This 27-bed extension to the hugely successful four-star Salthouse Harbour Hotel in Ipswich continues the industrial theme of the original hotel conversion, housed in a 19th Century dry goods warehouse; yet with its own recognisably contemporary structure.
The building occupies the entirety of a highly restricted site adjacent to a group of Grade I Listed buildings and over a private road, yet it cheerfully meets these stiff constraints with a robust and uncompromising response, improving the entrance and public areas both within and without.
Completed in 2003, the stylish boutique Salthouse Harbour hotel was an instant success, and became a symbol of the regeneration of the ‘Ipswich Waterfront’. To extend their operation onto a neighbouring site the client asked for as many bedrooms as possible on the upper floors and a generous Lobby and Reception on the Ground Floor, extending the existing restaurant.
There is no overall framework design in place for the Ipswich waterfront; each application is given very close scrutiny by many local bodies in addition to the planning authority. Effective consultation with these and English Heritage has produced a building which according to Concrete Quarterly (Autumn 2009) ‘is crisp and robust and the cuboid shape relates well with the industrial quayside’s architecture’.
Rooms facing the waterfront are glazed to the full room height and solar protection is provided by two pairs of purpose-made full height mild steel sliding shutters which carry the industrial theme and provide vitality to the waterfront elevation.
The Salthouse Harbour Hotel is proud to have achieved a BREEAM 'Good' rating. Low carbon technologies in the form of solar water heating and air source heat pumps are designed to provide ~20% of the buildings energy usage. Further Sustainability credits have been achieved by the selection of energy efficient building services, sustainable building materials and construction methods including Green Sedum Roofs.
Building work on the extension took place during full operation of the hotel and completed six weeks ahead of programme allowing the Hotel to take bookings earlier than expected with all rooms occupied on the day of handover.