Ever lost track of time while immersed in a good book? First of all, same… and second of all, we’ve found the perfect hotel for you. Well, actually, it’s more of a library that has bedrooms in it. But anyways, it’s a library hotel, and it’s the greatest invention… probably ever, in my opinion.
Gladstone’s Library in Wales was the brainchild of 19th-century British statesmen and Prime Minister William Ewart Gladstone. He was (and still is, to be honest) one of the most popular Prime Ministers, and was especially beloved by the working class. It makes total sense that in 1894, towards the end of his life, he decided to donate his personal library, along with £40,000 to the public. His daughter said that his vision was to “bring together books who had no readers with readers who had no books”.
He, his daughter, and a valet personally wheeled 32,000 books nearly a mile from his castle to the library and then unpacked and cataloged them. But, the building that housed the books was temporary, and after he died in 1898, a public appeal raised money to create a permanent home. The National Memorial to W.E. Gladstone opened in 1902.
Gladstone had a particular vision for his library, though. He wanted it to have bedrooms where scholars could stay while studying. In 1906, the residential wing of the library welcomed its first guest, bringing his dream of the library hotel to life.
The Gladstone Library Hotel today
The library maintains its Edwardian-era feel. But, the recently-renovated rooms feel like they’re straight from a boutique hotel. There are 26 rooms total, and most have en-suite facilities. The cheapest rooms run £66.00 (or $91) a night (including a continental breakfast) while the larger rooms only cost £100 ($138). There are no TVs, but you’re free to bring books from the library back to your room. Which, let’s be honest, is all you really need for a good weekend in!
More bookwormy goodness…