An excellent contemporary boutique brand from Scotland that appeals to high standards for space and style, Apex is a friendly and peaceful urban retreat that actually looks like its pictures. You’ll find it literally steps from the Tower of London, and a few rooms glimpse the Tower Bridge—along with the balcony, worth the upgrade of £15–£30. During the weekend, when The City is deader than Old Marley, it can be a steal. It’s handsomely designed in hardwood and walnut, Nespresso pods instead of awful instant coffee, and bathrooms larger than many B&Bs’ guest rooms, including walk-in power showers. The only downside is the City is personality-free off-hours. The Apex London Wall, just as good, is on the side streets north of Bank station, and the Apex Temple Court, off Fleet Street, is also tops, but for the views and its affordable proximity to the river, it’s a solid choice.