£10m hotel and casino plans passed by Preston’s planners

Ambitious £10m plans to transform Preston’s tallest tower into a hotel, casino and spa have been approved by the city council.

FWP is leading the rejuvenation of some of the city’s most important assets including the historic Victorian Market and the iconic 1970s Guild Hall complex.

Seb Salisbury, architect at FWP, is leading the transformation of the Guild Hall and the Guild Tower, which will be rebranded as Villa Urban. It is strategically placed next to the famous bus station, itself undergoing a major restoration and the addition of a Youth Zone.

The rooms have been designed to increase in size with the height of the building. The top four levels offer large 100 sq metre-plus luxury suites with viewing balconies overlooking the city, duplex spaces and entertainment and cinema rooms.

FWP’s proposals also include the creation of a new eye-catching entrance point into the Guild Hall, replacing the present bus station underpass.

Seb Salisbury said: “We are delighted our plans for the Guild Tower have been approved and we look forward to delivering this ambitious and visionary regeneration scheme to transform this part of Preston city centre.

“We have designed a stylish mixed-use development with a modern aparthotel that will attract visitors into the city centre, along with a casino and spa and gym facilities that are also designed to complement Guild Hall complex’s role as a 21st-century leisure destination.”

FWP’s plan is to convert the basement and ground floor levels of the venue into a 10-pin bowling alley, nine-hole crazy golf course, karaoke booths, a sports bar and dining room as part of an ambitious masterplan for the gradual redevelopment of the 1970s venue, which involves the creation of modern, attractive restaurants and bars as well as redesigning the external areas.

Seb added: “The Guild Tower is currently unloved and poorly used in the context of the surrounding buildings and public realm.

“The Guild Hall complex needs more uses and better connectivity to once again become a venue that is very close to the hearts of many Prestonians. In all our designs and concepts we are committed to breathing new life into what had become a tired building. “Our work seeks to better connect the Guild Hall with the public and the city centre, drawing more people in to its growing list of attractions. The Guild Tower proposal is part of this vision.”

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