IMAGE VIA INHABIT
While many hotels merely nod to wellness by adding Bran Flakes to the breakfast buffet or offering a “fitness centre” comprised of a single creaky cross-trainer in a basement corner, local destination Inhabit has health and well-being at its core.
Located on a quiet Paddington side street, this 89-room hotel has branded itself as “a place to rest and rejuvenate” and boy, do they deliver. But beyond providing a urban retreat where health-minded travelers can lay their heads, founders Nadira Lalji, a third-generation hotelier, and her cousin Rahim, also wanted to create a place that was also environmentally-conscious. So, you'll find tables created by sustainable company The Goldfinger Factory and signs offering Keep Cups to borrow for the day — even the toilet paper is eco-friendly.
You'll also see that nature runs throughout: there’s foliage in abundance, raffia rugs blanketing the floors, and sleek, wooden furniture filling the rooms. Nadira says creating a “home-like space” was the intention behind Inhabit’s décor, but most of us can only dream of living somewhere as beautifully-curated as this hotel. Through a bright, welcoming reception area, is the Library, a chilled-out space with velvet sofas, textured wall art, and sculptural lights. The book selection emanates wellness, with volumes dedicated to medicinal plants, Danish hygge, and awe-inspiring mountains.
A Scandi-chic aesthetic steers the hotel’s interior, where bedrooms are fresh and unfussy, but include thoughtful touches like in-room aromatherapy, Ren toiletries, and Casper mattresses. All-in-all it’s a long way from the bland, corporate hotels many travellers are used to, instead, offering an engaging, serene space where you can restore and refresh your mind and body.
Once you’ve checked into your room, it’s time to look at the daily schedule of activities available, which include everything from meditation sessions, Pilates workouts, and various types of yoga (think Vinyasa, Hatha, Yin, and slow flows).
You'll unroll your mat in a peaceful, plant-filled atrium featuring cabinets for your belongings and an entire wall strewn with handcrafted dream-catchers. Even if you’re not staying at Inhabit, it’s worth dropping in on a Saturday morning for Victoria Woodhall’s brilliant Vinyasa practice, which will stretch out and energise your entire body through a series of movements that harmonise breath and body. And, if you need a quick zen boost, there’s a meditation pod upstairs, where you can pop on headphones and listen to meditations from ‘Ready Set Go’ to ‘Sweet Dreams’. The best part? You don’t have to be a guest to book in. Just pay the £17 drop-in fee and you’re all set.
If you're looking for something a bit more intense, the hotel also features a small but well-equipped gym — the highlight being its luxury Peloton Bike that allows you to stream live classes with leading instructors.
Of course, when you're not relaxing or sweating it out in the studio, you'll need something to nourish you. For that, Inhabit has turned to Devon-based Yeotown Kitchen, and the results are a real treat.
We heartily recommend starting with one of their adaptogenic lattes — the Red Velvet made with beetroot, cacao, ginger, and cinnamon is a must. Though, if a full-on meal is what you’re after, you won’t be disappointed by the menu’s selection of delicious vegetarian dishes. Take your pick of everything from eggs on sourdough toast with dairy-free hollandaise to spelt truffle pasta with mushrooms. The paleo cookies deserve a special mention, too — but be warned, it’s hard to stop at one.
Who needs an expensive holiday away when you have the ultimate self-care sanctuary in your own back yard? So, leave your passport at home and book a few nights at Inhabit — this is the staycation deserve.
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