Kerala billionaire MA Yusuff Ali-helmed LuLu Group International is all set to unveil the ‘Grand Scotland Yard Hotel’, a seven-storey luxury property built at the site once home to Britain’s famed Metropolitan Police Service. The heritage property, located in Whitehall in central London, was bought by LuLu Group in 2015 from developer Galliard Homes for an astonishing sum of 110 million pounds.
Redesigned reportedly at a cost of 75 million pounds by Galliard Homes, the luxury hotel features over 150 bedrooms and 11 suits. It boasts of a signature restaurant overseen by chef Robin Gill along with cocktail and whiskey bars, gymnasium, library and an extensive meeting room for corporate events. Some of the bedrooms have reportedly been converted from cells where criminals have been housed in the past. In fact, the interior designing has been done keeping in mind the property’s illustrious military past. The police service used the building from 1829 till 1890 and later at one point was even home to the UK’s Ministry of Defence.
The luxury hotel has been designed to cater to the ultra-rich with tariff said to rise to as high as 10,000 pounds for a single night. Some of the rooms offer expansive views of the Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey, a large Gothic church which has witnessed several royal weddings and where rests monarchs and prime ministers of the country.
The luxury property is also an example of heightened Indian investments in the UK’s real estate market in the wake of a declining pound. It’s being seen as one of the most elegant hotels to be ever built in the UK.
“Galliard has delivered one of London’s most outstanding five-star hotels. With its iconic address and famous history, the hotel’s interior design cleverly references the building’s police and military past through the use of shields, emblems and historic details etched into glass and metalwork,” Stephen Conway, executive chairman of Galliard Group, had said about the hotel.
LuLu Group, an Abu Dhabi-based retail conglomerate with massive investments in India and across the Middle East, runs India’s biggest mall located in Kochi, the financial nerve-centre of Kerala. It also operates over 130 retail supermarkets titled ‘Lulu Hypermarket’ across India and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries.
“The future growth markets for us in the hospitality sector includes Britain, Middle East, India and South East Asia,” a Lulu spokesman had told The National news service back in 2015 when it bought the central London property. “Since we are now firmly established in the retail sector, we want to diversify into the hospitality sector as these two are complementary.”