8 boutique boltholes in Manchester, including former textile warehouses and quirky cocktail bars

Cathy Toogood
Everything from the furniture to locally commissioned artwork throughout Velvet Hotel has been sourced by owner

Manchester is a city with a swagger that isn’t afraid to do things differently. It's known for its outstanding music and sport, arts venues that host innovative events such as the Manchester International Festival, its thriving restaurant scene that offers everything from fine dining to a hip hop chip shop, and its trendy neighbourhoods are bursting with creativity. This originality is shown in its imaginative independent hotels too, where the personal touch will make a stay feel special. From an indulgent retreat with an infinity spa-pool and a glitzy theatrical hotel, to a trendy former textile warehouse with treats galore, here’s our pick of Manchester’s finest boutique hotels.

ABode Manchester, England

ABode Manchester

Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

ABode Manchester, set in a striking 19th-century former textile warehouse, is just a two-minute walk from Piccadilly railway station. Original features remain, such as parquet flooring and metal columns; make sure you take a peek at the stairs, with their original banisters and tiling. The period details perfectly complement the quirky décor, such as book-themed feature walls, rotary-dial telephones and tartan throws. A decent brasserie and bar have great options, ranging from moules frites to truffle macaroni. The hip Northern Quarter, with independent bars and restaurants, is less than a five-minute walk away. Read expert review From £74 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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The Cow Hollow Hotel, Manchester

The Cow Hollow Hotel

Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This happening spot in Manchester's Northern Quarter knows how to treat its guests. Exposed brick walls, copper accessories and marble fireplaces create a dramatic sense of style in the rooms, while extras such hairstyling tools, free Netflix and comfy Hypnos beds ensure guests feel spoilt. Many original features have been retained from the former textile warehouse it occupies, including fireplaces and exposed beams; original machinery can be found in some rooms. The Plantation Bar, is the place to go for free prosecco and nibbles (during happy hour), cocktails and coffee. Read expert review From £79 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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King Street Townhouse, Manchester

King Street Townhouse

Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

You’ll instantly feel relaxed in King Street Townhouse – the antithesis to a chain hotel. Everything from the furniture to locally commissioned artwork throughout the property has been sourced by owner, Sally O’Loughlin, and no two bedrooms are the same. The infinity spa-pool on the seventh floor is the jewel in this hotel’s crown: it’s a calming spot from which to admire the Town Hall’s clock tower, and is much loved by photographers. The buzzy King Street Tavern restaurant does a small menu of comforting classics well – expect items such as steaks, braised lamb neck and scampi. Read expert review From £149 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Great John Street Hotel, Manchester, UK

Great John Street Hotel

Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

Despite being a few minutes’ walk from Deansgate – one of Manchester’s busiest roads – this hotel is in a quiet spot. Its past as a Victorian schoolhouse has been embraced as a theme throughout: there are pictures of old pupils on the wall and the former roof playground is now a bar and event space. All rooms have luxurious touches, such as cast iron roll-top baths and walk-in showers as standard, and the majority are duplex. The Oyster Bar serves drinks and afternoon tea and offers a small food menu, while the adjoining library is a pleasant place for a relaxing drink. Read expert review From £113 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Whitworth Locke, Manchester, England

Whitworth Locke

Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This achingly cool aparthotel, spread over three former export mills, has all you need for a stay in the city – and more. The hotel is characterised by vibrant colours: the mills’ original features, such as exposed bricks and pillars, have been softened with pastel paints, an energetic jungle theme in the co-working space, and pops of yellow in the bar (a nod to the Manchester bee). Rooms are chic retreats and come with fully-equipped kitchenettes. A coffee shop, pop-up cocktail bar, a gym perfect for yoga, and a regular rota of events round out the dynamic offerings. Read expert review From £72 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Hotel Gotham, Manchester, England, United Kingdom

Hotel Gotham

Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This five-star hotel enjoys a central location in a grand, Art Deco building designed by Edwin Lutyens that was formerly a branch of the Midland Bank. Original features such as huge windows, the old bank doors and the main staircase’s brass banister pull off the bank-inspired theme without seeming tacky. Rooms are dark and decadent with leather bed heads and old-fashioned metal binoculars for you to peer at all of the sights. Honey restaurant has an encyclopedic wine menu; ask for a seat next to one of the arched windows for a great view of the city below. Read expert review From £125 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Velvet Hotel, Manchester, England

Velvet Hotel

Manchester, England

7Telegraph expert rating

Velvet Hotel is an unashamedly grand boutique option in the heart of the Canal Street action. As soon as you step into the hotel, the glamorous scene is set by a huge, gold gilt mirror and crystal chandelier. Each colourful room looks different, with some featuring statement wallpaper, some exposed brick walls and one even has a huge gothic mural. In addition to the Marco Pierre White-branded steak house, the buzzy bar is a great place to start an evening out. If you’re embracing the local nightlife, a discounted clubbing package is available including a bottle of fizz. Read expert review From £74 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Didsbury House Hotel, Manchester

Didsbury House Hotel

Didsbury, Manchester, England

8Telegraph expert rating

Your first impressions of Didsbury House Hotel will be undeniably grand, as you step in from the tiled porch – complete with a pile of vintage suitcases – to the parquet-floored landing with a soaring staircase and a huge stained-glass window. Get ready to relax here, whether it's wallowing in a roll-top bath in your room, lazing in front of the fire in the lounge, or sipping a drink on its terrace. The travel-themed interiors combine style with comfort, so allow some time to linger in your room. The suburban location in South Manchester offers an escape from the busy city centre. Read expert review From £90 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com