KOCHI: Malayalee billionaire Yusuff Ali, who bought the Great Scotland Yard, which served as headquarters for the Metropolitan police in London, has converted it into a luxurious 5-star hotel. The renovation that cost Rs 685 cr. (£75 Million) was done in 3 years.
The business tycoon, who is chairman of Abu Dhabi-based retail giant LuLu Group had earlier bough the iconic building in 2015 for Rs 1000 crore (£110 Million). The renovated hotel is all set to open later this year and will be managed by the Hyatt Group.
When asked about the property, Yusuff Ali said: “This is a very prestigious project for us as this is one of the most well-known property not just in the UK but around the world. We have not left any stones unturned to make this the most sought-after hotel while retaining the essence of the original building, so that each of our guests get a truly memorable experience”.
Great Scotland Yard has special relevance in UK history as it was chosen by the then Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel as the headquarters for the Met police in 1829. Even after the renovation, the essence of the original building has been preserved.
The hotel will have 153 rooms and the tariff per night is expected to go up to Rs 7,79,842 (10,000 euro). These suites offer guests picturesque views of Nelson's Column, Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace, making it one of the most unique locations in London.
The luxury hotel that is steeped in British political history will include references to the famous criminals of the time gone by. In a secret whisky bar, a decadent chandelier made of glass shards will be a nod to the Forty Elephants, the 19th-century gang of women known for smashing shop windows to steal jewellery. There will also be artwork by prisoners and old military uniforms.
Adeeb Ahamed, Son-in-law of Yusuff Ali and the Managing Director of Twenty14 Holdings, the hospitality arm of Lulu Group said, “Renovating the Great Scotland Yard building and unveiling the UK’s first Unbound Collection hotel will bring a truly individual and world-class hotel to London.
"The Great Scotland Yard is really an important part of the fabric of London and it is a great opportunity for us to be a part of the culture and legacy of this great city and help in its development. The Great Scotland Yard will be an enriching landmark in Westminster as a high-end luxury boutique hotel that recaptures the history, culture and essence of the London of yore.”