Planning Consent Approved for Conversion of Former Mothercare (Retail) Store in Maidstone, Kent Into New Hotel

Main Photo: The retail site granted planning permission for 132 room hotel

Date: May 2020

Location: Week Street, Maidstone, Kent, England, UK

Name: TBA

No. of Keys: 132

Seller: The site being a former Mothercare store

Buyer: A plan to transform the former store in Maidstone into a new hotel complete with the town’s first rooftop bar has been given the green light. Dexter Moren Associates has secured approval for the new 132-room hotel on Week Street in the centre of Maidstone.

DMA’s design is on behalf of client Assetrock Maidstone Limited. We think this is their first venture in hotels. The principal is well-versed in the finance and accountancy sector.

Alongside a reception, lobby, café area and restaurant, the 5,779sq m hotel will include the town’s first publicly accessible rooftop bar, with views overlooking the Kentish hills.

Herbert Lui, partner at DMA: “There were concerns about putting a new-build hotel onto such a sensitive site, fronting onto a key shopping street, surrounded by low-rise and historically important buildings and bordered by three conservation areas. However, we worked closely with planning officers, the design review panel, committee members and stakeholders to create a design that both fits in with its surroundings and brings a new energy to the high street area.”

The hotel will comprise three storeys facing the main pedestrianised shopping area with a nine-storey element sat behind the 11-storey Colman House office block.

Herbert concludes: “The client’s brief was to explore the opportunity to re-develop the site with a landmark building to match the 11-storey office building next to it. We worked hard to reassure the authorities, through our designs and choices of materials, that this new hotel would be a respectful and quality piece of architecture and a positive contributor to the regeneration of the town centre -with elements such as the publicly accessible roof top bar likely to attract patrons from outside the hotel.”

THPT Comment: Interesting…  does this suggest that city planning officers have finally woken up to retail stores are more viable to the high street, than retail…at least pre-Covid 19.

First Seen: Boutique Hotelier

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