The re-design of a historic Cumbrian hotel is underway after architects were appointed to oversee the £2.5m renovation.
Harrison Pitt Architects will manage the project to give the part Grade II listed Forest Side Hotel in Grasmere, a new lease of life following its acquisition by local entrepreneur Andrew Wildsmith.
The hotel’s 23 guest rooms will be reconfigured and refurbished to create 18 larger en-suite bedrooms and three luxury duplex suites. The dining room will also be extended to open onto a new garden terrace.
Andrew Walters, architect at Harrison Pitt Architects, said: “The scheme will improve the appearance of insensitive additions that have been made over the years while restoring generously proportioned rooms based on the original building layout.
“While it means the Forest Side Hotel will have fewer rooms overall, the scale and standard of accommodation will be much higher so visitors will have the chance to experience luxuriously appointed rooms.”
Andrew Wildsmith, Forest Side Hotel’s new owner, also runs hotels The Ryebeck in Bowness and Hipping Hall in Kirkby Lonsdale.
He said the renovation was designed to ensure the hotel is able to “offer the comforts of contemporary accommodation while maintaining the building’s historic charm”.
The firm’s designs will tastefully restore and conserve the building’s original features, including its fireplaces, panelling and decorative plasterwork.
The plans will also help transform the hotel’s restaurant into a first-class eatery by providing a visual link between the kitchen and dining area, while a new greenhouse will enable the Forest Side Hotel to source its own produce from its kitchen garden, which is also being restored.
The hotel’s Grade II listed hunting lodge, which was built in 1853, does not form part of the planned works.
Harrison Pitt Architects has worked on a number of recent refurbishment and new-build projects in the leisure and hospitality sector, including Hipping Hall in Kirkby Lonsdale and The Borough in Lancaster.