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The Dixon, Tower Bridge, London
Moments away from Tower Bridge, this Marriott Autograph Collection hotel makes the most of its unique history. Housed inside a Grade II-listed building, once a busy magistrates court and police station, the original courtroom is now an atmospheric cocktail bar plus the buzzy local restaurant, Provisioners, uses one of the former holding cells to roast their own-brand coffee. More like a boutique hotel than part of a big chain, the 193 rooms are modern with bright pops of colour, some in the original building and others in a new-build behind with views of Tower Bridge. A fascinating place to stay in a vibrant part of the capital with artworks referencing famous ex-residents such as George Orwell, Ernest Shackleton and Charlie Chaplin.
We loved wandering around Butler's Wharf like a local and walking along the South Bank past the HMS Belfast, Shakespeare's Globe and Tate Modern.
Next to Tower Bridge on the South Bank of the Thames, 15 minutes' walk from Borough Market's bars and street food stalls.
By car: around 4 hours from Manchester, 2 hours 30 mins from Birmingham and 7 hours from Glasgow. Reception can provide a discount code for the nearby Q-Park Tower Bridge.
By train: London Bridge is 10 minutes' walk from the hotel, Waterloo is 15 minutes in a taxi. Paddington, Kings Cross and Euston are all around 25 minutes in a taxi. thetrainline.com
Style & Character
Being part of the Marriott group, this hotel is popular with American tourists and business travellers who want something a bit different - although it's a great place to stay for anyone looking to discover a different side of the capital. We love sitting in the Courtroom Bar and feeling the eyes of ex-convicts staring down from their mugshots on the walls. The bar is sunken under the original judges canopy and the wood panelling is original - the good news is you can no longer be tried here for being drunk and disorderly!
Service & Facilities
This must be one of the only hotels to roast their own-brand coffee, Shakedown, which is surprisingly good. Enjoy it in one of the daily free tastings or, even better, in one of the Courtroom Bar's Espresso Martinis.
- Coffee shop
- Free Wi-Fi
- Fitness suite
- Room service
Our Executive Room in the new building had a massive bath as well as a walk-in shower and floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Tower Bridge. We loved the quirky artwork in the rooms and all over the hotel, much of it done by local artists and referencing SE1 in some way. Our favourite features George Orwell, who lived nearby on Tooley Street.
Dixon, Superior, Executive, Junior Suite, Suite, Orwell Suite
Facilities include: marble shower room, Murdock toiletries, table and chair, TV, mini bar, tea and coffee facilities, free Wi-Fi
Food & Drink
The 1905 Magistrates Afternoon Tea experience in the Courtroom Bar includes tasty cakes decorated with handcuffs, mugshots and crime scene tape. We also love the Provisioners' signature Wes burger with Wagyu beef, breaded king prawns and raclette cheese in a beetroot or brioche bun; decadent but divine.
Provisioners: European and British inspired, modern, seasonal dishes, fresh pasta, seafood. Open for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. Mains from £14.
Courtroom Bar: cocktails, coffee, afternoon tea.