Aparthotels: the new breed of accommodation offering the best of both worlds
Aparthotels are big business. We take a look at Native, the design-led brand with big plans
In recent years, accommodation for travellers has firmly been divided into two camps: home rentals, like Airbnb, or traditional hotels. Both have their pros and cons, the former, most prone to last-minute cancellations, the latter, a much more convenient option, but not as economical or practical- especially when travelling in a group.
Lately, a new hybrid has started to emerge, with innovative design-led brands from Locke Hotels to The Assemblage in New York, offering the best of both worlds.
One such brand making waves is Native. With over 11 outposts in London already, it was the opening of its Bankside property a couple of years ago that marked a turning point for the brand and set the bar in terms of design. ‘The launch of Native Bankside is the first milestone in plans to expand our aparthotel business in all major cities across the UK and will set a benchmark for the category in terms of design,’ says Guy Nixon, CEO of Native.
Occupying a 19th-century former tea warehouse on a quiet cobbled street adjacent to the Tate Modern, the property’s transformation is the work of SPPARC Architecture, the London-based firm retaining the building’s original façade and smartly creating an impressive double-height lobby that leads to a series of 75 one or two bedrooms suites - each with a bespoke layout featuring kitchenettes and living areas – a small fitness suite and a pantry and co-working area. This all makes way for a deeply set comfy sofas, geometric rugs, marble coffee tables and leather arm chairs in a bold deep blue and burnt orange colour palette.
Faultlessly set back from the River Thames, just a few steps from highlights like The Tate Modern, Borough Market and St Paul’s Cathedral, Native Bankside was followed closely by the openings of Native Glasgow and Native Manchester, a 166-studio property housed in a vast Grade II-listed former Victorian warehouse with a cinema, outdoor terrace and fitness classes. Raising the bar even further will be openings in Leeds, York, Bristol, Oxford and London’s Soho. §