When we first arrived in London, straight off the plane, we needed somewhere to stay while we hunted for a flat of our own. We found a great little bargain in Hackney at Silk House Hotel. I’ve told so many people about this privately, it’s time I shared the love and put it in a post.
London is always going to cost you, after $12 rooms in Asia and $50 rooms in the USA, London prices seem steep. But it is what it is. We think that food prices and transport prices are great in the UK’s vibrant capital, so it’s not all bad news. After all, there is so much to see and do in London, it really is a world highlight for many travellers.
Where We Stayed
After days, if not weeks, of online research, Silk House Hotel ( click to check prices) was absolutely THE cheapest place for our family of four to stay in London, that we could find. It was way cheaper than any of hostels including the YHA, at that time.
Silk House hotel is a short walk from Homerton train station, not in Hackney central. Hackney has a busy high street, shops and a large supermarket, it’s one stop on the train, or you can walk. From Homerton it’s just 3 stops to Stratford tube station and the Central Line.
What We Payed
Prices fluctuate enormously, but when we arrived at Silk House we were paying just £48/night. The weekend pushed up prices to £70, but it was still a great bargain. We eventually had to leave because they were fully booked. We stayed over a week at Silk House, very comfortably, the only slight issue was the shared bathroom. We recommend using the electric shower on the ground floor.
Our second hotel in London was far more luxurious, but more expensive and further out of town, at Heathrow. It wasn’t really suited for commuting into the city as it wasn’t on the tube lines.
What We Got for our Money
Our younger child, at 7 years old stayed for free at Silk House, if using existing bedding.
We had a room with one large double bed and a single, a desk and table, TV, storage and a sink. Bathroom facilities were on the other side of the corridor and were shared. There was a better electric shower on the ground floor which we preferred.
The internet was good, in our room and in public areas.
A simple breakfast of toast, cereal and drinks was included and guests had access to a nice kitchen, lounge and garden. You could easily self cater here, but they have rules about not cooking smelly foods or fish, somewhat bizarrely.
What We Thought
We were really pleased with Silk House, the big bed was plenty big enough for the children and I. It’s great to find a place where kids stay free right up to seven, I wish more hotels would do that. The kitchen was clean, the lounge was modern and comfortable and it was lovely to play football in the little courtyard garden in the early summer sunshine. Security was good and overall we enjoyed staying here, particularly at such a great price.
The building is old and has character, this isn’t a modern hotel other than the obviously newly installed downstairs kitchen and dining area. Our bedding was crisp and white but the rooms and fittings are older.
There was no washing machine for guests to use, that was a nuisance, but really, what we got for our money was outstanding. The other guests were a mixture of workmen, families and young travellers of all nationalities, some friendly, some not.
Staying here, with no bills, actually worked out cheaper than staying in our own flat.
Everybody wants to know where to stay in London, our answer to that would be Anywhere on the London Underground or Overground lines.
Silk House was a very short walk from the overground line at Homerton and once you’re on the train, just 2 stops from Stratford station and the Central Line.
Children up to 11 years old travel free on the London Overground, on buses and on the London Overground if accompanied by an adult with a valid travel pass or Oyster card.
You can easily base yourself at Hackney to explore the city, we did, London transport really is incredibly good and the city is small, you can get wherever you need to go, easily, by tube or on foot.