If you saw my Instagram Stories last week you’ll know that I took an afternoon of work on Wednesday and whizzed up to Manchester staying in the most amazing Airbnb overnight. It was an absolute honour to be invited by the lovely Medina at Grillo Designs to the launch of her lighting collaboration with Iconic Lights and I LOVE the opportunity to meet some of my social media buddies whenever I can.
The train from London Euston takes just over 2 hours so it’s the easiest journey and armed with train snacks and episodes of the new season of The Affair downloaded onto my ipad the time whizzed by. That said, I had no plans to head back to London on the same evening. The train prices are pretty crazy and I didn’t want to cut my time at the party short.
Thankfully Airbnb to the rescue. I’ve only used them once before even though I know they’re the standard go-to for most holiday goers. Pete’s a little cautious when it comes to accommodation and prefers recognised hotel chains to feel comfortable. We stayed in an amazing pre-war Budapest apartment back in 2015 but that was my one and only dabble.
When I travel solo though I’m a lot more adventurous and it became apparent that there was a winner when I searched the Airbnb website for a one night stay. The reviews were absolutely amazing and from the pictures it looked completely up my street. It’s about 15 minutes from Manchester Piccadilly station by taxi (although be patient with the traffic, it makes London look traffic-free) and easy to find.
Located in the historic Castlefield area which is undergoing huge redevelopment, the apartment is set across two floors in a low-rise stylish new block. There is a convenience shop a few meters away and a bar for breakfast/drinks/dinner too. I loved the light from the floor to ceiling windows over the industrial landscape, hinting at Manchester’s past and what’s to come.
And the room, OH the room. It is perfect with every touch you could possibly imagine already thought of. It’s clear hosts Paul & David have an exceptionally stylish eye from the artwork on the walls to the parrots adorning every surface. The bed is incredibly comfy (my first time on a memory foam mattress) with a snuggle duvet and more pillows that I’ve ever seen.
Wi-fi is fast and free, plus an in-room coffee maker and even little chocolates by the bed. Post hotels eat your heart out. This is Airbnb on a grand scale. The room also has it’s own private bathroom with shower over the bath, towels, face wipes and cotton buds. It really felt like a home from home and the hosts were so kind and friendly. The other bedroom in the apartment belongs to them and upstairs is the most amazing open plan living space with balconies on either side, kitchen, living and dining area.
The guest book was full of anecdotes of earlier guests who had stayed there and enjoyed a glass of wine and chatter with their hosts and pretty much everyone saying it was the best Airbnb they had ever found. Sadly my stay was all too short and I was in Manchester for less than 24 hours but I now know where I’ll be heading next time.