Don't you just love it when brands from two of your favourite industries team up to create something magical?
Well, that's exactly what just happened when Ibis Hotels became the official 2016 hotel partner of the Roundhouse, Camden, one of London's top music venues. This exciting new partnership launches officially just one week from today, on 10th November, with a performance from 4 of the Roundhouse's resident artists at London City hotel in Shoreditch. A series of similarly intimate performances will follow at other Ibis hotels across the country, including Birmingham, Manchester and Edinburgh - so keep your eyes peeled if you're travelling there soon!
The idea behind these hotel performances is two-fold: firstly, it let's Ibis guests experience the VIP treatment of getting up close and personal with music artists. They say everybody's famous at Ibis, and I certainly felt that way when I stayed in their Euston St Pancras hotel last week (but more on that in a minute!). And secondly, the partnership will allow some of the Roundhouse's artists to reach new audiences beyond the Camden venue.
The Roundhouse isn't your standard music and performing arts venue - it's a registered charity and incubator space which works with thousands of young people aged 11-25, helping them to reach their creative potential. This is probably the point at which I should admit I'd never been to the Roundhouse before the Clean Bandit gig - Yes, that's pretty bad of me, I know! - but I love travelling and staying in hotels, so it's the kind of partnership that would be perfect for getting upcoming artists in front of someone like me.
After checking in, we had some time relax - with champagne, of course - in the swanky bar and restaurant area pictured in my Insta-snap above. It's the kind of social space that will be taken over by artists during the Ibis Lates series and also seemed like the perfect place for some daytime blogging or evening drinks - whether you're staying there as a guest or not.
Before heading to the gig, we were also treated to a tour of the newly renovated meeting room spaces... with cookies! Yep, that's right. The meeting rooms come fully equipped with a cookie making machine so you can have fresh cookies to hand while you work! They sure know how to do meetings.
Happy from champagne and cookies, we took a very short taxi ride to the Roundhouse for the main event. The first act, Rivrs, were just starting when we arrived, so we grabbed some rum and enjoyed the entertainment from the members' lounge. I'd never heard of Rivrs before last week, but I'll definitely be keeping an eye (or ear) out for them from now on. I'm not great at describing music (there's a reason why I don't blog about music!!) but if you like AlunaGeorge, you'll probably like Rivrs.
And then it was time for Clean Bandit.
I wasn't really sure what to expect from the group - especially as the violinist had quit the band just days before - but I had such a great time singing and dancing along to Tears, Rather Be and Rockabye. There was such a great energy in the room - partly because Clean Bandit had so much presence, but also because the layout of the Roundhouse allows performers to have such a great presence.
Needless to say, we were pretty exhausted by the end of the night and ready to crash. We'd been told that the beds at the Ibis were super comfy, but you never really believe it until you try for yourself, do you?
Turns out they were comfier than I'd imagined and I slept SO well. The room itself was fairly impressive, too, with clever use of space. Hotels in London - and in zone 1, in particular - are notoriously small, but the room didn't feel too small at all... and the shower was massive! All in all, much more than you'd ever need for a one-night stay.
So, what do we think of this partnership?