When you live in a city it can be so easy to take it for granted. I have lived in Manchester my whole life and there are still places and sights I haven’t seen. The same has to be said for the hotels as with good transport links there is never really a reason to stay overnight in your home town.
This year my birthday was a bit of a washout. I left it too late to book a winter break abroad so decided I would spend my birthday in the next best place, my hometown, Manchester. And to really push the boat out I chose one of the newest hotels to open as my destination, I explored Innside and everything they have to offer.
When your birthday is slap bang in the middle of the week there is only one thing for lunchtime… cocktails! The chaps at the bar at Innside make a cracking margarita served with a shot glass filled with chocolate beans. I spent a fabulous hour at the floor to ceiling windows with my book watching the world go by. I took so long that the bartender approached me concerned that there was something wrong with my drink!
Next on my agenda was some pamper time and Innside has a resident massage therapist for just that. Using Potion Shop products that are handmade and paraben free I indulged in a neck, back and shoulder massage before a thorough facial. I clearly had some built up tension in my shoulders that the lovely Lisa from Escape Spa Manchester kneaded out for me and for such a petite woman, she has some massage power let me tell you! I left free of knots and energised for the rest of my day.
If I had felt inclined I could have used the gym, sauna and steam room but exercising on my birthday just didn’t sit well with me.
If you did decide to use the facilities the changing rooms are immaculate. Modern in slate and wood with plenty of room and ample lockers to leave your personal belongings. If you decided to visit Lisa at Escape Spa you also have complimentary access to these facilities so it is well worth visiting both for a healthy afternoon.
We stayed in a Lifestyle Suite which is the largest of the rooms available at Innside Manchester. On entering the room there is a living area with flatscreen TV, large sofa and table as well as a unit containing a complimentary mini bar and espresso machine. This reminded me so much of the standards in America where most hotels have a coffee machine in the room, a must I feel for people visiting a city centre hotel!
For me it is the small touches that make a hotel in such a big city like Manchester. There are loads of hotels but why would you choose one over another? Innside Manchester do the small touches really well in my opinion. I love the guide to Manchester book. It is personal to the city and gives a traveller some great options of how to explore this great city. I also love the selection of mugs and that they have different sizes ready for whatever type of drink you are going to have. Small details are what sticks in people’s memory and I will always remember these when asked for hotel recommendations in the city.
To the side of the door is a small walkway with a toilet on the left and a shower room on the right. The bath is open plan and is one of the deepest baths I have ever been in! It did cross my mind that this wouldn’t be suitable for some people sharing a room but I feel the addition of a separate shower room means there are still private bathing facilities and, chances are if you were sharing the room with someone you aren’t likely to want a bath anyway? There are sliding doors that cover the entrance to the bath and the doorway between the bedroom and the living area so you could still bathe privately if your companion chose to stay in the living area. And why wouldn’t they with that lounging sofa, big TV and mini bar?
The bed, oh my the bed, was huge and soft with a plump duvet and pillows. One of those beds that you just sink into, I would have happily stayed there all day and all night just relaxing. Floor to ceiling windows offer views over the city and plug sockets in the headboard means you never have to leave.
The amenities kits in the bathroom mean you are unlikely to have to call down to reception if you have forgotten something and there is also a hair dryer (with diffuser attachment, something I have NEVER seen in a hotel before) iron and ironing board in the room meaning you have everything you could possibly need.
The rooms are so spacious and well equipped that we commented on how perfect they would be for longer visits to the city and for business people who visit for weeks at a time. They are very quiet with no traffic noise or unwanted noise from other guests. Had I not bumped into other guests going to breakfast I would have thought we were the only ones there.
Breakfast is buffet style and they have thought of everything. All the hot items you would expect with your choice of eggs. There is a large selection of meats, cheeses, pastries, cereals and yoghurts for those who prefer things more continental and you can order porridge if you prefer something a little healthier. There is a coffee machine so you can select your style (it is a cappuccino for me) without mithering a member of staff each time you need a caffeine fix. The strangest thing about breakfast was the live DJ playing, something I have never seen before and I have stayed in some quirky places in my time!
At lunch time the breakfast area turns into a lunch buffet and I was genuinely disappointed that I had already made plans for lunch as it looked amazing. There were lots of city workers popping in for it and there is takeaway option meaning you can still go back to your desk with a cracking selection instead of a dry sandwich.
Resident pooch Wilson gets about a bit and we were lucky to be greeted by his happy grin on leaving the hotel. He had a lovely array of flowers surrounding him which added another of those little touches to the hotel that really makes it stand out from the crowd.
Missing out on a holiday for my birthday in gloomy January should have been a depressing time but Innside Manchester made it special, a date with my city in this beautiful new and modern hotel was just as good and our stay was effortless. An absolute must if you are visiting Manchester for an overnight stay and looking for a hotel that offers you everything at a high level under one roof.
Rooms at Innside start from £77 a night and treatments with Escape Spa start from £40.
I was invited to stay as a guest of Innside.