The hotel market attracts investors with its stability, but at the same time it frightens with the complexity of project implementation. What is easier - to build a new hotel or to reconstruct an old building for it, in which cities it is advisable to do this and how much investment will be required. Dmitry Gorbik, Chief Project Engineer of the Metropolis company, commented for the "Modern Hotel" magazine (No. 4, September-October 2018) for an article on this topic.
Hoteliers call Moscow and St. Petersburg the most promising locations for the development of the hotel business, due to the increasing tourist flow. It is in cities with a strong tourist flow that it is advisable to implement projects for the reconstruction of historical buildings into hotels.
To date, St. Petersburg remains, perhaps, the leader among Russian cities in which new hotels appear in the old buildings - not only in residential, but also in commercial and industrial buildings. From January 2013 to July 2018, according to Maris|part of the CBRE affiliate network, 44 new 3-5* hotels with 4.5 thousand rooms were opened in St. Petersburg (excluding mini-hotels up to 40 rooms), of which 70% are located in reconstructed buildings. Similar data are provided by specialists from Colliers International, who note that over the past year and a half, the share of such hotels among new openings amounted to almost 90%. 41% of the total number of rooms in St. Petersburg hotels is located in buildings with history, reconstructed and adapted to modern needs.
“When re-equipping a building to modern requirements, as a rule, difficulties arise with the arrangement of new engineering shafts, technical, residential and technological premises, ensuring the structural stability of the building when new and old structures work together. If at the same time the task is set to preserve the architectural appearance of a building of historical value, then the task becomes many times more complicated,” comments Dmitry Gorbik.
But if we are talking about the reconstruction of a historic building into a hotel, then here investors are ready to consider options and look for solutions, even expensive ones.
The volume of investments for the implementation of the hotel project is determined by the planned number of rooms and the total area of the hotel being designed. The ratio of residential areas (rooms and corridors of the residential part) and other common areas and the service part is determined by the type of hotel (business hotel, congress hotel, recreational, mass tourism, mini-hotel, etc.) and category (stars, diamonds, keys), experts say. For each type of hotel and each category, the optimal ratios of the areas of residential, service and common areas (restaurant, bar, cafe, conference center, fitness center, lobby, halls on the floors, parking lots, surrounding area, etc.) are known.
Thus, experts calculate the unit costs for the construction of one room (as the main income-generating unit of the hotel) or 1 sq. m. of the total area of the hotel. The main costs in the implementation of the hotel project are related to security.
Designing a branded hotel is an additional challenge for the architect and designer. According to experts, difficulties arise where there are contradictions between the current Russian norms and the operator's standards aimed at optimizing and increasing the functionality of the space.