McAleer & Rushe clears airport hotel for take-off

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A COOKSTOWN firm has just finished building a multi-million pound hotel in London - three months ahead of schedule.

McAleer and Rushe completed the 400 bedroom Premier Inn at Heathrow Airport Terminal Five within budget.

The hotel, designed by Belfast-based White Ink Architects, is set over five storeys and totals 128,650 sq ft (11,950 sq m) in size.

It was finished within 46 weeks, against a scheduled timeframe of 59 weeks.

Martin Magee, construction director of McAleer & Rushe, said: “To reach practical completion on a project of this scale and complexity a full three months ahead of the scheduled handover date is a testament not only to the McAleer & Rushe team, but also to the seamless working relationship we have with Grove Developments and Premier Inn.

“With any project such as this, the end user’s requirements are paramount. Premier Inn has clearly defined brand standards and rigorous specifications be achieved, but their straightforward approach together with a clear brief from our client Grove Developments allowed us to deliver an efficient, high-quality hotel building.”

The hotel’s location, at an airport led to some unique challenges, with bespoke specifications employed to meet the scheme’s requirements.

Premier In offers customers A Good Night’s Sleep, Guaranteed, so reducing or eliminating external noise was a key requirement for protecting this unique customer promise. Construction methods were devised to achieve the necessary acoustic quality, while careful consideration had to be given to landscaping, car parking and external lighting proposals.

The hotel, located to the north of the airport and accessed via the A4 Bath Road, takes on a ‘doughnut’ form. It is centred around an inner courtyard and designed to provide an acoustic ‘buffer zone’ for guests’ comfort. The inclusion of a restaurant and bar on the ground floor – with four floors of bedrooms above – creates the impression of a rainscreen-coloured box hovering on a glazed and solid masonry base, with colours chosen to create a dynamic façade and complement the landscaping.

McAleer & Rushe was appointed at the outline planning stage, allowing the firm’s design and build team to implement the amendments necessary to achieve a more efficient building. Workmanship on the scheme also had to meet the standards demanded by Premier Inn, with build quality surpassing the operator’s expectations.

Martin Magee said: “This has been the first of four buildings to be constructed on behalf of Grove Developments and, with the success achieved on this project, we look forward with confidence to completing the other properties in the development programme in a similar fashion. We are very appreciative of the excellent relationship we have with Grove, and hope it can be extended beyond existing contracted properties.”

Sinead Hughes, head of Grove Developments, said: “We were delighted to work with McAleer & Rushe on this turnkey project. Completing the project ahead of time, within budget and to the exacting standards that we set from the outset augurs were for the remaining properties in the development programme.”