Harley Davidson and electric guitar rentals available
Free Wi-Fi throughout
Rooms not well insulated from noise
Some rooms showing signs of wear and tear
Room design may be too ostentatious for some
No fitness center
No business center
The 30-room Sanctum Soho Hotel is a rock-n-roll-themed boutique option with an excellent Soho location, a few minutes' walk from Carnaby Street, Regent Street, and Piccadilly Circus. Rooms have extravagant details, like tufted leather doors, shimmery textured walls, and gold satin bedskirts, plus amenities like minibars, bathrobes, and free Wi-Fi. Note that the Crash Pad room category is appropriately named (that is, Crash Pads are tiny). The property's Remix restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as afternoon tea; the rooftop bar and hot tub are open 24 hours; and the former guest roster includes pop stars Britney Spears and Harry Styles. Travelers interested in a less scene-y hotel could check the rates at the nearby Nadler Soho, a boutique hotel on a quiet cul-de-sac just opposite Soho Square.
Dim lighting, glitzy decor, and a 24-hour rooftop bar and hot tub give Sanctum Soho a lavish rocker vibe (as does the fact that it is co-owned by heavy metal band Iron Maiden). The lobby has a neo-Gothic feel that is vaguely reminiscent of a boudoir, with purple walls, a black lamp with floor-length fringe, and a Jimi Hendrix stained-glass art piece. The playfully ostentatious look is also found in the individually decorated guest rooms, where quirky details include Marshall amp side tables, textured wall coverings, mirrored mosaic columns, and starry ceilings above the bath. Even staff member have a touch of rock star in them: the maintenance guy we saw was clad in sleek black clothing and a designer belt. Their service, though, is attentive and professional -- you have to go to the rooftop bar to find rowdy attitudes.
On the west edge of Soho, just a five-minute walk from both Oxford Street and Piccadilly Circus
The hotel is within walking distance of many major tourist spots, including Piccadilly Circus, Buckingham Palace, and Trafalgar Square. Such a central location, however, means that nearby streets are often crowded with tourists.
Soho is arguably one of the most entertaining areas of London, as this trendy neighborhood is home to the city’s red light district, gay quarter, fistfuls of independent dining, plenty of boutique shopping, a smattering of legendary record shops, and a ton of street-side cafes that make for great people watching. Expect to mingle with tourists, as well as the local hip and gay crowd.
Three-minute walk to Carnaby Street
Five-minute walk to Piccadilly Circus and the theater district
Five-minute walk to Oxford Street shopping
14-minute walk to Trafalgar Square
16-minute walk to Covent Garden
20-minute walk to Buckingham Palace
20-minute walk to the Embankment and South Bank
14-minute tube ride to Notting Hill Gate and Portobello Market
15-minute tube ride to Knightsbridge shopping district, including designer shops and the iconic Harrods department store
15-minute tube ride to Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, London Eye, and scenic walks along the Thames
Each of the 30 rooms is individually designed with funky glam accents that will seem decadent to some guests, and a bit tacky to others. Textured bronze and silver walls, tiger-print trashcans, black-and-gold brocade drapes, and moody oil paintings are a few of the design details you might come across. Amenities are consistent throughout rooms: all rooms feature iPod clock radios with speakers, flat-screen TVs, minibars, plush bathrobes, Cole and Lewis bath products, and free Wi-Fi.
Note Crash Pad rooms are accurately named: They're tiny and best for single occupancy or short stopovers, though they do offer king-size beds. Deluxe Double rooms feature two different decor schemes. Some have an Art Deco vibe, complete with gold accents and sleek black bathrooms with aviation-themed sinks. Others offer delicate Rococo furnishings in shades of dusty rose and ivory. Junior Suites scream "over-the-top glitz," with mirrored mosaic columns, silver quilted headboards, and shimmering curtains. Open-plan bathrooms are sectioned off by translucent fringe curtains and feature freestanding tubs sitting atop glowing glass floor panels. Upgrading to a Junior Deluxe suite gets you a separate living room and a huge circular bed. Textured rose walls and bronze accents make for a romantic vibe.
Features like a 24-hour rooftop bar are meant to evoke the rock 'n' roll lifestyle
The Roof Terrace gives Sanctum Soho as much rocker street cred as the glam decor. The partially enclosed rooftop space serves cocktails 24/7 and a selection small bites meant to be shared from noon to midnight. The bar also has a fireplace and an adjacent garden and open-air hot tub (closed during the winter). The Cinema is a private, soundproofed space with its own bar on the lower ground floor. It hosts movie screenings and monthly performances, and can be used for meetings or special events. Remix features modern British cuisine in a tavern-like dining room with glowing pink columns, bronze leather banquettes, and shiny alligator-skin chairs. In addition to breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Remix offers a traditional afternoon tea and Gent's Tea, which includes a tankard of whiskey and a cigar. Electric guitar and Harley Davidson rentals are available and Wi-Fi is free throughout.
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