The Mail’s hotel inspector calls at NYX Hotel London and gives it a one-star rating. Find out why…

‘It looks like six-year-olds did the interior design’: The Mail’s hotel inspector gives this £279-a-night London retreat a one-star rating…

Why would you want the lights to brighten and darken in sequence in a hotel restaurant? Perhaps because the ground floor restaurant of NYX Hotel London in Holborn is really an extension of the lobby area, which thinks it’s far trendier than it is.

It’s as if a pack of graffiti artists has been let loose. Or a classroom of six-year-olds has been responsible for the interior design. There are garish swiggles, a couple of arcade game machines, a model of the King sitting on a throne. It’s brash meets bling.

The cushion on my chair features a pair of red lips with ‘S***’ written on the teeth. Another is inscribed with the word ‘Toiletpaper’.

NYX Hotels, part of the Leonardo group, offer ‘more than a place to stay, they’re a place to be’, according to the website.

Certainly, the ninth-floor roof-top bar might be a good place to have a drink, but it’s only open Wednesday to Sunday — and I’m here on a Tuesday.

The Inspector checks into the NYX Hotel London, which is ‘more than a place to stay’, it’s ‘a place to be’, according to its website

I have asked for a room (of which there are 213) with a window that opens the tiniest of bits, but mine is hermetically sealed. 

Eventually, I am moved to one with a window that opens ajar, albeit looking out at the side of another building, letting in almost no natural light. 

There are anti-theft hangers, rock-hard pillows and a shower room so small it makes those in a Premier Inn look majestic.

The hotel has a 'splendid' swimming pool in the basement, with a sauna and steam room

The hotel has a ‘splendid’ swimming pool in the basement, with a sauna and steam room

Two round mirrors hang on a wall — one so high that only a basketball player would benefit from it, the other at knee height. And I’m paying £279 — without breakfast. 

On the plus side, there’s a splendid swimming pool in the basement, with a sauna and steam room. And breakfast is taken in a cheery space on the first floor, where the buffet costs £20 per person.

Before leaving, I reread some writing on the wall in the bathroom. It says: ‘It was all a dream’. I only wish it was.


NYX Holborn, 50-60 Southampton Row, London, WC1B 4AR. Doubles from £279. For more information call 020 7242 1800 or visit 

Rating out of five: *