Hotel 21 on Stanley Street in Southport

A luxury and boutique apart hotel in Southport town centre could become a 19-bed HMO (house of multiple occupation). 

The changes would take place at Hotel 21 at 21B Stanley Street, just behind Lord Street. 

Rooms at the 20-bedroom venue are currently being advertised for a minimum of £69 per night while the Penthouse Suite is available for £118 per night. 

On its website, it says: “Hotel 21 is a luxury and Boutique Apart Hotel with 20 apartments and rooms. It is a perfect combination of contemporary technology with elegant designs to form a calm and luxurious experience. Hotel 21 is a cool and clean Apart Hotel with simple but elegant styling and tactile textures.” 

Owner Manchester Real Estate Ltd has submitted a planning application to Sefton Council seeking permission to convert the site into 19 “high quality part self-contained units with ample shared communal facilities”

The firm’s application says: “The town centre has been in decline in terms of economic activity and footfall for a number of years. 

“It is now widely recognised that a credible solution to stop this national trend is to populate town centres, which brings vitality back into the towns which then makes town centres viable again.” 

There is one car parking space at the property, which would be retained, with no increase. 

Manchester Real Estate Ltd is proposing to add 19 cycle parking spaces and is keen to promote green modes of transport. 

Under the plans, 20 apart-hotel rooms would be lost, to be replaced by 19 HMO rooms. 

A planning statement prepared by architects Woolrich Hunter on behalf of Manchester Real Estate Ltd says: “Historically, the existing buildings intended use was likely to be storage / warehousing as a service building to the large retail units fronting Lord Street.

“In 2019, the building underwent a significant extension and renovation to an apart-hotel (20 rooms) with communal facilities, including internal alterations, demolition and rebuilding the front upper facade raising the roof to create two further floors and a three storey extension to the side.

“The proposal seeks Planning Permission for the change of use of this 20 bed unit ApartHotel to a 19 bed large HMO. 

“Each unit is furnished with a private shower / wet room together with an Elfin Kitchen unit for light sustenance preparation. There are large shared communal Kitchen / Dining / Living spaces located at the Ground and Upper (Third) Floor respectively. 

“All resident internal provision, both private and shared, greatly exceed the minimum required HMO standards. 

“Given the existing use of the premise as an Aparthotel with shared facilities; no external alterations are required, with the application largely comprising a material change of use only. “The purpose is to continue to offer high quality, affordable shared accommodation to working professional people such as key workers, graduates, local workers and those on secondment from established employment (not intended for students). 

“The property has recently undergone a full complete renovation, undertaken by the building owner; Manchester Real Estate Ltd. 

“Manchester Real Estate Ltd is a family business with over 20 years experience in the property industry, with portfolios in the UK and abroad. 

“MRE provides premium accommodation to professionals who require luxury living arrangements in Southport and the surrounding areas, with either short or long term contracts and to suit most budgets. They have a locally established and experienced team who are dedicated to caring for their tenants and ensure that all properties are all refurbished on a regular basis and maintained to a very high standard. 

“MRE is committed to meeting local housing needs by providing high quality shared accommodation for local professionals and key workers alike. 

“As an established Landlord, MRE has a longstanding investment in Southport town centre, reflected by its local property portfolio and commitment to providing consistently high standards of living.”

They added: “This HMO will also help address the need for key worker accommodation. There is an identified need nationally for housing for key workers to enable our core facilities to operate properly. 

“An HMO for professionals such as this provides an affordable option for key workers to live near their place of work in high quality accommodation.” 

There are no plans to increase the number of car parking spaces from one, with 19 new cycle storage spaces being proposed. 

The application says: “The development is essentially for a car free development. 

“That said, the site is located within Southport town centre, is well located in terms of accessibility and is very accessible to public transport with a train station and bus stops within easy walking distance. 

“Southport town centre is again within walking distance, allowing tenants to access a number of large supermarket shops, cafes, restaurants and other facilities and amenities with ease. This ensures that cars are not necessary for tenants of the property to get around for work or leisure purposes. 

“The property is also within convenient access to green modes of transport that provide linkages with the town centre and other places of interest. The applicant draws this information to the attention of new tenants to promote the use of green modes of transport.” 

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