The most impressive car park conversion you’ve ever seen

Yes, we made a bold statement. Bear with us, it is not every day that we come across a car park converted into a luxury hotel.

To be fair, this London neo-classical 4-storey car park, opened in 1926, is not the common multi-level structure found in every city. Allow us to be nostalgic and say that things are not designed as they used to be.

The care devoted to the building’s architecture resulted in a structure worthy of redevelopment. Serving as a car park up to 2009, it underwent a significant remodelling and  opened as a luxury hotel, The Beaumont, in 2014.

The building is Grade II-listed, a category reserved for buildings that are of special interest. Another unique feature of this hotel is that guests can sleep in an artwork. The special room (actually named ROOM) is located inside the giant sculpture by Antony Gormley and it is available for bookings.

The sculpture on top of the hotel is also a special room.

It is hard to conceive that a contemporary car park would be built with such architectural features. Cost pressure, efficient use of space and other aspects such as natural lighting and ventilation result in the dry structures we commonly see.

In a time of fast-fashion/fast-food consumption, it is difficult for developers to invest more funds than necessary to ensure a potential repurposing of car park structures in the future. Certainly, it is not possible to ignore the financial aspect. When construction costs are so high, it is difficult to expect that quality would prevail over cost. Not taking up saving opportunities can damage a project’s feasibility. The car park becomes an easy target for cutting costs.

Despite this, one can dream of car parks beautifully designed to embellish our cities and not just to serve their function of storing vehicles.

Check out more images of The Beaumont below.


Credits: The Beaumont and James Wood/Brown Hart Garden.

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