RPS Design delivers groundbreaking UK ‘digital’ hotel plan

Fast-growing North West-based RPS Design Group’s ambitious plans to create one of the UK’s first digital ‘e-hotels’ have been given the go-ahead.

The architecture practice’s nine-storey Caxton Hotel in Preston will boast a host of industry-leading digital innovations, with rooms accessed via smartphone and ‘app-driven’ LED lighting, sound and mechanism control.

The state-of-the-art 63 bedroom hotel is one of a growing number of high-profile hotel and leisure projects that RPS Design is currently working to deliver.

They include the conversion of the historic Nottingham Guildhall into a 160-bedroom hotel and spa.

The landmark Caxton Hotel in Preston’s city centre, named after the historical figure who introduced the printing press to England, will also include a restaurant, bar and a function space. It represents a major investment by developer Ascena Developments.

That investment has been welcomed by city planners, who have unanimously approved RPS Design’s cutting-edge scheme.

Seb Salisbury, architect and director of RPS Design Group, which is based in Winckley Square in Preston, said: “Our state-of-the-art plans for one of the UK’s first dedicated e-hotels will help further establish Preston as a forward thinking and ambitious city and we are delighted that the city’s planners feel the same.

The designs we have created for this highly sustainable site will enhance the architectural quality of the city’s skyline.

“The designs we have created for this highly sustainable site will enhance the architectural quality of the city’s skyline. The overall architectural quality of the building was considered at each stage of the design process.

“We’ve worked closely with our clients to create a truly innovative development harnessing cutting-edge digital technology and we are really excited by the opportunity and investment it will bring to our home city.”

He added: “The building currently on the site previously contained a bust of William Caxton above the main entrance door

“To recognise that, one of the primary design themes takes influence from Caxton and in particular the old blocks from a printing press.

“This theme is reflected in the bold, extruded form of the upper hotel windows which also provide additional seating areas within the rooms.”

RPS Design Group brings together experts in the field of architecture, design and 3D visualisation.

Its team approach and cross-discipline thinking is delivering high quality projects throughout the UK in all sectors and its portfolio continues to grow.

Seb explained: “We are design focused but commercially aware. We strive to maximise each sites development potential producing viable projects that are practical as well as inspirational.

“We work in close collaboration with clients and commercial agents throughout the UK to find workable solutions to difficult sites. Our design process includes a thorough investigation of site constraints and funding options which go on to inform concept designs and feasibility studies.”

The practice has been appointed as the lead architectural team to deliver the conversion of the historic Nottingham Guildhall into a quality 160-bedroom hotel and spa.

Its emerging plans for that project include a sky bar and restaurant and the conversion of the listed building’s old courtrooms into a bar and restaurant.

The Caxton Hotel development was successfully guided through the planning process by PWA Planning, which is also based in Preston.

Joshua Hellawell, senior planner at PWA Planning, said: “This is great news for Preston as it will increase quality hotel provision in the city centre, supporting one of Preston Council’s key objectives. We’re proud to be part of the project team for this exciting new development.”

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