Plans to develop a £150m hotel in London that resembles a ‘giant whirlpool' from above have been given the go-ahead.
US billionaire entrepreneur Stan Thomas has won permission from the Corporation of London to transform Trinity Square near Tower Bridge into a luxury hotel by building a huge glass atrium around a central courtyard.
The long-time vacant Grade II-listed building will be restored and its grand rooms incorporated into the 121-room hotel which is set to be completed by 2012.
A glass canopy will cover a huge ballroom at the new hotel while the central well of the rotunda will be used as a landscaped garden. Guests will drive into two "pavilions" in the grounds of the hotel and car lifts will lower them into an underground car park.
Rob Steul, principal at architect firm Woods Bagot and designer of the scheme, said: "Trinity Square is a unique site in the Square Mile and overlooking a World Heritage site at the Tower of London. The hotel will be the only one of its kind serving the City and Canary Wharf."
Thomas, who made his fortune with a string of projects across the US, will develop the scheme with his company Thomas Enterprises.
By Gemma Sharkey
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