There is a burst of excitement and renewal in Stratford, East London. Large, swanky hotels with enviable dining scenes and grand lobbies gobble up available space in the area, a branch of the V&A is due to open soon, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is right next door and there are fast connections to the center of the capital. It is quickly becoming a bustling and stylish mini-metropolis with plenty to discover.
why come here
The Gantry is one of those new hotels making its mark in this part of London. Launched in November 2021, the hotel, which pays homage to New York’s Flatiron Building, is a new design hotel comprising 291 rooms spread over 17 floors, with a dedicated sparkling bar, an all-day restaurant and a sky bar on the 18th floor. floor with panoramic city views.
The views from the rooms are perhaps the hotel’s biggest selling point, with magnificent panoramas of London stretching out before you in all directions from huge picture windows. Inside, the interiors have a sort of industrial, modern chic — all exposed brick and ceilings, designer lamps, bronze accents, and chunky mismatched armchairs. Bathrooms have rainfall showers and Grown Alchemist toiletries, but if you want a bath you’ll need to book a suite. The beds are large and comfortable and it is very easy to get a great night’s sleep in this quiet and elegant hotel.
The bubbly bar, Coupe, is gorgeous; a really stylish bar to while away an hour or two before dinner, where patrons can choose from some of the UK’s finest bubbly from revered estates such as Gusbourne and Rathfinny, and there’s a concise list of bubbly cocktails and Spritz.
At Union Social, the main restaurant, waiters concoct uplifting and confident cocktails – the classics are beautifully concocted and elegantly presented, while the mystical smash with white rum, muju chinotto, fresh basil and lime is truly delicious. The drinks were created by Walter Pintus, an award-winning mixologist who has been involved with some of London’s top institutions, from the Ritz and Connaught to the Mandrake and most recently the Conduit.
The food on offer suggests the hotel is still in a nascent stage of its life, and certainly hasn’t quite reached the dazzling heights of its neighbour, the Stratford’s Allegra restaurant, which is just across the street. out of the way, and where Irish chef Patrick Powell, formerly of Chiltern Firehouse, Wild Honey and The Writer of Dublin is making a mighty punch on the London culinary scene.
On the other hand, the food at Union Social, the Gantry’s restaurant is a bit hit or miss. The keftedes, Greek-inspired lamb meatballs, with homemade tzatziki and flatbread are hugely disappointing, the meatballs taste like little hard and chewy burgers. The presentation also leaves something to be desired. This is the type of hand that leaves you wishing you had gone for something else.
Oddly, the slow-cooked Hampshire grass-fed beef cheeks with pressed Lyonnaise potatoes are really, really good – beautifully meaty and soft, plump sitting in a rich, exquisite red wine jus. The sticky caramel pudding with sweet crumble and vanilla ice cream is good, but again the focaccia and charcuterie selection on the small plates menu is surprisingly poor – much like something you might buy at your local supermarket , price of its plastic and serve top.
The breakfast is also odd – the full breakfast has a distinct greasy spoon vibe to it, which seems incongruous with the beautiful setting, the avocado on toast and eggs is nothing out of the ordinary.
That said, a coffee on the quiet terrace in the mid-morning sun is a rather pleasant treat, and an artisan food market is due to open later this year – perhaps by then the food on offer will be ready to match. to its glamorous side. residence.
The portal is a work in progress, but it is not without promise or potential.
How to book
Entry-level rooms start from £189 bed and breakfast in low season and £229 bed and breakfast in high season. Suites are from £389 bed and breakfast in low season and £429 bed and breakfast in high season.
The Gantry London, 40 Celebration Ave, East Village, London E20 1DB; thegantrylondon.com