Boutique boltholes: hotel reviews, Selamta, April 2020

Be treated like friends and leave as family at these personable residencies, where small room numbers equals big personality

Bangkok Publishing Residence

This eight-room boutique feels more like an artists’ residence or a museum, thanks to its hodgepodge of gorgeously selected artefacts. The airy central atrium is filled with antique typewriters (a nod to the building’s former life as a magazine printing press), while a piano, shelves of magazine back issues and an old video games console keep guests entertained in the lobby.

Then there are the rooms – wood-panelled things of beauty, with Nespresso machines, efficient air con, free breakfast in bed and gorgeous silk robes. Head upstairs to the rooftop and find an intimate library and lush garden concealing a whirlpool tub. Bliss.

The Distillery, London

With just three rooms, this tiny hotel draws guests for The Ginstitute – a basement gin distillery that produces Portobello Road Gin No.171. It started out as London’s smallest museum and now offers an interactive journey through the history of gin, led by the Master Distiller. Hotel guests with a taste for juniper relish the chance to blend their own personal bottle of gin, before heading upstairs to indulge in the boutique’s other offerings.

Gin-based cocktails (which flow constantly) can be soaked up at one of two hotel restaurants: The Resting Room, with its British fare (think beef cheek cooked in Guinness) or tapas bar Gintonica, where grilled tiger prawns are served beside sizzling chorizo. Then it’s to the sleekly designed bedrooms, which all boast views of colourful Portobello road and minibars stocked with – you guessed it – gin.

Soho House, Barcelona

While this triumph of boutique design has more bedrooms than these other two – 56, to be precise – you’re unlikely to find a more intimate or exclusive-feeling stay in the Catalonian capital. A member’s club for the city’s trendiest creatives, guests get access to the same amenities: a terracotta-tiled gym stocked with Cowshed products; a spa complete with indoor pool, mani-pedis and facials; and a jaw-dropping selection of Mediterranean food.

Try to keep your cool when you reach the rooftop bar, with its long, thin pool, mouth-watering cocktails and awesome views of the city. If you have to scream in excitement, do so in the privacy of your plush bedroom, with its Egyptian cotton-clad bed, rainforest shower and teeny balcony. You won’t want to leave.

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