For that hip Hoxton stay it would only be right to choose a hotel oozing with exposed brick work, heavy doses of industrial chic and stylish loft living appeal—which is exactly what The Curtain presents from its location on the border between Shoreditch and the City. With a Harlem-inspired soul food restaurant in the basement and a terrace bar with outdoor pool on the roof, it’s safe to say that the Curtain is aiming at the cool, creative crowd, however, the location on the cusp of the Square Mile also attracts a mixed, corporate clientele.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Caught between the City and the heart of Shoreditch, weekends are busy and boisterous until the early hours, so if you’re thinking of a quiet spot in a trendy neighbourhood, think again.
The loft-inspired rooms feature exposed brick walls, king size beds, and minibars fit for a cocktail connoisseur. When you’re done mixing the perfect martini—using the manual provided—put some apt music on the room’s own Bluetooth speakers and enjoy the drink looking out on views of the City’s office buildings, which rise up all around. While some room categories feature terraces, standard rooms come with either city views or courtyard views, so choose wisely if you can.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Sirens can be a slight issue, but the glazing shuts out the vast majority of the city noise, while blackout curtains shut out all the light from the floor to ceiling windows in most rooms.
Monochrome marble bathrooms are extravagant and spacious but all that luxury has nothing on the feeling of stepping into your own private steam room, disguised within the high-tech rainforest shower.
Rather than executing a too-cool-to-care service style that some hip hotels find appropriate, the staff at The Curtain is approachable, fun, and friendly in the type of informal way that immediately puts you at ease in a sleek, dimly lit lobby.
Open year-round, guests will be glad to know that the outdoor rooftop pool is heated. With views out over the high rise towers of the City, its exposure to the elements is worth the goosebumps getting in and out.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Overlooked by the Lido restaurant and in the middle of the lively rooftop terrace, this isn't the type of pool for swimming lengths.
Cardiovascular machines, free weights, and punching bags make the Curtain Vault Gym an impressive place to work out, while the wood-paneled walls add a refined touch.
Open 24 hours, if hitting the gym at 3 a.m. is your thing, go for it.
Chef Marcus Samuelsson has transplanted his own version of Southern-style soul food into the loosely Harlem-themed Red Rooster restaurant in the basement, and it works. A lively atmosphere makes the regular live music fit right in alongside couples dining alongside larger groups. If fried chicken, cornbread, and collard greens aren’t your thing, there’s also Tienda Roosteria for tacos and guac, or the guests-only rooftop restaurant Lido, where breakfast through dinner can be eaten with views on the side.
While not the closest to central London and its major sights, there’s plenty to keep you busy around Shoreditch in the way of markets, restaurants, bars, galleries, and shops. To travel further afield, the number 55 bus heads to Oxford Circus from nearby Old Street, while either Shoreditch high Street Overground or Old Street Tube offer good connections.
Eat great Vietnamese food—particularly the summer rolls—at the nearby Song Que Café (13-minute walk), or head to Barbour and Parlour (7-minute walk) to keep it on the cool track with light dishes like smashed avocado or banana and maple pancakes in a reassuringly stylish warehouse environment.
One of the best cocktail bars in the city, Nightjar (10-minute walk) is worth booking in advance, especially if you like live jazz, swing, and blues with your liquor. The Book Club (3-minute walk) is a fun bar and club just around the corner and while Shoreditch is slightly style over substance when it comes to classic pubs, the Eagle (16-minute walk) is a great local for quiet daytime drinks with a newspaper.
WHY WE LIKE IT
A pool on the roof, great soul food in the basement, and rooms that make you feel like you’ve finally found your own Manhattan loft: What’s not to like? Well-connected to the best that East London has to offer, it’s , new addition to the city.