The City Hotel

3.5 out of 5 stars3.5 Stars

12-20 Osborn St, London, E1 6TE, United Kingdom
City Hotel
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Satisfaction Average
Very Good

Value Score Poor Value

Costs 24% more than similarly rated 3.5 star hotels

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Good For Families
  • Families69
  • Couples61
  • Solo64
  • Business62

More about The City Hotel

The City Hotel, London, UK

by TripAdvisor Member happytraveler1965

My hustand and I and our two teenage sons, stayed at the City Hotel on 6/19 and 6/29. The hotel is clean though a bit run down (they are renovating), the front desk staff are helpful though not terribly friendly and we found our accommodations sufficient. If you are staying in this hotel in the summer beware because they do not have any air conditioning. 6/19 was cool so I didn't notice it but when we returned on 6/29 they had the windows opened (no screens) and a dusty fan running. Our room on 6/29 was in the front of the hotel which is terribly noisy with the cars and trucks racing up the road - I had a difficult time falling and staying asleep through the noise. The hotel is in a so-so area. If you take the underground, exit at East Aldgate - its less than a minute walk from the station. We were fine returning in the early evening but I would not have wanted to walk around by myself after dark. While eating breakfast on 6/20 the local police stopped a car and questioned & frisked the three young African American men right outside the hotel dining room window before letting them go. The breakfast they provide was so-so. Cold cereal, various types of juices, what looked to be slices of american cheese and ham, toast, rolls, coffee, tea. It couldn't compare to what we had in Paris, Rome & Florence. The bright spot was the Indian restaurant at the corner, Clifton's. The food was EXCELLENT!! I highly recommend the chicken korma and mushroom rice - FANTASTIC -- Also, very good naan.

Be brave and this hotel could turn into your favorite!

by TripAdvisor Member mayflowerGreece

This hotel does amazing weekend special offers. It is in Brick Lane with its vast collection of indian restaurants. It is not traditional classic London but is near all the 'trendy areas' whitechapel, spitalfields etc. You can easily walk thru the 'City' with all its incredible buildings right up to Convent Garden. The hotel is a bit on the tired side, little bit scruffy but for £40 a night it is brilliant I have stayed in quite a few costing double that are barely as good. Comfortable, Good breakfast, good security, clean, good bathrooms, private parking, 2 minutes from Aldgate East Tube station which takes you anywhere. 10 mins walk from Tower Bridge...when we were there it was a tube strike and we walked everywhere. It is not the usual tourist Victoria/Hyde Park area but if you want to see, and live, some of the 'real London' then it is a gem.

Good Value Friendly Hotel

by TripAdvisor Member jackiem

I stayed for 4 nights while on a course. I only paid £55 per night for a double room which had a double and a single bed. I noticed the rack rate was £160. here was a good nicely tiled bathroom with the usual toiletries. A fridge and a kettle. The room was spacious. The room was very clean as was the bed linen. The hotel bar and restuarant are good. The staff are very helpful and friendly. I can also recommend the Clifton restaurant (Indian) at the end of the street for excellent Indian food in lovely surroundings.

wow- much much better than expected

by TripAdvisor Member emjoy

a friend booked us into this hotel whilst feeling adventurous. I had told her I liked the area but after she booked it I was bit nervous and wondered if I really liked the area enough to stay there. I was very pleasantly surprised at the quality of the City Hotel. I've stayed all over London in various 2 star to 4 star hotels, B &Bs and apartments and this was a great value.
My twin room on the 4th floor had a view of the 'gherkin' and basically had a balcony, it was so large that if this had been a west end B&B I would have expected to walk in and find 4 or 5 beds filling every inch of floor space. It was the most spacious room, very clean, bright (although my pictures don't do it justice), and it's stocked with tea making equipment and a large empty fridge- not a silly minibar with items you're afraid to dislodge for fear of paying hefty prices. Despite being in the city, I found it very quiet and had no trouble sleeping.
The breakfast was continental served in a modern restaurant through the nice hotel bar, and was substantial enough. There was apparently internet access on one of two computers in the clean bright lobby, but they weren't working during my three day stay. My mates room was rear facing and also large, but had a FULL KITCHEN! oven, hob, microwave, sink, utensils, everything. not neccessary for 3 days but certainly very good to know for future trips.
The hotel is off the aldgate east tube stop (District) which is on whitechapel. I love spitalfields market (sunday) and the area of Brick Lane. I do think the area would be daunting for a first time visitor, or someone who wants to stay closer to common tourist attractions, but if you've done all that already and want a nice clean, large room with good value for money, put the City Hotel at the top of your list.

Saved by the Service.

by TripAdvisor Member TravellinBilly

Myself and a friend stayed in the City Hotel at a very keen week-end rate.
The first floor room was Very spacious,well above the going rate for Hotel Rooms in London.
Clean and well presented bathroom and all the requisites in good order.
Our problem became apparent on Sat night when a seriously effective sound system began operations at a Private Party in the Bar.
The Hotels own guide did warn of music in the Bar until 0100 but when this came and went my companion had to visit the reception to see if we could be moved or the music (and Vibes) turned down.
Neither proved possible and this resulted in letter of complaint to the Manager.
All of this might seem negative and result in the City Hotel getting a raspberry were it not for the exemplary manner in which the Duty Manager and the General Manager dealt with our complaint the following day (Sun).
The duty Manager herself met us and acknowledged the strength of our complaint,apologised for the inconvienience and advised us that we would recieve a refund of the charge for that night.
The Bar/Restaurant has only recently been refurbished and it seems that the only area skimped on was some acoustic panels to prevent the upward escape of noise.
The moral of the story is that if U are staying over a Sat night then avoid the first floor rooms facing the front...unless of course u are a party animal in which case disregard all this.
All in all the City Hotel is a very attractive location for anybody looking for a hotel in the REAL London and the warren of side streets and markets in the immediate vicinity make for a very interesting browsing experience.

Good Value great location for sight seers!!

by A TripAdvisor Member

We went to London for one weekend to do some sight seeing and so decided to book a hotel online before hand. We found the City Hotel and decided to go for it because it looked quite smart and was good value (in comparason to most of the other London Hotels).

The Room was quite basic with a TV, Tea and Coffee etc but had everything we needed. A menu for the restaurant downstairs was left in our welcome file however when we went downstairs to the Restaurant it was closed (would have been nice if they told us when we checked in). We were however told that they were doing food in the bar (same menu) but the bar is very lively and quite noisy so we opted to go for a meal in one of the local restaurants nearby. There is a lot to choose from in the area but mainly Indian.

When returning we went to bed but found that the walls were quite thin and next door was obviously getting ready to go out (11pm) and we could hear all the conversations going on. They eventually left and then returned to their room at 4am, I was so tired that I fell straight back to sleep.

The hotel was in a very handy spot in the East end of London. There is a Tube right around the corner which was extremely handy as we were sight seeing all over from the Science Museum to the Tower of London.

The area was a bit run down but the Hotel was fine. The staff were very helpful and friendly.

Overall I would recommend this hotel to people who are looking for good value and who need to be close to the city centre.

Turned around and left

by TripAdvisor Member t_r_i_x_i_e_07

We booked four nights in this hotel, but upon seeing it, we left.

We booked this hotel through Hotwire, hoping to stay in the City (London's financial district). This hotel appeared within that zone. Unfortunately, it isn't. In fact, I've appealed to Hotwire to change its map.

City Hotel sits in Whitechapel, according to the Rough Guide to London, and according to my personal observation. Whitechapel is home to London's Bangladeshi community. Community life centers on Brick Lane. Osborn Street, the street in which the hotel sits, turns into Brick Lane. Whitechapel has traditionally been an immigrant neighborhood. While the area is rich in history and hosts several markets that are worth visiting, it isn't where I would choose to stay in London. While it is close to the Tower of London, it doesn't offer the leafy charms and comforts of the West End. If you stay here, know that this isn't a neighborhood of shiny skyscrapers and clean streets. In other words, it isn't the City. The streets aren't lined with upmarket boutiques and eateries, as in the West End. This is a working-class neighborhood.

The hotel's security seemed iffy. The streets immediately surrounding the hotel are not the cleanest or loveliest in London. The area is quite congested. City Hotel staff leave two sets of lobby doors wide open to the street, which made me uncomfortable. A local man asked us rather forcefully by a local to liberate a payphone we were using just outside the hotel. A homeless person came up to my partner, engaged him in conversation, and asked for money.

Upon checking in and taking the elevator to our floor, we found several housekeepers smoking and listening to loud music at the end of the corridor. They had left the stairwell door open, and smoke permeated not only the hallway, but also our room. This was, to me, a sign of poor management. Staff should have assigned smoking areas and not disturb guests with music.

The room itself left much to be desired. Although it was very large and included a living room and small kitchen, it was very depressing. The lights were dim, and the decor was extremely dated. With just one window (in the kitchen), the smoke smell in the bedroom did not dissipate, and the place felt gloomy, even on a relatively sunny day. One of the lights in the bedroom didn't work. The living room had an odd assortment of furniture in flowery, old-fashioned patterns. While I appreciated the collection of magazines left for guests, this could not make up for the room's other failings. I would have preferred a much smaller space with better furnishings.

We found the hotel staff less than willing to help. When we complained about not receiving BBC1 in our room, staff said that the hotel did not receive the channel. This would be the US equivalent of not receiving CBS, ABC, or NBC. We found it hard to imagine. During several visits to England, I've never stayed in a hotel or B and B that offered television and did not receive BBC1.

Some staff members spoke less-than-fluent English. When we said we would be leaving, one member responded, "Where is problem?"

We cancelled our reservation and stayed in another hotel, where we were much happier. Staying in Notting Hill and, later, Kensington meant that we could explore the neighborhood around our hotels without taking the Tube. Whitechapel is far off most tourists' paths. It isn't an area I would want to spend my trip exploring.

Although I left my name and phone number at the hotel, the general manager has not responded. The City Hotel offers cheap rates for London ($77, in our case), but we were pleased to pay more to stay in a hotel that felt more up-to-date and secure.

The hotel's star rating is 3, but I didn't feel that it merited this rating. I would give it 2 stars at best. I have been to Europe several times. This latest trip was 3 weeks long and included about 7 hotels. The City Hotel was the worst of the lot.

Okay, but with some disappointments

by TripAdvisor Member saf_2m

I went there with my 18 months old daugter, my mother, and my brother for an extended weekend holiday of 4 nights. I booked a triple room with a crib through londonnights at the rate of 64£ per night. I had read the tripadvisor reviews regarding the above average sized spacious rooms with lounge areas and was expecting real value for money. What a huge disappointment! The room was the typical shoe-boxed sized London hotel room with three single beds squeezed inside and barely with a little spot where we could put up the crib for the baby. The rooms at the hotel obvoiusly come in various sizes and not all of them are spacious as described in previous reviews.

The walls were rather sound proof but the doors were NOT. We could very clearly hear anyone passing by the hallway. However, we were on the fourth floor and not at all disturbed by the noisy bar and loud music.

The room was fairly clean however I found some blond hair on the floor besides my bed (our whole family has dark brown hair!!). The bathroom was small, yet clean with toiletries and even had a tub. Everything was in order except for the huge crack in the sink.

We quickly realized that some of the amenities that was supposed to be present in ALL rooms according to the website was NOT present. There was no hair dryer, even though it was listed in the brochure. A disappointment since I didn't bring my own because I trusted the amenities' list. The hotel was also supposed to have wireless internet according to the brochure, but we couldn't get our laptop to catch anything. When we asked the reception they told us that we had to get a voucher for 3£ (about 6 US$) which lasted for one hour's internet access only!! What a wrip off!

Regarding the hotel staff it is true that they might not all be that fluent in English. Also it was the most indifferent staff that I have ever encountered upon. They were not rude or anything, just so indifferent. They just sat there behind the desk with no facial expressions at all. Never a smile or a 'have a nice day' or 'good morning' or anything. I often passed through the lobby alone with my toddler in the stroller and not even once did anyone of them engage themselves in common courtesy gestures such as holding the door for me. They just sat there with stone faces like they could care less. Not a warm welcoming feeling at all.

Actually the best and most positive thing about the hotel was the unique location. We found the Asian atmosphere quite charming and the curry smells were alluring. Since we only eat halal food it was truly a prime location. We were also very happy to find out that the hotel is just a 3 minutes' walk away from the beautiful East London Mosque. All in all a very interesting and multicultural neighbourhood. We also felt very safe and were not at all bothered by anyone on the streets. The tube station Aldgate East is less than a minute's walk and just a couple of stops away from most of the London sights. If we were ever to stay here again it would ONLY be because of the unique location since one does not find many hotels in that part of town.

I would only recommend this hotel to people who are openminded, tolerant and not prejudiced towards other religions and cultures. If your are the oldfashioned conservative type...better stay in the West End!!

Affordable, helpful and relatively convenient to sites

by TripAdvisor Member Language_Guy

The City Hotel is a good place to stay at a good price. We booked early 5 months in advanced and paid $160 per night for a quad room for two couples. Generously, they let us check in early by an hour and permitted us to leave our luggage the morning we got in from the airport. They have a helpful, multilingual staff. The Aldgate Easte metro stop is within 3 blocks. They serve a descent breakfast. Be sure to be in before too late. Women should be accompanied after dark, as in any large city. If back in London, I would return to the City Hotel.

Stay away if you don't like insects!

by TripAdvisor Member katelouise

On arriving at the hotel we were pleasantly surprised, the reception area was lovely as was the hotel bar. Our room was a decent size with 3 single beds, and although the bathroom was quite small it was an acceptable size. However, as we put our cases on the ground a bug ran out by my feet, then in the bathroom another one. Over the first 2 days there was 6 of these bugs running around the carpet. As there was only 4 hangers in the wardrobe and we were living out of our cases, we had to put the cases up on our beds in case they crawled in. The worst part was on our last day, while brushing my teeth i saw something on the ground in the bathroom....a huge cockroach. The side panel on the bath was falling off and he ran back under that before I could do anything. As it was our last day we didn't bother complaining about the incident, just kept the bathroom door closed and blocked off with a towel. The bugs may have been out in force as the weather was so so hot (approx 28 degrees) but to be honest that didn't make us feel any better!
Apart from that the hotel was fine, the staff were friendly and the breakfast was satisfactory also. The hotel is a 10 minute walk from Liverpool Street Station and just around the corner from Aldgate station, so it's not difficult to get around, however if you are looking for something central, this may not be the best choice.

Forum Posts

City Hotel London

by ingenue_sg

Hello! Has anyone heard of or stayed at the City Hotel (12-20 Osborn Street London E1 6TE)? Is the hotel okay and is its location recommended for a first-time London visitor like myself? Are there also cheap Muslim restaurants very near to the hotel?
Would also be grateful for any recommendation on operators offering the cheapest admission tickets to London attractions as well as those providing cheap out of London tours (Stonehenge, Oxford, etc). Thanks all in advance for your kind advice!

Zulaiza (Singapore)

RE: City Hotel London

by film

The Lahore is one of most well known and also very economical.

That area has a large Muslim community with one of Londons largest mosques, most are from Pakistan and there is no shortage of nice restaurants. It is very busy around and maybe not the most attractive part of London, but it is one the most intersting. Very must the dodgy working class 'East End', the starting place for many different immigrant communities over the centuries, very popular with history walking tours.

RE: City Hotel London

by christine.j

Another way of getting to Oxford and Stonehenge would be the Explorer Days of London Walks. Not as comfortable as a coach, but cheaper and also very good information.!/default.aspx

RE: RE: City Hotel London

by ingenue_sg

Thanks all for your advice. Really appreciate it!

RE: RE: City Hotel London

by kit_mc

London has a very high Muslim population so food shouldn't be much of a problem if it is Halal food that you are concerned about. The Edgware Road, on the western fringes of the West End has a large concentration of restaurants and cafes with a Middle Eastern flavour. In the East End there is a large Bangladeshi community, the area around Brick Lane is well known for curry houses.

Even if it's just junk-food you're looking for, it seems that most imitators of KFC are Muslim owned and will generally have certificates to attest the fact that their food is Halal. If this is something that concerns you, then don't be afraid to ask in the establishment that you're eating in.

London City Hotel

by Herna

We are considering staying at London City Hotel during an upcoming London visit (Feb/March). I can't find any reviews of this hotel here at TripAdvisor, so I would be very happy if anyone has any experiences or information to share.
If you wouldn't recommend this hotel, what other hotels in the Southwark area would you recommend, preferably not above 80£?

RE: London City Hotel

by Herna

Sorry, I of course meant here at VirtualTourist OR at Tripadvisor.

RE: London City Hotel

by leics

Looks ok to me; one or two reviews around if you put it into google (I used london+city+hotel+osborne+review). for example.

RE: RE: London City Hotel

by Herna

Thanks leics, but the hotel we're considering is in Borough High Street in Southwark. (Very confusing names on some of these hotels;))

RE: London City Hotel

by leics

It's not the names, more my cognitive inabilties, I think........... :-)

Can't find any reviews, but it's on the local council website so can't be truly appalling. They've got other Southwark hotels too.

RE: London City Hotel

by Herna

We've taken the chance and booked London City Hotel now, but I still would appreciate hearing from anyone with any experience with this hotel.


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 The City Hotel

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

City Hotel London

Address: 12-20 Osborn St, London, E1 6TE, United Kingdom