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iQ Elliott House

iQ Elliott House

This historic Edinburgh townhouse, owned by the RAF Club from 1937-2017 and previously visited by astronauts Neil Armstrong and John Glenn, has undergone a massive new lease of life as a fantastic stylish new headquarters for iQ Elliott House Student Accommodation.

This William Playfair 1820 Category ‘A’ listed building at 11 Hillside Crescent had suffered from very unsympathetic sub-divisions and uncontrolled alterations with little upkeep throughout its lifetime. Major changes included the addition of bars on the ground and first floors, lowering of ceilings, the covering up of fireplaces and the insertion of a lift.

The existing building fabric of 11 Hillside Crescent, particularly internally, had been allowed to deteriorate due to minimal maintenance and a number of the afore-mentioned structural alterations over a large period of time. The lower level had an extensive drainage water ingress issue which had been ignored for a number of years. Advice indicated that if this issue was not remedied, it would ultimately impact on the building’s life expectancy in terms of its structural integrity.

Our Client iQ, who own and operate Elliott House, the student accommodation adjacent, saw the purchase of this classic building as an exciting opportunity to create a headquarters and central administration function for this particular location and provide its clients with a spectacular introduction to student accommodation through their iQ portfolio. Through sensitive historic investigation and research, the original Playfair designs were found in archives and exploratory works identified the structural integrity of the building, the original Playfair layout and cornice decoration.

Cooper Cromar worked closely with Historic Scotland and Edinburgh Council resulting in the primary rooms of the building being rescued. In particular, the central staircase and public rooms to the ground and first floor rooms, were largely restored to their original layout. The upper and lower floors have also been reinstated in a fashion that respects their original form with structural alterations minimised where possible.

This has allowed the creation of a series of unique spaces for student accommodation. The existing lift shaft has been removed to provide a discreet link to the existing student accommodation with neighbouring Elliott House allowing both buildings to operate as one. A blend of modern furniture and tasteful Georgian interiors results in a unique restoration of this wonderful building and hopefully is an exemplar model of what can be carried out within buildings of architectural heritage in the future.

PROJECT: iQ Elliott House
LOCATION: 11 Hillside Crescent, Edinburgh
CLIENT: iQ Student Accommodation
ARCHITECT: Cooper Cromar
iQ Elliott House
iQ Elliott House
iQ Elliott House

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