Built as an office building in 1907, Walter House is a 6 storey building within the Covent Garden Conservation Area, located on the corner of Strand and Bedford Street. The client acquired the building in 2016 after PJMA undertook a feasibility study for the remodelling and refurbishment of Walter House, and for the demolition and reconstruction of the adjoining 50 Bedford Street, to form a new, 57 bed 4 star hotel whilst retaining the retail units at street level.
The exterior of Walter House had been largely unaltered since it was built and has a composition which mixed classical references in rusticated Portland stone with more Arts and Crafts related massing and details. Described by Pevsner as ‘free baroque’, the design combined renaissance classical architecture with the organic influences of Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau design.
PJMA’s design sought to retain and utilise this historical character whilst rationalising the circulation, geometry and roofscape to provide a coherent form and to maximise the internal floor area, room count and quality of spaces.
After public consultation and engagement with community groups, PJMA achieved planning permission for a the design/change of use at the end of 2016. Work commenced on site in June 2017 with completion in December 2018 and the hotel opening early in 2019.