Themed hotels come and go all over Britain, but to have one based on Gotham – the city of Batman and also the crime drama series of the same name – is something extra special. Described on its own website as “Part Gatsby, part Grand Budapest, all Gotham”, this is a truly extraordinary hotel, one where the inside theme does indeed owe much to the atmosphere of the swinging 20s, which was, of course, when Marvel comics was first popularising the character of Batman and his sidekick Robin. The theme goes so far as to have its own list of 1920s characters. Not the Joker and the Penguin, but a series of Gatsby-style individuals with names derived from areas around Manchester. Thus we have Lady Delores Didsbury, a glamorous lady often seen in a Stockport speakeasy.
There is the scandalised Connie Crumpsall, the dapper gent Lord Salford – who Lady Didsbury keeps trying to set up with her niece Lady Eccles – and Tony Trafford, the waiter who also happens to be the best ballroom dancer around. Batman themes are never far away either. The black umbrellas hanging from the ceiling suggest the Penguin is never far off, while the wonderful opulence of leather-backed chairs and beds, furry quilt covers, bright colourful curtains and stylish rooms is entirely in keeping with the Bruce Wayne lifestyle. Indeed, the 55 bedrooms and five inner sanctum suites provide five-star luxury at its best, while including quirky details like big mugs and home-made biscuits. The building is a former bank, like many of its neighbours around King Street and the Spring Gardens area of the city centre. This is reflected in the slang words for its bar – Brass, and its restaurant Honey, both meaning money.
The restaurant has plenty of great food on offer, as it sets itself up to match the best restaurants in the city centre, most of which are close by. All in all, this hotel is definitely a great place to spend a ‘dark night’.