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By Katie Wilson

The independent Zetter Group have three hotels in London and all are fun and quirky in their own way.

First came The Zetter Hotel in Clerkenwell, a converted Victorian warehouse boasting 59 uniquely styled rooms, plus seven rooftop rooms including their signature outdoor bath suite.

Next came The Zetter Townhouse, also in Clerkenwell behind the original hotel. Set in a Georgian townhouse, it has 13 vintage-inspired rooms and is home to award-winning cocktail bar Wilhelmina’s Lounge.

A second Zetter Townhouse in Marylebone has since opened. Another Georgian property, it has 24 rooms ranging from Deluxe Doubles to Lear’s Loft which has a bath on the terrace.

But they say there is nothing like the original, so we checked into the very first Zetter Hotel for the night to see if it’s still got it.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

The Zetter Hotel exterior
The hotel is on the corner of St John’s Square. Credit: The Zetter Group/Steven Joyce

Wrapped around the corner of St John’s Square, you access the hotel via an automatic sliding door on Clerkenwell Road, where the main street is.

Inside it is sleek and modern with colour pops and strips of neon which light up when it gets dark.

A huge tree mural is emblazoned across the lifts and a pretty chandelier is the centrepiece of the reception area.

The friendly receptionist greets us and we’re surprised to find the Deluxe Queen room we reserved has kindly been upgraded free of charge.

THE ROOMS

Bedroom The Zetter Hotel signature suite
The modern bedroom in the signature suite. Credit: The Zetter Group

On the way up to the fifth floor, our stomachs flipped as we headed towards the rooftops – and The Zetter Hotel’s signature suite.

We couldn’t quite believe it when we looked outside the curtains and saw the terrace complete with roll top bath. We had the best room in the house! We’ve never been so happy about bad weather and a Tube strike if it meant we got to stay in this rock star room.

As well as the dreamy outdoor bath, there was a huge tub with rainfall shower in the bathroom and a selection of REN toiletries, fluffy robes and oversized towels.

Walk up what we called the ‘showbiz stairs’ (which light up as you step on them) to the bedroom and you’ll find an extra large double bed piled with cushions and a colourful Zetter throw.

Light strips round the top of the room also change colour giving it a disco vibe if you want to turn them on.

The Zetter Hotel bath tub room
The Rooftop Deluxe room has a bath on the terrace. Credit: The Zetter Group

There are two huge armchairs to sit in and a desk if you fancy splashing out and working there. The only addition we could make is a bigger table as there’s not much room to put plates if guests are ordering room service.

But it’s outside that is the real showstopper. The patio doors open out onto a huge terrace which has a bistro table, sofa and two chairs – and THAT pink claw foot bath.

We planned to take a dip but it was a bit chilly in winter, and coupled with Storm Arwen didn’t seem like a good idea. But in summer it must be amazing. You can see all the way to The Shard. Look out for the changing lights at night time.

FOOD AND DRINK

Wilhelmina’s Lounge Zetter Hotel
Wilhelmina’s Lounge at Clerkenwell Townhouse. Credit: The Zetter Group

It seemed only right we celebrate the room upgrade with a glass of fizz, so we ordered room service and got two glasses of English sparkling wine.

Feeling a bit peckish, we also ordered the Cheese Board and Mushroom Arancini, which was delivered promptly and hit the spot.

We were off out to dinner elsewhere that night so didn’t eat in the Zetter Restaurant where dishes include Salt Baked Sea Bream, Pumpkin Gnocchi and Pork Belly Croquettes.

Although we did sample a couple of expertly made G&T’s before sauntering over to sister hotel The Zetter Townhouse, just behind the main building.

Another view of Wilhelmina’s Lounge
Another view of Wilhelmina’s Lounge. Credit: The Zetter Group

We stopped off for a cocktail in Wilhelmina’s Lounge, a speakeasy sort of place which feels a bit like you’re in a life-size game of Cluedo. There were comfy sofas, big armchairs, mismatched furniture, tassel lampshades, a swirly red ceiling and lots of dark corners for, as my friend put it, ‘doing dark deeds’. Not that we saw any going on, might I add.

We sat cocktail in hand at what we were told is London’s second smallest table. The smallest, they claim, is also in the bar, and was occupied by a solo drinker when we visited.

Feeling slightly rock star, we ordered room service again for breakfast the next morning, both having the Full English Breakfast with coffee and orange juice. It was the perfect way to round off our stay and get us set up for the day.

EXTRAS

The staff at The Zetter Hotel are super attentive and everything we ordered was brought promptly. There was no wait time at all.

Obviously theRooftop Deluxe room is the one you want to book if you can. Prices for The Zetter Hotel’s signature suite start from £299 a night.

THINGS TO DO

Sessions Arts Club new UK restaurants
The Sessions Arts Club is London’s hottest new restaurant. Credit: Sessions Arts Club

The Zetter Hotel is in Clerkenwell, near Farringdon Station and not far from Old Street.

The Barbican Centre is also just a few minutes walk away so it’s ideal if you’re in town to see something or are heading to the cinema there.

London’s hottest new restaurant right now, Sessions Arts Club, is a stone’s throw away off Clerkenwell Green. Go to see how beautiful the building is. The dining room is a Grade II listed former court house which dates back to the 1700s and wows with its faded grandeur. But don’t get too excited for the food. Despite rave reviews from critics, we were a little disappointed when we visited.

For casual drinks, The Crown Tavern pub nearby is always a winner. A 10-minute walk away cocktail bars The Gibson and Oriole are where to head for late night tipples.

OVERALL VERDICT

We loved our stay at The Zetter Hotel. The only thing we would have changed is the weather so we could have got in the amazing bath tub, but that just gives us another reason to go back in summer. For a rooftop suite, it’s also reasonably priced for the capital.

Prices start from £199 a night

Book a stay at The Zetter Hotel here

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