25 April 2017

Award-winning planners bring to life world class hotel developments

Renowned New Forest hotel Chewton Glen has cemented its reputation as a world class destination with the introduction of its lavish purpose-built cookery school, kitchen restaurant and new luxury treehouses.

The five-star hotel saw its plans come to life following award-winning planning and design consultancy Terence O'Rourke’s influential role – with the organisation involved in planning, environmental and interior design, as well as landscape architecture.


The £2.6million cookery school, featuring classes from celebrity chef James Martin in the new building known as The Kitchen, provides a stunning environment for students to develop skills and enjoy learning about food and cooking. Outside the block there are raised beds and a greenhouse where herbs and vegetables are grown.


The Kitchen, which opened earlier this month, is a hotbed of creativity as guests and visitors gather for informal lunches, people take in cookery classes, gardeners select fresh ingredients and chefs develop menus. The space has an open-plan design with bi-folding doors where glass panelling floods the room with light.


It also has 12 professionally equipped cooking stations with views over the specially designed garden. It employs 19 people and includes a tasting floor, a charcuterie bar, bakery and patisserie, as well as a 40-seater informal restaurant that features a pizza oven. There is also a chef’s table for private dining and celebrations, an outside seating area and private parking.


The development involved the demolition of an existing outbuilding and construction of a new building on Green Belt land – a key area where Terence O’Rourke helped allay fears by working closely with Christchurch Borough Council planners, hotel and students.


The planning and design consultancy also came up with an inviting front door and arrival while ensuring the food journey and interior were in harmony for an experience in a high class teaching and learning environment.


“We are delighted to have been involved in such a high-profile development for a prestigious hotel like the Chewton Glen,” Terry Williams, director at Terence O’Rourke, said. “The new facilities add to its reputation as a world class hotel that offers the best for its guests, as well demonstrating its versatility with the new kitchen space and cookery school.


“We overcame various challenges by closely working with various stakeholders, providing precedent studies and undertaking research trips. One of our main ideas was to help make the hotel more visible to the local community and showcase its educational, training and business relationships locally.”


As well as the cookery school and the kitchen space development, Chewton Glen has also added another two more suites to its luxury treehouses – offering even greater exclusivity and splendour to those currently available. The treehouse suites include terraces and hot tubs, all with stunning valley views from a tree canopy.


Already having a variety of the suites on-site helped pave the way for planners to grant permission – reinforcing the hotel’s reputation as a place of opulence that attracts high quality clientele.   


Andrew Stembridge, managing director at Chewton Glen, said: “Chewton Glen is one of the most renowned hotels and spas in the world. Terence O’Rourke has successfully supported the evolution of this unique property with design and planning solutions and brought the hotel unprecedented international PR exposure and improved the dynamics of the business.”


Terry added: “We faced challenges with both developments but believe the decision of the planners to grant permission supported our belief of the great benefits from the proposals.


“Working with the Chewton Glen has been a great honour. The hotel team’s collective attention to detail and desire to find the right solution for their guests is driven by the standard of service experienced at the hotel.”


Terence O’Rourke, which has offices in London and Bournemouth, has been established for more than 30 years and is an acknowledged industry leader.


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