Architect Guy Hollaway's vision for the new multi-million pound 60 bedroom hotel and apartments at the Rendezvous site on Margate seafront
by Mary Louis
A stunning vision has been unveiled of a multi-million pound hotel and apartment development to regenerate Margate’s historic seafront.
Kent County Council revealed plans for The Rendezvous, a 60-bedroom hotel and 18 apartment scheme earmarked for the seafront beside Turner Contemporary.
The ambitious design has been created by Guy Hallaway Architects and was shown to guests at a special event at the art gallery.
The architects were appointed by Kent County Council as part of the programme to regenerate the seafront.
A model and CGI footage of the plans introduced The Rendezvous.
The proposal includes a two floor development cut into the landscape, accommodating the serviced apartments, called “retreats”, and including 25 internal car parking spaces and one floor including social and ancillary spaces.
Four floors of hotel bedrooms are incorporated, 15 bedrooms per floor, with space for 29 external car parking spaces and landscaping.
The Rendezvous site, located on the seafront next to the harbour and Old Town, is currently in Kent County Council’s freehold ownership. The new scheme will revive a site that was once bustling with many shops and homes and the Hotel Metropole when Margate established itself as a fishing town during Victorian times.
The plans are now on display to the public at Thanet Gateway where the exhibition will remain until October 10. A further public exhibition will then be mounted.
Following this, the designs will be finalised, taking account as many comments as possible.
An outline planning application is expected to be submitted this autumn.
Kent County Council leader Cllr Paul Carter said: “Kent County Council is bringing forward this exciting development which aims to contribute to Margate’s community by delivering a high quality hotel.
“If you live in Margate, or spend time here, you will notice that change is in the air. With the opening of Turner Contemporary, and over 20 other developments including plans to renovate the Dreamland amusement park, the spirit of the town is being transformed. Within this context a hotel for the Rendezvous site is an attractive prospect to enhance the offer for visitors to
Margate, whether here on business or pleasure.”
Architect Guy Hollawayis from Herne Bay and applied his own knowledge of and empathy for the north east coastal tip of Kent when drawing up the plans.
He said: “I think it’s really important to know a place and to really understand the area and also to sense a mood of the changes that are happening in Margate. We’ve been working with Kent County Council, Turner Contemporary and Thanet District Council for quite some months now to come up with these exciting ideas.”
Thanet District Council leader Cllr Clive Hart said: “The Rendezvous site was given to KCC by the former Conservative administration at TDC as Thanet’s contribution to the Turner Contemporary project.
“Generally speaking the hotel proposal from KCC is in line with the proposed Thanet Destination Management Plan, but it will be for KCC to obtain planning permission, access project funding and to create a hotel development that is acceptable to the people of Thanet and attractive to our future visitors.”
Will Scobie, Labour’s prospective parliamentary candidate for South Thanet, is delighted with the scheme.
He said: “This is part of the on-going project to rejuvenate Margate and I’m delighted that the plans have been revealed to build a new hotel. Margate is a major tourist destination for thousands of holiday makers, not only British people making a stay-cation, but also from around the world.
“This is more of the investment we need and I’m proud the Labour-controlled district council is putting every effort into making Thanet one of the hottest holiday locations in the country. Last year the Rough Guide named Margate ‘one of world’s top destinations’ and it’s right that we have a new hotel to reflect that.”