Style-led Ace Hotels to open in London's Shoreditch
The 265-bedroom hotel will be located at 100 Shoreditch High Street on the site of the former Crowne Plaza property, which was put up for sale in 2011 with a guide price of £80m.
Currently undergoing an extensive refurbishment, Ace Hotel London is to be headed by Chris Penn, previously general manager of Flemings hotel in Mayfair for two years. Earlier in his career, Penn, a former Acorn Award winner, worked at the Cavendish and Stafford hotels in the capital.
Co-founder of Ace Hotels, Alex Calderwood, intends to introduce to London the same affordable hotel experience with a strong connection to the local culture which he has successfully created in four locations in the US - Seattle, Portland, Palm Springs and New York. A fifth American hotel will open on the site of the former United Artists Theatre in Los Angeles later this year.
"Ace Hotel London Shoreditch marks our first expansion into Europe," said Calderwood. "We envision Ace London appealing to active participants in the
creative arts and new media industries as well as the culturally curious business and leisure traveller."
The New York property, which was described by the New York Times as "the country's most original new hotel" features a Michelin-starred restaurant, the Breslin, and the John Dory Oyster Bar, run by British chef April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman of Spotted Pig fame.
In London, the restaurant, bar and event space will be overseen by David Waddington and Pablo Flack , the creators of Bistrotheque in Bethnal Green and Shrimpy's, a seafood bistro located in a former King's Cross petrol station.
Originally launched in 1999, Ace Hotels has made a name for having an un-hotel like approach to design which features vintage furniture, unpainted metal doors and original artwork. Unusual in-bedroom touches include record players and staff-curated vinyl.
The interior and facade of the bland London property is to be transformed with an injection of nostalgia from Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby of Universal Design Studio, who recently created the new One Leicester Street hotel from the former St John hotel site. Last year, the Barber-Osgerby partnership hit the headlines for their design of the faceted aluminium Olympic torch for London 2012. The look of the hotel will be inspired by a combination of the creative culture of Shoreditch and new technology.
London businesses, That Flower Shop and Square Mile Coffee Roasters, will have a presence in the hotel lobby.
Flemings Hotel names Chris Penn general manager >>