Native Manchester pays homage first to the city’s rich industrial history: the Grade II listed Victorian-era warehouse retains much of its original underpinnings, including exposed brick walls, jack arches and cast-iron columns. And then, in rendering those columns pigeon blue, there’s more than just a passing nod to the city’s musical history, too – specifically the Haçienda – in its cavernous warehouse atrium. Still, here is a hybrid of home and hotel: each loft-style room has a kitchenette and space for entertaining, but there’s a restaurant, bar, gym, cinema room and lounge downstairs, too. So, if the architecture is a reminder of Manchester’s past, you only need to stop by the ground-floor bar and DJ booth for the city’s expressive, life’s-too-short attitude towards the present.
Get this when you book through us:
An arrival cocktail each at Ducie Street Warehouse Bar & Lounge
162 open-plan apartment-style rooms, including 43 suites.
11am. Earliest check-in, 3pm.
Double rooms from £93.60, including tax at 20 per cent.
Rates don’t include breakfast, but it can be purchased for £15 a person.
The revamp of this Grade II listed, 1867 red-brick building was led by Archer Humphryes Architects – a London-based firm that were keen to retain as many of the original warehouse characteristics as possible. You’ll spot barrel-arched brick ceilings, exposed piping, soft-blue cast-iron columns, pillar-box red apartment doors and an exposed skeletal frame. Bespoke Conran furniture and Marset lighting add warmth to the solid foundations. The hotel atrium and glazed first-floor screen mean the ground floor space is bathed in gentle Northern Light from above, thanks to sightlines up to sky lights in the warehouse roof.
At the hotel
Restaurant, bar, terrace, cinema room, all-day deli, coffee shop and bakery, WiFi throughout the hotel, co-working spaces, gym classes. In rooms: WiFi, smart TVs, Bramley bath products, fully-equipped kitchen with dishwasher, microwave-oven, fridge and freezer, cutlery, pots and pans, locally-sourced Blossom coffee, tea-making kit, fresh milk
Our favourite rooms
We love the premium one bedrooms – there’s plenty of room for two, and enough space for guests as well. Corner rooms are the best-lit: the bedrooms have the same out-facing windows from the original building, meaning lazy mornings under the duvet are light and bright.
Bring outfits that can take you from lifting, to lounging, to lunching.
Head to the bottom floor for Native’s award-winning gym with 21 classes spanning boxing, barre and breath training. Try a yoga and meditation class, handstand lesson or strength session – Native guests get 35 per cent off class prices.
Native is seriously pup-friendly. There’s no extra charge for paws (you’ll just need to sign a form to cover any damages), and a dog-friendly film is shown every Monday in the Mini Cini (think Lady and the Tramp, A Dog’s Purpose etc.). See more pet-friendly hotels in Manchester .
Two-bedroom apartments are great for families, or opt for interconnecting rooms if you’re travelling as a larger group (just contact the hotel to arrange). Family-friendly movies are played in the cinema room every Saturday.
Sustainable products and green initiatives are a focus throughout Native hotels. Full-sized toiletries are used in replacement of miniatures (and the products are Bramley, a British brand using natural ingredients and recyclable packaging). Metal straws, recyclable packaging and local suppliers are chosen wherever possible, and your morning brew is made with Blossom coffee – a carbon-neutral caffeine roaster.
Couples will like the corner table on the right-hand side of the restaurant – it’s close to the open kitchen pass but more enclosed and cosy than other tables. Larger groups can take to the feasting table, which seats up to 20 people.
Flares, fitted dresses, flat caps: anything expressive to match the characteristic Northern Quarter.
The open pass in the restaurant is constantly a-buzz: there’s a constant stream of sociable sharing plates and European tapas-style dishes flying out towards tucked-away dining tables. During the week, settle in with some friends and a sizeable spread: dishes include lobster macaroni cheese; chorizo with romesco and toasted almonds; heavily salt-flaked padrón peppers; and five-spice ox cheek croquettes. The Sunday roast is a real wow-factor here. Choose from a fall-off-the-bone leg of lamb, shorthorn beef sirloin, corn-fed chicken, or vegan roast. Sides include year-round pigs in blankets (they’re not just for Christmas), spiced apple braised red cabbage, and salted caramel piccolo parsnips. There’s a separate cauliflower cheese menu with eight variations of the molten good stuff: truffle topped, garlic and herb crumbed, or totally vegan. And that’s just the main restaurant. Visit the beautifully-tiled Counter for coffee, Pot Kettle Black pastries and Ducie’s bespoke canned cocktails; or Gooey for famously decadent cookies and doughnuts. You can dine alfresco, too, in the outdoor terrace backing onto Manchester’s old canal – complete with striped umbrellas to shelter you from the somewhat elusive Manchester sun.
A standalone bar takes pride of place on the ground floor, with communal tables, caramel-coloured sofas and black leather booths dotted around the perimeter. Try the DSW bloody mary, a classic espresso martini, or the breakfast margarita (citrus jam, Ocho tequila, spiced honey and lime). The space comes alive at night with live music Thursday–Sunday, and Saturday nights are DJ-helmed: Manchester’s varied deck-spinners take over with disco, house and garage.
The Counter kicks off early with pastries and coffee from 7am.The restaurant and bar close at 10pm throughout the week, extended to 1am on Fridays and Saturdays. The all-important Sunday roast slot is 12–8pm.
Native Manchester is on Ducie Street in the voguish Northern Quarter, just minutes from Manchester Piccadilly station.
Manchester Airport is a 15–20 minute train journey from Piccadilly station, or a 25-minute drive.
Trains between London Euston and Manchester Piccadilly run frequently, and take two and a half hours. Native is a three-minute walk from the station, and a five-minute walk from a network of trams that take you all over the city.
Manchester is about four hours by car from London and there’s a secure underground car park beneath the hotel, operated by yourparkingspace.com – rates start at £25 for 48 hours.
Worth getting out of bed for
Innumerable bars, restaurants, galleries and museums make up Manchester’s streets. Step straight out into the Northern Quarter: a jumble of vintage shops, indie record stores, cafés and bars. Rummage for old-school wares at Pop Boutique, shop for denim on Tib Street, or pick up discs in Piccadilly Records and Eastern Bloc. St John’s Gardens is a pretty green spot, or head to Old Trafford to cheer on Manchester United. Five listed buildings make up the Museum of Science and Industry– filled with exhibits that tell the story of British industry in a way that only Manchester can. The Royal Exchange Theatre has had many uses: as the Royal Exchange, a World War Two casualty room, now a hub of Mancunian theatre. Catch a classic – Oscar Wilde or Bill Shakespeare – or explore some of the excellent new writing that the Exchange embraces. Make sure to check out the original trading board, showing the closing figures from the day the Exchange shut for good in 1968. At sunset, set up shop at one of Castlefield’s waterfront bars, and round off your day dancing til the early hours in Canal Street’s Gay Village.
Try Taiwanese bao or mozzarella-laden pizza slices at indoor food market Mackie Mayor (on proper plates, too). Head to the Northern Quarter’s Koffee Pot for hearty breakfasts hailing from all corners of the UK, or to Moose for US-style brunch (eight styles of pancakes, eggs every way, burritos, hot dogs and even a doughnut burger). Enter Australasia via a sci-fi-esque glass prism, and descend into a cream-hued subterranean space with bleached brick walls and bare-limbed trees. Artfully plated fare hails from Australia and the Pacific Rim – choose from sushi, steaks or sizzling fish cooked on the Robata grill. For more interior flora, try Tattu, where beef-and-foie-gras gyoza, soy-glazed wagyu and lobster prawn toasts are served under a flowering cherry blossom.
There are plenty of trendsetting caffeine spots in the Northern Quarter. Find quality brews ground and roasted in Manchester at friendly Ezra and Gil; or finely-tuned craft coffee at Ancoats Coffee Co. – a caffeine-lovers sanctuary in an industrial red-brick warehouse. Trove’s breakfasts (and sourdough slices) are legendary, and made with organic, locally sourced ingredients. Evelyn’s Café Bar on Tib Street branches out on brunches: try North African shakshuka and Korean chicken-and-egg rolls. Takk MCR is an Icelandic-inspired coffee shop (we love the single-origin coffee from the Barn in Berlin). If you like your leaves a little looser, North Tea Power serves an aromatic array of blends in a rustic communal setting with hefty timber furnishings and exposed grinders.
The spirited nightlife of Manchester is world-renowned, and for good reason. Oast House’s ale inventory includes everything from IPA and lager to Trappist. The pints are served in an offbeat pub amid the gleaming towers of Spinningfields. Then there’s Marble Arch – an attractive city pub with original Victorian tiling and a chequerboard floor, with house-brew taps lining the bar. Groups will love Escape to Freight Island: a former freight depot rebuilt as a food market with a unique selection of bars – including an intimate wine bar, neighbourhood cocktail spot, and craft beer tap room. As the night progresses, take your pick from Gorilla (niche music acts, comedy nights and a gin parlour), Deaf Institute (rock and indie gigs), or Native’s own ground-floor DJ sets.
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this design-led aparthotel in Manchester’s Northern Quarter and unpacked their vintage records and flat caps, a full account of their city break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Native Manchester…
Manchester is iconic, and so is Ducie Street Warehouse – the colossal Grade II listed building that now houses a ground-floor venue in which you might find yourself working, working out or working your way through a three-course meal, all in the space of a day. Seven floors of elegant aparthotel rooms sit above, separated by a glass screen at first-floor level that overlooks the buzz below. Solid parquet flooring, uber-comfortable beds and vibrant velvet textures are met with blue and brass kitchens and crisp black-tiled bathrooms: there’s so much going on with the interiors here, and yet it works – much like Manchester itself, in fact. Despite the central location, the rooms are quiet and somewhat refined – a sometimes welcome respite from this music-obsessed, football-mad city. That said, should you wish to get straight to Manchester’s much-mythologised nightlife, some of the best in the business take residence at the downstairs bar, be it live music come early evening or table stomping come the DJ sets of the early hours.