London, United Kingdom

The Zetter

Price per night from$158.24

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 60 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (GBP113.33), via, using today’s exchange rate.


Slick warehouse conversion


Off-centre Clerkenwell

The Zetter is a hotel that’s all about cutting-edge design, with the clever and ironic contrasts and clashes of modern styles that you’d expect from an establishment embodying London’s eastside renaissance. The flamboyant pink chandelier that greets you in the lobby is a statement of intent, and the bold thinking continues throughout.

Smith Extra

Get this when you book through us:

A selection of cake bites


Photos The Zetter facilities

Need to know


59, including seven rooftop studios.


11am. Earliest check-in, 3pm.


Double rooms from £119.00, including tax at 5 per cent.

More details

Rates exclude breakfast; a cooked veggie breakfast is £12.50, a full English is £13.50 and Continental is £15.50. All breakfast options include bottomless tea or coffee.


Guests missing their daily hit of endorphins can request a day pass to nearby Gym Box for £15.

At the hotel

High-speed Internet access, airport transfers and limo service; massages can be arranged.

Our favourite rooms

A rooftop studio: two are extra-spacious, with large private terraces and views of Sir Norman Foster’s skyscraper, the ‘Gherkin’, and St Paul’s Cathedral.

Packing tips

Your dancing shoes – superclub Fabric is a stumble away.


Hot-water bottles available (with hand-knitted covers).


Are welcome; a cot (free; suitable for under-2s) or an extra bed (free; suitable for children aged 2–16) can be added to the Deluxe King/Twin rooms subject to availability. A child-minding service is also available.

Food and Drink

Photos The Zetter food and drink

Top Table

Ask for a table by the sweeping window – there's no shortage of those.

Dress Code

The area is a magnet for architects and graphic designers: opt for clean, structural lines or bold prints and dark denim.

Hotel restaurant

At breakfast time, hit up the Atrium for bakery-fresh pastries, American-style pancakes, egg-and-bacon-based favourites and, of course, coffee. Then for lunch and dinner, head to the airy ground floor restaurant, with floor-to-ceiling windows, a smattering of tables and quirky potted-plant installations. For lunch, tuck into a juicy Zetter burger with cave-aged cheddar cheese, triple cooked chips and inions rings, or roast Cornish cod with mussels and seaweed crushed potatoes. If you have any space left, return for dinner; start with smoked salmon or chicken liver parfait, then follow up with miso-glazed pork belly with sesame seeds, edemame and charred onions, and finish with dark-chocolate mousse or a selection of English cheeses. Light snacks (sandwiches, charcuterie and English cheese plates, and sharing boards) are also available throughout the day.

Hotel bar

The wine room and bar serves a range of wines, beers and cocktails, cured meats & cheese platters, small plates and bar snacks. There are various other nooks and crannies with brightly coloured walls, low chairs and bold artwork – perfect for a relaxed cocktail or three. The wine and cocktail lists are filled with tempting picks (we like the refreshing strawberry and rhubarb Kir Royale) – stop by during aperitivo hour (6pm to 7pm) for well-priced aperitifs and help-yourself bites from the kitchen. If you're after a particular spirit have a chat to the very clued-up barmen. During the day, it's a members club for collaborative working and in the summer there's  an alfresco dining area with waiter service.

Last orders

Breakfast is served 7am to 11.30am on weekdays and from 7.30 on weekends. Brunch is available on weekends between noon and 3pm. The Zetter restaurant is open daily between noon and 10.30pm.

Room service

Snacks are available 24 hours and you can order the restaurant menu between noon at 10.30pm.


Photos The Zetter location
The Zetter
86-88 Clerkenwell Road
United Kingdom


London Heathrow is technically only a 40-minute drive, but the inner-city traffic crossing eastwards may lengthen this slightly. Stansted is another option, within an hour of the hotel.


There's a frequent train service direct from London Gatwick to Farringdon overground station, which is a 10-minute walk from the hotel. Alternatively hop off the train at King's Cross, a mile and a half from the hotel, with St Pancras International next door for Eurostar escapes to the Continent.


There's easy access to several main roads. including the A1 and A10. The hotel is a 10-minute taxi ride from the West End.

Worth getting out of bed for

Clerkenwell is one of London’s most ye olde parts – in amid hipster coffee joints and big-deal restaurants, you’ll see ancient overspills from the City of London, including the Charterhouse, the Museum of the Order of St John and some very old-school churches. St Paul’s Cathedral, revamped Shakespearean theatre the Globe and regal jailhouse the Tower of London are also easily reached from here. Shoreditch and Bethnal Green are London’s liveliest ‘hoods; the former has louche live-music venues and diverse eateries (Vietnamese, Peruvian, best-of-British), the latter lauded cocktail bars (we like the Last Tuesday Society for the Viktor Wynd curio museum in its basement) and serious craft-brew hangouts. Big-hitter museums include the Geffrye, Sir John Soane’s and the British Museum; and galleries are in abundant supply, whether you’re trawling Shoreditch’s inroads for indie spots (StolenSpace has an excellent eye for up-and-coming talent) or want to see who's hanging at the Tate Modern. And, for one-stop cultural immersion, the Barbican offers dance, song, drama and more – all in a jolie-laide Brutalist shell.

Local restaurants

Head east for super-cheap Vietnamese on Kingsland Road, or cruise Brick Lane for curry. Exmouth Market is a great lane of shops and eateries. We love Moro for Spanish and North African tapas and grills, Berber and Q for shawarma and Coin Laundry for seasonal British fare. From foie gras to smoked eel, Club Gascon on West Smithfield serves fine French fare; St John on St John Street puts colour in the cheeks of carnivores with earthy British cooking. A former working man’s café, the Quality Chop House on Farringdon Road has hard benches but great food. Pub/club/restaurant Smiths of Smithfields on Charterhouse Street is ideal for brunch. Shoreditch satiates appetites in style at Brat, where most dishes come flame-cooked, and Gloria where spaghetti is served in a large wheel of parmesan.

Local cafés

Pop along to Workshop Coffee on Clerkenwell Road for coffee with a kick and amazing brunches (we love the toasted banana bread with espresso mascarpone).

Local bars

The Zetter Townhouse hotel, just across the courtyard from the Zetter, has the cosiest of bars with a madcap cocktail list dreamt up by drinks maestro Tony Conigliaro. Sibling to the sultrily cool cocktail bar Nightjar, Oriole is a romantic frescoed space with two sets of live music a night (three on weekends). If you prefer the enigma of a 'secret' bar, head to Ask For Janice – the staff will look after you very well there. Head to Bethnal Green where masterful mixologists do their thing: Coupette's decadence runs to a champagne piña colada and a white-truffle-laced negroni; Satan's Whiskers (343 Cambridge Heath Road) staff will fill you in on their favourites; and the London Cocktail Club is a great deal of fun.


Photos The Zetter reviews

Anonymous review

It’s with nostalgia that we wander up Clerkenwell Road towards the Zetter. Clerkenwell has come a long way since the Sixties. My father studied at the art school here, and his strongest memory of the area is of the all-pervading aroma from the local tobacco factory. Years later, I attended the same college, but by then all the factories were empty; by the time Mrs Smith attended, a decade later, Clerkenwell was firmly established as a thriving and fashionable London arrondissement – the cigarette fumes now emanating from the many bars and clubs.

We’ve had the Zetter described to us as an ‘urban inn’. It is housed in a Victorian warehouse building that blends in so well with its surroundings that it seems more likely to be a top-end design company. We almost pass right by, then, just as we’re trying to work out how to get in, a glass door glides open. We get the feeling we’ve been let into a secret lair rather than just an exclusive boutique hotel…

Having sworn I’d avoid using the much-abused word ‘cool’, what can I say? That’s exactly what the Zetter is. It’s a hotel that’s all about cutting-edge design, with the clever and ironic contrasts and clashes of modern styles that you’d expect from an establishment embodying London’s eastside renaissance. The flamboyant pink chandelier that greets you in the lobby is a statement of intent, and the bold thinking continues throughout the building. Just off the lobby is a small bar that smacks of Seventies Austrian chalet; wood panelling, floral chairs and cork stools make us smile.

The staff are genuinely warm and charming, and there’s an informality that we find immediately relaxing. But as we rise in the lift, Mrs Smith is most excited about the small touches. As a graphic designer, she appreciates the work of Precious McBane, a playful mix of the contemporary and the classic, used in our quirky key fob and the number on our door, a rooftop studio. (It’s well worth the extra to go high: not only do you get your own balcony, but also views over the London skyline.)

The room is modern and full of light, yet cosy. The fittings are minimal, but ornate flourishes include a Z logo embroidered on an orange blanket, and a delightfully absurd standard lamp. The bathroom has a nautical theme, with a porthole that looks out onto our olive tree on the balcony patio. And, fittingly for Clerkenwell, land of the digerati, the Zetter comes out tops on technology too; there’s nothing you can’t access from your TV, be it the internet, a library of 4,000 songs, or extensive local information. Who needs a butler when you’ve got this?

What’s so special about our room is that it feels like a dream studio apartment. Not folk who like everything to match, we love furnishings like this: surprising, original and a little cheeky. It’s the sort of place former geeks with something to prove should come to, and take some photos of themselves ‘at home’ to post on the 21st-century equivalent of turning up to a school reunion in a flash motor – the thought of anyone belonging in these surrounds would give them insta-cred.

Our favourite touch, oddly, isn’t anything costly or showy; it’s actually the water. To our amazement, the handsome bottle that stands before us is full of aqua that’s been pumped from aquifers 1,500 feet below us. Sure, you wouldn’t expect EC1 to be giving the Swiss Alps a run for its H20, but before you wince at the thought of sipping from East End sewers, let us add that this is an area whose name is derived from the Clerks Well, which in centuries past was revered for its health-promoting qualities. Anyway, nutritious or not, London water has never tasted this good.

After such a salubrious start to our stay, we head off for a few aperitifs. On our way out we discover the hotel’s most striking piece of design – its back stairway. We’re overwhelmed by the raucous carpet and vivid walls: decoration at its boldest. The fact that the red gloss walls clash with Mrs Smith’s outfit is all that prevents us from taking a photo. Our first stop in the outside world is Exmouth Market – a strip of boutiques, bars and eateries that is, unusually for London, mainly alfresco.

As we walk past a few old haunts, memories of misspent afternoons flood back, and I can’t help keeping an eye out for one of my alcoholic lecturers. Convinced we spy one at the bar of an old boozer, we decide to have a butcher’s at Medcalf instead. (An appropriate rhyming-slang slip, as that’s exactly what it used to be.) It’s now a laid-back bar/restaurant, as is customary for this terrain.

Continuing on the meatery-turned-eatery theme (when you’re Eastside, part of each hip hang-out’s charm is often its previous incarnation, carnivorous or otherwise), we think it fitting to head to our namesake-for-the-night, Smiths of Smithfields, a former meat warehouse turned into four floors of restaurants and bars. It’s Saturday night, and Clerkenwell is livening up, though it’s not too heaving. (Local workers party hard on Friday nights, whereas the rest of the weekend is more relaxed.) After rum cocktails in the huge embrace of Smiths’ red-leather banquettes, we stroll back to the Zetter’s beautiful high-ceilinged restaurant, with its huge 180-degree curved windows overlooking a cobbled square.

After dinner we have the best intentions of reliving our student days on a nearby dancefloor (several clubs are within walking distance, and Hoxton is a brief cab ride east), but four courses of delicious Modern Italian have put paid to that, and our room with a view is too tempting. As we bemoan our bodies not being as young as they were, we return to find that the hue of the pink fluorescent light in our bedroom’s ceiling is wonderfully flattering, and feel sufficiently rejuvenated to trawl the TV for music to have a nightcap to (admittedly opting for less BPMs than we might once have done).

If we didn’t go to bed with ringing in our ears, we’re only too delighted to wake up to it; there aren’t many sounds in London more romantic than the bells of St Paul’s on a Sunday. Just as I comment what a unique memory our leisurely breakfast on the balcony will make, I notice Mrs Smith smuggling a rather-more-real souvenir into her bag. Once I’ve convinced her to not pinch the offbeat ashtray, we reluctantly head down to check out. Though we might be leaving the Zetter empty-handed, we don’t leave empty-headed. It has left a vibrant stamp on our consciousness of London. ‘Maybe it was something in the water,’ smiles Mrs Smith.

Price per night from $158.24

Book now