ROYAL NATIONAL HOTEL LONDON REVIEWS. ROYAL NATIONAL HOT
Royal national hotel london reviews. Bayberry inn bed and breakfast
Royal National Hotel London Reviews
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The Old Refuge Assurance Building at Manchester
Location:Oxford Street, Manchester, Lancashire, England, UK
Date of Photograph:28 May 2005
OS Grid Reference:SJ841975
The Refuge Assurance Company, now part of The Royal London Group, was founded by James Procter and other Manchester business men in 1835. Although it is now principally a provider of private pensions, much of the Refuge’s original income would have come from the fire insurance of readily-combustible, but then ubiquitous, cotton mills and warehouses.
Since 1987 The Refuge has occupied purpose-built offices at Wilmslow.
The pictured interior is of the foyer of the Refuge Building in central Manchester, built for the insurance firm and occupied by them from 1891 to 1987. This foyer area was, however, moribund by 1972. When I passed it as an undergraduate I was most impressed and intrigued by the massive and very closed iron gates that sealed a silent Victorian cobbled courtyard in which shrubs grew from the stones.
The now-renovated Italianate edifice is of structural pressed red brick and Doulton terracotta with lavish interiors of Burmantoft faience and glazed brick. Building work extended from 1891 to 1895. There is a copper-domed tower on the corner of Oxford and Whitworth Streets and the main Oxford Street frontage is graced by a 217-feet copper-domed terracotta clock tower, one of the icons of Manchester and now seen nationally on television weather glimpses from the city. Under the clock tower is a large ornamental portico of polished gray granite. The main building is by Quaker architect Alfred Waterhouse ( 1830-1905 ). He was a Liverpudlian but had the good sense to become an Owen’s alumnus. This architect’s most celebrated structure is The British Museum of Natural History at Kensington: The same as starred in “One of our Dinosaurs is Missing”. The clock tower was added in 1910-12 by Alfred’s son Paul. Further co-ordinated extensions were ranged along Whitworth Street by Stanley Birkett in 1932.
The structure is Listed Grade Two Star.
Whilst basically Cisalpine the architecture reflects Alfred Waterhouse’s eclectic Late Victorian style as reflected in the “Gothic” museum and other prestige buildings such as The ( London ) University College Hospital, The National Liberal Club and the striking Victoria University ( “Owen’s” ) complex half a mile South along Manchester’s Oxford Street. Waterhouse Senior designed numerous other university buildings across England.
The interior of The Refuge is, if anything, even more breathtaking than the facade, glittering with stained-glass, faience and iron and would have left on unforgettable impression in the ghostly green glow of Welsbach lamps. There is a marvelous marble and bronze staircase fit for The Vatican.
In 1996 Richard Newman adapted the premises for Meridien Palace Hotels Limited, who run the building as the four-star Palace Hotel, allegedly the most expensive in Manchester.
The refurbishment cost ?7 million and included a partitioning into 257 en-suite guest rooms together with numerous bars and conference rooms as well as an 810-seat restaurant open plan to the main first-floor Tempus Bar. There is air-conditioning in 60 guest rooms ( according to the staff ) and 257 ( according to Meridien Hotels ).
As a hotel the Palace has enjoyed mixed reviews. My room was large and very clean but overlooked the debris-strewn trickle in the concrete ditch that passes as the River Medlock. The breakfast was of good quality and of all you could physically consume. The Palace is however widely despised, largely it seems because the aircon and the service both conform to the traditional Mancunian standards. Some foreign guests also find the drunkenness and lawlessness of the adjacent streets disconcerting.
The pictured scene looking Southwards into the new Oxford Street foyer is accessible to non-residents as it is on the way to the main Tempus Bar, the dining area and the lavatories. Extended explorations would require arrangement with Meridien Palace Limited.
National Hotel, Mt Molloy, Qld.
Main Street, Mt Molloy, established c. 1902, with our Wicked camper out the front.
Owner of this pub from 1904-7 was the well-known explorer and prospector James Mulligan, who discovered gold on the Palmer River in 1873, tin on the Wild River in 1875, and gold in the Hodgkinson Goldfield in 1876. He mined at numerous places in the region, and died in 1907, aged 70, from knife wounds he received when he intervened in a bar-room brawl in this hotel. He is buried in the Mt Molloy cemetery.
After setting up camp in a nearby camping area, we returned here for an excelent dinner, & were on the lookout for drinkers with knives while we were there.
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