Cool down at Mondrian Shoreditch this summer

By Lauren O'Neill | 27 Jul 2022 | Travel

Brooklyn meets the med in the heart of East London

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It seems that not so long ago, outdoor pools were few and far between at UK hotels, but over the past few years - particularly in the capital - several hotels boasting rooftop pools to rival any of their Mediterranean counterparts have emerged, and have never been so gladly received given the current heatwave.

One said refuge is one of The City's latest offerings, Mondrian Shoreditch, which opened its doors in August 2021. Formerly The Curtain, it was announced in 2020 that Mondrian had signed a deal to take over the chic, city hotel, marking the brand's return to London. The sixth hotel in the Mondrian portfolio, Mondrian Shoreditch is the group's only European outpost. 

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Fans of the former hotel will be glad to know that the building's new iteration, thought up by design studio Goddard Littlefair, has retained a lot of its Brooklyn-inspired vibes - think floor-to-ceiling crittall windows, exposed brick, and that 'can't quite put your finger on it' air of Williamsburg cool - but under its new ownership, the rooms and outlets have been infused with the playful, artistic aesthetic of Mondrian hotels.

Its 120 luxury guestrooms - including 13 suites - take inspiration from the quirk and creativity of its surrounding neighbourhood, with modern, white brick walls and bespoke artwork by Studio Graphite, while floor length windows allow for ample light and views of the city. The bathrooms here are a thing of beauty - white-flecked marble tiles line the walls and floor, complemented by dark cabinetry and chrome finishes. Each room has its own steam shower, and the larger suites have a separate freestanding bath in the bedroom. 

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Situated on the lower ground floor is Spanish kitchen BiBo, led by world-famous chef Dani Garcia, marking his first restaurant in London. Even on a Tuesday evening the space was filled, with diners clearly enjoying every morsel on their plates. There is a plethora of meat, seafood, and vegetarian tapas to choose from, such as Porcini Croquetas, Gambas Fritas, Tuna Belly Tartar, and Chorizo Brioche with Quail Egg, as well as Dani's signature Paellas to share. We would recommend going for a couple of tapas for the table to start - La Tortilla was a highlight, perfectly crisp on the outside and soft on the inside - and choosing a Paella for your main as you won't want to miss it. Options include Lobster, Octopus, Braised Coquelet Chicken, Iberico Ribs, Rib Eye, and Vegetarian.

For cocktails, move up a level to Christina's, the hotel's cocktail bar located on its ground floor, where you will find a selection of natural wines and concoctions as refreshing as its energetic, jovial bar staff. The menu offers twists on classic cocktails, reimagined 'through the lens of quintessential British ingredients' - the bar only sources products from local independent suppliers, start-ups and brands with social impact. Our mixologist for the evening was Samba, who expertly chose cocktails for us based on our previous order, one of which was the delicious Apple Blossom 75, comprised of Caprelous 1000 Trees, Empirical Plum I Suppose, London Honey Co. Borage Honey, Olive Leaf and Moet NV Champagne. Do also check out Christina's in the daytime for coffees in partnership with Redemption Roasters, pastries from Chestnut Bakery and Japanese-inspired Sandos, ideal for lunch time.

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Which brings us to its crowning glory, its rooftop pool, exclusively for the use of hotel guests Curtain Club members. Small but perfectly formed (and surprisingly not overcrowded when we were there, although admittedly it was midweek) it is the perfect place to take a dip and cool down with a cold glass of rose and, open until 10am, you can stay put all day. Worth noting though the pool gets the sun most of the day so be sure to pack the factor 50.

Adjacent is Laurel's on the Roof, a new eatery which opened in May this year, which takes inspiration from 70s Hollywood and Laurel Canyon in Los Angeles. As the sun goes down over London, Laurel's terrace is a great spot for an Aperitivo - you can come just for drinks, but would recommend having dinner here too or you'll need to order a small dish with any beverages.

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Locals can make use of the pool and Laurel's on the Roof at any time by joining The Curtain Club, which also offers members access to its co-working space, 24 hour gym, and an exclusive calendar of events. 

If you're looking for East London cool with a luxe edge this summer, Mondrian Shoreditch has you covered. 

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The Penthouse Suite at The Mondrian currently starts at £1,474 per night B&B. sbe.com

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