Dismal Designs – Premier Inn

Catching an early flight from Gatwick recently I stayed the night before in the Premier Inn next to Gatwick North Terminal. The nearby car park cost was part of the deal, and it was great to walk next door to the terminal building in the morning.  A design and build contract by McAleer & Rushe, the hotel opened in 2012 and is a fairly innocuous design in coloured metal panels, much the same as the rest of the airport architecture.

However, the convenience was offset by the really vile interior! Not sure if M&R designed it, I imagine Premier Inn’s in-house team did. It must be like staying in a modern army barracks with bleak nondescript corridors and small bedrooms with cheap looking ‘wood’ laminated furniture looking as if it came from Argos. Coat hanging with no doors and nowhere to put other clothes. The television is crammed on to a small shelf and so it is impossible to turn it to face the bed. Who chose those ‘pictures’?? Look at the design mess around the door with a cheap suspended ceiling and wooden plank with a couple of hooks on the wall. Plus the usual Premier Inn faux-matey messages and absurd warnings such as ‘GETS HOT!’ next to the hot tap and towel radiator! A really dispiriting place to spend a night.


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Why do the corridors have to be so horrible (a joint effort with M&R this time)? The building structure (I assume) sticks out at regular intervals making them look even narrower, the lighting and colour scheme are bleak, and there is absolutely no design at all. It is difficult to believe this was built in 2012.


It really is inexcusable for a modern hotel, even from a budget chain, to be so badly designed in every way. Premier Inn’s design team and management need to stay in a Myhotel, any of the German Motel One chain, the John Malkovich backed Big Sleep Hotels, or the Barcelo chain, etc, to see how it could be done. Premier Inn, Travelodge and Holiday Inn are light years behind these interesting European budget chains, stuck in a hotel design time warp of the mid 1970s.

All photos by me.

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