Great review for the smart new Base2Stay hotel in the Ropewalks, in the Guardian over the weekend. The reviewer couldn’t fault the place. Apart from one thing: she couldn’t open the windows.
“Why don’t the bedroom windows open, I want to know? It was a planning condition, comes the reply. So that’s it. All that effort into design and green-ness and it seems to me like some numpty in a council office decides the public simply can’t be trusted not to hurl themselves out of a building only four storeys high. Did it compromise my enjoyment? You bet it did,” she said.
SevenStreets looked into it. And, yup, her suspicions were right:
Planning application 07F/2213 has the following condition attached:
REASON: To ensure that nearby occupiers are not adversely affected by the development.
Now, unless the hotel can devise windows that automatically close at 11pm, that means they’re forced to keep ’em shut. Period. And we, like the reviewer, don’t like hotel rooms in which the windows remain shut. Can’t get a feeling for the city that way.
What a ridiculous state of affairs. This is to do what? Prevent noise? In an area which comprises Mood, the rest of Concert Square, and a good deal other bars and clubs? There can’t be any residents any nearer this excellent hotel than there are at the drinking dens. So why the draconian rules?
Does our Council’s planning department really think that guests in a hotel bedroom are going to make more of a din than the combined effects of the Ropewalks bars? Makes you wonder what they get up to in their hotels, doesn’t it?
If The Ropewalks is to develop as our thriving cultural heart, it’s about time our Council stopped suffocating it with red tape and bollocks, stopped erring on the side of light-sleeping locals, and started having a sensible, grown-up approach to creating a cultural, and accommodating city centre.
Thank God that, in every aspect under their control, Base2Stay ticked all the boxes. Good to know that those who are actually trying to regenerate our city have a clue.