Matthew Neville

"Affordable luxury” hotel and office regeneration project given £56m boost by funding specialists

Real estate funding specialist ASK Partners and OakNorth Bank have provided a £56.2m senior development loan to privately owned, pan-European property investment, asset, and development management company RE Capital.

RE Capital will use the loan to fund the construction of a mixed-use hotel-led scheme in Clerkenwell, central London, on the site of a former Victorian school building and car park.

The scheme will comprise a new build 153-bed hotel, plus an extension and remodelling of the existing Victorian schoolhouse to include 18,700 sq ft of Grade A office space and nine new-build affordable residential units. The total development will be 74,000 sq ft.

Planning consent was granted in January 2020 for a 153-bed “affordable luxury” scheme and a pre-let agreement is already in place between RE Capital and German hotel group, Ruby GmbH, for a 30-year term.

Construction has commenced, with HG Construction appointed as contractor. The offices are due to be completed in February 2023, and the hotel and residential will follow in July.

Simon Banks, Head of UK at RE Capital commented: “We are excited to be launching the construction phase of this mixed-use scheme, which will bring significant regeneration to the local area.

“The development will be finished to exceptionally high sustainability, wellness and connectivity standards, focusing on cutting-edge interior design for the newly evolving workplace, alongside the quality that Ruby Hotels will deliver as a highly reputable brand.

Daniel Austin, co-founder and CEO of ASK commented, “This is a fantastic scheme that we were delighted to fund. Having funded a number of hotel and office schemes this year, we are fully confident in the recovery of both these markets post-Covid, as the current take up of office space and steady rise in hotel occupancy proves.

Hemesh Patel, director of property finance at OakNorth Bank, added, “Under Simon Bank’s leadership in the UK, RE Capital has built an exceptionally strong reputation within the real estate investment market and we’re delighted to once again co-lend with ASK to support the development of this well-designed scheme.

“Given its central location close to a number of top tourist attractions, wide range of amenities and office buildings, we expect the new hotel to see strong demand from both corporates and tourists.”

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