How These Empty Office Buildings Transformed Into Chic Hotels

In cities across the globe, commercial real estate has undergone a dramatic transformation, especially after the 2020 pandemic. With the (major) increase in remote work, the former demand for office spaces has significantly dwindled, leaving many buildings underutilized or completely empty. And, while this shift in real estate was daunting at first, it has ultimately made way for some of the coolest new hotels around.

But, before adding these new hotels to your bucket list, we’ll start from the beginning. One of the main reasons that repurposing office buildings into hotels has been so successful lies in their prime locations – most of which are in the heart of a city. Unlike newly constructed hotels which might have to call the outskirts home, these properties are often situated in the middle of bustling cities since they were formerly major business hubs. Because of this, these new hotels can offer unparalleled access to some of the best shopping, restaurants, and transportation networks in these cities. 

What’s more, the art of repurposing existing structures into hotels is much more sustainable than building from the ground up. This approach not only revitalizes underutilized spaces but also reduces environmental impact, which is a major win. 

Now, for the fun part. When it comes to hotels that have taken over vacant buildings, there are a handful that are worth traveling for. One of the coolest hotels is, hands down, The LINE LA, a boutique hotel in Los Angeles’ Koreatown, which was once the Wilshire Building. After a pretty big renovation, the hotel now blends its contemporary aesthetics with its historic Art Deco facade. Its rooms pair a brutalist design with modern amenities (including comfy beds and walk-in showers), as well as floor-to-ceiling windows that have views of the city.

Similarly, The Ned in London was once a bank headquarters. Now, this luxurious hotel offers guests a unique blend of sophistication and history in the heart of London’s financial district. Here, guests can enjoy ornate interiors, upscale amenities, and an array of delicious dining options. (Pro tip: Be sure to check out the spa, it’s well worth it.)

In Amsterdam, The Hoxton hotel is one of a kind. Housed in a building that was originally commissioned by the Royal Holland Lloyd Shipping Company in 1921, the space was transformed into a dreamy hotel with 136 bedrooms, a cocktail bar, a European brasserie, and an original Dutch windmill.

For those in Australia, the QT Sydney was once nothing more than two vacant historic buildings (the State Theatre and the Gowings department store). Now, it’s a luxury hotel that blends art deco and theater with a splash of Sydney. The best part? The overall vibe and aesthetic of the hotel is absolutely stunning – just look at the rooms.

Last but not least, The Liberty Hotel in Boston, which was once the Charles Street Jail, now offers luxurious accommodations within a historic setting, complete with preserved jail cells and original architectural details. (Don’t worry, it’s too chic to be creepy.) When guests stay here, they can enjoy gorgeous rooms and suites – all with sweeping views of the city skyline and Charles River – as well as five different restaurants and bars. Not to mention, it’s super pet-friendly! 

No matter where you might find yourself in the world, these incredible hotels prove that there’s always room to make something new out of something old.

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