As London’s financers head north along Bishopsgate from the Square Mile, they are met by the creatives of Shoreditch from the east and the tech-entrepreneurs of Old Street from the west.
The three convene at what is known to locals as Silicone Roundabout – a hub for young, savvy media companies with an eye on global expansion.
With its aspirations to emulate Silicone Valley in California, the area is certainly one of the fastest developing in the capital, mixing artisanal cocktails bars such as the Nightjar with cutting edge clubs as XOYO.
Joining the scene this year is M by Montcalm – Shoreditch, a sleek new property from the usually more rarefied Montcalm brand.
Situated on City Road, a three-minute walk from Silicone Roundabout (which despite its allusions to grandeur is still very much a working roundabout) the property juts from the ground like a futuristic iceberg, towering over its surroundings.
Its 18 storey futuristic façade was influenced by the work of ‘Op-Art’ pioneer Bridget Riley, particularly her 1993 work “Nataraja,” which now hangs as part of the Tate Collection.
As such, the building is one of the first in the world to absorb a horizontal transom on the façade, preserving the purity of the original architectural concept and making for an eye-catching addition to the London skyline.
Visiting on a Friday evening, the air on arrival is very much technology-orientated: guests play Angry Birds on television sized screens built into the tables in reception, while the staff buzz around entering information into their iPads.
All the surfaces are sleek marble or brushed metal, seemingly now de rigour for any design-led hotel in London or around the world.
In many ways, M by Montcalm is a recognition that just as life has changed, so has luxury travel, with luxury hospitality increasingly experience-driven and tech-enhanced.
The M by Montcalm seeks meet this demand, melding the best of technological innovation with the warmth of the human touch.
And in this aim the project has largely been successful.
The 269 stylish rooms are all complete with luxury amenities from Hermès, rain showers, Bose speakers and easy to use technology that enables guests to create their own environment – everything one would expect.
Guests can even select the room aroma.
Features also include tablets to easily control the lights, sound, and temperature of the rooms, while huge touchscreen televisions hang on the walls.
The feeling is glossy, advanced and welcoming.
Back downstairs and the M Spa: M by Montcalm is a place to unwind amid the buzz of Shoreditch’s spirit of innovation.
Offering a wide range of therapies, guests can also swim a beautiful Versace tiled swimming pool with steam room, sauna and Jacuzzi, while the gym is equipped with the latest in technology and renowned beauty brands.
Two exciting restaurants are also housed within the property.
Urban Coterie, created by Anthony Demetre, explores his Bistronomy movement, offering experimental haute cuisine at affordable prices.
Spread across the ground and mezzanine floors, Tonic & Remedy is one of those rare beasts – a hotel restaurant alive with guests.
Offering a relaxed atmosphere and serving world-class cocktails, it pays homage to the apothecary trade that had been located in that area of London throughout previous centuries.
Led by chef Paul Welburn, the menu is focused on simple British fare, using locally sourced suppliers.
Poised above the lobby, its cocktail bar provides the perfect vantage point for people watching.
M by Montcalm adds an exciting new dimension to an area of London that is unrecognisable from even a few years ago.
For more on the hotel head over to the official website.