An extension designed to attract new business

The Royal Hotel in Elgin has always been a popular choice for locals and visitors alike with its traditional charm and central location. But owner and proprietor Allan Main could see the potential to expand the property to offer a more informal bistro style dining experience that would not only appeal to guests but would attract passing custom and drive additional revenue into the business.

Given the historic nature of the building, we worked with Historic Scotland to create an extension that would complement the existing style of property while offering a modern and contemporary dining space, designed to suit the specific needs of the business.

We designed a cedar extension with a central cupola that would allow light to flood into the new space while offering a more solid structure to match the existing style of property. Wishing to create a room for private dining and exclusive use functions, we incorporated internal bifold doors to enable the room to be divided into two areas when required, without compromising on light and the feeling of space. With our clients’ clear wish to create an extension that would attract passing custom in mind, we needed to ensure the design included a separate ‘street’ entrance so customers could enter the bistro without having to pass through the main hotel reception. The owner felt that coming through the main hotel was presenting a potential barrier to non-guests popping in for a coffee or a spot of lunch.

Commercial Feature

"The extension added significant value to the property"

The hotel previously benefited from a dining room, however, due to the internal nature of the room, it was slightly hampered by poor layout and light therefore it was important to link the new extension to the existing dining space, creating a natural connection that allowed the full use of both spaces.

Originally connecting to an outdoor patio, the unpredictability of the Scottish climate meant that this space was rarely used, and the owner decided it made sense to invest in extending the property so that this space could be used all year round.

Attracting new business also required the extension to be designed and positioned in such a way that it would draw people in, so we incorporated floor to ceiling fixed glass panels for maximum exposure and light. It was therefore easy to see from the outside that this was a bistro style restaurant which was open for business.

Without wanting to compromise the existing business while work was being carried out, we partitioned the space off before commencing the build to preserve the integrity of the main hotel and its guests. The project ran to schedule and allowed the day to day business to continue as normal. The project was complete in just six weeks.

Commenting on the success of the project, Owner and Proprietor, Allan Main said:

“We are delighted with the extension which is not only attracting new business into the hotel but has allowed us to diversify the space offering private functions and advertising as an exclusive use venue which wasn’t previously feasible.

“The extension design struck the right balance between modern and traditional for this style of hotel and has added significant value to the property itself. Achieving a space that could benefit from prominent positioning, light and use all year round was essential in creating a successful bistro style restaurant that appeared separate from the main hotel but matched the traditional design of the existing building.”

When asked about the success of the project:

“I was extremely happy with how Mozolowski and Murray managed the project from start to finish where they demonstrated a clear understanding of what we wanted to achieve from the outset. If I decide to expand the hotel further, I wouldn’t hesitate in using them again.”

Allan Main | Owner of The Royal Hotel, Elgin

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