£17 million department store aparthotel conversion to open in autumn

George Sell George Sell Uploaded 21 February 2021


UK: A 133-bed aparthotel in the former Fenwick department store in Leicester is on schedule to open by early autumn.

The Grade-II listed building on the corner of Market Street and Belvoir Street has undergone a £17 million redevelopment and will be known as The Gresham. It will include a lobby bar, restaurant, fitness suite, four shops and shared workspace.

The store closed in 2017 after losing trade to the city’s Highcross shopping centre and Fosse Park on the outskirts of Leicester.

The Gresham was building’s name when it was first built in the 1880s to a design by Leicester Arts and Crafts architect Isaac Barradale.

The project has been supported by £4 million loan from the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership’s (LLEP’s) Growing Places Fund.

Developer Aimrok said most of the structural work has been finished, with work on the interiors set to get underway.

Aimrok director Mark Copson said: “We are very pleased with the way the development is progressing. Despite the pandemic, we are managing to keep plans largely on track to launch in early autumn. It will be extremely high-class and every finish will be completed to the highest quality. The internal construction is 80 per cent of the way there and the interior designs are being finalised as we speak."

“It’s been an incredibly interesting project during testing times. Although from the outside it only appears to be four storeys high, one of our largest challenges has been the re-levelling of the floors where they have been changed and added to, over the years. Those who remember the building as Fenwicks might well believe there were over 25 different levels to painstakingly and carefully attend to, across eight buildings. The Gresham now has six level floors – including a top deck which houses four units with spectacular, unparalleled views over the city, and we have added a light well from the roof to the first floor, allowing natural light to flow into the heart of the building," he added.

“We purposely set out to make The Gresham different from anything else in Leicester. It is an iconic and loved building and it deserves a superior look and feel throughout, to match – one I hope its original designer, Isaac Barradale, would have been proud of. It is incredibly exciting to see it all coming together and we are continuing to work with the local authority; our finance partners, development lending specialists Maslow Capital; the LLEP; and local businesses, to ensure that it enhances and is embedded into the fabric of Leicester for generations to come.”Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership’s (LLEP’s) Growing Places Fund," concluded Copson.



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