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All London press announced back in April of this year, that the Qataris owners of the U.S. Embassy iconic building have plans to turn it into a luxury hotel.  The London’s Mayfair neighbourhood nine-storey building dates back to the late 1950s, but as State Department officials decided to move its offices to a new complex in South London.  This plan has lately been approved by the Westminster City Council on Tuesday evening.  The plans are to redevelop the embassy into a 137-room hotel with restaurants, stores, a spa and a ballroom, all designed by the UK architect Sir David Chipperfield.  Qatar Investment Authority subsidiary Qatari Diar is proposing a $1.4 billion refurbishment of the Qatari owned former US Embassy approved for a Hotel is scheduled to open in 2017.

Qatari owners got approval to convert the London former US Embassy into hotel.

The US Embassy Hotel main entrance

The US Embassy Hotel main entrance

According to most GCC’s online media, London’s 30 Grosvenor Square, Mayfair, is set to undergo a ‘re-use’ as it is transformed from the US Embassy into a luxury hotel.

Through “sensitive and adaptive re-use” the former US Embassy complex will become a 137-bedroom hotel with shops, restaurants, bars and a spa, Doha News reported.

Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Co. (QD) – the real estate arm of Qatar Investment Authority – bought the Grade II listed Modernist building when the US elected to move their offices next year to new premises in Battersea, South of the Thames in London.

QD’s plans to convert the US Embassy in London into a luxury hotel has received government approval this week, according to the project’s architect.

In a statement, UK-based David Chipperfield, Architects said existing security bollards and fencing around the complex will be removed, while the symbolic, gilded-aluminium bald eagle will remain in place atop the building before reminding that Westminster City Council granted a conditional planning permission and that detailed design and production drawings and specifications will be submitted for final approval.

After at least eight months of public consultations over the design of the new facilities, the planning approval was granted and, in an online consultation document, the developers assured that the main architectural features will be retained and the transformation would “breathe new life into this significant building”.  The refurbishment will include extend the hotel to use all nine stories, three of which will be underground, with a glass pavilion on the roof and the ground floor open to the public.

There will be some alterations in the neighbourhood road traffic arrangement due mainly to the relative relaxation of security of and around the building.  Plans to open roads between the former embassy building and the adjacent Grosvenor Square Gardens are envisaged.

Further reading and more details are at 30 Grosvenor Square.com.

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