By Tanner Saunders
September 17, 2019
Courtesy of Mama Shelter

When it comes to hotels more money doesn’t always mean more fun. There’s the tried and true luxe properties we all know and love, but over the course of the last few years plenty of hotels that are easy on the wallet and on the eyes have opened up around the world. And now London, a city known for its outrageous hotel prices, has people staying with Mama.

No, not a room in your friend’s mom’s house, but a room in the chic but quirky Mama Shelter hotel chain.

Courtesy of Mama Shelter

Mama London — located in East London near the Bethnal Green underground stop and the train at Cambridge Heath, a quick commute to the trendy bars of Shoreditch — is a place where functionality and comfort meets a service-oriented and design-driven sense of hospitality. It’s the type of place where anyone should feel welcome — and are.

“We’re much more inclusive as opposed to exclusive,” Jeremie Trigano, one of the brothers who helped create Mama Shelter told Travel + Leisure. “Mama is for everyone. It doesn’t mean that everyone is going to like Mama, but it’s within our name: Mama Shelter — the mother, the caring one, the loving one. And the Shelter, that is for everyone to be protected from the negativity going on the world.”

Courtesy of Mama Shelter

And if you happen to be looking for shelter that’s also Instagram ready, you’ll find it all here. Home to 194 rooms in a variety of shapes and sizes, there’s a space for every type of traveler and every budget. Starting at £99 (about $122) the Small Mama room is the perfect affordable escape for the solo traveler or partners, feeling reminiscent of the most charming tiny houses seen online but also extremely functional. Or, if you feel like taking up some space, the Underground Mama Suite is the sort of place you can spread out. At 376 square feet, it’s the sort of place you can truly unwind before heading out for swing music and flaming cocktails at Nightjar.

Courtesy of Mama Shelter

“You can come to Mama whether you have deep pockets or not,” Trigano said. “You can get a room for £59 or a suit for £300. You can eat a pizza for £8 or eat the superb steak for £45 euros. When you come to Mama, you have a very eclectic crowd: from old people to young people, from businessmen to students. And this is really differentiating.”

Designed to feel like a charming english cottage, where “dark woody interiors” meet “stretches of velour,” the hotel is as charming a local watering hole as it a place to rest your head. The restaurant and bar serves up a wide range of menu options while arcade games and table soccer are available for those looking to just chill. The real heros, two Japanese-style karaoke rooms where guests can belt their favorite anthems, from Selena to Celine and every pop diva in-between.

Courtesy of Mama Shelter

“We’re not selling cool. We’re selling fun,” Benjamin Trigano, the other brother and founder said.

The Trigano family might not be peddling cool, but cool the chain certainly is. With successful openings of Mama Shelter properties around the world — Rio, Paris, Prague, and brand new openings in Lille and Paris, among others — people recognize the brand for its effortless style and a damn good time. In fact, Beyoncé and Jay-Z have been spotted dining at Mama Shelter Los Angeles, high above the glitz and glamour of Hollywood.

But at the root of all the Mama properties, London included, are the people there to host; the Mama’s, you might say. And these brothers know that, especially considering the Trigano family helped create Club Med.

Courtesy of Mama Shelter

“I think our brand [has] developed its big crowd of followers and enthusiastic people due to the fact that we manage to find great talents who are there to host other people,” Benjamin said. And in a world where dollars are driven by experience more than anything else, it’s the personal connection that truly brings people “home.”

“We don’t have the big standards that all these big chains have,” Jeremie said when asked what sets their employees apart. “We don’t give them a booklet to explain how they need to behave… It’s more we train them on the basics and then we help them to be themselves.”

And isn’t that what any good Mama wants? A clean and comfortable home where their family feels safe? Delicious food on the table that the whole community knows they’re welcome at? A karaoke room?

Well yeah, because Mama Shelter isn’t just a regular mom. It’s a cool mom.

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