Jenners Edinburgh: Plans revealed to transform Capital's 'Harrods of the North' on Princes Street

The historic facade of Edinburgh former Jenners department store would be restored and a single-storey roof extension created under plans to transform the iconic building.

David Chipperfield Architects has revealed its long-awaited plans, backed by Danish retail billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen, to transform the famous Jenners store in Edinburgh’s Princes Street.

Under the proposal, the former 17,000sqm department store would be turned into a 96-bedroom boutique hotel, together with a bar and restaurant, above overhauled retail areas, according to planning documents submitted to the council.

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The three-storey, top-lit grand saloon at the heart of the Victorian Renaissance Revival style building would be “restored to its former splendour as a unique public space that is integral to both the department store and hotel”, the architect firm has said.

The proposed design for the building facing Princes Street and South St David Street (Photo: David Chipperfield Architects).

The project, backed by Anders Holch Povlsen’s property company AAA United, includes restoring the historic façade, revamping and part re-modelling the linked 1960s Princes Street building, adding a new floor, frontage and roof terrace to 10-14 Rose Street, and creating a single-storey roof extension to the 1895 and 1903 Jenners buildings.

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In a design and access statement lodged with Edinburgh City Council, AAA United director Anders Krogh said: “When we acquired the Jenners building, we knew that it came with a great deal of responsibility.

"We understand the scale of the challenge and are fully dedicated to honouring this building and its place within the future of Edinburgh.

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Visualisation of Rose Street plans for the building (Photo: David Chipperfield Architects).

"The original Jenners building will always stay and is the very DNA of our plans, with the redevelopment of a vibrant, sustainable and accessible department store being the heart of the project.”

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The 1895 building, designed by William Hamilton Beattie and often described as ‘the Harrods of the North’, was sold in 2017 to the owner of the fashion group Bestseller for £53 million.

David Chipperfield Architects, which is working with executive architect 3DReid and Glasgow-based conservation specialist Loader Montieth, was appointed to the job in 2019.

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Founded in 1838, Jenners is one of the oldest department stores in the world to continuously trade from the same site.

The reimagined grand saloon seen from the first floor perspective (Photo: David Chipperfield Architects).
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The Category A-listed building closed its doors in May 2020 and has not reopened since.

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