By Koray Hussein
I’ve never really been a hotel kind of person. The thought of spending hundreds of pounds to have the privilege to sleep in a tiny room with a TV from 1983 by a company named Sany, Sumsong or Tochiba doesn’t appeal to me. I don’t care if you’re going to throw in some stale toast and a croissant the size of a chicken McNugget, it’s not worth it. Breakfast buffets are even worse with long queues just to get to the barely edible scrambled “egg” (That’s not egg…. That was never egg.) and something which kind of looks like bacon but smells (and tastes) more like rubber.
No, if I’m going to be spending that kind of money, I don’t want to be queueing for sub par food… In fact I don’t want their sub par food at all. Remove that from the equation and give me a kitchen so I can make my own sub par food (I’m an awful cook). I also want the option to bring whatever food I want back into the accommodation I’ve paid for; the amount of times I’ve had hotel staff ask me to discard a piece of food or drink when re-entering the hotel is absolutely shocking.
These are luxuries that you are able to have when you rent a villa or an apartment, which is what I do when I go on holiday now.
It’s one of the reasons why I’ve never reviewed a single hotel since we started Maybe It’s Because. I’ve left that section entirely up to May as I’m pretty sure I’d have nothing but bad things to say, and it would be all my fault since I’m not a hotel person. I’m an apartment person…
So, you can imagine my reaction when I came across an email from the guys over at Go Native whilst scrolling through the countless spam emails (Why do these people think I can afford to rent a luxury yacht or hire a private plane?) in my inbox. They asked if I was interested in doing a feature on one of their places and within a couple of days and a few emails I was all booked up to have a one night stay in their Hyde Park branch the following Sunday.
Check-in was at 3pm which, as an Arsenal fan had me a little worried as that was the exact time the Arsenal vs Chelsea match was scheduled to begin. Thankfully the apartment was ready and waiting so I was checked in a little early, giving me the chance to witness Arsenal beat Chelsea 1-0 (that was put in bold for all you Chelsea fans out there) before heading out to see what the area around this place was like.
Now, I’ll admit that I walk a lot more than most people (it comes with the job) but even the laziest of people can’t baulk at the idea of walking two to three minutes to one of London’s most famous parks.
I’ve lived in the unfashionable part of East London all my life, where getting anywhere even remotely interesting is at least 45 minutes away and here I was, still checking if I had everything I needed in my pockets, walking into Hyde Park. It was kind of surreal.
I really can’t say enough about the location of Go Native’s Hyde Park site as everything worth seeing is either right there or a short walk away… And if you’re feeling particularly lazy, you have Lancaster Gate and Paddington station both within a five minute walk.
One place I was really keen on visiting however was the Paddington Basin as I was hoping to see either the fan bridge or the rolling bridge in action, which sadly I didn’t, but it was still worth the walk as the basin actually leads into Little Venice (I feel like I should have known this before) which looks like this at sunset…
I don’t, however, like to write reviews or features that make everything sound glowingly positive. Even the best of places have faults and Go Native Hyde Park is no exception… although, I will be honest and say that this is nitpicking as I really enjoyed my stay there.
You may have noticed throughout this review I haven’t mentioned the actual apartment that I stayed in. Well that’s because I was saving it for this section of the review because… it’s small.
It was a studio apartment, which aren’t exactly famous for being massive but this was the premium studio and in all honesty I had expected it to be slightly bigger. Again, this is nitpicking because I can’t say that the apartment size affected my visit in any negative way but I feel it needs to be said. It was a really comfortable apartment with a nice kitchen, great view, big ol’ fridge and a top notch bathroom but the small size was noticeable. So noticeable in fact that I couldn’t even get a shot of the interior because I didn’t bring a wide enough lens… You can see images of the premium studio by clicking here.
Still, that’s me searching for something to complain about because really, it was perfectly acceptable and the staff were nothing but friendly.
If you’re thinking of coming to visit London any time soon or if you’re a Londoner looking to take a break in your own city (this place is bloody perfect for photographer’s who want a nice central base), you can do a hell of a lot worse than checking out Go Native Hyde Park as they’ve managed to get me wanting to check out their other apartments after just one nights stay.
Stay tuned to our Instagram page to see some more shots we took from our visit to Go Native Hyde Park.