Portable hotel extends Edinburgh gap site stay
A PORTABLE hotel is set to operate on a notorious Edinburgh gapsite for another three years, The Scotsman has learned.
Snoozebox, a company fronted by former Formula One star David Coulthard, will be allowed to operate for up to 70 days a year next to Waverley Station.
The firm struck a deal with the South African-based owners of the site of the Caltongate development, which collapsed four years ago when a previous operator went into administration.
The city council has given the company permission for the move after the 120-room complex, just yards from the Royal Mile, was run throughout this year’s Fringe.
Snoozeboz, which has rooms big enough for two adults and a child, has been tried out successfully at major events like the Goodwood races, Formula One events, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant.
Despite being forced to slash prices back from £229 per room to just £80 due to slow sales, the company claimed it ended up filling 90 per cent of all slots in Edinburgh this summer.
The council has agreed to let the firm return to the site, despite Artisan Real Estate Investors pursuing plans for a new development on the site. However it is thought they do not need the part of the gap site, adjacent to Calton Road, where the Snoozebox was based in August, as the new-look Caltongate scheme is to be carried out in phases.
Now the company is planning to return for the entire Christmas and Hogmanay season in the capital and has told The Scotsman it expects to operate on the site for the next three years.
It emerged earlier this month that work is finally set to get underwa on the Caltongate project - despite almost half of the original scheme having to be redrawn.
A former school building which had been earmarked for demolition could now be saved after new architects were called in to redesign a proposed hotel, public square and arts quarter.
The old Canongate Venture building would become a hub for publishers, literary organisations, writers and illustrators, under a bid by the Edinburgh Old Town Development Trust.
However it has yet to reach agreement with Artisan to take over the building, which dates back to 1901.
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