Visitors to London are spoiled for choice when it comes to hotels - the city is poised to have the most hotel rooms in the world by 2025. Among its gems are some of the world's most beloved properties, like Claridge's and the Connaught, along with newcomers that are soon to reach the same level of esteem. Take the luxurious Raffles London at the OWO, where rooms will start at more than 1,100 ($1,372), or the Peninsula London, whose palatial rooms start at 560 square feet and 1,300. Both open in September.
But spending four-figure sums each night is hardly a requirement. According to data from the commercial real estate research firm CoStar, the average daily room rate in the city was 185 in August 2023, up from 150 in the same month in 2019. While that may not buy you a top Mayfair spot with butler service, it will open the door to a new wave of stylish hotels, ranging from a food-focused urban hangout in Shoreditch to a Caribbean-inspired escape in Notting Hill.
There are other ways to save, besides making a less conventionally luxurious choice. Traveling in January rather than July can shave more than $150 off average five-star room rates, bringing them from around $647 to $462, according to data from Google hotels. Using credit card points and benefits always helps, too. With business travel still depressed, weekdays remain cheaper than weekends - and saving on accommodations can (and probably should) be a good excuse to splurge on London's best bars or tickets to the theater.
With that, here are seven great recently opened hotels in London with rooms typically priced under $500 a night.
With 36 rooms spread across three Queen Anne-style Victorian red-brick homes in leafy West London, this residential-style property lets guests feel like a Chelsea local - some suites even offer private access onto Cadogan Gardens. The neighborhood has a lot to offer: The Saatchi Gallery, Royal Court Theatre, and charming Pavilion Road with its boutique shops and restaurants are all nearby. And given the track record of the hotel's posh siblings, the luxurious Cliveden House and the Mayfair Townhouse, service and style are bound to be above-par. Rooms from 364.
Art'Otel London Battersea Power Station
Accessible via the newly extended Northern line on London's Underground network, this quirky-cool spot is right next to the revamped Battersea Power Station - a decommissioned riverfront icon which now contains the new UK headquarters of Apple, as well as fun shops and bars. The hotel itself is brightly decorated with funky artwork and mirrors on the walls. It proved quite buzzy this summer, with tech workers and Londoners on dates filling the rattan chairs around the hotel's rooftop infinity pool. It's also the home to restaurant Joia, which serves fantastic Iberian fare like Spanish tortillas and salted cod with potatoes, egg and black olive. Rooms from 224.
The Hoxton, Shepherd's Bush
The irreverent Hoxton brand, which got its start 17 years ago in the eponymous East London neighborhood, recently opened up a West London outpost in Shepherd's Bush with 237 rooms. The area may be unfamiliar, given it's not the most exciting location - but the central line zips into Bond Street in just 10 minutes, and the pastel-colored homes of Notting Hill are within walking distance. Add Hoxton's bold design, stylish rooms and a fun restaurant in Thai-American diner Chet's, and Shepherd's Bush is suddenly looking up. Rooms from 176.
This East London neighborhood is chock full of trendy bars and restaurants, but one of its worthiest reservations is at this converted warehouse hotel: the Spanish spot Bibo Shoreditch, run by ultra-talented chef Dani Garca. (Pack a bathing suit, too, if the forecast allows; the rooftop pool and bar make for excellent people-watching.) The 120 light-flooded rooms have urban features like exposed brick and there's access to a spacious basement gym. Plus, you can't beat the location. Rooms from 299.
One Hundred Shoreditch
The former Ace Hotel on Shoreditch High Street was a mainstay of East London, known for its always-packed bars and chill atmosphere. The creative class worked on laptops here during the day and partied into the late hours at night. The Ace closed in 2020, but the property reopened, fully refreshed, in 2022 - under the management of the same independent hotel group that runs the fantastic Pulitzer hotel in Amsterdam. In its new incarnation, One Hundred Shoreditch has 258 rooms and suites, and multiple venues to eat and drink - ranging from Sticks'n'Sushi to a rooftop restaurant serving California-inspired brunch. It's a welcome addition to Shoreditch's scene, especially the bar Seed Library, where cocktail maestro Ryan Chetiyawardana pours drinks like the Koji Hardshake, made with Johnnie Walker Blue Label, miso, koji, cream sugar and lemon. Rooms from 254.
Hotel Amano Covent Garden
Stay at this 141-room boutique property and you may luck out with direct views of Covent Garden or the Theatre Royal Drury Lane - does it get more in-the-thick-of-it than that? There's a rooftop bar with sweeping views of London and an Israeli restaurant called Penelope's, with a lively, party-like atmosphere. What you get in location you pay for in square footage: The basic rooms start at 13 square meters (140 square feet). But all of London is at your doorstep. Rooms from 169.
Ruby Zoe, Notting Hill
Notting Hill may be London's most charming neighborhood - it's known for Portobello market, the August carnival, those brightly colored houses and, of course, the 1999 romantic comedy of the same name. What it lacks are great hotels. This 173-room gem is turning the tide, with Caribbean-inspired interiors that nod to the area's historic West Indian population. There's an in-house vinyl shop, and guests can borrow electric guitars from the hotel during their stays (the rooms have soundproofing). And for some more conventional sightseeing, it's all a stroll away from Kensington Palace and the shops of Westbourne Grove. Rooms from 225.