Where To Stay When You Head To Aintree Racecourse
You’ve had your tickets to the Grand National for months, you know exactly what you’re going to wear and you can almost taste the Guinness you plan on drinking, so the only thing left on your list is to sort yourself somewhere to stay. The options open to you are numerous, thanks to the fact that Liverpool city centre is relatively accessible to the course, working alongside the Aintree region the course is located in.
The big choice you need to make is whether you want to stay close to the action or you’d rather find a hotel nearer to the city centre where you can stay, giving you access to everything that Liverpool has to offer. Opting for the former will make things easier for you in terms of getting to and from the course, but plumping for the latter means that you can head to the Cavern club, the waterfront and the bars and pubs of one of England’s most exciting cities. Here’s a look at some of the hotel options for a range of budgets.
The Closest – Premier Inn, Aintree
You’ll struggle to get much closer to the racecourse unless you’re planning to take a tent and stick it up in front of Beecher’s Brook.
Being a Premier Inn, you’ll know exactly what to expect in terms of the hotel, with all of the usual trappings that you’ll be used to from a chain hotel.
As well as free WiFi, a comfortable bed and a power shower, the other big thing you’ll be interested in if you’re thinking of driving is the fact that there’s free parking on-site for guests.
Given parking is limited around Aintree on race days, that can be really helpful.
The Cheapest – Trivelles Seaforth
Most people are operating on a budget nowadays, especially when race day rolls around and you’ll want to save some of your cash to spend on the course.
With that in mind, the Trivelles in Seaforth might be a hotel that you want to keep an eye on, being one of the cheapest in the local area.
It’s about half an hour’s walk from here to the racecourse, so it might be worth looking to book a taxi with reception when you check-in.
As well as free WiFi and free parking, the hotel also offers family rooms that have a fridge and microwave. There are only 27 rooms here, so you’d do well to act fast if you want one of them.
The Theme Hotel – Hard Day’s Night Hotel, Liverpool City Centre
Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, there are few hotels close to Aintree Racecourse that offer guests a horse racing theme.
If you’re after a themed hotel and don’t mind staying in Liverpool, however, then you won’t do much better than one themed after the city’s most famous sons, The Beatles.
It is, remarkably, the only Beatles inspired hotel in the world and is housed with a stunning Grade II building just spitting distance from all of the main attractions of the city centre itself. Each room has a Beatles theme, meaning that you’ll be able to look over some of the band’s memorabilia before you go to sleep.
You can also have dinner in the hotel or enjoy a cocktail in the lounge and bar area.
The Football Hotel – The Shankly, Liverpool City Centre
Another themed hotel comes in the form of The Shankly, which is also located in the centre of Liverpool. As with Hard Day’s Night Hotel, it is also based around one of the city’s most famous exports and the founding father of it: Liverpool Football Club and Bill Shankly. Perhaps you might want to pop in for a pint or a bite to eat in the Bastion Bar & Grill, where you’ll be able to see some of Shankly’s memorabilia from his managerial days.
It’s a curious quirk of fate that the Grand National often falls on the same weekend as the Merseyside derby match between Liverpool and Everton, so what better way to enjoy a sporting couple of days than to stay in the hotel themed in honor of the man that made modern day LFC the club that it is? Obviously this isn’t necessarily the best hotel for Mancunians or Evertonians, but for everyone else it’s the perfect option.
The One For Evertonians – Toffees Townhouse, Everton
Whilst Toffees Townhouse isn’t themed after Everton or one of the club’s former stars, bar the fact that the trophy cabinet is empty, it is situated close to Goodison Park and bears the moniker of the club’s nickname, so it might be one that fans of the blues prefer to The Shankly.
Aintree Racecourse is about 3 miles away, so it’s one where you going to want to either drive from here or else get a taxi. It’s more like a home-from-home rather than a hotel, being a self-contained apartment that sleeps six. There’s a small garden area out the back, should the April weather decide to be kind to you whilst you’re visiting. You can also use the kitchen to cook your dinner, which is handy if you don’t want to eat out.
The Bootle-Based Option – The Park Hotel, Bootle
It would be misleading to say that The Park Hotel has a myriad of modern and fresh-looking rooms, but it’s still one of the hotels you’ll want to check out if you’re heading to the area for the National. Only 20 minutes walk away from Aintree Racecourse in nearby Bootle, The Park has 61 rooms and a restaurant and bar on-site.
As well as free WiFi, you’ll be able to park your car here if you’re driving. You can get breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant, which is handy given what big days those spent on a racecourse can be. Add into that the fact that you can leave your luggage in the hotel’s storage area and you’ll soon see that that it’s a decent option of hotel for those looking to live the high-life at the races.
The One Close To Crosby Beach – The Royal Hotel, Crosby
The city of Liverpool and the surrounding areas have plenty of culture to offer those that are happy to look for it, with a prime example of this being the Another Place exhibition of Antony Gormley that adorns Crosby beach. A walk along the waterfront at sunset can be an exhilaratingly eerie experience, thanks to the dozens of statues that are planted in the sand there.
Crosby itself is a lovely place to spend a bit of time, but even if you didn’t want to look around anywhere other than the beach then you could have dinner in the on-site restaurant, drink in the bar and sit out on the terrace or in the gardens. As well as WiFi and a cooked-to-order breakfast included in the cost of your stay, there’s also free parking. It’s about 45 minutes walk from Aintree Racecourse, so being able to have your car there is no bad thing.
The Expensive City Centre Hotel – Malmaison Liverpool, Liverpool City Centre
If you’re heading to the races then you might want to make it something of an extravagant weekend, with the Malmaison being perfect for exactly that. With 130 rooms, a restaurant and bar on-site and a 24-hour fitness centre available, the Malmaison is perfect for those of you that want to take your weekend seriously. Add into that the fact that it’s hugely convenient for Liverpool’s various amenities and you can see why it’s a popular one.
Being in the city centre it’s not very close to the racecourse, but it is close to the train station that can get you there easily enough. It’s part of the Malmaison chain, so you know you’re going to get quality if you stay here. It’s pet friendly, though we wouldn’t recommend leaving your four-pawed pal in the room all day for obvious reasons. This is one to consider if you fancy a splurge.
The One With A Pool – Marriott Hotel – Liverpool City Centre
Sometimes it’s nice to head to a hotel where you can properly relax, especially if you know you’re going to have a tough day on the racecourse at some point over the weekend.
The Marriott Hotel in Liverpool city centre is the one for you if you’re hoping to combine your horse racing exploits with a bit of a chill out.
As well as an indoor pool and full-service spa, the Marriott boasts a health club where you can truly unwind and let go of the stresses of your day. Being a city centre hotel it’s obviously not all that close to Aintree, but it’s the closest hotel on our list to Liverpool Central Station, from where you can jump the train out to the racecourse every 7 and a half minutes on race day.
The Other Chain Hotel – Premier Inn Liverpool North, Liverpool
The final hotel we’ll draw your attention to is another from the Premier Inn chain of hotels. It’s located a bit further afield than the one that is practically part of the racecourse, but it’s still only a short walk to Old Roan Station, which is one stop away from Aintree Station on the railway line.
As with the other Premier Inn, you’ll be able to use the hotel’s WiFi during your stay and there’s also a bar and restaurant on-site if you’re trying to make things as convenient as possible for yourself. Don’t expect many frills or luxuries, but if you want to enjoy your stay in a place where you know what you’re going to get then this is a good option.
Best Practice When Booking Hotels For Aintree
Obviously not everyone is able to get tickets in advance for something like the Grand National, but the simple truth is that hotels get booked up incredibly quickly for the main event. With that in mind, the sooner you can book a hotel the better placed you’ll be.
To be honest, if you’re even considering going to watch any of the racing at Aintree Racecourse or simply think you’d like to be in Liverpool to soak up the atmosphere then you’d be mad not to at least book a room with one of the companies that allows you to cancel without charge if you decide not to go or can’t get a ticket.
Liverpool is a city used to seeing a large influx of people for sporting events, whether it be European football fans coming over the watch their team play against Liverpool in the Champions League, people coming from Wales to watch Everton or Grand National lovers like yourself, the city has a myriad of options for you to choose from. Just try to be clever when it comes to where you’re booking and the company you’re booking with.
Alternative Methods For Accommodation
Not everyone wants to stay in a hotel when they travel, of course, so it’s worth having a look at other options available to you when you travel to Liverpool for the Grand National. The first thing to do is look at the options for camping, with around 22 sites within a reasonable drive of the course.
The closest campsite that is certified by the Camping and Caravanning Club is Hidden Corner Camping in Maghull, which is about 2 miles from Aintree. Offering pitches for both tents and caravans, it’s also got flushing toilets and showers – not always a given when you’re camping!
If you fancy a trip to the other side of the River Mersey then Arrowe Brook Farm on the Wirral is worth a look. It’s small, offering room for just 5 caravans and 10 tents, making it a more private experience than elsewhere.
If your exotic lifestyle stretches as far as being happy to moor a boat up on a canal then you’re in luck when you travel to Aintree. The Leeds to Liverpool canal is just over half a mile from the racecourse, offering a number of mooring spots for you take advantage of.
If you’d rather be closer to Liverpool city centre then that’s an option for you too, with the Liverpool Canal Link given a £22 million makeover in the Spring of 2009. The options are there for you, should you wish to take advantage of them.