Formally launched at this year’s International Hotel Investment Forum in Berlin, Beyonder Group have been acquiring key sites in major European cities for their new innovative serviced apartment concept aimed at global millennial travellers. The product of a merger between the serviced apartment platforms of Oaktree Capital Management and The Serviced Apartment Company (SACO) Beyonder aims to become a leader in the serviced accommodation sector. Operated under the SACO brand, each Beyonder ApartHotel unit is a minimum of 30 square metres and has four distinct areas – bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and living space – all designed to exceptionally high standards.
Dexter Moren Associates have been working on two of the group’s key developments in Edinburgh, both located within the UNESCO-recognised New Town.
With a prime location on George Street, one of the first built streets in the central New Town, Lismore House has an elegant, listed Georgian façade dating back to the mid-18th century with a 1970s office building behind. The building’s upper levels afford fantastic views to the rear across the Forth River all the way from the Forth Rail Bridge to the Firth. Beyonder purchased the site with existing planning permission for 66 short stay apartments. When DMA revisited the proposals a further six units were achieved while aligning the design with the Beyonder brand standard for 30sqm apartments. Front of house and service areas were also readjusted to achieve greater functionality. The generous proportions of its Georgian façade means the building only has five storeys fronting George Street but six storeys in the 70s-built block to the rear. This quirk has allowed for the creation of interesting internal spaces including three dramatic split level apartments overlooking George Street. The scheme now achieves 72 units, catering for stays of up to three months and is due for completion in spring 2016.
In addition to Lismore, DMA are working with Beyonder Group on the recently acquired Erskine House, a sizeable 1970’s office building spread over six floors. Owing to the hilly topography of Edinburgh the building’s raised ground level on Queen Street is basement level one to the rear. This offers both planning opportunities and challenges when considering circulation and access for both guests and servicing. Current proposals achieve 187 brand standard units alongside breakout spaces on every level, a gym, café and a rooftop lounge that takes full advantage of the building’s setting.