What do Hualamphong Train Station in Bangkok, Thessaloniki bus station and Luton airport all have in common?
Give up – I’m not surprised as it is a rather tenuous link. The answer is that they are all places where I have had to spend the night because there was no connecting transport for a few hours and I was too stingy to pay for a hotel.
Although I am always on the look out for bargain travel options, the days of true budget travel are behind me. Now, at least, I can afford a place to stay if I need to.
Recently I was due to take a very early flight from London Heathrow back to Stockholm Arlanda. I needed to find a place to stay where I could get to the airport early. While researching places to stay, I found these quirky little rooms at a place called Yotel. I was also lured in by the Yotel tagline:
“For independent, tech-savvy travellers who value time and efficiency”.
The rooms at YotelAir hotels are more like cabins on an overnight train or dinner cruise ship. The compact rooms, also known as pods, are the epitome of cutting edge design. Unlike a normal hotel room, you can rent pods for just a few hours, so you if you have a long layover, you can have a rest, a shower or just some privacy.
The pods also have en-suite bathrooms, wi-fi, free coffee and tea, a tv and some very bonkers pink lighting. In fact I felt a bit like a pea in a pink pod.
The pink hue started to make me feel a bit trippy after a while. Which, if I am honest, was a feeling I rather enjoyed – after two and a half years of being tee-total the closest I have been to narcotics is a strong cup of tea.
But it was sleep I needed so I switched off the pink lighting and turned on the television. Here I found another unexpected treat – a Duran Duran special on Top of the Pops 2.
Soon after I fell asleep. I was checked in for six hours, and set my alarm for 4am.
The first Yotel was opened in 2007 at London Gatwick, closely followed by the one at Heathrow. You can also stay in Yotelair at Singapore Changi Airport, Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Amsterdam Schiphol Airport and Istanbul Airport. If you just want the kooky Yotel experience then you can stay in pods in New York, Boston, Singapore, San Francisco and Edinburgh.
Here’s a link to their website https://www.yotel.com/en