By: Leah Sinclair
If you’re looking to recharge, a microbreak might be just what the doctor ordered.
Sometimes, all we need is a day away from our normal routine to get back into tip-top shape.
Whether it’s spending 24 hours in new surroundings, engaging in activities that aren’t a part of your day to day life or sitting back and reconnecting with loved ones, this opportunity to tap out from our day-to-day and, instead, tap into ourselves, can provide the much-needed boost we need to push ourselves through the rest of the week feeling refreshed and revitalised.
This quest for daybreaks has increased since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Research from the retail consultancy team at Harper Dennis Hobb found 83% of Brits would prefer a local staycation rather than travelling abroad – and it seems people are taking this a step further with microbreaks.
Microbreaks are a variation of the staycation boom over the past few years, but instead of taking a trip far away from home and staying there for a night or two, the microbreak is short and sweet, as you spend a day or one night at a hotel close to home.
The benefit of these microbreaks is the ability to relax for a fraction of the price as you fully switch off from the world for a day while staying local.
This makes it particularly appealing to those who want to take care of their own wellbeing but don’t have the luxury of getting away at a minute’s notice.
“There has been a surge in local tourism as a result of the pandemic,” says David Lebée, CEO of Dayuse.
“After months of lockdown and travel restrictions, the British public is in need of new experiences. Booking a hotel room for a few hours in your own neighbourhood is a genuinely compelling option for those in search of a quick getaway to satiate their inner desire to escape or a change in scenery without breaking the bank.”
Dayuse, which was created in France, is an app that allows individuals to book a hotel for the day where they can have a few hours’ respite at a hotel close to their home to rest and revitalise, providing a quick and effective way to break up your day and add a better work/life balance to your week.
“People have become more concerned with their health and taking care of and treating themselves or just getting a change of scenery, which may benefit your mental health,” says Lebée.
“After months of lack of privacy and social gatherings, microbreaks are an opportunity to recharge or reconnect.
“No valid passport needed, no suitcase to pack, no long trip to suffer; just a handbag with a swimsuit and a charger.”
“After months of lockdown and travel restrictions, the British public is in need of new experiences”
Those looking to indulge in a microbreak have an array of options at their disposal for maximum relaxation.
“You can book a treatment at the spa, order room service, enjoy some drinks at the bar or have some bubbles brought to you.
“You can also make use of the facilities included in your “daycay”, like bringing your swimsuit to do some laps, running on the treadmill or indulging in a steamy bath and making use of the luxurious amenities. Lastly, don’t forget your vanity bag with the latest samples to test, your sleeping mask for a well-deserved nap and your Netflix password.”
So if you’re looking to get your microbreak on, we’ve listed a few hotels that will help create the daycay you’re looking for.
When you think of The Standard, there are a few things that come to mind.
From the buzzy atmosphere and calendar full of must-attend events to the vibrant and playful interiors, The Standard has a reputation as a hotspot in the heart of the city with some of the coolest clientele.
But it’s also a great location for those who want to relax and enjoy all the cultural offerings that Kings Cross has to offer, making it a good option for a microbreak.
The hotel boasts 266 rooms where you’ll find rest in a variety of surroundings, from the snug cosy cores to terraced suites with outdoor bathtubs overlooking St Pancras station.
Guests can also take in the city views on The Rooftop, enjoy Saturday brunch at Decimo (located on the tenth floor) and nip out for a spot of shopping and fine dining in Coal Drops Yard, which is a pleasant 15-minute walk from the hotel.
Get a soothing and relaxing facial at the newly-opened Blomma Beauty and take a seat by the canal and watch classic movies with Everyman’s Screen on the Canal.
You can also marvel at the Sheila Hicks woven wonders installation in Coal Drops Yard while shopping at Twiin, Wolf & Badger, Astrid & Miyu, Cubitts, Beija and more.
Pretty much everything is at your disposal at – and close by – to The Standard and it’s definitely worth visiting for a quick city trip this summer.
The Soho hotel
If you’re looking to relax while still enjoying all the best shopping, restaurants and bars that London has to offer, The Soho Hotel is the perfect place to stay.
Situated in the heart of central London, you’ll be surrounded by an array of buzzy bars, bistros and restaurants while being within walking distance from all the key surrounding areas from Carnaby Street to Leicester Square.
With 96 individually designed bedrooms and suites situated on a peaceful street in the heart of London’s entertainment neighbourhood, The Soho Hotel is a quiet oasis away from the hustle and bustle and allows you to truly unwind with the best amenities at your disposal.
Guests can break a sweat at the gym or enjoy some downtime in the decadent guest drawing-room while booking a range of treatments with the hotel’s body and beauty treatment room and dining on fresh, seasonal produce at the Refuel Bar & Restaurant.
And it doesn’t stop there – each room is designed with a fresh English aesthetic, combining embroidered fabrics, colours and texture into each space and complete with floor-to-ceiling warehouse-style windows, flat-screen TVs and Bluetooth Bose units.
And if you’re debating what to do while there, we’ve also got you covered. Take a leisurely 4-minute walk to Skin Laundry to get a signature laser facial and stop off for a light lunch at Ugly Dumpling while pursuing all the shops up and down Carnaby Street.
Treehouse Hotel London
When you think of a treehouse, there are a few things that come to mind. From woodland trees to playful games, treehouses were often a space that many of us dreamed of having as kids – and now we can fulfil those fantasies right here at Treehouse Hotel London.
Located in Marylebone, the hotel is filled with playful motifs reminiscent of a childhood clubhouse, from the wooden decor that can be found in the foyer to the cute kitsch details found in the rooms – like the Paddington Bear teddy bear to the sunshine yellow clock that is sure to standout upon your arrival.
Each detail is well thought out and will add a lovely sense of nostalgia to your microbreak, while you take in the sprawling city views from the bay windows featured in every room and enjoy all the amenities that the hotel has to offer.
From the rooftop bar The Nest (which is particularly buzzy on Friday and Saturday nights) to enjoying brunch at the hotel’s very own Mexican restaurant Madera, everything you need is housed right here at The Treehouse Hotel, making it a perfect option for a quick break away from day-to-day life.
If you’re looking to indulge in a luxury microbreak, The Beaumont is the perfect place for you.
The five-star hotel, located in the heart of Mayfair, is great for those looking to relax in one of London’s best districts, with options to dine, shop and relax within minutes from the hotel.
Guests can relax in the hotel’s luxurious rooms and make use of the spa and 24hour gym, along with enjoying cocktails at Le Magritte Bar and Terrace (which has a wide selection of bourbons, American whiskies and classic cocktails) and breakfast at the decadent Colony Grill Room.
And the formidable service and amenities are just part of the reason to stay at this hotel, which is perfectly placed among an array of restaurants like the newly opened Apricity and a wide variety of retail stores of the ultimate shopping experience.
Take a gander down South Molton Street and shop at female-owned brands like jewellery label Annouska or walk to Mount Street and visit the likes of Moynat for a truly luxury shopping experience that will leave you feeling fully revitalised and restored.
The Londoner Hotel
The Londoner Hotel is the perfect location for a microbreak in a central location with all the key amenities.
Based in the heart of Leicester Square, the chic location is perfect for those looking to unwind and dine in style, with spa facilities, incredibly relaxing rooms and supportive staff to help you throughout the day.
Guests can enjoy a coffee in the lobby or indulge in their champagne afternoon tea. Or spend the day enjoying the wellness facilities, which include a steam room, sauna, jacuzzi, pool and additional spa facilities that will provide you with everything from massages to manicures.
Guests will also have exclusive access to The Residence, a 24-hour residents-only club where you can enjoy some snacks and hot beverages.
The May Fair, A Radisson Collection Hotel
Italian marble. Egyptian cotton bedding. Ren toiletries. Talk about luxury.
Indulge in a decadent day experience at The May Fair, a Radisson Collection hotel, which will leave you both relaxed and thoroughly entertained by what the hotel and the surrounding area has to offer.
Located close to Buckingham Palace, Bond Street and Berkeley Street’s world-famous restaurants, this hotel is the perfect place to shop and dine, while it also provides a host of facilities to aid in your break, including a 3D cinema, spa, 24-hour gym and elegant rooms that will make the perfect backdrop for your selfies.
Intercontinental London – The O2
Spend the day close by to one of London’s biggest landmarks at the Intercontinental London – The O2.
Each room comes with an en-suite, flat-screen TV and complimentary luxury toiletries – and that’s only the beginning.
Whether you want to dine in one of the three restaurants or sip cocktails at one of the bars, you can enjoy a chilled culinary experience at the beginning or end of your day, complete with a visit to the luxurious spa, which has a holistic approach to wellbeing through its state-of-the-art facilities, treatments and professionals who deliver them, along with a steam room, wood-lined sauna and 27m pool
Images: Getty; The Treehouse Hotel; Zac and Zac; The Londoner; The May Fair; Intercontinental London – The O2