There is a wave of excitement and revival in East London’s Stratford. Large, luxurious hotels with enviable food scenes and grand lobbies are eating up all the available space in the area, a branch of V&A will open soon, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is on your doorstep. and has quick connections to the center of the capital. It quickly became a stylish, bustling mini-city with plenty to explore.
Why come here?
Gantry is one of the new hotels making its mark in this part of London. Launching in November 2021, the hotel honors New York’s Flatiron Building, a new design hotel with 291 rooms across 17 floors, with a dedicated sparkling bar, all-day restaurant and sky bar on the 18th floor with panoramic views across the city.
The views from the rooms are perhaps the hotel’s biggest draw, with stunning panoramas of London stretching out in front of you in every direction from huge floor-to-ceiling windows. Inside, the interior is industrial, modern chic – all brick and exposed ceilings, designer lamps, brass touches and large mismatched armchairs. Bathrooms include a rainfall showerhead and Grown Alchemist toiletries, although a shower will need to be reserved in advance. Beds are large and comfortable and it is easy to get a good night’s sleep in this quiet, smart hotel.
The sparkling bar, the Coupe, is gorgeous; a truly classy bar to go for an hour or two before dinner, where guests can choose from some of the finest UK cuisine from revered estates such as Gusbourne and Rathfinny, and has a great reputation. Brief book of cocktails and appetizers.
At Union Social, the main dining spot, waiters are concocting confident, exhilarating cocktails – classics beautifully crafted and elegantly presented, while entrées mystique with wine. The white rum, muju chinotto, basil and fresh lime are really delicious. The drink was created by Walter Pintus, an award-winning mixologist who has participated in some of London’s finest institutions from The Ritz, The Connaught to The Mandrake and most recently The Conduit.
The food on offer suggests that the hotel is still in its infancy and certainly hasn’t reached the same level of brilliance as the neighboring restaurant The Stratford’s. Allegraright across the street, and where Irish head chef Patrick Powell, formerly of Chiltern Firehouse, Wild Honey and Dublin’s L’Ecrivain is delivering a powerful punch into London’s dining scene.
In contrast, the food at Union Social, Gantry’s restaurant is a bit underwhelming. The keftedes, Greek-inspired lamb meatballs, with homemade tzatziki and flatbreads were overwhelmingly disappointing, with meatballs that tasted like chewy mini burgers. The presentation also left much to be desired. It’s the main kind that makes you wish you’d choose something else.
Curiously, the cooked Hampshire grass served with beef cheeks with pressed Lyonnaise potatoes is truly delicious – the meat is tender and plump, sitting in a delicate glass of rich red wine. The toffee pudding with sweet crumbs and vanilla ice cream was delicious, but again, the focaccia and charcuterie selection from the small plate menu sucks – no different than what you can buy from the local supermarket, bonus from its resin and serve upwards.
Breakfast was also quirky – the full breakfast had a distinctly greasy spoon vibe about it, seemed out of place with the beautiful surroundings, the avocado on toast and the eggs was nothing worth it write home.
Having said that, a coffee out on a quiet terrace in the mid-morning sun is quite a 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 its alluring beauty. Home page.
The Gantry is a work in progress, but it is not without promise and potential.
How to set
Entry-level rooms start from £189 room and breakfast in low season and £229 room and breakfast in high season. Suites start from £389 room and breakfast in low season and £429 and breakfast in high season.
The Gantry London, 40 Celebration Ave, East Village, London E20 1DB; thegantrylondon.com
https://www.theweek.co.uk/arts-life/travel/956028/the-gantry-london-hotel-review-stratford Hotel Review: The Gantry, Stratford, London