Gosh February was just jam-packed with weekends in London. Weekends of bottomless brunches and crazy golf and delicious meals and live cinema experiences. It’s been a lot of fun. Well last weekend was no different and I was back in the Capital for a gig in Camden – a band called Foxygen were playing at KOKO and Josh and I went along to see them. Rather than rush to get the last train home, we decided to stay at Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage, a hostel nearby in North West London.
In terms of the location, Swiss Cottage is pretty nice. It’s in the Primrose Hill area of London where celebs live and beautiful white townhouses line the streets. And Palmers Lodge is a quick 5 minute walk up from the tube station. Although I would say that despite being close to Camden, I forgot that tube lines don’t really work that way and we would have to go back into Central London and out again to get there which is a bit of a drag. But luckily an Uber was only 6 quid. Total bargain (2 people get the tube is £4.80…).
Anyway, it’s hard to miss this hostel as it is a MASSIVE Victorian mansion! And it’s all lit up at night with fairy lights outside so it’s easy to spot.
Pretty impressive to look at, right?
It’s just as cool inside too with sweeping staircases and large Victorian rooms. I honestly think this is a great place to stay for someone looking for an authentic English experience, I mean there’s mahogany wooden panelling throughout, chandeliers everywhere and even a suit of armour for god’s sake! A history buff would love the decor, for sure.
Oh and anyone that’s a fan of the #IHaveThisThingWithTiles hashtag on Instagram, there’s tile gold in this gaff. SO PRETTY.
We stayed in a private room with an ensuite bathroom on this visit and the room wasn’t fancy, it was fairly basic. But it wasn’t like some hostels where they try to mask the fact that there’s just a cheap wire frame bed in the room by painting the walls crazy ‘fun’ colours. You know the ones I mean. The furniture is wooden and sturdy and classy like the rest of the hostel. It’s very traditional but has everything you could possibly need. Including a nice little spot near the window where you can have a cup of tea and watch the world go by outside, which was my favourite part.
Also, despite it being a historic building, it was more than warm enough in the room on a cold night in February. Which is more than I can say for my actual house at the moment!
The common areas were in-line with the rest of the building with antique furniture, leather sofas and fairy lights. After our gig in Camden, bars nearby were pretty dead so we had a quiet evening in the hostel bar. Drinks were SO MUCH cheaper than when we were at the gig, everyone was chilled and friendly and we played a nice game of pool. So nice.
I guess that’s the downfall of Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage, it’s not a party hostel if that’s what you’re looking for. But I’m so glad about that. So many London hostels are big on nightlife and are full of 18 year old German boys on gap years and quite frankly, I’m too old for that shit. Palmer’s Lodge was perfect for me – you get a bar serving cheap drinks open until midnight but you don’t hear your room neighbours stumbling through the hallways and throwing up. That’s really all I want.
And it’s such a chilled area, it wasn’t loud at night, like SO much of London is.
Overall I can totally understand why Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage has such amazing ratings and has won tonnes of awards. It’s unique without being gimmicky, friendly without being too boozy and comfortable without being expensive. All the best things right? It’s out the way from the sights but you can get everywhere via the Tube so I can’t see that being a problem for anyone.
I really liked it, you guys. Totally recommend it.
Have you stayed at Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage? What did you think?
Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @HeelsInBackpack!
Total Blogger Transparency: I accepted a complimentary stay at Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage but all thoughts and opinions expressed all my own. I wouldn’t play you like that, shorty.