Famous around the world for its University and stunning architecture, Oxford is a town made up of both ancient and mode buildings, with all the attractions anyone could need for a short break or a long stay. This beautiful town is becoming increasingly popular as a city break destination, due to its vibrant nightlife and the wealth of interesting activities on offer.
The Malmaison in the City Centre is, in our opinion, one of the best hotels in the city. This sumptuous, castle-like, stone fronted building was originally built as a prison, and the innovative restoration and bold interior design has transformed this place into a beautifully bizarre hotel. Super-fast complimentary WiFi, ultra comfortable beds and enormous drench showers are just a few of the lavish touches in the rooms here, but the utterly stylish environment of the overall building will have you strutting your stuff the moment you walk through the door.
All the bedrooms have moody lighting, heavenly en-suite bathrooms with both a bath and power shower, a digital HD TV, and a mini bar stocked with sinful treats. There’s also a same-day laundry service, luxury toiletries, 24hr room service, and an ironing board & iron in each room. Baby and toddler beds are also available, and you’ll have more than enough space to accommodate children.
The décor really is quite special at Malmaison Oxford. Unashamed of its somewhat darker history, the hotel has kept its original prison title (Malmaison) which translates as ‘Bad House’. This is definitely not the case. We at Function Fixers would be more than happy to let the designer remodel our homes! Welcoming, yet hard-edged enough to feel city sleek and contemporary, the building has been remodelled to accommodate enormous windows, exquisite tiled floors, deep mood lighting and double height celings.
The restaurant, which has a charming outdoor lawn area for al fresco dining and enjoying a cocktail in the sun, serves up hearty and eclectic food – but the real gem of the Malmaison is The Malbar. Famous throughout Oxford, this stylish and completely cosmopolitan bar sees celebrities and the elite coming to enjoy inventive cocktails and a laid-back city vibe. The bar staff put on a show and are expert mixologists, and you can enjoy an evening of funky deep house music. In daytime hours, however, this space transforms into a casual brasserie serving up fresh breakfast pastries and ground Italian coffee.
For private dining with a difference, Malmaison have cleverly converted the largest prison cells into beautiful dining rooms. Seating up to 30 guests, you will be surrounded by crumbling exposed brickwork lit by gentle up-lights. Intimate but by no means cramped, this is a truly novel experience. The venue has made sure that the space isn’t overbearing by adding familiar, personal touches – such as a display of rare and sometimes ancient wines, and by paneling the bottom half of the walls in a warm, welcome dark wood. A large round table makes for maximum conversation, and the friendly and professional staff will keep your glasses full and your smiles broad all evening.