Midland Hotel

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Built at the junction of Peter Street and Lower Mosley Street opposite Manchester Central railway station, terminus for Midland Railway express trains to London, St Pancras, the hotel was designed by Charles Trubshaw and constructed between 1898 and 1903 for the Midland Railway Company at a cost of more than £1 million. In 1908 The Railway News reported that the hotel had over 70,000 guests in its first year and described it as a "Twentieth century palace".[3] The hotel had a 1,000-seat purpose-built theatre where opera, drama and early Annie Horniman performances were staged, and a roof terrace where a string quartet performed.[4]

Its distinctive style comes from a structure of red brick and brown terracotta clad in several varieties of polished granite and Burmantofts terracotta to withstand the polluted environment of Manchester. The building shares some similarity with other highly-decorative Edwardian Baroque buildings in Manchester such as London Road Fire Station and Lancaster House. The building has been designated by English Heritage as a Grade II* listed building.[1]

The hotel is close to Manchester Central Conference Centre on the site of the former station, the Bridgewater Hall and Manchester Central Library. The Midland Hotel was allegedly coveted by Adolf Hitler, who maintained a keen interest in architecture, as a possible Nazi headquarters in Britain. [5] American Intelligence speculated that the area of Manchester around the Town Hall was spared from bombing so as not to damage or destroy the Midland Hotel.[6]

Once known as the Crowne Plaza Manchester - The Midland it was bought by the Paramount Hotel Group (now Barcelo UK) in 2004.[7] It was upgraded in a £12 million renovation and was transferred QHotels (formerly Quintessential Hotels) Paramount's sister company. The hotel has 312 en-suite bedrooms and 14 suites, a health club and two restaurants - the French Restaurant and former Colony.

Despite changes, the building has maintained its appeal and was voted Greater Manchester's second-favourite building by readers of the Manchester Evening News in 2012.[8]

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