base2stayGreat 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:

10. All windows and doors shall remain in the closed position after 23.00 hours other than for the use of doors for access to and from the premises.
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.

  • Marshall Stephens

    Perhaps the council are so busy approving Tesco’s applications that they have no time for anything else?!

  • Christina

    It’s a very strange planning condition in that location, but I really wish that it would have been put in place for the holiday apartments around Henry Street which has a lot of residential buildings. I’m tired of waking up at 5am to the sounds of screaming morons.

  • John

    As Christina says, in an ideal world this sort of regulation wouldn’t be necessary – but we do have screaming morons.
    Many of the people who will stay at a hotel in this area will be younger people going for a night out – unfortunately many of them do scream and make noise.
    Good on Liverpool City Council for being proactive and sensible, and stopping any problems before they arise. This means a wide range of people can enjoy the area, not just those who want to splatter our pavements with vomit at 5am.

  • http://www.sevenstreets.com Robin

    Surely the point is that the hotel is slap-bang in the middle of one of the loudest areas in the city in the first place? Hard to see how some hotel rooms with the windows open could really make a dent on the billion-decibel racket blaring out of the bars at all hours.