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A Short Ride Away From London City Airport, A Socially-Conscious Hotel With A Big Vision

January, 2018
From Amsterdam to London | The Good Hotel

If you’re coming through London City airport, this is the hotel for you. Located conveniently close to the airport, the Emirates cable car and the Royal Victoria DLR station, the Good Hotel London isn’t in central London but its location has a multitude of benefits: price, privacy and refreshing new scenery.

Launching first in Amsterdam, the Good Hotel was steered to London. Yes, steered. It was transported by a submersible barge over the North Sea Canal, onto the River Thames and through the King George the Fifth lock to its current location in the Royal Victoria Docks. The hotel will remain here until 2020. At that point, the hotel will either renew its contract in London or move on to whatever city calls for a floating social business hotel to grace its waterways. That’s the adventure of it all. As the hotel moves, so does its message and business foundations which positively contribute to any area they are in.

At the core of it all is Good Hotel’s good philosophy: premium hospitality with a cause. Their aim is to redefine the model of how the current hotel business operates, by simply “combining doing business with doing good and quality”. The Good Group, their umbrella company run by the same founders, is a non-dividend company “founded on entrepreneurial spirit and the belief that one day all business should be social business”. By changing how the hotel business operates, they first start in-house with their own business model. The Good Hotel employs those who have found it difficult to find work, and have the determination, but just need a foot in the door in their Good Training program. Their training program leads their strategy to offer long-term unemployed locals the chance to learn all about the hospitality industry (thus re-integrating into the economy) through hands-on work in the hotel. The joining process is democratic, and the company is all about equal opportunities (although they do prioritise those that live in the surrounding area). Through their approach, trainees learn from experienced staff through their on-the-go training, and the cycle continues. They are paid a salary in this training program, just like any other full-time worker, and are given the time to learn and develop to eventually ‘graduate’ and are again supported in finding a permanent job outside. It’s a conscious effort to restructure their own system in-house, to allow room for those that need the experience, but have the basic skills waiting to be utilised.

The hotel is open to locals and guests alike, with the lobby, indoor restaurant and outdoor bar great places to mingle and meet new people. Also accommodating the area (it is right next door to multiple commercial hotels like the Holiday Inn and the Excel multi-purpose large events venue) there are well-equipped meeting rooms available to hire for any purpose.

Rooms start at £140, which is incredibly reasonable for what they offer. We must admit the finest of details can sometimes be missed (our shower detailing had started to peel) but everything else was considerably immaculate. In the room, the large bed was snuggly fitted in between the walls, but it had clever side panelling which would lift to present power plugs to charge phone or electronics overnight. This panelling acted as side table of sorts as you lay in bed and look out onto the Docks outside. It’s quite like being in a cabin on a ship, but perhaps designed by Muji, and you have everything you need in a 5 metre but 3 metre rectangular space.

They pride themselves on their choice of no-nonsense materials, taking their inspiration from practical Dutch design. Designed by two young Dutch designers, Remko Verhaagen (art director) and Sikko Valk (lead designer), materials such as steel, concrete and wood have informed the interior design and the colour palette for the hotel: a blend of natural and industrial. Downstairs in the lobby you’ll find Dutch design classics by Lensvelt and Moooi, with additional items from brand Hema. Aside from these designers, the hotel has been cleverly designed by the Good Hotel in-house team, with all the materials mentioned above. They’ve made great use of space, and its easy to forgot you are on water unless you glance out the window!

Welcome to... The Good Hotel London
Lobby | The Good Hotel London
Cabin-style hotel rooms are minimal, yet cleverly designed | The Good Hotel London
Handy design details | The Good Hotel London
The Good Hotel London
Yoga classes available | The Good Hotel London
The lobby and meeting area | The Good Hotel London
View over the Royal Victoria Docks | The Good Hotel London


Western Gateway, Royal Victoria Dock
London, E16 1FA
United Kingdom

– Every booking made via their website enables the Good Hotel to donate £5 (per night) to their NGO partner, Niños de Guatemala –


All images as credited 

January, 2018