Brum moves up with first five-star hotel

Stars come out: luxury hotel for Snowhill
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Ballymore to develop 200-room Starwood scheme at Snowhill

Birmingham is set to have its first five-star hotel – from US operator Starwood Hotels & Resorts at Ballymore’s Snowhill scheme.

Ballymore has entered into an agreement with Starwood to open a 200-room five-star Westin hotel, spa and restaurant.

The hotel, to the north of the site overlooking a plaza in front of St Chad’s Cathedral, will form phase three of the Snowhill scheme, which was given the go-ahead in May.

Phase three comprises the Glenn Howells Architects-designed hotel tower and a 332-unit residential tower next to more than 600,000 sq ft of offices.

Phase one is an office block with 120,000 sq ft let to accountant KPMG. Ballymore is thought to be starting on site this quarter.

Phase two comprises a second office block. Ballymore is thought to be in discussions with law firm Wragge & Co, which has had a longstanding requirement for more than 220,000 sq ft, and Barclays bank, which is searching for 100,000 sq ft.

Neither deal had been signed as Property Week went to press.

The five-star hotel will be welcomed by the city as Birmingham has fallen behind cities such as Manchester and Leeds without a five-star hotel presence.

The only option in the West Midlands for a five-star hotel is Marriott’s Forest of Arden Hotel and Country Club in Warwickshire.

Birmingham will be Starwood’s second Westin Hotels & Resorts-branded scheme in the UK. The other is the Westin Turnberry Resort in Ayrshire. It is thought the Snowhill hotel will open in 2011.

Cushman & Wakefield Hotels advised Ballymore on the hotel.

All parties involved refused to comment.

Birmingham’s second luxury hotel is to open at the Mailbox’s second phase, the Cube, in 2010.

The developer, Birmingham Development Company, is searching for a boutique brand for the Ken Shuttleworth-designed Cube and will make an announcement later this year.

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