-> 2009 -> Islay Hotel October 2009 Update

Monday, 02/Nov/2009

Islay Hotel October 2009 Update

Picture of the front of an under construction hotel

Having returned from Islay just over a week ago and with the calendar having moved to November I think it's time for one of the fairly regular topics of this blog: From the headline and the pictures you'll obviously know what that is, the Islay Hotel in Port Ellen. Regular readers will already have seen a larger version of the picture above in the ‘And He's Back From Islay’ entry. That's obviously not the only picture I took during my visit in October, here's the corresponding view of the back of the hotel on a beautiful sunny afternoon:

Picture of the back of an under construction hotel

For a variety of reasons the plans for the extension were changed. Among other the toilets were moved from the main building into the extension, where they will now be towards the right hand side. The picture above was taken at my arrival on Islay, the one below towards the end of my stay. It quite nicely demonstrates some of the progress during the week with the walls starting to take shape:

Picture of the back of an under construction hotel, taken a week later with the walls having moved up a bit

Most of the progress has been made on the inside though, kind of behind the scenes. The various cables have been laid, the water pipes put in and Roland told me the underground heat extraction pumps will soon be connected, in time for the cold days coming up. A lot of the plasterboard has been put up in particular on the ground and first floor:

Picture of the stairs and landing of an under construction hotel, the plasterboard in a nice pale pink

Now don't get worried, this is not the final colour scheme for the hotel. That's just the plasterboard, still, looks nicer than the bare walls. In the guest room you can see the bathroom having been put into place, if you look closely you can see the shower just left of the door.

Picture of a guest room in an under construction hotel, the plasterboard has been put up and parts of the bathroom are ready

I hope these pictures give you an impression of the latest progress at the hotel. I also met with Roland who told me that he expects to have opened the hotel by the time of my next visit in April 2010. A lot of things are now falling into place and will soon be completed. I'm not sure when it will be installed, but the lift is currently being assembled in Italy. One (1!) engineer will then travel to Islay to install it within 3 days. Not bad for the to my knowledge first and only (public) lift on Islay.

There will be public WiFi at the hotel (sounds good to me and probably others), although probably restricted to specific areas. Roland plans to employ as many local people as possible, same as he's done during the construction of the hotel. There might be the odd exception, but the majority will be local people. That's the most important points I can remember (and hopefully didn't misrepresent), so fingers crossed everything goes to plan and I can bring back pictures of the (pretty much) finished hotel from my next visit…

PS: Over the next week or so I plan to create (and blog about) the latest Islay Hotel Port Ellen 180° Panoramas as well as a Photosynth of the hotel. Watch this space.

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