The disused former Blackpool Post Office, a prominent building on Abingdon Street, will be converted to a 148 boutique hotel with modern rooms and inspired suites by the prestigious Indigo chain if a £25 million development goes ahead. Cheshire-based Ashall Project has unveiled plans to transform the Grade II listed building into a high-quality 148-room Hotel Indigo and Indigo Suites. The proposals include retaining many of the original features of the Post Office, which opened in 1910, including the Abingdon Street frontage and the eight red telephone boxes outside. Inside, the marbled flooring, cornicing and other key architectural features will be restored. The hotel, a short walk away from Blackpool’s £28m new conference centre at the Winter Gardens, would employ around 70 staff and 215 people would work on the construction.
Blackpool Council is seeking £7m from the Government’s Levelling Up fund towards the total investment of £24.8m. The Post Office was in use at Abingdon Street until it closed on 12 September 2007. It was designed by architects of the Blackpool Office of Works in 1910 and built by R. Neill & Son of Manchester.
Mark Ashall, director of Ashall Projects, said, ‘There’s a lot of work to do on this project, but we have the resources, knowledge and commitment. Instead of being neglected and in danger of becoming an eyesore, these buildings will enhance the town centre and provide the world’s first Indigo hotel of this type which will help attract all kinds of visitors to Blackpool. This will be a Hotel Indigo with a difference. It will cater for both short-stay leisure and business visitors and it will also offer extended stay suites with additional facilities, such as kitchenettes, to provide the space and amenities for guests who want to stay longer.”
Mr Ashall added, ‘There are nearly 150 Indigo Hotels across the globe but this will be the first time anywhere that Indigo will be offering extended stay rooms in addition to the classic Indigo rooms. We believe this will allow us to provide a wide range of accommodation options which will meet a variety of customer requirements.’
Blackpool Council leader, Councillor Lynn Williams said, ‘Blackpool Council fully supports the plans to bring this key historic property back to life. This upscale hotel development will attract extended stay business and leisure guests to the centre Blackpool all year round for the benefit of local businesses. ‘
Ashall Projects has previously developed the Aloft Hotel in Liverpool after transforming the historic Royal Insurance building in the city.