Room 2 was founded in 2015 by the Lamington Group. The properties under the brand are referred to as ‘hometels’, combining home-style living with hotel facilities, and all have a huge emphasis on sustainability.
There are currently three properties under the brand in Chiswick, neighbouring Hammersmith and Southampton, with plans for 5,000 keys across the UK by 2030. Forthcoming properties will be located in Glasgow, Belfast, York, Manchester, Liverpool and London’s Fulham neighbourhood. The 86-room Room 2 Chiswick opened in December 2021.
The brand’s main USP is its commitment to sustainability, which is thorough and impressive. The Chiswick property is completely net zero and is the first of its kind to offset both operational and embodied carbon (the amount emitted during the construction of a building), which is a huge feat and hopefully the first of many. This is done in collaboration with partner Ecoplanet Bamboo in Nicaragua. The hotel has been awarded a Gold rating by Green Tourism, an internationally acknowledged certification.
Efforts include heating and cooling the property using heat pumps that go 200m below the property, while solar panels on the roof power the bar and lounge lighting and heating. The rest of the renewable energy is sourced from wind, solar and hydro offsite.
Where is it?
On Windmill Road, just off Chiswick High Road, close to plenty of shops and restaurants. Chiswick Common is also at the end of the road, providing some green space. It is a four-minute walk to Turnham Green underground station, which is served by the District line (and Piccadilly in the early morning/evening).
What's it like?
The hotel is housed within a low-rise modern building, with red brickwork on the upper floors and floor-to-ceiling windows on the ground floor providing a glimpse into the stylish lounge area. The interiors retain that industrial feeling, with brickwork and ceilings featuring an exposed structure design, but are also cosy thanks to a warm colour scheme, soft furnishings and bespoke handcrafted pieces designed by local craftspeople and artists.
There are also nods to nature, with lush greenery, vases filled with dried flowers and petal-shaped lampshades. All of the furniture is manufactured within ten miles of the property and uses only natural, recycled or reclaimed materials and FSC certified wood – a total of 4,462 trees were planted to offset the carbon of all the furniture in the hometel.
There is no reception and staff check people in with iPads from two high-top tables in the entrance area. I understand the decision for this flexible arrangement, but it doesn’t quite work when it is busy as it is a small area. I waited a little while until a staff member finished a telephone booking, and was then asked to provide my name, email and phone number.
The latter is so that you can contact them on Whatsapp, as there are no phones in the room. This chat service worked well during my stay. Check-in is from 2pm and guests get a full 24-hour experience, with check-out anytime up until 2pm the following day – ideal for those with later flights or those looking for a good co-working spot. Check-out is done online – you choose a time slot and simply drop off your key at reception.
To the left of the entrance is the stylish lounge, which was reserved for a private event the evening of my stay, and a café-style counter with pastries and drinks. This is a beautiful and well-designed light-filled space, with a mixture of seating areas that are ideal for working or socialising – from the window-facing counter to two-person tables, a long communal table, banquettes and comfy armchairs and sofas at the back of the rectangular room.
Straight ahead is a lift which takes you to the three upper floors (home to 58 rooms) and the lower-ground courtyard, which has 23 rooms, a gym and laundry room. There are also 18 rooms on the ground floor, down corridors to the left of the lift.
The property is not only filled with eco-friendly features, but also calls on its guests to alter their behaviour for the better. A wooden sign at the lift, for instance, encourages you to take the stairs.
Rooms come in five categories: 16.5 sqm Snug, 22 sqm window-less Sleepwell, 22 sqm Studio, 27 sqm Lounge, and 30 sqm Suite – the latter are penthouse rooms with panoramic windows, an oven and dishwasher.
All accommodations include king-size beds, a sofa and work desk, free high-speed wifi, a fully equipped kitchen with a fridge-freezer, induction hob, kettle with Clipper fairtrade teabags, microwave, toaster, kitchen utensils and crockery.
There’s also a safe, a digital Roberts radio, QR code for dry cleaning, a 43-inch TV with Chromecast, blackout curtains, a noticeboard with information on the property and appliances, and 20 per cent off sustainable health food shop The Source.
There are plug sockets underneath the TV, and both plug sockets and USB ports on either side of the bed along with reading lamps and easy-to-use light switches. Bathrooms feature a rain shower and handheld shower, along with large-sized and beautifully scented toiletries.
The room design echoes that of the public spaces, with pink and red hues and a myriad of bespoke artworks. Pink and purple marbled prints by Maiden Marbling have been transformed into wallpapers to give a geological and earthy feel to the interiors, while Petronella Hall’s hand-sketched line art depicting dancing bodies is a beautiful and simple backdrop to Dali-esque mirrors by Kieran Letts in the guest bathrooms.
My Lounge room on the lower-ground courtyard level was spacious, with a narrow kitchenette as you enter opening up into the shared bedroom and living area. There’s a comfy bed on one side and a cosy window-side cushioned bench on the other side, with a small table which you can use for dining or working.
As it was on the lower-ground level, it felt a little dark in the evenings but the large windows onto the courtyard fill it with natural light during the day.
The rooms have a homely feel, living up to the ‘hometel’ ethos, with the door to the bathroom resembling a front door to a house with windows and curtains.
On the eco-side, there’s a 3-in-1 recycling bin which makes the disposal of waste much easier, with signs telling guests what products are designed for general waste, mixed recycling and food waste. Lighting and heating systems only work when someone is in the room and there’s a woven bag for groceries.
Food and drink
There is no on-site restaurant but the lounge has a café which sells pastries, sandwiches and snacks from B-corp certified companies (businesses that meet high environmental and social standards), and a bar for cocktails.
Breakfast is offered here from 7am to 11am and guests can select four items from the counter for £12.50 – these include fresh pastries, yoghurt, homemade granola, porridge and hot drinks. The crockery is beautiful, with cast-iron teapots, and it’s a lovely bright place to work or socialise.
Honey for the produce is sourced from the on-site beehives on the roof, home to 75,000 bees and also a bonus for biodiversity.
The lounge area is popular with co-workers and has plug sockets, as well as fuel for your brain at the café.
There’s a 24-hour gym on the lower-ground floor with two Peloton bikes, free weights, a rowing machine, yoga mats and floor space for workouts.
The hotel has also partnered with Club Five to offer complimentary exercise videos via a QR code.
Room 2 Chiswick is an excellent example of how hotels can successfully incorporate sustainability into their operations in a stylish and non-invasive manner, enhancing the guest experience rather than disrupting it.
The beautiful interior design champions local arts and crafts, rooms are comfortable and spacious, and the public spaces are well-designed for remote workers.
The hotel is also looking at the future, with two lab rooms tracking energy, appliances, lighting, heating, water and air quality to find out how its guests use the rooms and drive down energy further.
- Best for A net-zero stay with comfortable bespoke furnishings
- Don’t miss Co-working with a croissant in the light-filled lounge
- Price Internet rates for a flexible midweek stay in January started from £139 for a Snug room
- Contact 10 Windmill Road, Chiswick, London W4 1SD; 0203 988 0220; room2.com