Property development group Alchemi is having a pretty strong run of it, bagging three major prime resi planning approvals within the last month. Just weeks after approval was granted on their 54-unit 55 Victoria Street development (more here) and within a month of getting the nod on a 20-unit £9m office-to-resi scheme on Westbourne Park, Westminster Council has given the firm the go-ahead for the conversion of the derelict Leinster Hotel on Leinster Square, W2.
The six stucco-fronted Grade II-listed terraced buildings at 7-12 Leinster Square, just off Hereford Road and Westbourne Grove, will be turned into five family town houses and six three-bed lateral apartments, ranging from 1,200 to 3,800 sq ft. It is, the developer claims, the first major resi development in the area since The Lancasters.
A consortium of Middle Eastern investors, put together by JR Capital, is funding the project, with Alchemi working as Development Manager and TateHindle as architects. Approved designs aim to “complete a sympathetic conversion by restoring these buildings to their original status, whilst respecting their Grade II listing.”
Charlie Baxter, Managing Director of Alchemi Group: “We are very excited that we have achieved planning consent for this iconic and prestigious property, which follows hot on the heels of our recent planning gained at nearby Westbourne House and 55 Victoria Street, SW1, last month.
“The property offers us an opportunity to carry out a high quality conversion, showcasing our design skills in one of Central London’s historic garden squares. Conversions of listed buildings are always immensely rewarding as you are restoring part of London’s heritage and there are only a limited number of garden squares in Central London. Residents with access are buying into an exclusive club.”
Alchemi is looking to convert 50,000 – 100,000 sq ft of central London office space into residential use each year. The group’s latest run of planning luck started in April, when Stiff & Trevillion’s designs for the 35,000 sq ft 1980s-built Westbourne House on Westbourne Grove were approved. The property was acquired in July 2012 for £19.1m (£544 psf) by a Middle Eastern consortium, and will be converted from its current office-use into 20 one- to three-bed resi units (including a new seventh floor), with completion due in 2015.