The Malmaison Hotel Reading brings a touch of elegance to the town centre by restoring a former Reading landmark to its glamorous best. Situated directly opposite busy Reading Station the Malmaison group has redeveloped Great Western House, formerly the much-loved Great Western Hotel. The grade II listed building was certainly in need of renovation; fortunately Malmaison have a flair for regenerating historic buildings, as can be seen in almost all of the other hotels in this group, including Oxford, Edinburgh, Newcastle and London.
Originally built as the Great Western Hotel in 1844, Great Western House is reputed to be the oldest surviving railway hotel in the world. It was designed in collaboration with the great Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel, pioneer of the Great Western Railway. In its long history the hotel welcomed many of the most distinguished visitors to Reading, including on several occasions Prime Minister Winston Churchill. Tragically a fire in the mid 1960s swept through the building, destroying much of its interior. Subsequent to this the building was used as offices, and in 2007 was reopened as the funky, boutique Reading Malmaison.
The hotel is located in the centre of Reading, opposite Reading Central Rail Station and connections to and from locations across the UK. The Malmaison is also a minute’s walk from Reading’s shopping and nightlife, and a short bus or taxi journey from the Madejski Stadium, home of Reading FC and London Irish rugby.
Malmaison hotels are characterised by their highly stylised guestrooms – individual, luxurious and contemporary – offering something a bit different to the average hotel room. At the Malmaison Reading guestrooms are decorated with chunky dark wood headboards and moody lighting, and with more than a nod to the venue’s former incarnation as a railway hotel. In typical Malmaison style the facilities at the Reading hotel are second-to-none. The Brasserie is moody and alluring, with exposed brick walls and rich furnishings. The adjacent bar is equally attractive, and makes a perfect start to a night out in Reading. The hotel also offers two boardrooms for low-key corporate meetings. For fitness, there is an on-site gym or for something a little more special, the Malmaison offers a weekend ayurveda package.
Malmaison Hotel Reading
18-20 Station Road
- Number of bedrooms: 75
- Number of conference rooms: 2
- Restaurants and bars: Brasserie and Wine Bar
- Leisure: Gym
- Internet access: Complimentary wireless throughout
- Car parking: Chargeable offsite parking at Garrard Street NCP
- Nearest rail: Reading train station, opposite