I’ve been to Manchester Piccadilly train station countless times and always walked past the illustrious Malmaison without having time to pop in and see what it’s all about. But this year I was invited to stay for a night of delicious food and a relaxing suite right in the heart of the city.
What used to be a 19th century warehouse, Malmaison Manchester is one of the most stylish hotels in Manchester city centre. Being a few steps from the train station, Gay Village, Market Street and the general hustle and bustle of the busy city centre, the hotel makes you want to get out and explore all the sights of the city. Consisting of 167 luxury rooms and 13 suites it is perfect for a city break or business trip with amenities including comfy beds, super-fast Wi-Fi and en-suite bathrooms with baths and power showers. The hotel also has a fully fitted gym as well as a luxurious spa offering a range of treatments to make your stay that extra bit special.
I met my sister from the train station and headed to the hotel where we were immediately impressed with the beautiful foyer. Gorgeous black marble desks and a checkerboard floor were surrounded by flashes of gold sculptures and neon signs giving the place a real modern feel without it feeling cold. The bar looked very inviting but we had an afternoon of vintage shopping in the Northern Quarter planned so we headed to our room to drop off our bags.
Our junior suite consisted of a perfectly large king size bed, robes and slippers, plasma TV, Espresso machine and extras such as a hair dryer, kettle, iron as well as a desk and lounge chair. Best of all, the room feels huge, which is ideal when you have 2 grown women with suitcases to stay for one night and more shopping bags to fit in!
After a long day of shopping and taking full advantage of happy hour, we went to our room to freshen up for our evening meal at Chez Mal restaurant. It was lovely to be able to shower using toiletries from Arran Aromatics who I’ve reviewed before then get ready wearing a lovely soft robe and slippers.
Chez Mal restaurant is on the bottom floor looking out over the busy streets. You can order locally sourced and inspired dishes including smoked steaks and delicate, flavoursome fresh fish. The service we received on the night was outstanding, with all our needs met (I mean our glasses kept topped up!) and recommendations on what we’d enjoy from every member of staff. We began with a sharing platter of Italian Olives, Tomato Hummus and Grilled Sesame Flatbread, Seasonal Tomatoes and Fresh Italian Mozzarella, a selection of cured meats and a lovely bowl of Thai Noodles with Beef that was so delicious we fought over every last scrap of it.
Now the waiter did warn us that this starter selection was huge and some people have it as a main but we were adamant that it would be no problem. It was of course a problem because this was indeed too much food. Absolutely excellent value for money though, especially for the city centre.
I chose a bottle of Pinot Grigio, Puiatti, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy to go with our mains of chicken and fish but this wine was a lovely accompaniment to the whole meal and was a real easy drinker. For mains I had a lovely Chicken Katsu Curry, with fluffy white rice and crispy panko breadcrumbs the curry sauce was absolutely delicious. We also had a portion to dip some chips in as it was so moorish and tasty. My sister enjoyed the healthier option of Grilled Salmon and Green Vegetables and kept offering me a bite. But why would I want that when I’ve got curry and chips? How we fitted in dessert I don’t know, but she thoroughly enjoyed her Chez Mal vanilla crème brûlée whilst I nibbled around the edges of a Praline Parfait with Dark Chocolate Sauce. We were well and truly stuffed!
We trundled back to our room for an early night and enjoyed an absolutely silent and pitch black night’s sleep, exactly how I like it. I was really surprised that such an old building, so close to the city centre, could be so soundproof but we both slept like babies.
The breakfast selection in the morning was wonderful. With a continental buffet with the likes of granola, pastries, fresh fruit and cereals as well as a hot food menu. I opted for my favourite of boiled egg and soldiers, which you don’t find in most hotels, so I was very content.
Malmaison menus change with the seasons so dishes may not be the same when you visit. But visit you should, because this hotel, which I have walked past many times in the past, is well worth popping in for a relaxing stay and some wonderful food.