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Whitbread and Olympian Homes get the go ahead to redevelop landmark Bristol City Centre hotel

7 Mar 2024 Estate, Property

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  • Student accommodation and co-living homes will be delivered on the site of the Bristol City Centre (Haymarket) Premier Inn
  • Redevelopment will replace end-of-life 20-storey hotel building with two new buildings of 18 and 28 storeys
  • Masterplan sets aside two thirds of the site for public open space and creates a new, safe pedestrian route connecting Bristol Bus station with Broadmead
  • 20% of the co-living homes will be at affordable Local Housing Allowance rents

Whitbread PLC, the UK’s largest hotel business and owner of Premier Inn, and its development partner Olympian Homes have secured planning consent from Bristol City Council to redevelop the site of the Bristol City Centre (Haymarket) Premier Inn.

The consented plans will see the 20-storey 1970’s building redeveloped to create two new buildings providing 132 co-living homes and 442 purpose-built student accommodation bedrooms.

The footprint of these buildings – of 18 and 28 storeys – would occupy one third of the current site with the remaining two-thirds of the site’s ground floor (1,900m²) being opened to the public as open space.

This space, which will be extensively landscaped and planted with a biodiversity net gain of more than 5,000 per cent, will also create a safe and welcoming pedestrian route connecting Bristol Bus & Coach Station and Broadmead.

Richard Pearson, Development Manager for Whitbread, said [previously approved]:

“The Bristol City Centre (Haymarket) Premier Inn has reached the end of its operational life.  Constructed in the early 1970’s, the building now requires substantial investment to meet our current brand and sustainability standards. We are also fortunate in having another Premier Inn hotel serving the same city centre catchment.  By redeveloping the site into student accommodation and co-living homes we can realise the true potential of the gateway location at the same time as releasing capital back into the business to invest in our growing estate.”

The existing building was granted planning permission in 1967 and became home to Avon County Council from 1974. Whitbread acquired and converted the building into a hotel in 1999.

Olympian Homes appointed RIBA Stirling Prize-winning Architect Hodder+Partners to design the scheme alongside landscape designers McGregor Coxall. In developing the masterplan, care was taken to open up views of the Scottish Presbyterian Chapel, an important heritage benefit for the city.

Oliver d’Erlanger, Associate Director at Olympian Homes, said:

“This development has been three years in the making and I would like to thank councillors and Bristol City Council Officers for their proactive engagement in the design and planning of the new development. The location is suited for city-centre living in Bristol City Centre and the development will replace a very tired building with the most elegant, tall building in Bristol, and would transform the public realm.

“A key feature of our proposal is the inclusion of 20% affordable homes, set at local housing allowance rates, specifically designed to support key workers. Our co-living model not only presents a financially viable alternative to traditional renting, costing approximately 25% less than a standard one-bedroom flat, but also promotes a sense of community and belonging.

“We are proud of what we have designed together with Whitbread and with planning permission now secured, we will press on and work to deliver our vision for the landmark location in Bristol city centre.”

Whitbread will continue to operate the Bristol City Centre (Haymarket) hotel as it agrees the planning conditions and Section 106 for the development with Bristol City Council.  


Notes to editors

The application was determined at Bristol City Council’s Development Control Committee on Wednesday March 6th (6pm).

Whitbread operates four Premier Inn hotels in Bristol City Centre including the Bristol City Centre (Haymarket) hotel.   The Premier Inn City Centre (Lewins Mead) hotel serves the same catchment as the Haymarket hotel.

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