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The best cheap hotels in central London

Stays in central London hotels don't have to be expensive. Here's our pick of the best cheap options

By Time Out editors
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‘Cheap central London hotel’ may sound like an oxymoron, as the closer you get to the centre, the higher the price. But we’ve discovered some genuinely cheap hotels in central London, from Mimi’s ‘minis’ in Soho and Hoxton’s stylish ‘shoeboxes’ in Holborn to tech-smart pads.

The best cheap hotels in central London

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Mimi's Hotel Soho

Hotels Soho

In the heart of Soho, Mimi’s modern ‘minis’ cram everything you need into seven square metres, including a double bed with Frette linen, and a rainforest shower and Molton Brown products in the bathroom, plus free newspapers and bottled water. The hotel has its own stylish bar that morphs from breakfast area to cocktail lounge, and beyond all that, Soho beckons. A ‘mini’ double, including free Wi-Fi, starts from £109.65.

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The Z hotel Piccadilly

Hotels Leicester Square

Rooms may be a squeeze, but what a location – just off the Haymarket in Piccadilly. Minimalist styling includes a wall-mounted Smart TV, plus a tiny en suite wetroom with power shower, and there’s free Wi-Fi, tea- and coffee-making facilities, and, rather marvellously, free wine and cheese available in the lobby every evening between 5pm and 8pm. Prices start at £69.

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California Hotel

Hotels B&Bs King’s Cross

Less than a minute’s walk from King’s Cross station, the California is a stylish B&B comprising four converted Georgian townhouses. The 60 individually designed rooms include the cosy ‘small double’ with en suite bathroom and Aqua Viva toiletries. Rates include full breakfast and a free drink in the bar, plus use of lounge and private terrace. More trendy bars and restaurants are within five minutes’ walk. A small double, including Wi-Fi and complimentary welcome drink, starts from £89.

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Tune Hotel - London, Westminster

Hotels Waterloo

One of five branches across London, this Tune is a minute’s walk from Big Ben, Westminster and plentiful river attractions. Like the others, the vibe is non-fussy and pretty much everything, aside from the bed, is an optional add-on, but ‘Favourite’ rates (for as little as £10 extra) include TV, Wi-Fi, towels and toiletries. Basic doubles start around £74.

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The Hoxton Holborn

Hotels Boutique hotels Holborn

Hip Hoxton Holborn deserves credit for great design values and plenty of nice touches, such as Pen and Ink toiletries, fresh milk in the fridges, and even free bike hire. A ‘shoebox’ room can be had for well under £100 depending on availability – we found one at £89 for a Sunday in late February. Thanks to an in-house coffee shop and chicken shack, the lobby area is always buzzing.

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Premier Inn London Leicester Square

Hotels Leicester Square

In spite of the excellent location, it’s possible to get a double room here for as little as £109 (depending on availability), and, sticking with the Premier Inn formula, you can expect clean, no-frills, small but comfortable en suite rooms with free Wi-Fi and tea- and coffee-making facilities. A bountiful buffet breakfast is extra, but kids aged 15 and under eat and stay free with paying adults.

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St Giles Hotel & Leisure Club

Hotels Bloomsbury

While the lobby and reception area are being updated (until March 2017) guests get free Wi-Fi, and use of the nearby fitness club and full-size pool. Rooms, with a desk and en suite bathroom, won’t win any design prizes, but the location is perfect for Tottenham Court Road tube station and shopping on Oxford Street. Standard doubles from £87.

Hub London Covent Garden

Hotels Covent Garden

In the heart of theatreland, the USP at Premier Inn’s offshoot, the Hub, is cleverly designed mini-rooms – slide-out desk, under-bed storage – with everything, from booking it to turning off the lights, controlled via an app on your phone or tablet. The app also brings to life a London map on your bedroom wall displaying mini area guides. This keeps prices low, and techies happy. Doubles from £86.

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Travelodge Covent Garden

Bang in the heart of Covent Garden, this contemporary high-rise hotel has attractive modern rooms with en suite bathrooms and tea- and coffee-making facilities, with doubles from an unbeatable £59. For a little extra (around £10), Wi-Fi and a buffet breakfast are included (children eat for free). An on-site cafe/bar is available for lunch and dinner.

Imperial Bloomsbury

Rooms are traditionally designed – think patterned carpets and curtains – but a reasonably priced 3-star hotel close to Russell Square is a rare find. What’s more, a double room from £99 includes free Wi-Fi and complimentary breakfast (full English or continental). There are three bars, a stylish café, and it’s handy for the British Museum.

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