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Hotel Square Hotel 0 star
Easyexperts
4 New Steine BN2 1PB Brighton, United Kingdom -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

Square comfortably finds its place amongst the relatively new tradition of stylish boutique hotels housed in Georgian town houses. The property can claim to have some of the best appointed rooms in the city and what's more, they are spacious and have good amenities. It is a laid back environment with pleasant, approachable staff and a decent, quiet location not too far away from the action. The hotel does have a cheeky side too and as such, kids are not allowed at the hotel, so it's more one for groups of friends or couples.

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    Location 9.97 /10

    Situated on one of the smaller squares just off the Brighton seafront (New Steine), Square has the best of both worlds in that it's quiet but at the same time still close enough to the city's attractions. Its immediate surroundings in the area of Kemptown are mainly residential, but Brighton Pier is just several minutes' walk away while The Lanes, North Laine and the commercial centre are easily reachable on foot. Trains from the station, a 15 minute walk or 5-10 minute taxi ride away, serve Gatwick airport (30 mins) and London (50 mins on fast train). For those driving to the hotel, you won't be able to park in front of the hotel but metered parking not too far away as are public car parks which chare varying rates.

    Accommodation 7.70 /10

    If you've read some of our other Brighton bed and breakfast reviews, you won't be surprised to learn that the number of rooms at Square is nine. These are divided up into three categories: standard city view, king with oblique sea view and the reverse penthouse. Each room has been individually decorated and has one feature wall with a floral (or other) print wallpaper, king beds with white leather headboards and hardwood flooring. The bedding is crisp white sheets topped with a plaid and fluffy cushions which match not only the feature wallpaper but (sometimes) also the artwork and furniture upholstery. Every room also has some sort of designer seating, whether it be a brown suede corner couch or perspex armchairs which resemble suction caps. Amenities include flatscreen television and DVD player, tea and coffee facilities, fan and storage space in various forms including a mirrored cabinet and an antique wardrobe. There is artwork too in each of the rooms, some of which is erotic, the rest of which are modern pieces by local artists. One of the rooms boasts a uSpace Well-being chair massage chair. The bathrooms are tiled in black and have mosaic-topped vanities, deep soaking tub or monsoon shower and Molto Brown toiletries. The hotel's unique selling point is its reverse penthouse so called as it's found in the basement. The transparent, multi-coloured illuminated stairs leading down to it take you straight into the kitchen which is fully equipped and features a central sink unit with storage below. TO one side of this is the lounge area with sofas, shag pile carpet and flatscreen television, while to the other side is a dining table over which is a glass atrium. The bedroom, entered into through a curtain of fine black cords, has a low king bed with luxurious plaid and cushions and boasts a bathtub within the room as well as its own television and cordless phone. Artwork in the penthouse recalls the paintings of Hopper and there are other 'objets' such as vases and statuettes adorning tables and sideboards. This is arguably one of the finest accommodations in the city.

    Overview 7.45 /10

    Making its subtle mark amongst the terraced houses of New Steine, the hotel is painted a light shade of green and is recognisable as Square by the (rusty) sign of that shape to the left of the entrance. As is pretty standard in bed and breakfasts of this type, check-in is done in the front room, at the bar, and is painless. Getting up (or down) to your room may be tricky if you have large suitcases as there is no lift and the staircases in these buildings are somewhat narrow. The entire place is spick and span and in good condition with well decorated hallways and tasteful furnishings. There is complimentary wifi throughout the hotel and guests can borrow DVDs from Square's collection provided they place them back for user guests' use when finished. Both the bar and penthouse can be hired for private events with a full bar service.

    Food and drink 7.20 /10

    Breakfast is served in the front room of the hotel which also serves as a reception and, in the afternoons and evenings, as a bar. The space is dominated by a homage to gay icon Madonna, with a large backlit false stained glass image if the singer surrounded by the words 'Our Lady Madonna, 24 carat fag hag'. This, and the rather amusing erotic artwork that hangs on the walls, may offend some, but should be taken light heartedly, in the spirit of what makes Brighton the city it is. If, on the other hand it doesn't offend you, then feel free to purchase one. To the front of the room are sleek white tables with metal frames surrounded either by the white leather banquettes which line the walls or funky orange armchairs with semi-circular backs. Breakfast is served between 8am and 9.30am (9am and 10.30am on the weekends) and comprises both a continental and hot offering. To the back is the bar itself which is open until 11pm and which serves beers, wines, spirits and speciality cocktails. It isn't one of Brighton's hottest venues, but it is a pleasant, relaxing environment in which to enjoy a drink.

    To know

    Square which has always been the hotel's name, was refurbished just over three years ago at a cost of half a million pounds, which is no small sum for a property of this size. It was, however, money well spent as the quality of the décor and furnishings is extremely high. Housed in a Regency townhouse dating from 1790, Square does not allow kids or animals in the hotel and smoking is forbidden too. And given the centrepiece of the reception come breakfast room come bar, it will come as no surprise that the hotel is also gay friendly!

    Equipment

    • Shuttle bus
    • Car park
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Spa

      beauty salon, wellness

    • Non-smoking rooms
    • Meeting room

    advantage

    • Location on square
    • Décor
    • Reverse penthouse
    • Size of rooms

    disadvantages

    • Artwork may offend some

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    • Overall Score nc/10
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