Coventry-based No Ordinary Hospitality Management, the team behind historic 4-star Coombe Abbey Hotel, has been appointed by Historic Coventry Trust to use some of the city’s ancient buildings as unique visitor accommodation, with a view to boosting the city’s visitor economy.
The team will launch six historic buildings as boutique accommodation for visitors next month.
Four properties on Priory Row will cater for parties of two to six, while a further two properties on Cook Street and Swanswell Gateway can accommodate two people each.
The partnership comes as Historic Coventry Trust’s £1.5 million partnership project with Coventry City Council to restore and convert the city’s two medieval gates and the three Lychgate Cottages in Priory Row nears completion. The project has been undertaken to revitalise buildings built in 1385 but have lain dormant for the past several decades.
Graham Tait, Assistant Director of the Historic Coventry Trust, who has managed the delivery of the project, said: “This is the culmination of 12 months of painstaking restoration work which followed years of planning and fundraising to bring the project to fruition. This has only been possible through our close partnership with the Council who have transferred the buildings to the Trust on a 250-year lease. The project forms part of the ground-breaking Framework Agreement entered into between the Trust and Council in 2019 covering many of the city’s most important heritage assets.
“The results of the works really are stunning and give Coventry a unique set of accommodation which will allow people to stay in historic properties while exploring what the city and region has to offer. The timing is perfect as the city gets into gear in its year of culture with lockdown restrictions lifting.”
The project has been funded by Architectural Heritage Fund, the Council’s Cultural Capital Investment Fund and the Government’s Getting Building Fund through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP).
The framework partnership with the Council has gained widespread attention, with the Trust’s entrepreneurial model of sustainable reuse of heritage buildings set to be adopted by other cities following previous of successful restoration projects including The Burges/Hales Street regeneration, London Road Cemetery, Charterhouse and Drapers’ Hall.
Richard Harrison, of No Ordinary Hospitality Management – the company behind Coombe Abbey Hotel – said the new accommodation would give the city a unique offer to potential visitors.
Councillor David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Heritage in the city, said: “These are some of the city’s most important heritage buildings and it is remarkable to see what the Trust has done to turn the buildings into real assets for Coventry.