Check In: Little National Hotel, Canberra

A super small room that is very big on features

★★★★1/2
21 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600 Australia
☎ +61 2 6188 3200
#  Hotel Website
$ Rooms start from $115 AUD per night.
What I loved: Beautifully designed room, super comfortable bed, hip ammenities
What I didn’t: Small room, slightly voyeuristic
Perfect for: Business travellers, solo travellers, quick weekend getaways

Hotel Features at a glance:
120 Rooms / Free Standard Wifi / USB Powerpoints / T2 Tea / Nespresso Coffee Machine / Minibar / Work Desk / Appelle’s Apothecary Ammenities / Complimentary In Room Movies / Foxtel / 24 Hour Business Lounge / Super King Size Beds / Free car parking on Friday, Saturday and Sunday for hotel guests.

The travella.com.au review 

The Little National is a bit of a blink and you’ll miss it hotel – in fact you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for a carpark. It looks just like that, a carpark in the middle of a field. That’s because it is one – or at least it’s built on top of one – an extremely functional and perfectly neat little unit, almost as if IKEA had made itself a flat-pack hotel, which seems to be a theme for the entire hotel.

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The exterior of the Little National (front) – Pic by Doma Hotels Group

Minimalist design is a massive feature of the hotel, a point that will smack you in the face from the moment you enter the lobby through to arriving at the door to your room. In the lobby you’re presented with lots of empty art gallery-like space, modern lines, a hotel reception desk that looks more like a piece of art and staff that look as if they could be mod artists themselves.

The check-in process was smooth – we were traveling on business and checking into three rooms – and we were given a quick introduction to the hotel, features, given the option to pre-purchase a buffet breakfast ($10 cheaper when it’s pre-booked) and then our room keys. The hotel hallways feature the same cool modernism of the entire hotel, white repeating corridors that are oddly hypnotising and roof lighting that turns on as you walk through, just one of the eco-nods this hotel features.

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Don’t forget your room number: The hallways look the same everywhere you turn. 

Arriving at the room you’re met with a hyper colour room number and touch screen panel. You tap the panel to get in to your room, and lights indicate if you need a room service or if you wish to get some rest.

Stepping inside you’re met with the reality of the hotel’s premise – the Little National is a little hotel. The rooms are super tiny, but interestingly the design of the room is such that you never feel claustrophobic – or at least I didn’t. The bed, which gave me one of the dreamiest sleeps I’ve ever had in a hotel room, is butted up against a full glass panel wall. Privacy is afforded to you by an electronic blind that you should always remember to close because it gives everyone on the outside a full view into your room. The room features everything you could need in a short stay room – a closet with mini bar inside, iron, robe hooks and desk. On your bed you’ll be presented with a T2 set with Sleep Tight Tea and a copy of a local magazine – a lovely touch.

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Super huge bed in the tiny well-designed room. Photo: Little National Hotel

The bathroom, also super compact, is once again surprisingly well-designed and feels large enough to get everything done. The thing I have to emphasise here is that I’ve felt more uncomfortable in rooms double the size of this one, which really speaks volumes for the idea of “spatial planning” the hotel quips on their website.

 

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A pot of tea and a copy of the Little National paper settles you in to sleep at night

Other great features of the room: USB power points, a big screen TV with on-demand movies and excellent TV selection, natural ammenities. The hotel also features a two storey business lounge open 24 hours which features coffee, tea, biscuits and plenty of meeting space both in the form of desks, tables and couches with fireplaces. There’s also a bar but it wasn’t open for the three nights I was there. Shame.

Breakfast the following morning is a lovely experience in the restaurant of the  neighbouring Hotel Realm  (also part of the Doma Hotels chain) but there’s better coffee and less traditional breakfast options at Maple + Clove cafe across from Hotel Realm – the staff weren’t the friendliest but the food options and great coffee definitely made up for it.

The Little National has fast become my favourite new hotel in Canberra – and I’ll definitely be back. I would say it’s more of a quick weekend getaway / business hotel rather than one you’d bring the family to, but with rooms this affordable (we paid a super cheap $110 a night) you could afford to rent a room for each of the kids too. What’s your favourite place to stay in Canberra? Let me know below!

 

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