Anne and Shelly backpacking

Over 15 years ago, Anne and Shelly, two sisters from Dublin, went backpacking. They had the time of their lives, but for this dynamic duo it wasn’t quite enough! Inspired by their stays in hostels around the world, they set out to open the doors to their own. Ashlee House, at 261 Grays Inn Road, London, was born. The two sisters used the experience of the things they had loved (or loathed!) at other hostels to bring Ashlee House to life. It soon became a well-known and successful backpackers’ hostel. So the sisters set their sights on bigger things…

Bigger things like Rock ‘n’ Roll! Well, sort of. An old courthouse came on the market. It was where Punk band The Clash had stood trial and where Charles Dickens once worked. The sisters knew it was an opportunity too good to miss. With a solid knowledge of the industry (and always up for a challenge!) they took on the tired old courthouse as their next hostel venture. The striking building was lovingly refurbished with quirky, bold and colourful decor. It reopened with the name Clink. (Why ‘Clink’? It’s an old English slang word for prison, and with its old prison cells and courtrooms, the name seemed apt!).

Ashlee House and Clink then came together under the umbrella name of Clink Hostels. The buildings were renamed Clink78 and Clink261. Although different in size and style, they shared the same energy and spirit. The focus of both hostel teams was to engage with guests and understand their needs. The ultimate aim was, and remains to this day, to deliver a great guest experience!

Since then, we’ve opened ClinkNOORD in Amsterdam’s cool and creative Noord district. It sits on the banks of the River IJ, just a few minutes from Amsterdam Centraal Station. This grand old laboratory was the former head office of oil and gas giant Shell. Renovated by local Dutch architects, it marks our first step into continental Europe. We’re very excited to be here!

We’re busy exploring new locations too, so keep your eyes peeled for news of our next opening…