The Hoxton Holborn is the second hotel by the hip and expanding Hoxton mini-chain. The original Hoxton in Shoreditch was a game-changer when it arrived on the scene in 2006, offering affordable rates for minimalist yet stylish rooms in a desirable neighborhood. The Holborn outpost opened late last year and will be followed with Amsterdam in late 2015, then Brooklyn and Paris in 2016.
Best Feature: Freebies include breakfast bags -- filled with granola, yogurt, milk, and fruit -- delivered each morning, plus WiFi and one hour of calls to the U.K., U.S., Australia, and most of Europe. There's also a nail salon on the ground floor, rotating art exhibitions in the lobby, and a full event calendar of everything from yoga to movie screenings.
The Rooms: We booked the smallest (and cheapest) category, Shoebox, for £79 ($121) -- but were upgraded to the second highest category a Cosy, which currently begins at £219 ($337). Rooms make good use of space, with extra bedding stored under beds and a tall wooden desk/bookcase that holds the TV and tea- and coffee-making facilities. A huge circular mirror occupies one side of the room. We loved the London-themed illustrated wallpaper, pocket-sized maps pointing out cool bars and shops, and the toiletries from local company Pen and Ink (that's cockney rhyming slang for "stink").
The Food: Along with Hubbard & Bell, there's rotisserie chicken on offer at the Chicken Shop and coffee at Holborn Grind.
Who Will Love It: Most everyone, really -- but to be more specific, scenesters and art and design fans.
Who Might Not: Families, who might not enjoy the hubbub of the lobby, or gym bunnies. (There's no gym, but the hotel does offer free bicycle rental if you really want to brave central London traffic.)
Nearby: You will be within a 15-minute walk of Covent Garden, Soho, Oxford Street, and the British Museum. For further adventures, it's a minute's walk to the nearest tube station and bus stop.
Deals and Special Offers: Sign up to their mailing list for periodic discount codes.
Getting There: Exit Holborn tube station (on the Piccadilly line, direct from Heathrow), cross the street, pass Sainsbury's supermarket, and it's a few doors down, on High Holborn. Address: 199-206 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7BD.