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Don Your Hard Hat! InterContinental Westminster Opens Next Month

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  Site Where: 22-28 Broadway, London, United Kingdom, SW1H 9JS
October 22, 2012 at 9:45 AM | by | ()

We mentioned in our last round-up of London hotel news that the InterContinental Westminster is back on our 2012 to-watch list, having moved up its opening date forward to November 30.

In the lead up to the look inside we plan to give you once fully finished, we had the opportunity to put on some high-visibility gear and a hard hat last week and see the site as it is today. The place was crawling with hundreds of construction workers, which are laboring away pretty much round the clock to get everything guest-ready over the next month.

The main entrance to the hotel on Broadway is starting to show, including the porte cochère that has been built within the existing façade. As we’ve said before, seeing this side of the hotel will have you underestimate the total footprint of the building, as it’s only a sliver of what extends behind and around to cover most of the block.

Hotel main entrance

As you walk in, there will be a concierge lounge on the left, where guests can set up an appointment and sit down for help in organizing their stay. And it doesn’t stop there: we loved InterContinental’s concierge app already two years ago, but these days you can also use it to video chat before you arrive and secure those hard-to-get restaurant reservations.

Up a few steps is the triangular marble lobby, dominated by a huge skylight. Art will be a major focus in the public spaces, with a sculpture to take center stage in the lobby and a wall relief of Westminster planned behind reception. Most of the ground floor is taking up by food & beverage. With a separate entrance, the Blue Boar Smokehouse & Bar will bring some much-needed spark to this corner of St James’s and aims to draw locals as much as hotel guests. Emmeline’s will be a lounge with a twist, with Tim Burton-esque murals, creating a through-the-looking-glass feel.

We peeked inside a Classic and Club InterContinental room, as well as a One-Bedroom suite and the top-of-the-line Penthouse. All rooms will have a neutral palette, with marble floor entrances, wood paneling, and a flat screen TV hidden behind a smoke glass panel. Carpets have a fingerprint-like pattern, a reference to New Scotland Yard next door. Most come with a separate rain shower and soaking tub.

The Penthouse suite is more a swank loft apartment, located in the eaves of the building on the sixth floor. In standard form, it comes as a one bedroom, but can be easily extended to create a multi-room spread. The shower was so big there was room for a tiled bench inside. The raw space looked really interesting, so we’re curious to see what the end result will be.

Best of all, there will be complimentary WiFi in all rooms and throughout the building. Hallelujah! Online reservations are currently accepted from next year, but we'd expect these to be moved up as well; rates for a Classic room start in the £225 ($360) range on a weekend.

We’ll have more for you once the InterContinental Westminster opens, so stay tuned!

[Photos: HotelChatter]

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