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Titanic task to redevelop the White Star Line building

Albion House in Liverpool – formerly the home of White Star Line, the shipping company that launched the infamous Titanic ocean liner – has seen plans for its redevelopment into a luxury hotel approved.

Following the disaster and the subsequent departure of many shipping lines, the building has remained largely empty for decades. The new owners have announced plans to turn it from a stark and grim reminder of the impact of that historic accident into a celebration of the architecture of the day – and a more eye-pleasing commemoration of those who lost their lives.

The luxury hotel will include around 350 bedrooms, a modern gym and banqueting facilities. The owners feel that some of the original features – including the steel rivets that shared the same engineers as those who eventually built the Titanic – will do lots to appeal to guests.

Rather than put the building through a complete revamp, the owners plan to scale back some of the modernisations, such as removing some false ceiling space and pulling up the dated nylon carpeting to reveal rich mahogany hardwood flooring. Liverpool has a rich shipping history, and though the Titanic disaster is a somewhat morbid chapter of that past, it is one that the owners are keen should not be forgotten – and indeed should be remembered rather than left to decay like Albion House.

Work will begin immediately following a successful planning application. The hotel is expected to be accepting its first visitors in April 2014.

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