Virgin Hotels, the luxury lifestyle hotel brand by Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson, has announced plans to open in Edinburgh, Scotland. Expected to open in 2020, the development marks an important moment in Virgin Hotels’ history and is expected to be joined by more UK and European projects in the coming years.
The hotel will be located in the landmark India Buildings at 1-6 Victoria Street in Edinburgh’s Old Town. The space itself will feature 225 Chambers and Grand Chamber Suites; multiple dining and drinking outlets, including the brand’s flagship space, Commons Club, as well as numerous meeting spaces. In re-envisioning the building the design team will work to preserve its notable elements while adding a sense of style and sophistication. The property will offer a stunning mix of old and new.
“Edinburgh is such an iconic city and we’re thrilled to be able to say it will be the home of the first Virgin Hotel in the UK and across Europe,” said Sir Richard Branson, Founder of the Virgin Group. “My grandparents were from Edinburgh and my wife Joan is also Scottish, so the country has always held a special place in my heart. The people of Edinburgh have been so great in welcoming us to their great city; we can’t wait to open our doors to people across the country and, indeed, the world.”
“Edinburgh has so much to offer, as a top travel destination in the UK and internationally, it’s an ideal location for our next hotel,” said Virgin Hotels CEO Raul Leal. “This project, from an award-winning hotel brand such as Virgin Hotels, will further highlight the city’s eclectic style while remaining true to its historic heritage, all while offering guests and locals alike an experience like no other.”
Virgin Hotels Edinburgh will be completed in partnership with owner Flemyn and developer Jansons Property and will be managed by Virgin Hotels, and asset managed by Siggis Capital. All of Virgin’s Partners have extensive experience in developing, owning and operating hotels in UK and Europe.
“Flemyn is proud to have our first capital investment in Edinburgh with an amazing brand like Virgin Hotels,” said Luigi Gatti Bonati, Co-Founder of Flemyn. “We couldn’t be more pleased with this partnership and look forward to the journey ahead.”
“Edinburgh is a city rooted in tradition with an energetic spirit – we’re delighted to do our part in restoring a unique property such as this,” said Andy Jansons, Managing Director of Jansons Property. “With numerous investments in Edinburgh, we are so thrilled to bring another incredible project to this city.”
Located just steps from the city’s famed Royal Mile and Edinburgh Castle, the hotel will offer a distinctive and dynamic addition to this remarkable city.
“This is an exciting announcement and a huge coup for Edinburgh; it really is testament to the city’s resilience during these uncertain times that Virgin Hotels has chosen Edinburgh as the first city outside the US in which to open a new hotel,” said Cllr Gavin Barrie, Housing and Economy Convener with the City of Edinburgh Council, which helped take forward the proposals as part of its ‘Edinburgh 12’ portfolio of investment sites. “It’s estimated that the hotel will provide a £5 million boost to the local community every year, helping one of the city’s key shopping areas in Victoria Street and the Grassmarket,” Cllr Barrie explained, “the development of the site will help support hundreds of jobs during construction.”
About Virgin Hotels:
Virgin Hotels is a lifestyle hospitality brand that combines heartfelt service, straightforward value and a seamless, personalized hotel experience with the track record of innovation and smart disruption that Sir Richard Branson’s global Virgin Group has pioneered for over 40 years. Each property will intermix a passion for food and beverage with music and culture, fusing with the local landscape and providing a vibrant and inclusive environment for travelers and locals alike. Virgin Hotels Chicago, which was named the “#1 Hotel in United States” by Conde Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2016 and “#1 Hotel in Chicago” by Conde Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards in both 2016 and 2017, is now open and accepting reservations at virginhotels.com. Virgin Hotels San Francisco is slated to open in Spring 2018. Locations in Nashville, Dallas, Washington, D.C., New Orleans, New York, Silicon Valley, and others are to follow. Virgin Hotels continues to explore hotel and office conversions as well as ground-up development in cities such as Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, Austin, Seattle, and London.
Flemyn LLP was co-founded in August 2013 by Mr. Luigi Gatti Bonati and Mr. Mark Valentine. Flemyn is a family office / co-investment boutique that originates, executes and project manages direct investments in real estate on behalf of the Bonati family and a select group of co-investors. Flemyn follows an opportunistic and common sense approach to investments with no pre-defined asset allocation, geographical bias or return criteria underpinning its selection and due diligence. Investments are across the capital structure.
About Jansons Property:
Jansons is a partnership of the tenacious and innovative approach of Andy Jansons with the financial might of the William Pears Group. Jansons is a highly regarded property developer and investor, with a diverse portfolio. Andy has been in property since 1983, working for various surveying practices before forming a commercial agency, Jansons and Partners, in the ’90s. After selling out to Colliers CRE, Andy formed Jansons Property in 2003 as a joint venture development company with the William Pears Group.