Emaar in talks for Battersea Power Station hotel

Emaar may open five-star hotel on iconic redeveloped site

London's Battersea Power Station.
London's Battersea Power Station.

The Malaysian firm behind the ambitious redevelopment of London’s iconic Battersea Power Station has said it is in talks with Dubai’s Emaar Properties to open a five-star hotel at the site.

SP Setia’s group CEO told The Star newspaper that phase one of the project, which comprises 866 residential units, was 95% percent sold with £681m worth of property receipts ahead of completion in 2016.

Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin said that phase two of the project was now underway, and would include retail and entertainment amenities within the wall of the abandoned art deco facility.

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Kee Sin Liew added that he has a close relationship with Mohammad Alabbar, known as the man who built Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, and was currently seeking to convince the Emaar chairman to open one of the company’s hotel brands at the development.

“I wanted to meet [Emaar]... to invite them to open a hotel with us in London,” he told The Star. Kee Sin Liew said that he was eyeing an opening of Emaar’s high-end The Address brand, of which there are currently three in Dubai, with a further in the emirate under construction.

“I’m very interested in The Address, a three-to-five star hotel which Emaar already has a few. It’s a business-cum-family hotel, a new concept with first-class service,” he added.

Kee Sin Liew said that an Address property would help to attract tourists from the Middle East to the Battersea development. “If I can get the Address to come, the Arabs will come,” he said.

He also claimed that if SP Setia launched an Address property in the Middle East, it could help drum up interest in a third phase of the project, which would include a further 1,000 residential sales.

A spokesperson for Emaar did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the matter. SP Setia paid £400m to acquire the grade II listed Battersea Power Station site in July 2012 on the back of plans to build 3,500 homes, offices, shops and a park at the 39-acre area in south-west London.

Battersea was decommissioned in 1983 and has since been left vacant, with a number of plans for the site since falling through.
The overall regeneration of the area and its surroundings is expected to cost a total of £8bn and create 26,000 jobs.

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