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Travel: City Slicker

ParentFolk slips off for a night at The Stratford Hotel, London and discovers a little bit of design heaven. Just don’t tell the kids.

There’s something incredibly indulgent about sneaking away for a night without the kids and only going 20 miles down the road.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to say no to a weekend in Rome, but when time is limited, sometimes it’s good to look closer to home and explore what’s around you.

The Stratford is a vibrant new hotel in, well, Stratford, also offering rental loft apartments, restaurants, sky terraces and lots more.    Overlooking Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and right next door to Westfield, The Stratford feels like a central hub in this newly developed cultural district of London.

Photo: The seriously stylish interiors at The Stratford Hotel

The hotel is seriously stylish and what feels like a world away from piles of washing, toys and mud.  We feel like we’ve stepped back in time to our pre-kid life where the floor is clear of LEGO and no one is arguing over the remote control.  Designed, by Space Copenhagen, there is a Scandi feel throughout, with stunning pieces of furniture, interesting art installations and a cool vibe running through the hotel.  There are 145 seriously stylish bedrooms with incredibly comfortable beds and gorgeous bathrooms filled with REN products.

Photo: Cocktails at The Stratford

There’s lots of choice for foodies at The Stratford. The Stratford Brasserie is a contemporary but welcoming all-day dining restaurant on the ground floor in the hub of the hotel. It’ll see you through from breakfast to lunch and dinner and it’s a great option for a delicious meal in a relaxed atmosphere – and a perfect spot for people watching, if that’s your thing. For a drink in a glamorous setting then head to The Mezzanine.  This laid-back cocktail lounge serves drinks and food until late and offers a cocktail menu designed to evoke emotions and embrace the classics with a modern twist.

For those looking for a real dining treat then it’s worth checking out Allegra.  Opened by Chiltern Firehouse’s Patrick Powell, this restaurant on the 7th floor offers a high-end dining experience in the most beautifully designed restaurant.  Plus the roof garden is worth spending time in and taking in the views of the city.

The Stratford is perfectly situated to access more of London.  Just a short walk away is Hackney Wick, a hipster hangout perfect for taking in the street art, strolling along the canal,  sampling the local craft beer and dining on a delicious pizza at Number 90 Bar & Kitchen.

For the more active, there’s a Wellness Centre within the hotel offering classes and there are some great outdoor running routes.  Take advantage of the close proximity to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park with 50 acres of parkland, waterways and cycle trails. There is also The Velodrome at Lee Valley and The Aquatics Centre close by.  For those looking for a bit more culture, it’s only a 20-minute tube ride to the West End, a 12-minute journey to Borough Market or a 10-minute ride to King’s Cross. The world, or at least London, is your oyster.

Rooms from £199/ night

www.thestratford.com @thestratford

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