Echo Building CGI

Operator targets 2019 opening for Echo building hotel

Melia Hotels International is aiming to open a 207-bedroom hotel in Trinity Mirror’s office in Liverpool by 2019 under its Innside brand.

The hotel will form part of the wider redevelopment of the building on Old Hall Street, which also includes converting the building into 44,000 sq ft of offices and 17,000 sq ft of retail. The scheme has been designed by architect Corstorphine + Wright.

The hotel includes a rooftop restaurant, meeting space, and a fitness studio. The rooftop bar and restaurant, 18 storeys up, will be accessible by the public.

Melia will operate the hotel under its Innside brand, after having opened hotel under the same name at Manchester’s First Street in 2015.

Gabriel Escarrer, vice chairman and chief executive of Meliá Hotels International, said: “Of all of our brands, Innside by Meliá is the one that has had the highest growth over the last five years, at the same time becoming increasingly international thanks to its customer value proposition and high profitability.

“That is also the reason it is attracting investors and hotel owners all over the world. In particular, we are very confident that the Innside Liverpool will be an attractive new option for the city, and we feel very comfortable with the partnership with Trinity Mirror. We share values with them such as our focus on innovation and excellence.”

Trinity Mirror is working with Trinity Investment Management, owner of the Capital, and Paradigm Asset Management, to bring forward a planning application for the building. Trinity IM is expected to finance the project through its joint venture with US firm Starwood Capital, which invests in hotels.

In December, the publisher of the Liverpool Echo newspaper announced that it would be moving its 300 staff out of 95 Old Hall Street, which it has occupied since 1973, to take 25,000 sq ft within the nearby 5 St Paul’s Square.

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I was involved in the letting of that tower block to the new Merseyside County Council back in 1973. I was working at Mason Owen at the time. Record rent at £2 per sq ft! We had enormous problems with the centrla fire escape from the new fire officer working for Merseyside County Council. It was resolved, eventually, by the structural engineers. My bonus was a TR6. Happy days.

By Nigel Bruce

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