“A modern B&B on a traditional London Street” Russell’s of Clapton is Hackney’s hidden gemstone, situated on the up-and-coming Chatsworth Road. Run by former Hot Chip band manager Annette Russell and her resident whippet Reggie, the tasteful
In the run up to London’s 2012 Olympics which takes place from July 27 – August 12, we will be featuring a series of alternative recommendations for things to do and places to go during the Games...
“A modern B&B on a traditional London Street” Russell’s of Clapton is Hackney’s hidden gemstone, situated on the up-and-coming Chatsworth Road. Run by former Hot Chip band manager Annette Russell and her resident whippet Reggie, the tasteful townhouse is far from your usual bed and breakfast filled with dusty doilies and doll collections.
From the luxury linens, antique furniture, exposed brickwork, wooden floors, eclectic artworks (Louise Riley, Tracey Emin and Picasso prints are among those hung on the walls) and locally sourced produce served at breakfast, it is unsurprising to hear that Russell’s inspiration for the unique concept originated in an upmarket B&B in New York: “I’d been staying at this B&B in Williamsburg that I really liked, which lots of musicians frequented, so I wanted to take that template and bring it back to East London, because there really weren’t very many places to stay around here,” explains Russell.
Opened a year ago in January with no advertising or big press announcement, Russell’s of Clapton has been booked-up since, purely by word of mouth. “There is a really nice mix of people who stay,” tells Russell, “From people with relatives in the area, to dotcom entrepreneurs who have businesses in Shoreditch, photographers that might be shooting around the corner, new face models, record label people, and lots of bands [Metronomy, Drums, Black Lips, Gang Gang Dance and Chairlift have all stayed] and crew because of my background in music.”
"Gang Gang Dance said Chatsworth Road felt like Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg, with all its cross-streets, coffee shops and that same sense of community and real environment."
Always moving house as a child because her father was in the Air Force, Russell really wanted to create a “home away from home” for her visitors – something she has effectively achieved and is testament to her success over the past year. “A lot of American bands have said that they think that Clapton is like Williamsburg. In fact Gang Gang Dance said Chatsworth Road felt like Bedford Avenue with all its cross-streets, coffee shops and that same sense of community and real environment, rather than being in mid-town where it’s all touristy and glitzy.”
Whether you will be visiting London for the Olympics or want a cosy urban retreat for a night or two, Russell’s of Clapton is certainly worth a visit. Take a choice from the five unique bedrooms with your own private bathroom or en suite, reasonably priced from £75 – £110. During your stay make sure you visit Chatsworth Road Market, fine food shop L’Epicerie, Venetia’s café and modern British restaurant Chatsworth Kitchen.
Russel’s of Clapton, 123 Chatsworth Road, London E5 0LA, +44 7976 669906, www.russellsofclapton.com
Text by Lucia Davies