Fountainbridge to host Hilton four-star hotel

The site of future Hilton hotel at Fountainbridge. Picture: Julie Bull
The site of future Hilton hotel at Fountainbridge. Picture: Julie Bull
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A FOUR-star Hilton hotel is set to be built on an empty gap site in Fountainbridge.

The 228-room offering will be the first hotel in the city to operate under the Hampton by Hilton banner – one of the largest hotel franchises in America.

Aimed at the “upper midscale” holiday market, developers Grosvenor promise the five-storey facility will be “another milestone” in their “major revival” of the canal-side area, which was once renowned as the Capital’s industrial heartland.

And they insist the hotel – scheduled to open in summer 2017, on the corner of Melvin Walk and Fountainbridge – will form a key part of their ongoing Springside revamp.

The firm’s plans will see an office, retail complex and homes built alongside the student accommodation, apartment block and public square that have already been constructed in the Fountainbridge area. Planning permission was recently granted for up to 400 homes adjacent to the new hotel.

Robin Blacklock, Scottish planning and development director at Grosvenor, said the move was another part of their “transformation of Fountainbridge”.

He said: “The hotel will benefit from close proximity to all of the amenities of the central city and will bring further jobs and vibrancy to the area.”

The hotel site, which already has planning permission from the council, was snapped up by Queensgate Hotels – which will operate it under the Hampton by Hilton banner – earlier this month in a sale advised by Savills.

Boasting more than 1900 hotels in the United States alone, Hampton by Hilton offers “moderately priced, upper midscale” accommodation across 17 countries.

The new facility will be constructed just yards from the site of the £35 million replacement Boroughmuir High School, which is expected to be completed later this year on the former Fountain Brewery grounds between Viewforth and Dundee Street.

Bosses said the hotel would be ideally suited for visitors seeking easy access to the Capital’s central business district and Edinburgh International Conference Centre, as well as tourists on the hunt for somewhere close to the city’s famous landmarks.

Grosvenor’s wider Springside development already boasts 250 homes for sale, including affordable homes, serviced apartments, private rented homes and two student residences.

Rob Stapleton, hotels director at Savills, said the ongoing regeneration of the area offered the perfect location.

He said: “We are pleased to have supported the major revival which is under way in Fountainbridge by working alongside the Savills team in Edinburgh to secure the sale of this high-quality hotel development opportunity.

“With significant residential development and landscaping under way, plus the addition of high quality commercial accommodation in the future, this area is a prime location for a new hotel.”

alistair.grant@edinburghnews.com