Forget Orange is the new black, Oxford is the new Black, at The Malmaison Hotel Oxford. This converted prison is nestled deep in the old City. If your after an unusual play to stay, this needs to be top of your list!
Malmaison is a actually a collection of Boutique Hotels across the UK. They anticipate and exceed the expectations of travellers with their continuous innovation. The Oxford Malmason compromises of 95 rooms shared in several blocks.
Arriving, the entrance from the road was an almost hidden, short narrow drive, scattered with tourists. A small collection of cars were parked tightly to either side of the main hotel entrance. We had booked valet parking, so once unloaded, I popped the Velar into valet mode, and the porter moved it into the second row back. I was slightly concerned that tourists were able to roam and potentially scratch our Range Rover…. but it was still better than having to find an overnight carpark.
The buildings were beautiful, a renovated yellow brick. The architecture mesmerising, with bold shapes nostalgic of the original prison. whilst the gardens and modern feel lured you into believing it was a Manor House in a country estate.
Our room was in the main block, and the original features were fabulous. The traditional white metal corridors and stairs, bolted to the brick cells around a large communal area. It reminded me of all the old tv and movie prisons…. Shawshank redemption, Porridge and more….
Our room was the superior double, 3 of the original cells made into one room and a bathroom, giving quite a spacious feel. The decor really gave you that ‘prison feel’. From the tally themed carpet to the metal furniture. But tossed in was the luxury items of a comfortable bed, wifi, wide screen tv…. But my favourite part was the bathroom!!
A great power shower and the roll top bath was a beautiful touch! Mildred and I had a great bath together.
We probably would of slept really well had the room not of been so hot. A gentle warning to anyone that visits in a heat wave like we did, there is no air con! Only there was a small fan provided.
Underground on the lower floor we found the restaurant where we had dinner and breakfast, deciding to enjoy the prison vibe as much as we could. The food and venue didn’t disappoint.
We went for lunch in oxford city, a stones throw away, at one of the roof top restaurants. Over looking the wonderful historic buildings and tree tops, we enjoyed a lovely meal. There was also some of my favourite shops so we enjoyed a little retailing.
Overall the stay was well worth it. A really reasonable price, the staff and amenities were great and we loved the quirkiness.
Check out this other boutique stay on a boat!