citizenM Taipei Northgate

A bold new design boutique hotel in Taipei

citizen M opens its first branch in Asia, a design boutique hotel in Taipei that is changing the way hotels are supposed to be. It’s bold and brave but highly imaginative in its interior. It only has one kind of room category and all 267 are modern, minimalist and smart.

I got excited when my stay at citizenM Taipei North Gate got confirmed. Who wouldn’t be when you get to stay in a beautiful design boutique hotel in Taipei. It’s actually the 11th branch of the Dutch brand that has a presence mostly in Europe and two in New York. Plans are afoot to open in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur soon. But for now, Taipei is it.

citizenM Taipei North Gate is in a good location. It’s just walking distance to Taipei Main Station where you can take the MRT, High Speed Rail with connections to the airport. It’s just a few meters away from the historic North Gate, a 19th century structure. Ximending is just a few minutes walk away and so is 228 Peace Park, Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall, several retail shops and restaurants as well as streetfood.

design boutique hotel in taipei

Terminals for self check-in which is quick and seamless. Instructions are easy to follow but you can always ask the hotel ambassadors for help.

Checking in is a breeze

Although the hotel’s exterior doesn’t give any hint of what’s inside, except for a wall art near the entrance done by a local artist and a red swing bench, once you get inside though is a different matter. A wall with interesting decor, artworks and books makes its presence felt. At the far end is a spiral staircase that leads to the second floor. There’s no cavernous lobby but what greets you upon entering the hotel is a table with terminals.

design boutique hotel in Taipei

Yes, abuse their wifi!

Checking in is a breeze. Here, you can do a self check-in using your personal details or confirmation info. Once confirmed, you just get the keycard which also doubles as your bag tag. You can even bring home this bagtag as a souvenir or use it again when you come back to stay at the hotel. Although seamless and instructions are easy to follow, a citizenM ambassador, as staff are called, was there to help me.

Minimalist smart rooms

I just love the minimalist and white washed walls of the room. I was billeted at the 24th floor of the room with great views of this part of Taipei and farther beyond, the Tamsui River and mountains. It has perfect views in the morning when the sun is just waking up from the east or at dusk when the city lights start to electrify the city.

It looks spartan but the XL bed and pillows are comfortable. Opposite it is a large flat screen TV and the wide window. It’s almost bare except for the necessities but central to this room is the Ipad mini that prominently stands at the bedside table. From this device you can control almost all aspects of the room from watching TV or listening to radio, aircon temperature and settings, mood lights, streaming your device’s display to the TV to closing or opening the blinds and curtains. Check the Youtube video below to see what you can do with it.

And darn, the wifi! As in WIFI in capital letters! Check the above speed test I did!

design boutique hotel in taipei

Part of the room showing the toilet and bath as well as the sink

design boutique hotel in taipei

Detail of toilet and bath as well as sink

design boutique hotel in taipei

The living room with interesting colors and accents. The living room lobby used Vitra furniture.

The Living Room lobby

The Living Room lobby is perhaps one of the defining spaces of citizenM hotels. It’s a space where you can relax or entertain friends. Or just hang out or go online. With the many books and works of art done by local artists, which citizenM champions, you immediately get the local feel. It’s interior is one of the best in this design boutique hotel in Taipei!

It’s a 180 turn around from the hotel room. Here, its colorful, vibrant yet relaxing too. The space has that living room feel where you can be at home. I was just so amazed at how it is designed, a taste of European chic and contemporary interiors! It’s also where that grand spiral staircase leads to from below.

More images of the Living Room at my other blog, TenZeroFour.

design boutique hotel in taipei

canteenM, the 24 hour cafe and cocktail bar


design boutique hotel in taipei

What a good way to start the day

Ah, canteenM. It’s the hotel’s 24 hour cafe and cocktail bar for guests, who at any time of the day need some refueling. Or a few drinks. Or something to wake them up. citizenM Ambassadors are also said to be good baristas. Although I didn’t There’s specialty coffee and drinks, signature sandwiches and other dishes. Buffet breakfasts, lunch and dinners are also served beside it, for a fee.

The buffet breakfast was included in my stay. Although not as extensive as what you can experience in a big hotel, the breakfast buffet in this design boutique hotel in Taipei has various options. From international fare to local. You can have bread or flaky croissants or a hot bowl of noodles. Or eggs done in several ways. I love one frittata type of dish. And there was bacon too, although not as crispy and crunchy as I wanted to be. There’s coffee and juice and infused water. Ah, I had several glasses of the orange juice. It was good too. I actually had a good breakfast and had me full.

design boutique hotel in taipei

Dining area with interesting wall full of decors, local art and books

design boutique hotel in taipei

You have lots of choices for your buffet breakfast

Clockwise from top right: mirroring your device’s screen display to the flat screen TV via Miracast; notes, bag tag/room key, hotel guide and Ipad Mini to control almost every feature of the room; love the view of the Tamsui River at this side of Taipei; and, room toiletries

I had a great stay at citizenM Taipei North Gate. No question about it. I love the design of the Living Room, the reason that I wanted to stay here in the first place. I love the minimalist and white smart room that you can control via a device. I love the breakfast. In short, I love this design boutique hotel in Taipei. And I wouldn’t hesitate to stay here again. You should too.

Have you stayed at the citizenM Taipei North Gate? How was your stay? Tell us about it in the comments below.

design boutique hotel in taipei

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Thanx to citizenM Taipei North Gate for the staycation.

citizenM Taipei North Gate
No. 3 Section 1 Zhonghua Road Zhongzheng District
10043 Taipei, Taiwan
+886 70 1016 1061

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.


  1. Raffy Pekson II
    December 18, 2017 @ 22:45

    I love the “please abuse our free WiFi” message 😂

  2. estan
    January 26, 2018 @ 23:09

    Haha! Ang bilis e!

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