New Capsule Hotel in Gatwick gets Mixed Reviews

We posted a year ago about the upcoming arrival of Japanese style capsule hotels within British airports and now they are here–at least in Gatwick (Heathrow will be up and running by Autumn).

Called the Yotel, these itsy-bitsy little rooms are designed to accommodate passengers trapped in layover hell at affordable prices and greater comfort than steel benches found at the gate.

So how do they measure up?

Max Davidson, writing for the Telegraph was a champ and decided to give it a try for the night.

His room (or cabin as they call it) measured seven square meters, was just larger than a bed, and included a small bathroom and shower as well. The good news is that Davidson was impressed with the crisp linen, shower, internet connection, flat screen television and drink service.

But at 1:30 in the morning, things turned bad. For whatever reason, the air in his tiny room was not circulating. Davidson felt like he was breathing the same air he had just exhaled ten minutes earlier. He began panting and hyperventilating. Falling back asleep became impossible and poor Davidson struggled through the rest of the night in perpetual zombie state–like the rest of us stuck in an airport over night.

I’m not sure what the problem was with his cabin, but fresh air is something I tend to expect no matter how little I spend on a hotel (in this case, £55 a night or £25 for four hours). Fetid air in cramped quarters is a serious oversight for Yotel. I sure hope they can fix this because the next time I spend 4 hours in Gatwick, I want to do it comfortably.