This is our review of Canopy London City, a new hotel by Hilton.
It is the first hotel to open in the UK under the ‘Canopy’ brand, which Hilton describes thus:
“Located in the most desirable neighbourhoods around the world, Canopy by Hilton is a vibrant boutique lifestyle brand that embodies the neighbourhood so that guests and locals have a positively local stay. Each hotel is designed as a natural extension of its neighbourhood and provides a place to relax and recharge with simple, guest-directed service, comfortable spaces, an energizing atmosphere and thoughtfully local choices.“
Canopy is still a fairly small brand, with around 30 properties currently open. Another 30 or so are in the pipeline so you are likely to see more of them in the coming years.
The hotel website is here.
We first visited the hotel back in November for a media event, and on the back of that were offered a free stay to try it out.
Where is Canopy London City?
Canopy London City is in the eastern fringe of the City of London:
Just round the corner are Aldgate and Aldgate East tube stations, from which you can catch the Circle, Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City and District lines which will quickly get you into the more touristy parts of London.
The Tower of London and Tower Bridge are within 10 minutes walk, as is Spitalfields Market and Brick Lane. It is located amongst a cluster of hotels, including the Hotel Indigo.
Inside the Canopy London City hotel
The Canopy London City is a brand new building with a ribbon-like facade. Inside is a warm, light-wood lobby and cafe:
Also on the ground floor is a quieter lounge area with a fireplace off the main lobby:
The reception staff are extremely friendly – verging on American levels! – and recognised my Hilton Gold status.
I was given a king room on the sixth floor (there are twelve in total). Corridors are grey:
…. punctuated with a portrait every so often:
I’m not sure if these portraits really fit into the rest of the hotel – my sense is they will age much faster than the rest of the decor and I’m not entirely certain what the point of them is.
Rooms at the Canopy London City hotel
My room was generously sized. As you enter you have an open wardrobe and luggage rack on your left:
…. followed by a safe, mini fridge and a tea and coffee making facilities.
Nespresso machines are standard in all the rooms:
Canopy doesn’t provide bottled water – instead you get a reusable glass bottle that you can fill up in the bathroom and take to your bedside etc which gets a thumbs up from me.
Opposite the open wardrobe is the bathroom in white subway tiles:
I was pleased to see that there is a towel rail along the shower enclosure so that you always have a hand towel to hand. It’s amazing how many hotels don’t have a convenient rail.
As you can see there is no bath tub, although the shower isn’t exactly small. There is a dual shower head.
I did notice that the towels seemed especially fluffy – some of the nicest towels I have used recently.
Amenities are these colourful Apivita Greek honey-based products:
You also get a little box of amenities that usually include cotton buds, shaving kit etc but in this case was completely empty so seemed a bit pointless ….
Returning to the bedroom you get a king size bed:
Bedside tables and plug sockets are on both sides, which is always good. Light switches are old-fashioned flip switches which I hugely prefer to touch-screen style controls as you can’t accidentally turn something on in the middle of the night. I wish more hotels would do proper, physical switches.
The bed was comfy, with some really nice pillows.
Opposite the bed is a nice, large desk plus an armchair:
Above the desk is the TV, framed in a case of knick-knacks and commissioned art (all securely glued down so that it doesn’t get stolen!):
I thought this was quite a charming approach to room decor and adds a bit more depth versus framed photos or pictures.
Depending on which side of the building you are on you also get some views, although I was surprised to find that the windows are double glazed with an additional layer of glazing on the inside, similar to what you occasionally find in older properties with heritage windows. Here is the view of the city from my room:
All things considered I found the rooms well appointed and well designed, with a slightly industrial-chic.
Oddly enough and despite being on the 6th floor you can just about hear the tube trains pass underneath the hotel. The vibrations must rise through the structure of the building, although it is only noticeable because the air conditioning is silent and the sound proofing is otherwise exceptional.
Dining at Canopy London City
The Canopy has a number of restaurants and bars, the majority of which have yet to open. There is a rooftop bar and terrace called Florattica which should have good views of the city when it opens in the summer, as well as a restaurant called Penny Squares which will also open in 2022 (it is currently just serving breakfast, as you will see below).
For now, the Freedom Cafe in the lobby is the only option that’s open with a cafe, bar and a casual dining menu. It also does a free tasting every day, which during my stay involved a little glass of the best mulled wine I have ever had:
Menus are printed on newspapers which is charming and include various facts about the local area:
In the end we decided to share a few of the smaller plates, which the waitress quite rightly warned us were not as small as we were imagining. The selection included mac n cheese croquettes, corn crusted chicken bites, grilled halloumi and scorched gunpowder tea radishes:
The breakfast buffet is served in the main Penny Squares restaurant which is on a mezzanine level:
It’s a light space. A full spread is provided, with hot items:
Smoked salmon and other deli items are also available, as is a range of bread and pastries, yoghurts, fruit and cereal. You can also choose from several different juices:
I decided to go all in. Here is what I had:
One other thing worth a quick look is the gym in the basement, which was very classily done. Although just a single room it felt very spa-like:
It’s clear from my stay that the Canopy brand has got a lot of things right. The hotel is well designed and in many ways ought to be a blueprint for how the main Hilton brand should evolve too.
The breakfast is good and you are within walking distance of the City. Once the rooftop bar opens in the summer it is likely to be even better.
Rooms at Canopy by Hilton London City start from £171 per night midweek in January or 56,000 Hilton Honors points. You can find out more, and book, on the hotel website here.
How to earn Hilton Honors points and status from UK credit cards (January 2023)
There are various ways of earning Hilton Honors points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.
Do you know that holders of The Platinum Card from American Express receive FREE Hilton Honors Gold status for as long as they hold the card? It also comes with Marriott Bonvoy Gold, Radisson Rewards Premium and MeliaRewards Gold status. We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.
Did you know that the Virgin Atlantic credit cards are a great way of earning Hilton Honors points? Two Virgin Points can be converted into three Hilton Honors points. The Virgin Atlantic cards are the only Visa or Mastercard products in the UK which can indirectly earn Hilton Honors points. You can apply here.
You can also earn Hilton Honors points indirectly with:
- American Express Gold (30,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Rewards Credit Card (10,000 bonus Amex points)
and for small business owners:
- American Express Business Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Business Platinum (40,000 bonus Amex points)
The conversion rate from American Express to Hilton points is 1:2.
(Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)