A swanky new hotel has opened in London. As with all five-star offerings, guests can expect personal trainers, spa days, comfortable beds to nap in, tasty treats and even nutritionists. The catch? Only four-legged residents will be allowed.
Urban Mutts, a new dog club and hotel, officially opened in September 2020 after an unexpected year scuppered what was expected to be a grand opening months earlier. The team — dogs and humans alike — have pinned their hopes on 2021 being the year the business finally takes off.
The hotel welcomes dogs of all breeds, colours, shapes and personalities — but operates on a membership-only basis. With their owner’s assistance, dogs can fill in a quick online form to get the process started, including their name, breed, age, interest in the club and, of course, owner’s details. For the safety of all members, Urban Mutts will make sure all vaccination records are up to date.
Walking services, pet training and even puppy training and day care for smaller breeds and puppies just over 12 weeks are just some of the services offered at Urban Mutts. They will be taken for walks, allowed to nap to their hearts’ content and will learn to socialise — safely secluded from big dogs.
The doggy spa is likely to be a big hit, and when it comes to anything accessory-related, the four-legged guests can expect only the best in terms of custom-made dog accessories from Hindquarters (a London-based company selling bespoke dog products), and others.
Naturally, an on-site vet will make sure all your dog’s health needs are taken care of — including its weight, heart rate, temperature, hydration levels, teeth condition and gait.
As for the décor, expect fun, colourful graffiti-painted walls, plush carpets, life-sized balloon dog figures and nap pads of various sizes, colours and textures.
Owners interested in first checking out the nifty quarters and services can pop in and meet Barry Karacostas, whose dog walking business sparked the idea of a dog hotel; his wife Julie; their business partner Gregory Hands; and dog directors Bruce the Labrador and Bubbles the Rottweiler.
The hotel’s sleep huts are the answer to the traditional dog kennel — with a few luxe tweaks. They are heated, ventilated and lit with ambient LEDs. A day’s stay will cost £70 (roughly R1,400). A three-day bundle for a weekend getaway will set you back £180 (roughly R3,600) and a weekly bundle, or staycation, will cost £350 (roughly R7,000).
If a shorter stay is more in line with your canine’s needs, day-care packages that include play time, nap time, spa time and networking in the social club with its soft, paw-friendly floor can be arranged to suit your specific needs.
The hourly day-care rate starts from £15 (roughly R300), a half day rate costs £30 (roughly R600) and a daily rate £50 (roughly R1,000). A spa day bundle, which includes daycare and a wash, costs an easy £80 (roughly R1,600).
As is to be expected, drop-ins won’t be accommodated. To avoid disappointing your pooch, make sure to join the club for an additional one-off £150 membership fee (roughly R3,000) and book in advance — with the online booking system, it’s a walk in the park.