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BUILDING PROJECTS


WHITWORTH LOCKE HOTEL MANCHESTER


The big reveal


James Parker speaks to the architect of a complex restoration project in Manchester to create a boutique hotel which enhances industrial Victorian architecture, and celebrates the city’s trading history


new adaptive reuse project in Manchester has rescued three important Victorian industrial buildings and stripped them back to reveal their original character, including thoughtful interior design which refers back to Manchester’s global trade of the past. The project, realised in the heart of the city for boutique ‘aparthotel’ chain Locke, has created a high-end 160-room hotel whose guests now benefit from the proportions of the restored spaces, combined with comfortable interiors and guest rooms complete with kitchens. The site is sandwiched between key thoroughfare Whitworth Street and the Rochdale Canal, surrounded by bars and hotels, and adjacent to Manchester’s ‘Gay Village’ located in Canal Street. Whitworth Locke comprises three connected Victorian era buildings, which are somewhat Mancunian with their robust red brick facades. The slight exception is the listed Central House on Princess Street which was built as a showroom for textiles in the Scottish Baronial style, complete with corner tourelles. Behind it, and running along the canal is Johnson House, a former textile mill, and on Whitworth Street sits Dominion House, which was a warehouse for storing the goods produced in the mill. The architects of the project, New York firm Grzywinski + Pons, commented that the commission to restore what were neglected buildings, and remedy previous poor interventions, had “a special resonance” for them. The practice explained: “The beautiful former textile warehouses and showroom were highly reminiscent of some of the earliest work we did designing interventions to 19th


A


ADF MAY 2019


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