Hotel conversion proposed for Arts and Crafts heritage building in Downtown Vancouver

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      One of the oldest office buildings in Downtown Vancouver is proposed to be transformed into a hotel.

      Interior and exterior alterations are planned for the Arts and Crafts building, which is listed in the City of Vancouver’s heritage register as significant in heritage value.

      Completed in 1911, the Arts and Crafts building started as a printing house.

      A development application filed by Gustavson Wylie Architects Inc. indicates that Coromandel Properties Ltd. is acting on behalf of the owner of the property.

      According to the application, the owner has entered into an agreement with Sonder, a Montreal-founded company that offers short-term rentals.

      “Sonder offers an alternative to a downtown or suburban traditional hotel, with larger spaces – often with two bedrooms – in hip neighbourhoods,” the application states. “They specialize in the extended-stay sector, using their proprietary reservations, concierge and operations software to deliver a superior guest experience during extended stays.”

      The proposal calls for the creation of 36 hotel suites and a restaurant on the ground floor.

      The application states that the units will range from studios to two bedrooms, “all designed and furnished to appeal to visitors staying longer than the city average of 2.7 days”.

      “Sonder anticipates the average length of stay of the guest to be 10 days and license the premised for hotel-like accommodation,” the application explains.

      Currently headquartered in San Francisco, Sonder offers rentals in North America and Europe, which offer the convenience of a hotel and the comforts of home.

      The Arts and Crafts building is in the middle of a four-storey building, and a two-storey building that houses the former Railway Club. Across the street is the downtown campus of BCIT.

      “Constructed in 1911, the Arts & Crafts Building is valued as part of the early twentieth century development of downtown Vancouver, for its longstanding printing house use, and for its Edwardian era commercial design, as executed by notable architect Thomas Hooper and, later Richard T. Perry,” the development application notes.