Friday, October 19, 2007

The Gatwick “Yotel”

Nothing is more troublesome for travelers arriving after a long, uncomfortable overnight flight to Europe than a long layover or the prospect of having to kill the morning wandering around an unfamiliar large city such as London while waiting for their hotel or early evening connecting flight. Now, in London, there is an alternative: a compact cocoon for jet-lagged travelers modeled in part on the Japanese capsule hotel and first-class airplane cabins, the Yotel. Gatwick airport offers a low-budget refuge for those needing a nap, a shower, or a just a little privacy during a long layover (the minimum stay is four hours). The Yotel at Gatwick opened in July, with two other airport Yotels to follow: one at Heathrow airport in early November, a third at Schiphol airport in Amsterdam in early 2008.

Pigeon art in London