It all started with a pair of shoes...


Marten Dresen, the founder of the Good Hotel, was travelling through Guatemala when he met Mirna, a girl with no shoes. He bought her a pair of Converse trainers, kicking off a charitable chain reaction.

Soon after meeting Mirna, Marten founded Niños de Guatemala, a foundation that builds and operates schools in rural Guatemalan communities.

Learn more about Mirna and her flamed Converse
OUR STORY Marten Mirna

Niños de Guatemala

Marten, together with his good friend Sander, former Spanish teacher Carmen, and sister Annemiek, started a Foundation that would open a first elementary school, Nuestro Futuro, in 2009 the village of Ciudad Vieja. In 2012, they opened a second elementary school, called El Porvenir, in San Lorenzo el Cubo. Then in 2015, a secondary school was inaugurated.

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Once the first schools were up and running, Marten began to wonder how to generate a sustainable income for the charity and create quality jobs for the children that graduate from the schools. What if he could harness the potential of tourism?

The idea for the Good Hotel was created in 2012. From the start, Marten set out to build the Good Hotel and the Good Group on the principles of "social business", as per Muhamad Yunus.

Learn more about the hotel as a social business
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The original Good Hotel

The first Good Hotel was conceived in Antigua. 

Read the full story and watch the videos


The concept for the Good Hotel was launched to the public in a 2 Michelin star restaurant in Amsterdam. This is also when the customary Good Training program got piloted, training local residents out of unemployment and into a hospitality career.

Learn more about the launch event

The Good Hotel that floats

Marten spotted an old derelict accommodation platform, which was for sale in the port of Amsterdam. He had a flash of insight: what if it could be converted into a beautiful hotel? Which could then be transported to Brazil, where it could serve as legacy project for the Olympics of 2016?

An Olympic legacy for Rio
Social bus


In order to "practice" running the floating Good Hotel before moving it to Brazil, the city of Amsterdam offered up a temporary mooring location. This is where the floating Good Hotel Amsterdam was in 2015 and 2016, as a pop-up. Four months before the hotel opening date, the first full-fledged Good Training program kicked off.

Kicking off the Good Training program
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Across the North Sea

Well before the Olympics, Brazil entered into a deep recession. The floating Good Hotel had to change course. In October of 2016, it was towed on top of a submersible cargo barge, and started its voyage across the North Sea. Destination: London.

Learn about the landing in London


Late 2016, the floating Good Hotel arrived into London. And though the shore connections took a while, both the hotel and the local training program successfully got going in 2017.

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The brand

Over the course of 2019 and 2020, the Good Hotel brand was refreshed under the 'sleep good, do good' campaign.

Read more about the brand

The London training program

The Good Training Program has trained up hundreds of local residents from the London Borough of Newham.

The BBC sent by Tom Kerridge to report on it.

Watch the video
BBC Good Hotel


After some delay due to COVID, the Good Hotel Guatemala City finally opened in 2022.

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Taste of Good dinner

On 9 October 2022 Good Hotel London hosted the Taste of Good Dinner to share stories. For this special occasion, Debora Fadul, Good Hotel Guatemala City's resident chef, came over.

Watch the video

Antigua hotel extension

In 2024, the Good Hotel Antigua will be extended with 25 rooms.

Watch the video