Famous Liverpool hotel to be reopened by top hotels group

30 James Street

One of Liverpool’s best-known hotels is to have a new lease of life as it is reopened by a leading UK hotels group.

The historic 30 James Street hotel, with its distinctive red and white brick façade, is to be operated by Legacy Hotels, following Julian Clarke and Matthew Nagle being appointed as LPA receivers of the hotel.

Legacy Hotels has been appointed by the receivers for the property on the corner of James Street and The Strand in the city centre, which was formerly the headquarters of the White Star shipping line, owners of the ill-fated Titanic.

Legacy Hotels is already well known in the city, operating the Pullman Hotel on the waterfront and opening a Novotel at the new Paddington Village near the University of Liverpool.

It currently operates a portfolio of hotels across the UK and Europe.

The new operators are seeking to preserve as many of existing jobs as possible, despite the challenging economic situation.

The Grade II-listed, four-star 30 James Street Hotel was owned and operated by Signature Living and opened in 2014.

Legacy Hotels has confirmed that Signature Living will have no further links to the management of the hotel.

The hotel contains 63 nautical-themed rooms, as well as a rooftop terrace bar with stunning waterfront views, a restaurant, events space and spa facilities.

The building was designed by celebrated Victorian architect Norman Shaw, who also designed New Scotland Yard in London, and was completed in 1896.

The building’s banded red brick and white Portland stone has earned it the nickname locally as the ‘streaky bacon building’.

Julian Clarke, of Savills, one of the receivers, said: “We quickly identified that there were some urgent works needed to have the building cleaned up and in good shape for reopening, so we commissioned the builders who are already working on this.

“We also carefully considered our options to reopen the hotel, and we are now delighted to be working with Legacy to bring this about.”

Jim Gordon, managing director of Legacy Hotels and Resorts, said: “This is a new beginning for this historic and beautiful building.

“The hotel is a key asset for Liverpool’s visitor economy, and it is important that we reopen it as soon as possible as the city begins to open up again after the coronavirus pandemic.

“To that end there will be a significant amount of money invested on much-needed repairs and upgrades as well as ensuring that it is thoroughly cleaned to provide assurance to staff and guests as we commence trading, post the COVID lockdown.”

He added: “Recent months have proved an extremely difficult time for the hospitality and leisure sector.

Jim Gordon

“We are keenly aware that it has been tough for the team at 30 James Street, with profound uncertainty because of the current national health situation. We will do all we can to retain as many existing jobs at the site as possible.

“The health and safety of our teams and returning guests also continues to be a key priority at this time and we have made all necessary preparations to ensure that everyone is looked after as we work towards a late July reopening.”

Legacy is currently working to ascertain the level of forward booked business, including any deposits for events or bedroom bookings.

Deputy mayor, Cllr Wendy Simon, cabinet member for culture and tourism, welcomed the news. She said: “These are exceptional times and more than ever we need to do what we can to support the economy, protect jobs and livelihoods.

“Culture and tourism are key drivers of Liverpool’s economy and having a new operator for one of our most popular hotels will help accelerate our recovery.

“I am pleased to hear that not only will Legacy Hotels and Resorts, already a trusted city partner, manage the building, but are also making every effort to safeguard jobs in the hard-hit hospitality and leisure sector.”