Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Central Hotel lives on the Grand Central Hotel – and wins prizes

Purely by chance, I ended up reading one of my old posts, in this case from back on 2009, when I was depressed to see the Central Hotel in administration.

I always remember it for the plaque which identified it as the location, in 1927, where John Logie Baird transmitted the first long-distance television picture from London to the fourth floor of the hotel. Not many people were aware of that, and I wonder if many more are nowadays. It has to be said, the plaque was barely noticeable, and not a feature that anyone ever pointed out.

Although I had haunted its corridors fairly regularly in earlier years, changes in my circumstances meant I had not been there for years, or was even aware it had been heading that way.

At the time, it had already been closed for week and was in administration, and there were no great hopes for its future.

One could not argue that the building was not a bit “tired”, and I speculated that anyone prepared to take it on would have to have deep pocket if they were to bring it up to date, since Historic Scotland would be perched on their shoulder enforcing the requirement that go hand-in-hand with the 1898 seven floor building’s A-listed category.

It got lucky, and received a £20 million makeover, not only refurbishing it and turning it into a four star tourism and conference venue, but adding another 30 rooms to its original 222.

A lucky escape from the alternative of abandonment, dereliction, fire/arson, and finally demolition.

They must be doing something right, having gone from administration in 2009, it was open again in 2010 (doesn’t take long to splurge £20 million), and seems to be prospering.

Now Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow wins the Scottish Hotel Awards | Going Out | Glasgow | STV

Only problem I can see is with the new name – the new owners might think the new name is more upmarket, but as far as I can tell, Glaswegians still just see the Central Hotel, regardless of what they put on the sign.

The figure in front of the hotel’s entrance was unveiled on 17 June, 2001. A bronze sculpture entitled “Citizen Firefighter” by Kenny Hunter, one of Scotland’s foremost sculptors, it is a tribute to all firefighters past and present who have served in Strathclyde Fire and Rescue.


May 2, 2013 - Posted by | Civilian | , , , ,

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