Manchester is a place where history, culture, and the vibrant LGBTQ+ community come together to create an unforgettable experience, especially during the Pride weekend festival.
And staying at the Kimpton Clocktower Hotel during the event truly is a gem in the heart of this spirited city.
Booking.com’s Commitment to Inclusivity
Before diving into the Manchester adventure, there needs to be a moment to appreciate the strides made by Booking.com in fostering inclusivity within the travel industry.
As Arjan Dijk, CMO and Senior Vice President at Booking.com, aptly puts it, “In a world of increasing contradictions and instability, it’s no surprise that the LGBTQ+ travellers of today are simultaneously more cautious and more confident.”
Recognising the unique challenges faced by LGBTQ+ travellers, Booking.com launched its Travel Proud initiative, a beacon of hope and change for LGBTQ+ travellers worldwide.
The heart of this initiative lies in the provision of free inclusive hospitality training for accommodations.
This training equips properties with the tools and knowledge to understand the unique challenges faced by LGBTQ+ travellers and create a welcoming environment for everyone, regardless of their background, who they love, or how they identify.
As Arjan Dijk emphasises, “The travel industry should strive to be a beacon of inclusion, helping foster an environment where everyone can flourish and thrive, whether exploring closer to home or travelling to the other side of the world.
There are now more than 24,000 certified properties globally on Booking.com, with welcoming Travel Proud stays available in 118 countries and territories and over 7,030 cities.”
In the wake of this powerful initiative, Kimpton Clocktower Hotel in Manchester stands as a testament to what a truly inclusive hospitality experience can be.
A Grand Welcome
Manchester is a city that thrives on its diversity and celebrates individuality, and what better place to call home during the stay than Kimpton Clocktower Hotel where the LGBTQ+ flag is flown proudly all year round not just for pride events.
Entering into the lobby, the grandeur of this century-old building really does shine.
The Kimpton Clocktower Hotel: A Historical Marvel
Originally known as the Refuge Assurance Building, the Kimpton Clocktower Hotel is a masterpiece of Victorian architecture.
Its iconic red-brick façade and towering clock tower have graced Manchester’s skyline since its completion in 1895.
Designed by the renowned architect Alfred Waterhouse, the building is a testament to the city’s rich history.
The hotel seamlessly blends the grandeur of the past with modern comforts, creating an atmosphere of timeless luxury.
Inclusivity at Its Best
Kimpton Clocktower Hotel, in partnership with Booking.com’s Travel Proud program, exemplifies inclusivity.
The staff here understand that each guest is unique, and they go the extra mile to ensure everyone feels welcome.
From LGBTQ+ travellers to anyone seeking an unforgettable experience, this is a safe haven for all.
The staff’s genuine care and commitment to inclusivity made the stay all the more special.
They understand that every traveller is unique and deserving of respect and comfort.
Exploring Manchester’s LGBTQ+ Scene
Manchester’s LGBTQ+ scene is legendary, and Kimpton Clocktower Hotel serves as an ideal base for exploring it all.
The hotel’s central location means you’re just a stone’s throw away from the city’s vibrant LGBTQ+ bars, clubs, and cultural hotspots.
A short walk from the hotel takes you to Canal Street, the epicentre of Manchester’s LGBTQ+ nightlife.
This pedestrianised street comes alive in the evenings, with rainbow flags adorning the bars and clubs.
The Refuge Bar & Restaurant
Originally the public dining room for the Refuge Assurance Company, this space has been lovingly restored and it now is The Refuge, is the hotel’s own bar and restaurant but is also open to all with its separate entrance on the corner of the building.
It offers a blend of British and international flavours, and dining here is truly an experience as the space is adorned the original features such as the glazed brick and the marble floor.
The ambience, with its botanical touches and heritage charm, is both elegant and relaxed.
Adding to the uniqueness of the hotel and the building, nestled on the third floor hidden away from the masses is a rooftop garden.
There are no signs to find this but when one does it brings a magical feel to the entire place specifically at night with the fairy lights on and the glow from the clock tower right above you, this special little garden feels like your own.
The staycation in Manchester, accompanied by the warm embrace of Kimpton Clocktower Hotel and the inclusivity championed by Booking.com, was an experience that will be cherished for a long time.
Manchester’s LGBTQ+ scene is vibrant, its history is rich, and its people are welcoming.
Together, they create a tapestry of diversity and acceptance that leaves a lasting impression on all who visit.
In reflection, the progress made in the travel industry nowadays is amazing for the LGBTQ+ community.
The Travel Proud initiative, along with welcoming properties like Kimpton Clocktower Hotel, reminds us that travel should be a safe haven for everyone to explore the world, regardless of who they love.
Manchester, with its LGBTQ+ heart, stands as a shining example of how love, diversity, and inclusivity can truly make a city come alive.