Shoreditch is expecting a hotel boom with seven new hotels set to open in the area over the next two years.
Many of these will be luxurious or “boutique” hotels, expanding tourists’ choice of upmarket accommodations in the diverse East End.
Even though the arrival of new hotels is usually associated with economic growth, thanks to tourists emptying their pockets in local bars and restaurants, a Hackney community organisation has expressed some concerns.
Rachel Munro-Peebles, co-chair of the Shoreditch Community Association, told EastLondonLines: “We are working hard to make sure the hotel boom does not change the significant culture of Shoreditch. We just need the newcomers and the council to listen to our voice.”
The number of new hotel rooms in the area will double in the next two years, with a total of 1,500 rooms compared to 750 before 2013.
One of the most luxurious hotels of the upcoming influx, with one site already open in Vegas, is the Nobu Hotel. It has recently begun construction and is expected to open in 2016 on Willow Street in Hackney.
London-based boutique hotel developer Meir Abutbul told Design Week that the Nobu Hotel’s architectural design “aims to reflect the Shoreditch area of the hotel site.”
This seems to be a common goal for most of the upcoming boutique hotels in the area.
Ace Hotel, recently opened in Shoreditch in September 2013, has been designed to represent the area’s street style and scene.
Previously the Crowne Plaza, the hotel was refurbished and redesigned to meet the needs of the Universal Design Studio, making it worthy to be the first Ace Hotel outside the United States.
JasonD, a contributing editor at Hotelchatter, a “daily web magazine chronicling hotel stories”, told The Londonist: “Compared to other parts of the city, particularly the more traditional tourist areas such as the West End, Shoreditch has had fewer hotels. Because it is an area that has been in development, it’s probably easier to find suitable sites.”
The next hotel opening will be in January 2015, with Z Shoreditch launching in Old Street.
Then the CitizenM will come, scheduled to open mid-2015.
Munro-Peebles explained that her association is not against hotels altogether: “We support some of the hotels, for example The Ace and The Conran have been a great contribution to the area, supporting start–up retail units and sourcing food locally and so on.
“We believe in taking from the community but putting back at the same time. This is Shoreditch and this is what we should protect.”
She added: “Hotels can have a positive impact on the area, so long as the area is well managed by the council and we do not become a transient area, with just a night–time economy with transient guests. This is not what the area was and is about.”