Inspire

Sleep Surrounded By Books At This Operating Library Hotel

Whether it’s being surrounded by generations of stories or the fact that they’re a quiet zone,  there’s something so relaxing about libraries. If you’ve ever felt like you could doze off while flicking through the books, you’re not alone. But while snoozing amid the stacks may be frowned upon in your average library, it’s actually encouraged at the Gladstone’s Library in the Welsh town of Flintshire, Hawarden. It’s truly a library hotel.

The operating library has 26 quaint hotel rooms, meaning bibliophiles can sleep surrounded by books. Guests at the hotel get access to the library until 10pm (it’s open to the public until 5 pm) and with more than 250,000 books on offer, there’s no shortage to choose from.

The Gladstone’s Library was named after William Gladstone, a former UK Prime Minister who was elected to a record four terms. As an avid book lover he accumulated more than 30,000 books in his lifetime. Shortly after his death in 1989, the library was established to make his collection available to the public.

Accommodation in the Gladstone’s library hotel. Image: Craig Colville / Gladstone’s Hotel

While there’s wi-fi in the rooms, something tells us you won’t be needing it. Guests in the room can curl up with their books in front of the charming views of the Welsh countryside, while drinking an endless supply of free coffee and listening to vintage radio. If you feel like leaving your room (unlikely!) The site is also home to the Hawarden Castle where Prime Minister Gladstone lived.

A stay in one of the library hotel’s rooms is surprisingly affordable, beginning at around £69 (AU$121) and including free breakfast at the onsite café, Food for Thought. The hotel is located in northern Wales and is accessible by driving, or taking a train from the nearby town of Chester.

You can book a stay at Gladstone’s Library here.

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(Lead image: Melissa Cross / Gladstone’s Library)