The Shelbourne Hotel Redevelopment

  • Location: Georgian / Governmental Quarter
  • Architect: HKR Architects
  • Completed: 2007

In 2001 HKR Architects was appointed to extend and refurbish the landmark and heritage 5 star Shelbourne Hotel in the historic centre of Dublin, beside St Stephens Green. This was the first major remodelling of the property since 1860.
 
With an €80 million revamp that blends classical elegance and new generation 5 star flourishes, the Shelbourne Hotel reopened in 2007under the Marriott brand as a Renaissance Hotel. 
 
The extensive remodelling of the hotel, which has increased in size by over 6,200m² (67,000 sq ft) to 22,300m² (240,000 sq ft),  greatly enhanced and expanded the functional elements while also retaining the essential spirit and atmosphere that makes The Shelbourne Hotel what it is. 
 
The redesign of the hotel involved extensive refurbishment of the existing public areas including restaurants, bars, health spa, conference facilities, the addition of a 7 storey 100 bedroom wing over two basement levels, and the construction of a new ballroom over a new basement, all within this protected structure. The total number of bedrooms and suites in the hotel is now 265.
 
Key to the redevelopment was retaining The Shelbourne’s character while meeting the high standards of the Marriott International Renaissance Hotel brand. The broad scope of the project required extensive studies and appraisals of the existing hotel and its fabric, both at the initial stages with the original hotel operators Meridian, and subsequently with the new owners Kantaka Ltd and operators Marriott International.
 
The architects developed the concept for the refurbishment and extension of the building in 2003. A number of planning applications were subsequently made in 2005 with the new owners who purchased the hotel in late 2004. To achieve these applications HKR evolved and expanded the design to include additional bedrooms, more basement areas, the layout for a new ballroom, and the lowering of existing basement levels to provide enhanced headroom. The scope of refurbishment in the existing heritage areas of the wing also increased to include the complete replacement of all electrical and mechanical systems in the hotel.
 
The Shelbourne Hotel project demanded a very high degree of conservation expertise and architectural sensitivity with regard to the national and historic significance of the hotel fabric, particularly as such a major renewal of mechanical and electrical systems in a historic structure was been undertaken. Careful integration of these systems into the historic fabric was required – The Shelbourne is now the first heritage hotel in Ireland with a conservation approved mist sprinklers system.

Posted by Reflecting City Team on Wednesday, September 17, 2008
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