Work begins on £5m boutique hotel scheme in Chester

by | 12 Oct 2021 | Projects

Wildes Hotel Group has announced that work has started on a multimillion-pound project to transform a historic site in northwest England into a luxurious hotel, restaurant and spa.

The city of Chester, famous for its Roman walls and medieval Rows, is gearing up for the arrival of a stylish new hotel. 

Reinventing a historic site

Wildes Hotel Group has revealed that work is now underway to convert a historic site on Bridge Street in Chester into a boutique hotel, restaurant and spa. Scheduled to open in late summer 2022, the scheme represents the first fully branded Wildes hotel in the company’s portfolio, following on from its inaugural foray into own-branded hotels, Van Dyke by Wildes.

Wildes Chester is aiming to become only the second five-star hotel in the city after the landmark Chester Grosvenor. The total cost of development is estimated at more than £5 million.

Paul Wildes, CEO of The Wildes Hotel Group, said: “I am thrilled that work has finally started on Wildes Chester, nearly four years after seeing the site for the first time. Chester is currently alive with development as collective efforts are underway throughout the city to put Chester back on the map and, as such, we are pouring our heart and soul into reviving this historic venue, creating a destination venue that is set to attract attention from far and wide.

“We are fiercely aware that the work we are carrying out may cause some day-to-day disruption but we’re working closely with our contractors Truman, local residents and the council to keep this to a minimum. I’m committed to creating amazing places for the people of Chester to enjoy and now, with work underway on the hotel and confirmation of our lease on Booth Mansion further down Watergate Street for our members club ‘W’, we’re excited to be bringing some of the most talked-about destinations to Chester city centre in 2022.”

Pairing heritage features with modern design

Wildes Chester will boast 18 guestrooms, a spa with city-view rooftop pool, and a destination restaurant and bar looking out over Eastgate Street. The Grade II-listed building, created by architect Thomas M Lockwood in 1892, will be sensitively restored to retain period features like original beams and stone fireplaces, while also introducing modern interior design elements.

Each room will be unique in design, with freestanding furnishings, including bathtubs beneath skylights, to allow the original structure to breathe. Adding even greater appeal, one of the rooms will come with its own four-seat cinema.

Meanwhile, the first-floor spa will house a relaxation area and nail bar, in addition to treatment rooms, and there’ll also be a rooftop pool, Jacuzzi and terrace.

A sympathetic transformation

David Wheeler, managing director of Truman Design & Build, said: “We are honoured to be working on this exciting project with The Wildes Group in Chester, undoubtedly one of the most interesting projects going on in the region right now.

“The building itself is a hidden gem with plans to sympathetically transform it using many of the original features along with contemporary architecture and design that will make it a standout development for the city. We are very excited to be involved and look forward to working alongside the Wildes’ team over the coming months to deliver a fantastic product.”

Wildes Hotel Group has also bought a vacant neighbouring building, 10 Bridge Street, in support of the project.

Paul Wildes said: “The acquisition of 10 Bridge Street is another exciting milestone for Wildes Chester. The additional space has meant we are able to update our already exciting plans for the spa and restaurant, elevating the offer even further, and ensuring the hotel, spa and restaurant will be like nothing the city has seen before.”

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