green holidays made easier
This hotel exudes calm. Situated on a quiet side street, it is a stone's throw from the Tower of London (a World Heritage Site), Tower Bridge and the marina at St Katherine’s Dock, and next door to St. Olave’s church where Samuel Pepys is buried. It is within the City of London (financial district) and a short walk to four tube stations and the Docklands Light Railway.
Converted from a former office block it opened in 2005 and is part of the small Scottish Apex group which is independently owned and family run.
The 130 bedrooms are comfortable and well equipped with top-notch business facilities. The décor is contemporary and understated with soft neutral colours: toasted almond, taupe and slate set off against walnut furniture. Duck or goose down pillows aid a good night’s sleep. There are sizeable desks and executive swivel chairs. Widescreen TVs, CD/DVD players, air conditioning, Wi-Fi Internet access plus broadband modem points are standard. All rooms feature spacious bathrooms with generous bathtub, separate walk-in power shower and even a rubber duck! Some also have terraces with views of major landmarks.
The Addendum Restaurant specializes in Modern European dishes and has been awarded two AA Rosettes. The Addendum Gastro Bar, overlooking the gardens opposite, serves refreshments and lighter meals and a range of cocktails, wines and beers. There is a well equipped gymnasium. All making the Apex well suited for business and leisure.
Prominently displayed in the lobby is a framed certificate the hotel collected when winning the “Gold Future London Sustainable Tourism Award” at the Visit London Awards in 2006.
Apex has rapidly become admired in the trade for its company-wide environmental policy. It has a green team headed by an Environmental Director based at its Scottish headquarters and a Green Champion in each hotel. All staff members are briefed on these measures and environmental audits and spot checks are conducted with the scores going towards their bonus scheme.
Like other hotels in the group the Apex City of London was designed with eco-friendly features, for instance its building management systems. The General Manager, Yousif Al-Wagga, said he is particularly proud of its energy saving activities. All the rooms are “intelligent”, with keycards controlling lighting, heating and air coolers when not in use. Dual flush toilets were installed to save water. Gas, electricity and water usage is monitored daily to help reduce consumption and this has fallen significantly.
Most food is locally sourced and they have begun asking suppliers about their environmental policies. The hotel aims to use eco-friendly and soaps and detergents for laundering and chemicals too. Meanwhile limited back of house storage facilities were said to be hampering recycling and waste management.
There are good links with St. Olave’s Church next door and nearby St Bart’s Hospital Trust and customers are offered the chance to carbon offset conferences and other events with Climate Care.
ecofriendlytourist.com visited the Apex City of London in April 2007