This is our review of the new Hyatt Place London City East hotel in Whitechapel.
Hyatt has historically been fairly weak outside of its US home market. This is slowly changing – its Small Luxury Hotels partnership has opened up a swathe of UK hotels and it is slowly increasing its footprint with a range of reflags, such as the upcoming Hyatt Regency London Blackfriars, and the newly opened Great Scotland Yard Hotel (review here).
Hyatt Place London City East opened over the Summer and adds a further option in London, this time in a new build property designed with Hyatt’s select service brand in mind.
We thought it was worth taking a look to see what Hyatt Place London City East has to offer. Hyatt offered us a free night for review purposes.
Hyatt Place London City East is – you guessed it – east of the City, a stone’s throw from London Liverpool Street Station. It is also just round the corner from Aldgate East tube station, served by the Hammersmith & City and District lines.
The location feels very East London, although it is on the more gentrified side of Whitechapel (closer to the City). Spitalfields Market, Brick Lane, the Whitechapel Gallery and the Tower of London are all within a short walk.
Inside Hyatt Place London City East
The hotel is a former office building with a few extra stories added on top. Here is the entrance:
Walk inside and you’ll find that reception is in the basement, down these steps:
As you can see, the lobby has two abstract murals by London street artist Olly Fathers:
Like a Moxy or a citizenM, Hyatt Place places an emphasis on trendy and well-designed spaces. I’m a big fan of what has been done here and it is probably the most ‘grown up’ of these three ‘select service’ brands – it is slightly less over the top. I particularly liked the shades of green and rust used throughout.
The lobby also features some seating as well as a little cafe:
Plus a mini business centre:
Check-in is very quick and easy and the reception staff are very enthusiastic.
Rooms at Hyatt Place London City East
I was given the second highest category room – ‘1 king bed high floor with balcony’ on the eight floor.
As a city centre select service hotel none of the rooms are huge, but they’ve managed to squeeze in a lot:
On the right hand side is a semi-open wardrobe with tea and coffee facilities (only in rooms with a balcony or terrace, though):
There’s a Nespresso machine as well as kettle and an empty mini fridge:
To the left of the bed is a decent sized desk:
Opposite the bed is a massive TV:
Connectivity is good since this is a brand new hotel, with sockets liberally distributed around the room.
It’s a couple of steps up to the balcony:
Whilst you can’t see it from inside the room, you have a view of the City from the railing if you turn your head:
Back in the room you have a small compact bathroom:
There is a shower with just a single head. Down by the sink, there isn’t a whole lot of space for a washbag:
Toiletries seem to be a mix of Barney Kenet MD shower gel and conditioner and a different brand of shampoo:
There’s a small gym in the basement of the hotel featuring a few running machines, weights etc:
Restaurant, bar and breakfast
This is where the hotel really outshines its competitors. Whilst most select service brands like Moxy or citizenM skimp on the food offering I was seriously impressed at what was on offer at Hyatt Place London City East. It was better than the food at many four star hotels I have visited.
A small rooftop bar called Pocketsquare offers indoor and outdoor seating with a view of Canary Wharf:
Pocketsquare specialises in cocktails but also has a small bites menu. Here is the ‘Taiyo’ cocktail:
Plus the bao and salmon:
Portions are admittedly small but good quality. There’s also a charcuterie board:
Zoom, the main restaurant, offers ‘proper’ dinner.
The restaurant hadn’t officially opened when I visited but we were given a taster menu, including a Middle Eastern style starter with flat breads, lamb kofta, beetroot salad and curried cauliflower:
For my main I had the sea bass:
The food was great – far better than I was expecting, because select service brands tend to offer a very basic menu. It is head and shoulders above its competitors.
Breakfast is also served in Zoom and offers an impressive spread.
Breakfast is NOT free at Hyatt Place hotels in Europe, but it can be added very cheaply. At present, the price difference between ‘room only’ and ‘B&B’ is £9-£10 per night looking at hyatt.com, irrespective of the number of people in the room.
You get a full choice of cooked items:
The range isn’t huge but it covers all bases and – crucially – has a full selection of hot food which you won’t find at citizenM or Moxy. It is a proper, decent buffet breakfast.
I love a select service hotel – they often offer everything you need at a reasonably price, and I’m a big fan of both Moxy and citizenM.
Having now stayed here, I am a bigger fan of Hyatt Place which feels like a slightly more grown up and sophisticated select service hotel that punches above its weight.
It is hard not to argue with the basic offering. Trooms are smart, clean and well thought out, if not huge. Where Hyatt Place London City East really excels is with the food, which you could reasonably expect to eat at a ‘proper’ restaurant.
Rooms start at 12,000 World of Hyatt points per night or £126 in November, which is about right given our valuation of World of Hyatt points.
World of Hyatt update – December 2021:
Get bonus points: Hyatt is not currently running a global promotion.
New to World of Hyatt? Read our overview of World of Hyatt here and our article on points expiry rules here. Our article on what we think World of Hyatt points are worth is here.
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