Scotland Yard to get ?100m facelift
Galliard Group has bought a 125-year lease on the Edwardian building and once complete in June 2016, the new ?100m seven-storey hotel will provide 235 bedrooms and suites including a VIP suite. Features will include a grand entrance foyer, winter garden lounge, signature restaurant, cocktail bar and lounge, second lounge, library, 120 seater main conference room/ballroom, meeting rooms and function/private dining rooms.
In Tudor times the building served as an Embassy-style dwelling for the Kings of Scotland when they visited King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I at neighbouring Whitehall Palace.
In 1829, Home Secretary Sir Robert Peel selected Great Scotland Yard as the headquarters of the newly founded Metropolitan Police force. The building?s main entrance was at 4 Whitehall Place, but a public office was installed to the rear at 3-5 Great Scotland Yard and so gave the headquarters its famous name. It was here that the famous Plaistow Marshes (1864) and Jack the Ripper (1888) crimes were investigated and Scotland Yard was made famous by novelists including Charles Dickens and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. In 1890 the police headquarters moved to a new location, which was named New Scotland Yard.
In 1910 the current Edwardian building was constructed on the site and served as the British Army Recruitment Office and Royal Military Police headquarters. It is here that Lord Kitchener famously told WWI recruits ?Your Country Needs You? and there were cells in the basement for Army deserters. In 1982 a refurbishment introduced a new atrium and the building later became the Ministry of Defence Library until 2004.
Costing over ?50m, the 26-month construction programme to create the hotel will commence in January 2014, with the hotel scheduled to open in 2016.
Stephen Conway, Chief Executive of Galliard Group said: ?Our vision is to create one of London?s most outstanding 5-star hotels. It really is a ?blue-chip? building with grand architecture, a fascinating history and large dramatic interiors. The street is quiet and tranquil yet on the doorstep of London?s most famous landmarks including Trafalgar Square, No.10 Downing Street, the Mall and Buckingham Palace.?
Don O? Sullivan, Managing Director of Galliard Group said: ?We want to create a world-class hotel of the quality of The Mercer or the Chateau Marmont, a place renowned for exceptional service, destination dining and leisure and outstanding luxury and quality.?