Review: The East London Hotel

Open since summer 2018, The East London Hotel is a budget 3.5-star hotel located near Bethnal Green in East London. Housed in a new-build property in a bustling area, this hotel has 161 rooms, which are mainly all double and twin rooms plus a couple of family rooms that sleep up to four people. I stayed here for one night in January 2019 and this is my review of my visit. To give you a real feel for the hotel, I’ve included my own images below. If you find my review for The East London Hotel helpful, be sure to leave me a comment below and let me know! 👇

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The East London Hotel @minkaguides exterior

Location


One of the biggest selling points of The East London Hotel is its location. Situated seconds from Bethnal Green Underground station, the hotel is surrounded by fantastic bars, restaurants and cafes on Paradise Row, Cambridge Heath Rd and Bethnal Green Rd. It’s also just down the road from Savage, one of my favourite nightclubs in London. It would be a great hotel to stay in if you’re attending one of the festivals in Victoria Park (like All Points East festival) in the summer.

Overall, the hotel is in a great spot for exploring the rest of East London – especially nearby Hackney and Shoreditch. Plus, Bethnal Green station is on the Central Line which can whisk you into Central London in about 15 minutes. Despite being in a bustling area with many bars on its doorstep, I was never bothered by the noise outside once. I was even staying on the first floor with my room directly overlooking Paradise Row restaurants but didn’t hear a peep.

📍 Address: 309-317 Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9LH, England

☎️ Phone: +44 20 3146 1960

The East London Hotel @minkaguides bathroom selfie

Price

The East London Hotel primarily features double and twin rooms, that vary in price depending on whether you opt for a room with or without a window. If you’re on a budget and just looking for somewhere to crash for the night, their windowless rooms are a great option. Prices for their rooms vary depending on the season and time of the year, but according to TripAdvisor, you can pay anywhere between £49 – £171/night. Click here to see the price for your dates:

Booking.com

Expedia

Hotel’s website

Are there any benefits for booking directly with The East London Hotel? They don’t currently have a loyalty scheme or offer any obvious inclusives for booking directly. It’s surprising considering their proximity to Paradise Row that hotel guests who book directly aren’t offered a discount at the bars and restaurants on the hotel’s doorstep. However, the hotel is still quite new and may develop some benefits to encourage direct bookings in the future. Otherwise, the rates they offered were the same as elsewhere.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides keys

The room

I stayed in Standard Double room with a window on the first floor at The East London Hotel. I mention the window because this hotel has a number of rooms without windows for a reduced price. If you’re on a serious budget and only looking for somewhere to stay for a night or two, this could be worth considering. If you do opt for a window, your view could either be of the main road (with a park on the other side), a petrol station or the restaurants and Overland train line that run along Paradise Row. My first-floor window faced onto the restaurants, which look nice but also was quite weird as everyone outside could see right into my room, so it meant I had to keep the blinds shut at all times.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides bed

The room was quite compact, with just enough room for a double bed and not much else. The silk and lambswool pocket sprung bed was very comfy and faced onto a huge flat screen TV. There was also a small amount of hanging space, a laptop-sized safe, a Nespresso machine, and free bottled water. The room is quite well designed to fit all of these amenities into such a small space, and considering I was only there for one night, it was perfectly sized. It would even work well for a weekend, but the lack of space around the bed and the absence of a wardrobe doesn’t make this hotel a great option for more than a couple of nights.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides flat screen TV

My biggest problem with the room was the aircon/heating. It didn’t work and the room was always freezing, which is the last thing you want in mid-January. I was told at check-in that if I need help with anything that I should message a WhatsApp number rather than speak to anyone at check-in (as there isn’t an actual reception but a ‘self-check-in’ desk). I messaged the number and someone from check-in came to help me, who then told me that the aircon isn’t actually controlled in the rooms (which is weird as there is a control panel in the room) but that it was controlled for the whole building elsewhere. The staff member said I just need to wait and it would get warmer, but it never did. This definitely made my experience of the hotel very unpleasant.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides wall art

My other issue with my stay was that a £50 security deposit was held on my bank account when I checked in (in case I damaged the room or took anything) and was supposedly released the day I checked out. A week later though, this money was still showing as a pending charge on my account. When I called the hotel to ask when this charge would be refunded, they said it was definitely refunded the previous week and that a receipt would be emailed to me immediately. The receipt never arrived but within an hour that charge was finally reversed. It’s frustrating that I had to call up to have the money returned to me. As I mentioned above, there is no proper reception at the hotel, but rather a self-check-in station. I think that with some reception staff that take responsibility for your experience, issues like the deposit and the aircon would be dealt with properly. My bad experiences aside, the hotel receives really great reviews elsewhere so these were probably just unfortunate anomalies.

The bathroom

Like the room, my bathroom at The East London Hotel was very compact and simple, with a rainfall shower, toilet and basin. The room came with fresh towels and toiletries and the shower was hot with good pressure. If you’ve read any of my other hotel reviews, you’ll know I’m freaked out by anything remotely gross about hotel bathrooms. Thankfully, this one was spotlessly clean, which I really appreciated.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides shower

Breakfast

The East London Hotel offers breakfast for £10 per person in cafe/dining area in the entrance of the hotel. I’m not really a fan of hotel breakfasts, especially when there are good places to go for brunch nearby, so I didn’t opt to try this. Breakfast is served from 7am-10am on weekdays and till 11am on weekends, and apparently includes bagels, fruit salad and juices.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides restaurant

Amenities

As this is a budget hotel, there aren’t many other facilities or amenities here. The cafe/restaurant at the entrance of The East London Hotel is a relaxed hangout space for all guests (whether you are dining or not) which serves coffee, cocktails and light bites till the end of the evening. Otherwise, that’s it.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides bar

Bottom line

Hotels in East London are often pricey or poorly located, simply because this is such a popular area of London. The East London Hotel is different because it manages to be in the heart of Bethnal Green, with stylish rooms and excellent transport links. I’m sure in time they will fix the issues I mentioned above about the aircon and the security deposit and would still recommend this hotel to anyone wanting to book a short stay in East London.

The East London Hotel @minkaguides light feature

 

🌟 Plan your trip with my East London city guide.

 

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The East London Hotel @minkaguides

 

📌 Disclaimer: This hotel kindly offered me a discount in exchange for writing a review and featuring it on my social media accounts. They made no editorial demands on me and this is a completely honest account of how I felt about my stay. As a general rule, I don’t write negative reviews: if I don’t like a hotel or hostel, I don’t feature it. So, I obviously really liked this one.

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2 Comments

  1. Cora Harrison
    23 January 2019 / 10:50 am

    Urgh! Those security deposits are a pain. Glad you had a nice stay though 😀

    • Minka Guides
      Author
      23 January 2019 / 1:15 pm

      Yes – they’re fine as long as they’re refunded straight away 😉

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