The hotel scene in Manchester continues to grow in stature. Ambitious hoteliers and the city’s wealth of impressive ex-industrial buildings means a heady mix of classy lodgings, from cosy boutique offerings with atmospheric cocktail bars to 21st century stunners with the city's best restaurants. Whether you want to see the city from the dizzying heights of the Hilton Manchester Deansgate, marvel at the Victorian splendour of the Principal or embrace the beautiful game at Hotel Football, you’ll find somewhere special to stay with our selection of the best hotels in Manchester.
Manchester's best hotels
Part of Manchester’s Eclectic Hotels group (which also owns King Street Townhouse, among others), Great John Street is a red-brick boutique hotel. Once a school, the building now houses a richly decorated set of bedrooms and suites, two bars (one of them rooftop) and some interesting event spaces. The afternoon teas are worth noting: there's one for children, and another for 'gents' which includes a scotch egg and a mini burger. Handy for the Spinningfields area, and close to the Opera House.
Slap bang in the Northern Quarter, the Abel Heywood is a gastropub with boutique hotel-style rooms. These are small but well appointed, and there's free wifi. Breakfast is extra (though a bargain), and is worth having – a big choice includes the Manchester fry-up, featuring Bury black pudding. What's more, it's served until noon. It's an easy walk to most of central Manchester from the hotel, including music venues such as Manchester Arena.
The Townhouse describes itself as a 'baby grand hotel', an apt moniker for an upmarket establishment with just 40 bedrooms including five suites. What was the Manchester Salford Trustees Bank (built in 1872) has been transformed into one of the city's most charming hotels. The central location, stylish decor and the atmospheric King Street Tavern restaurant – not to mention the little infinity pool in the spa area – combine to make an alluring package.
Situated close to Old Trafford football stadium, Hotel Football is the brainchild of ex-Manchester United players Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs. It's an ultra-modern space; unsurprisingly the decor is masculine – all clean lines and monochrome shades, with splashes of strong colour. Equally unsurprisingly, in-room TVs offer all the Sky Sports and BT Sports channels.
For a greener, quieter option outside the city centre, this 27-bedroom outpost of the Eclectic Hotel group hits the spot. Rooms in the modernised Victorian villa are individually decorated, in classic boutique, hotel-chic style. The smaller bedrooms have stand-alone baths in the rooms, while the largest suites are more like small flats – the biggest is 720sq ft. As well as a residents' bar, a couple of lounges and a terrace, there's also a small gym.
Nicely placed for Manchester Piccadilly station and the shopping and drinking delights of the Northern Quarter, Abode is housed in a 19th century textile factory and retains some handsome period features. Bedrooms and suites are decorated in a quietly quirky, modern style; suites come with extras such as Nespresso machines and Bose sound systems. There are two bars and a modern European restaurant.
The grande dame of Manchester hotels, the Midland opened in 1903 and was thoroughly revamped a few years ago. The public spaces look a treat, and the rooms are luxurious but contemporary. Two well-regarded restaurants and a state-of-the-art spa (opened in 2015) complete the picture. A carving in the entrance commemorates this as the place where Mr Rolls met Mr Royce. Afternoon tea here is something of a tradition.
This branch of the UK chain was one of the first boutique-style hotels to open in the city. Carved out of an Edwardian warehouse, it's a handsome building, and even though the hotel holds 180 rooms (some of them suites), it manages to retain a slightly alternative vibe, with splashes of colour enlivening the decor. There's a bar and a brasserie on the premises, as well as a small spa.
After a £25 million revamp, what was the Palace hotel relaunched as the Principal at the end of 2016. The splendid Victorian red-brick edifice, once the HQ of the Refuge Assurance Company, has magnificent features (including a ballroom) and 271 elegant bedrooms. A big attraction is Refuge, a bar-restaurant collaboration with Manchester's Volta, a huge space which manages to be both imposing and inclusive. It's handy for the Palace Theatre and Oxford Road railway station. Pricy but impressive.
If you’re in search of glamour, look no further. Even in a city with no shortage of monumental buildings, Hotel Gotham has a head start; it's housed in an ex-Midland Bank designed by Edwin Lutyens. The 60 rooms (five of them suites) are spacious, and decked out with a luxurious mix of faux fur throws, brass fittings and jewel-coloured soft furnishings. There's a restaurant, and a club-bar with a roof terrace.
Across the road from Manchester Piccadilly station (and connected to it by a walkway) the Doubletree is a super-comfortable, modern hotel. Decor is international-chain-hotel-bland, but the floor to ceiling windows mean the bedrooms are full of light, and the views from the upper floors are spectacular. There's an in-house bar and a restaurant, plus a fitness centre, and both the Northern Quarter and Canal Street are an easy walk away.
Situated midway between Deansgate and Oxford Road stations, Innside is a shiny new hotel in a revamped area, with big modern rooms and suites. There's a restaurant, and a Wellness Suite which holds a sauna, a steam room and a gym. It won't suit fans of historic buildings, but prices are keen, and the location is walking distance from most central Manchester attractions.
The Hilton occupies the lower 23 floors of Manchester's tallest building, Beetham Tower (a 47-floor giant). It's a swanky option, right in the centre of the city, at a sweeter price than you'd expect (though note that there's a charge for wifi). Bedrooms are sleekly corporate. Amenities include a pool, sauna and steam room, but the big attraction is Cloud 23, a sky bar with wow-factor knockout views. One to get dressed up for.
Santiago Calatrava's Trinity Bridge offers an elegant introduction to this striking waterside hotel, which is situated just across the river Irwell in Salford. Built in 2001 and refurbished in 2015-16, the Lowry holds 165 rooms, all furnished to a five-star standard, as well as glamorous restaurants and bars, a spa, a gym and a hair salon. Every guest is guaranteed a parking space, but it's a short walk (under ten minutes) to Manchester city centre.
It couldn't be described as cosy, but the 338 rooms here are a decent size, and come with little extras such as iPod docking stations and free wifi, as well as all the usual amenities expected from a four-star hotel. The spa is a big draw, with a steam room, sauna and roster of therapies and massages, but note that unless you've booked a treatment, there's an entry fee (£10 Monday-Thursday, £20 Friday-Sunday).
Yet another magnificent Manchester building – in this case, the former Free Trade Hall – now houses a top-notch hotel. The Radisson Blu Edwardian offers five-star luxury without pretension. It's huge, with 263 bedrooms and suites (the latter offering far-reaching views of the landscape below), two restaurants and a champagne bar. There's also a spa, with a gym, pool, sauna, steam room and whirlpool bath.
A well priced hotel in Manchester's Chinatown. It's part of an international chain, and has a clean, corporate look, but it's actually a good place for children and pets to stay. Dogs are charged at £15 a night, while families (up to two adults and two children) can sleep over for under £100. There's free wifi, a restaurant and bar, and a fitness centre.
Velvet hotel grew out of the already existing Velvet bar and restaurant, and is an established favourite in Manchester's Gay Village. Decor throughout is OTT, creating an opulent but fun vibe. Velvet is independent and has just 19 bedrooms, making this a great choice for anyone bored with big, bland chain hotels; it's also an easy walk from Manchester Piccadilly station.
An 'aparthotel', Roomzzz offers serviced rooms and suites with kitchenettes in the city centre. Decor is pared-down and contemporary; facilities include a microwave and a dishwasher. There are communal washer-dryers too. The larger suites are more like apartments, mostly on two levels. Continental breakfast is included in the price, as is wifi, and guests can also access deals on parking and local gym day membership.
This Marriott-owned hotel in Salford ticks a lot of boxes. The reasonably priced rooms are a decent size, and come with free wifi and breakfast. There's a fitness centre, a restaurant and bar, and various parking options. It's also very handily placed if you're visiting Old Trafford, the Lowry Arts Centre or the Imperial War Museum North, or working in MediaCity, all of which are walking distance from the hotel.