Bayswater hotel to revert to residential gold with Alchemi
By Kat Sbybey Property Week – www.propertyweek.com | Residential | 24-01-2014
Umi hotel in Leinster Square will be combined with terrace to create luxury homes
Residential developer Alchemi Group is working up plans for a £150m luxury Scheme in Bayswater, west London, after taking control of the Umi hotel.
Alchemi is working on plans to convert two hotels into more that 30 luxury flats, which are expected to command values of around £2,000/ sq ft, and will dominate the northern side of the square.
US private equity investor Angelo Gordon has bought the Umi hotel, at 13-19 Leinster Square, from Lowry Group for a price thought to be around £30m. Alchemi has been appointed as the development manager to convert the three-star, 116-bedroom hotel, which is also known as the Westminster hotel, into 15 to 20 flats, which could be worth around £90m when completed.
In 2012 JR Capital, a Middle Eastern consortium working with Alchemi bought the adjacent 80-bedroom Leinster Inn, at 7-12 Leinster Square, for £20m. Last year the pair won planning consent to convert it into 11 flats with an estimated value of around £60m. Five of the flats will have their own ground-floor entrances.
The acquisition of the Umi will more than double the number of flats Alchemi can create on the square. Despite the different owners of the two sites, Alchemi is in talks to try and combine the two schemes, which could share communal facilities such as a gym, spa and swimming pool.
A combined scheme would take in 13 grade II-listed buildings that make the up most of the squares northern side.
Architect Tate Hindle, who designed the first element of the scheme, has also been lined up for the Umi hotel.
Lowry Group has taken a lease on the Umi property until March, and will have a rolling lease after that to wind down the hotel. Alchemi is expected to submit a planning application by the end of May.
Work is expected to start on 7-12 Leinster Square in February, with Alchemi hoping to be on the Umi site by the end of the year.
The conversion of the hotels comes as London councils appear keen to support planning applications to convert hotel properties that were originally designed to be private residential, back into residential use, behind the retained traditional facades of the buildings.
To see the original article click here Property Week – 24th Jan 2014