows spanning both floors. All rooms are unique and have been put together thoughtfully with lovely touches such as black and white pictures of Manchester taken by the hotel’s owner on the walls, stripped floors, roll-top baths and walk in rain showers. As each room is different, make sure you ask for any special features when you book – for example, only three of the four Eclectic Grands have the twin roll-top baths. For a real treat, I love the Opus Grand suites – they have a two-person bathtub in the bedroom, a living area with a beautiful fireplace and quirky ornaments scattered around the bookshelves.
Choose between the “Study” on the rooftop or the “Library” downstairs to sit and sip a coffee. The Library Lounge is done out in rich reds and browns and still has a bookshelf with a librarian’s ladder propped up against it. The Rooftop Lounge is also a lovely place to sit and has been recently renovated. Bag a place on one of the shockingly pink velvet settees next to the new fire and read a paper. A word of warning though: all of the public areas are available for private hire so it may be worth checking when you book whether an event is planned during your stay.
Eating and drinking
The Oyster Bar on the ground floor is another relaxing place to sit with your newspaper as you sink into the huge settees and velvet armchairs, and food and drink is served to guests from 11am onwards. Breakfast is served in a separate room upstairs and generally costs extra - £13.50 for a Continental and £15.95 for a Full Breakfast. My favourite place to have a drink is on the rooftop terrace (the old school playground) that looks out over Granada Studios. There is a hot tub for those who don’t mind soaking in public, a covered glass seating area (you are in Manchester after all) and plenty of tables and chairs to sit on while people watching.
Very efficient – I was offered a drink seconds after I sat down in the Oyster Bar.
Who stays there
Couples celebrating special occasions love the huge baths and decadent feel of the rooms and business travellers enjoy the luxury during the week.
The Great John Street is offering a great “Sunday School” deal at the moment with packages (including breakfast) below the normal rate - use our booking widget to check prices. Parking is available underneath the hotel for a pricey £25 for 24 hours, but there is an NCP car park nearby offering 24 hours for £17. WiFi is also £10 extra for 24 hours.
If you are planning to stay here on a Saturday night, I would advise booking at least a month in advance as the hotel is very popular at the weekend.
- High-Speed Internet
- Room Service
- Culture vultures
- Special occasions
Pros & Cons
- Full of historic character
- Extremely stylish
- Beautiful bathrooms
- Great rooftop bar
- Pricey extras