Published: 06:00, 24 April 2020
Striking images of a rooftop restaurant planned for a six-storey £20 million hotel have been revealed.
Computer-generated designs show how the swanky eatery, which will go atop the rebuilt Slatters Hotel in Canterbury, is due to look.
Set to boast views across to the Cathedral, the restaurant is part of the multi-million pound redevelopment of the St Margaret’s Street site.
Construction is slowly progressing amid the nationwide lockdown and the official opening of the 130-bed Hampton by Hilton hotel is still planned for next year.
But the project, which was given planning approval five years ago, is still not without its critics - and developers have this week defended claims the hotel will become Canterbury’s “white elephant”.
Tweaks to the hotel's design - including changes at the entrance and general layout alterations - have been submitted to the city council's planning department.
Critics have quickly picked up on the amendments and raised questions over the potential success of the £20 million scheme in light of a changed economic world after lockdown.
Commenting on the council’s planning portal, Glenn Bowman said: “Having pushed those plans through, the owners of the site are now attempting to force the council to bend yet further to their will to profit at the expense of historic Canterbury - a will to profit likely to come up against the impending recession and collapse of UK tourism, leaving the hotel as a massive white elephant.
“The building is still grossly incommensurate with the character of St Margaret’s Street.”
In stark contrast, co-director at Slatters Developments Ltd, Zaw Htut, is confident his hotel will be a success.
“There is a still a massive demand for hotels in Canterbury - that hasn’t changed and we’re still committed to it,” he said.
“Unless they have a crystal ball no one knows for sure what’s going to happen.
“We’re looking to still open next year as planned - who knows what the world will look like in a year from now.
“We’re still going to deliver this successful hotel for the city.
“We’re not changing architecture or design. The approved planning drawings are to a certain level of detail so we’ve made some slight technical changes for the construction which is entirely normal.
“There are some individuals out there who are still against it but you can’t please everyone.”
The hotel was designed was Kent-based architect Guy Hollaway.