The Inspector calls at Liverpool’s Hope Street Hotel… but concludes it’s mostly hopeless, with a bedroom ‘that should be used for storage’ and a ‘depressing’ spa experience
- The property, a former warehouse, was converted into a hotel 20 years ago
- The Inspector visits the spa but finds the sauna is ‘nothing like hot enough’
- Remember, The Inspector pays his way… and tells it like it is
The most exciting thing about Hope Street Hotel in Liverpool was seeing the Leicester City players traipsing through reception before boarding their buses and heading for Goodison Park for their match with Everton (they drew 1-1).
This former warehouse was converted into a hotel 20 years ago. At the time, it may have been regarded as cutting edge. Today, it’s in danger of becoming bland, albeit the spacious lobby features some iconic furniture, such as The Eames Lounge chair by Charles and Ray Eames for Herman Miller.
Our room on the second floor is entirely bereft of imagination. It should be used for storage rather than guests. You have to stand on tip-toe to see out of the hideous window; there’s nothing on any of the white walls; the lights are tinny; the wood-panelled headboard is perfunctory and charmless.
The Inspector checks in to Hope Street Hotel in Liverpool, pictured, a former warehouse that was converted into a hotel 20 years ago
Above is one of the hotel’s rooms – but not the one in which the Inspector stays
Which is such a shame because Hope Street — which links the city’s two cathedrals — is the centre of Liverpool’s cafe society, boasting a Georgian parade of restaurants and shops, the Everyman Theatre and the famous Royal Liverpool Philharmonic.
The late poet, Adrian Henri, lived round the corner. And here’s something you might not know: Liverpool has more listed buildings than any other city in England apart from London. How many? No fewer than 2,500, of which 14 are on Hope Street.
The hotel makes much of its spa in the basement, but for some absurd reason you are charged an extra £35 to use it.
The hotel has two restaurants – a pizzeria called 1931 and The London Carriage Works
‘The thermal journey is amazing,’ says the friendly receptionist.
Actually, the thermal journey is profoundly depressing: the heated outdoor pool with its underwater jets is overlooked by run-down buildings; the ‘shower experience’ where the colours change every now and again is laughable and the Himalayan salt sauna is nothing like hot enough.
There are two restaurants: a pizzeria called 1931 and The London Carriage Works, so called because this is where the coach building firm set up shop in the 19th century.
‘This once trendy hotel needs an injection of energy and investment of creativity,’ says the Inspector
It’s a big space, broken up by several massive glass shards.
My wife orders from room service, after which she phones down and asks for the tray to be removed from outside the room. Next morning, it’s still there.
This once trendy hotel needs an injection of energy and investment of creativity.
‘Hope Street – which links the city’s two cathedrals – is the centre of Liverpool’s cafe society,’ writes the Inspector. Above is the street’s Everyman Theatre
The Inspector notes that the hotel is a short distance from the famous Liverpool Philharmonic Hall (pictured)
Hope Street Hotel, Liverpool, L1 9DA. Doubles from £129. For more information call 0151 709 3000 or visit hopestreethotel.co.uk.