For a budget conscious and modern choice we recommend staying at one of the splendidly big Travelodge’s in the city centre. The Newmarket Road Cambridge Travelodge is the best accommodation currently available, if funds for the trip are somewhat limited. (1)
There is the Travelodge Cambridge Central and the Newmarket Road Travelodge. We have stayed at both and they both offer friendly reception service and everything you would expect for a bed and bathroom suite at prices that start from £35 per night per room.
This years coronavirus precautions mean that the hotels are cleaner than ever and you can always bring your own anti-bacterial kit, in addition to your favourite personal protection equipment too.
The Cambridge Central Travelodge has the advantage of an excellent location near to the train station and a small retail and leisure park. There are a few good brasserie’s in the vicinity as well as mini versions of Tescos and Sainsbury’s supermarkets. Walking into the centre of town is simple, it is literally further up the road. There are lots of great buildings and unusual shops to look at on the way. Long stay parking in the multi-storey around the corner was a breeze. In addition there were also some free bays for cars in front of the entrance to the striking bright blue coloured lodging facility.(2)
The Cambridge Central Travelodge has air conditioning, which has the advantage that it can be really warm and cosy easily, if that is how you like your boudoir. However it is not possible to open the windows at this hotel which could be a concern for customers looking to avoid any recirculated air. We were lucky that when we turned off the rooms fan we were left with an ideal temperature space with a vent in the bathroom, that seemed to go out to the fresh air on the adjacent outside wall.
Alternatively the Newmarket Road Travelodge has opening windows but no air conditioning and the rooms are heated with radiators. There are 50 spaces for cars at the hotel and extra places at the nearby Grafton Centre. The well known travel company explains that “For shopaholics, Cambridge has plenty of stores and boutiques packed into its centre, while there’s an abundance of galleries, including the Fitzwilliam Museum, to enjoy – and that’s all in addition to beautiful university buildings such as Christ’s College.” The Newmarket Road Travelodge has a bus stop literally outside that goes straight into town and the public transport system is frequent and works very well. (1)
Another reasonable abode in Cambridge is the ‘ibis Cambridge Central Station’ which is a stone’s throw from the station on a leisure park and 20-30 minute walk away commercial and historic hub. From around £60 per room per night a mini break in this comfortable 3 star hotel with its own coffee shop is ideal for couples. Single room air conditioning is an extra health and safety feature too. (3)
We like national chain companies as in our experience they are successful at consistently meeting high standards. Unless you are very unlucky the big brands at the lower end of the market have the basics covered, like a clean en suite with a bath and a quality mattress, bed and spotlessly fresh bed covers. Usually the customer service in these large corporate hostels is efficient and friendly. To help visitors settle into their temporary home a team member is nearly always ready at reception, all through the night as well as during the day.
If you are driving to Cambridge and would like to take advantage free on site parking then the Premier Inn on the A14 road at Junction 32 could be ideal. At £31 per room per night it is amazing value at the moment. It is worth noting that the windows do not open at this hotel and the rooms have air conditioning. (4)
Just in case you have decided to splurge instead, we have a deluxe recommendation too. The University Arms Hotel has an impressive entrance with tall classical arches. The Arms Hotel would be an luxurious upmarket accommodation choice with prices from £140 per night per room. This boutique Marriott hotel “was designed by renowned architect John Simpson. Immaculate accommodation features charming Edwardian interiors with bespoke writing desks, luxury linens, complimentary Wi-Fi and an abundance of natural light.” (5)
(1) ‘Cambridge Newmarket Road’, Travelodge Hotels, 16 October 2020 ‘Cambridge Newmarket Road’, Travelodge
(2) ‘Cambridge Central’, Travelodge Hotels, 16 October 2020 Travelodge Cambridge Central
(3) ‘Ibis Cambridge Central Station’ Ibis Cambridge Central Station
(4) ‘Cambridge (A14, J32) hotel Premier Inn, 16 October 2020 Cambridge (A14, J32) hotel Premier Inn
(5) The University Arms Hotel, Autograph Collection, 16 October 2020 The University Arms Hotel, Autograph Collection, 16 October 2020