Edwardian Hotels has confirmed that the opening date for its “super boutique” hotel The Londoner has been pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Business Traveller has regularly reported on the progress of the hotel, which will be located on the southwest corner of Leicester Square, forming part of the redeveloped Odeon West End site which will also feature a cinema, spa, restaurants and bars.
We attended the topping out ceremony for the hotel in late 2018, and last year it was announced that the hotel would be joining Preferred Hotels and Resorts’ Legend Collection.
In mid-February it was announced that the 350-room, 35-suite property would open in June this year, but the subsequent coronavirus outbreak and imposition of UK and global travel restrictions has forced Edwardian Hotels to rethink.
In a statement the group said:
“For several weeks we have been closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and working with our key stakeholders to fully understand the impact on the opening of The Londoner in Leicester Square.
“After carefully considering all of the recommendations and proactive measures in line with the UK Government and World Health Organisation, we have come to the conclusion that the responsible course of action would be to postpone our June launch until late 2020.
“This is an unprecedented time for all, and we are deeply disappointed that we have had to make this decision after all of the hard work and dedication from our partners to date. However, we know that this is absolutely the right thing to do to protect the safety and wellbeing of our guests and employees. Work will continue on site as expected and our teams will advance the development according to original timelines.
“This is not the course of action we hoped to take, however we look forward to unveiling this hotel that we are so proud of later this year.”
The Londoner is being dubbed the UK’s “deepest” hotel, with the lowest floor some 30 metres below ground – almost as deep as the property will be tall.
The hotel will feature a rooftop bar serving cocktails and Japanese dishes, and a 1,000-capacity pillarless ballroom, as well as a signature Mediterranean restaurant, lobby bar and ground-floor “Gastro Tavern”.