22 cool budget hotels in London, from Soho to Shoreditch

Telegraph Travel
The Culpeper has been spruced up in East London fashion, with a stylish restaurant and bedrooms

Staying in London doesn't have to mean splashing out, nor should you have to compromise on quality. Gone are the days of tired hostels: say hello to 22 of the best budget hotels in the capital – priced at less than £150 per night – with everything from rooftop terraces and pools, to comfortable bedrooms and proximity to central London. Locations include Bloomsbury, The City, Shoreditch and Wimbledon.

Central

Myhotel Bloomsbury

Bloomsbury, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A well-priced urban conversion on the corner of a fine Bloomsbury terrace, ideally placed for brainy London and fashionable Fitzrovia. Soho is a walk away and you are minutes from the legendary high-street shopping of Oxford Street, Regent Street and their environs. Despite its business-like air, plenty of families and 30-somethings on leisure breaks make up its clientele. The well-equipped rooms are enlivened with dark Asian woods and splashes of colour from throws, silk cushions and leather bedheads. Compact bathrooms feature subway tiles, mosaics and Anyah amenities. There's a Gail’s Bakery & Kitchen offering delicious pastries, and a value-for-money spa (express facials from £15). Read expert review From £99 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

mimi's hotel soho, london, england

Mimi's Hotel Soho

Soho, London, England

7Telegraph expert rating

Situated above a bar in the heart of Soho, Mimi’s makes a lively and affordable base from which to explore the city. The hotel combines high-tech engineering with a dark, velvety 19th-century feel in its on-street bar, Hensons. There is a smart gold and mirrored lift to the bedrooms and an attractive marble staircase. The largest rooms are the seven Lux ‘suites’. Hardly suites: they are small and box-like, but serviceable and with good bathrooms. Next come the Cosy rooms, even smaller, and then the Tiny Singles, more like couchettes. Rooms are well equipped with superb insulation, specially filtered water, underfloor heating and fog-free mirrors in marble bathrooms. Read expert review From £99 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Assembly London, London, England

Assembly London

Leicester Square, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

Word is out on this West End budget beauty. Its simple but comfortable rooms, stellar location right next to Leicester Square, design inspired by some of the greatest British fashion icons, and access to fabulous orangery-style rooftop restaurant Bourne & Hollingsworth will be a winner for city-hopping millennials. Rooms (Snug, Nest, Pad, Den) are uniform greyscale with geometric carpeting, headboards with leather buckles and dog tooth-style cushions. Budget doesn’t mean a compromise on comfort – squishy beds have Hypnos mattresses and sheets are Egyptian cotton. Countless theatres, restaurants, bars, museums and clubs are within moments of the hotel. Read expert review From £130 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Z at Gloucester Place, Marylebone

Z at Gloucester Place

Marylebone, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This smart handful of converted Georgian townhouses on Gloucester Place is light years ahead of most budget hotels in London. Rooms are minimalist and comfortable, service is genial, and the complimentary cheese and wine offering every evening is the cherry on top of an already impressive affordable stay in Marylebone. It's a 10-minute walk from Baker Street and Marylebone Underground stations (serving multiple lines) and a short walk to the Sherlock Holmes Museum, Madame Tussauds and Selfridges on Oxford Street (all 10 minutes' walk away in various directions). Read expert review From £55 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The Zetter Hotel, London, England

The Zetter Hotel

The City, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A fun boutique hotel in creative Clerkenwell with colourful design and locally inspired amenities. Many places are walkable from the hotel, including plenty of great restaurants. Exmouth Market (a pedestrianised street that's home to restaurants such as Moro) is a five-minute walk away. Don’t expect a formal experience, the chilled atmosphere matches the design of the hotel. Rooms incorporate dark hues, thick carpets, botanical patterns and primary colours. The food is excellent: think wonderfully gooey smoked ham hock croquettes, a creamy risotto of Jerusalem artichokes and truffle, and a zingy cured sea bream tartare with lemon purée. Read expert review From £135 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Strand Palace Hotel, Strand, London, England

Strand Palace Hotel

Covent Garden, London, England

7Telegraph expert rating

The Strand Palace, opened in 1909, was once an Art Deco gem – a few treasures still linger and its glamorous foyer is now kept in the V&A Museum as a memento of what was sadly lost. Its 758 rooms over nine floors are built around six inner courtyards – those facing inwards are generally quieter. Being so large, at times it feels like a mini-planet where you may well forget that there is another world outside. The shops, restaurants and theatres of Covent Garden lie to the north, with Waterloo Bridge, Charing Cross and the Thames to the south. This is a good choice if you plan to do a lot of sightseeing and/or partying. Read expert review From £100 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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West

High Road House

Chiswick, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This members' club (part of Soho House) for people in the creative fields, which also offers hotel rooms to the general public, was originally designed by Ilse Crawford. It has just the right mix of self-conscious style and easygoing charm: think Scandinavian touches and charming hand-painted wallpaper. There's a very welcoming, cosy atmosphere and the staff are young, relaxed and quick to help out. Expect light, fresh and intentionally simple rooms, with wooden coat pegs around the walls used for hot-water bottles and hairdryers as well as clothes. Complimentary snacks, drinks and Cowshed spa products are in the drawers. There's a Parisian-style Brasserie downstairs — often packed — that serves everything from pasta to leek and artichoke tart. Read expert review From £116 per night

K West Hotel & Spa, Shepherd's Bush, London, England, United Kingdom

K West Hotel & Spa

Shepherd's Bush, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This Shepherd's Bush hotel is reasonably positioned for those who covet the bright lights of downtown; it's 10 minutes from the West End on the Central Line. The likes of David Bowie, Bob Marley and Amy Winehouse once played here, and the hotel continues to be a favourite haunt of musicians thanks to its proximity to the Hammersmith Apollo. There is also an impressively kitted-out K Spa. While the hotel can give the impression of being a little underfurnished, there is an undeniable elegance to the décor. Rooms are light, spacious and well equipped. There's a small restaurant offering casual dining, and the Glam Rock Afternoon Tea is a nice touch. Read expert review From £107 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The Distillery hotel, London

The Distillery

Notting Hill, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A boutique bolthole on the coveted Portobello Road offering contemporary yet characterful interiors. Like its surroundings, the hotel's interiors are busy in a pleasant, intimate way. Despite this, each floor has its own character, from the low-lit, heavy set Resting Room, to the Spanish flair bursting through the blues and yellows of Gintonica bar. The hotel's main facility, its basement gin distillery, produces Portobello Road Gin No. 171. Known as The Ginstitute, it began life as London's smallest musuem, but now hosts regular gin experiences. There are just three bedrooms. Read expert review From £138 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The Pilgrm, London

The Pilgrm

Paddington, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A Victorian-era building brought back to life as a “reinterpretation” of the traditional hotel. All the frills have been stripped back so you’re left with simple, but considered, hallmarks: smooth check-in (at the coffee bar downstairs), meticulous design and a world-class cocktail menu. In short, it’s the future of city hoteliering. It’s a paean to British craftsmanship. Interiors were either meticulously sourced or custom-made to fit the style. Seventy-three rooms are set across three ‘wings’, categorised into Small, Medium and Large. They are compact, with the emphasis on the bespoke beds, backed by parquet panelling and topped with handmade mattresses. The bar has a selection of drinks cherry-picked from the world’s best cocktail menus, while the short all-day menu belies the size of the kitchen. Read expert review From £85 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

La Suite West, London

La Suite West

Paddington, London, England

7Telegraph expert rating

La Suite West occupies a white townhouse typical of the area, and has interiors by designer Anouska Hempel. The narrow reception area – through a tall black door – is flanked by an extended white marble desk, with a low fire opposite (slightly Nineties pop video). The black marble floor and dark walls do make the overall effect quite gloomy, but if it’s minimalism you favour, you’ll feel at home. The 79 rooms and suites run along narrow, black (again) corridors. The smallest are small, at 17 square metres, while the largest suites have private terraces. The raw and vegan restaurant serves small plates - think courgette pasta with cashew nut cheese. It is five minutes' walk from Hyde Park and a minute from Bayswater Tube station. Read expert review From £108 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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EAST

The Culpeper, Spitalfields, London

The Culpeper

Spitalfields, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

An 1884 boozer has been spruced up in East London fashion: strong design credentials, a fêted restaurant, five cosy bedrooms and, in summer, one of the most coveted rooftop terraces in the area. The five bedrooms are fairly equal in size, with simple but considered furnishings including Hypnos beds, Sisal carpets and Acapulco chairs covered with sheepskin. Dining here is a journey through London’s finest produce: think 35 day-aged beef rump from local butcher Ginger Pig. Head to the rooftop terrace for summery cocktails and views of London's skyscrapers. Read expert reviewCheck availability Rates provided by Booking.com

New Road Hotel, Whitechapel, London

New Road Hotel

Whitechapel, London, England

7Telegraph expert rating

A youthful and affordable hotel in a former textile factory in London’s East End. Many attractive original features remain, such as industrial windows, old fire-escape doors and the huge metal sign above the bar. Space is maximised even in the dinkiest of rooms (‘Pocket’). Attention is given to the most important details: king-sized beds with Hypnos mattresses, a big mirror, a television, USB ports and a capsule-like, glass wet room with a rainfall shower. If travelling as a couple, upgrade to a Warehouse X room for a huge couch-bed. The hotel is in the ever-vibrant, multicultural neighbourhood of Whitechapel, with the likes of the Whitechapel Gallery and arthouse cinema Genesis mixed in with long-standing South Asian shops and restaurants – hotspot Tayyabs is around the corner. Read expert review From £84 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The East London Hotel

The East London Hotel

Bethnal Green, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This budget base in East London taps into the area’s eclectic heritage and current hipster sensibilities, attracting discerning millennial travellers looking for hands-off service and proximity to the fun. The use of local suppliers who provide everything from bagels to beers creates an authentic community feel. Rooms are compact and certainly not designed for lounging around, however large windows (in most) and pale walls stop things from feeling claustrophobic. This ostensibly no-frills hotel also taps into the modern traveller’s needs, providing a Nespresso machine as well as huge televisions that take up half the wall and a pleasing number of USB charging points. Read expert review From £43 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Leman Locke, Aldgate, London

Leman Locke

Aldgate, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

One minute walk from Aldgate East station, Leman Locke hotel sits on the easterly edge of London’s Square Mile. New York based interior design firm Grzywinski+Pons was brought in to showcase Leman’s USP; an establishment that bridges the gap between home and hotel stay. Lofty ceilings and chipped concrete walls create an industrial chic vibe for the café, lobby and hallways. Over the 22 floors are studios and single suites. Every room has a living area and fully fitted kitchen complete with crockery, utensils, a fridge-freezer and even a Nutribullet. Rooms use muted pastel colours to soften the grey London skyline, and feature a specially-designed L-shaped dusty pink sofa, floor-to-ceiling soundproof windows and a yoga mat. Read expert review From £124 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Rockwell East

Rockwell East

The City, London, England

7Telegraph expert rating

Rockwell East, just five minutes from Tower Bridge, is a solid choice if you value affordability and a convenient location over buzzy surrounds or flashy amenities. The chic and generously sized apartments ­– each fitted with washing machines and kitchen appliances – make for cosy temporary nests, and are very decently sized for London. The washed grey palette is brightened up by touches of cobalt blue, in the form of mirror frames, Danish ceramic bowls and velvet cushions. Some one-bedrooms have a distant view of Tower Bridge. Menu choices are quite international, ranging from pasta to wiener schnitzel, while breakfast is a continental spread. Read expert review From £108 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The best hotels in East London


South West

The Bedford, London, England

The Bedford

Balham, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A lively music and comedy venue in south London that hosted early gigs for the likes of U2, The Clash and Ed Sheeran. It now comes with 15 stylish rooms, some with roll-top baths, in retro hues. Find a wood-panelled bar, fringed lamps, warm cream walls and bistro chairs in the main room where you’ll stop for a pint, then pull up a red leather stool at the marble counter of the Saloon Bar for a more potent tipple, where you’ll be met with mirrors, chandeliers, and copper and gold accents. Corridors feature circus-themed art, and the Club Room, where the majority of the entertainment happens, feels much like a big top itself with a domed ceiling and dramatic red curtains. Read expert review From £79 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Dog & Fox, Wimbledon, London

Dog & Fox

Wimbledon, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A 19th-century pub with rooms in the middle of Wimbledon Village. Walk into reception, formerly a conservatory, and there’s a giant Kilner jar of iced water and a covered plate of Danish pastries at the ready. There’s a nod to hunting in the décor, with jokey animal pictures, fur throws, tartan bedheads and horsey wallpaper. The rooms are generally large and light. Big bathrooms feature French Algotherm products, white cotton towels and great walk-in showers. There's seasonal British food at great value in the restaurant — the likes of Brixham crab and samphire in summer and three-course menus at £25. There’s jazz on Wednesday evenings, live music on Saturdays and a Sunday quiz night. Read expert reviewCheck availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The Windmill hotel, Clapham, London, England

The Windmill

Clapham, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

The Windmill, a pub with rooms within a typical Victorian edifice built in the 1880s, stands on Clapham Common Southside. It's a busy local with pseudo-vintage feel and a pleasant conservatory. Nothing has not been thought of in its chambers, from Nespresso machines to top-quality beds and linens, and rooms have been characterfully designed, with painted tongue and groove panelling on the walls, and attractively coloured bathrooms. 'Good pub grub' is served at dinner, and breakfast is a generous buffet. Read expert review From £129 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

South

CitizenM London Bankside

citizenM London Bankside

South Bank, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

Travellers who like value-for-money hotels with a zestful design and sociable staff will fit right in at citizenM London Bankside, which is within walking distance of Tate Modern, the South Bank and the City. You won't find a better nightly rate for somewhere so stylish and lively. It’s a help-yourself place to keep rates low: check-in is done on screens by the entrance; the restaurant is a serve-yourself canteen; and there’s no room service. The high-tech rooms feature comfortable beds decked with crisp, white linens, and hot, hard showers. Nice cocktail bar, too. Read expert review From £119 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Church Street Hotel

Camberwell, London, England

8Telegraph expert rating

You would be hard pushed to find such style and value elsewhere in the city, and the Camberwell location will please those seeking authentic London living. You will either love or hate its turquoise and red walls, ecclesiastical iconography (a Virgin Mary here, a crucifix there), and mad patterned carpet. The Havana Lounge has pale walnut wall panels like one might find in a church, and the Communion Bar has stained glass wall panels and live music from local bands. Rooms are packed with colour and character, but don’t skimp on practicality or comfort. The hotel restaurant, Angels & Gypsies, serves excellent tapas. Read expert review From £55 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

The Victoria Inn, Peckham, London

The Victoria Inn

Peckham, London, England

7Telegraph expert rating

This revamped old boozer has given Peckham its first boutique pub with rooms, and it’s a beauty. Come for the food; stay to people-watch supping on a glass of ‘living’ wine or pint of Brockwell IPA. The tastefully restored rooms are stylishly simple. The bar and restaurant are at the centre of this little universe, with cosy armchairs and cushions, Chesterfield-style banquette seating, mismatched shabby-chic chairs and a healthy dose of exposed brick. Read expert review From £90 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

All prices cited are starting rates for double rooms, based on two people sharing, in low season. These prices are subject to change in high season and during popular holidays and events.

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