Palmers Lodge - Award Winning Hostel

Updated: 24th February 2012

"The refurbishment has created a hostel in London with a difference and will ensure the future of this beautiful building so that it can be enjoyed by travellers from all over the world." 
Harvestglen Properties (Client)

Keith Farmer [Building Services] worked with Harvestglen Properties to breathe a new lease of life into a fascinating and rather dilapidated property to form a unique 300 bed Boutique Hostel - unsurpassed by any other budget hotel in London...

In 2004 Palmers Lodge was in a vacant and neglected state - until it was acquired by Harvestglen Properties Ltd. 

The Directors of Harvestglen had to meet the challenge of adapting the house to provide well appointed, exceptional value, budget accommodation - whilst restoring many of the unique features protected under the building's listed status.  The Directors appointed Keith Farmer [Building Services] to design and project manage the redevelopment and refurbishment of the house into a boutique hostel - blending the traditional backpacker's hostel with the high standards set by today's affluent younger travellers.

Calling on many years' experience of the Hostel and Hospitality marketplace - Keith Farmer and his team worked with Harvestglen to create a fresh and remarkable scheme that resulted in a highly successful project - receiving numerous accolades from around the world - including London's Best Hostel for three years running.

Key Features include: 

  • -300 beds ranging from double en-suite rooms to a 28-bed dormitory
  • -Central London location
  • -Bus connections to Stansted and Luton airports
  • -Free secure parking at the hostel with spaces for coaches 
  • -Easy access off the A41 from the M25 and M1
  • -Bar and Restaurant
  • -Key card security system
  • -Full CCTV security coverage
  • -24hr reception and access
  • -Laundry and drying facilities
  • -Large TV lounge

...to see the results of our work or to stay at Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage - please visit
www.palmerslodge.co.uk

HISTORY:
Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage, number 40 College Crescent, is a grand, detached house built c. 1880-1881, designed by Morris and Stallwood of Reading for Samuel Palmer of Huntley & Palmers Biscuits.

Samuel Palmer had already been living on the site by 1862, in the original house which lay closer to Finchley Road and which was probably built at around the same time as the existing houses in College Crescent.

The original house was demolished in 1880, maybe because of the development of the Metropolitan tube line in 1872 by cut and fill which widened the road but more probably because it was not grand enough for society entertaining.

After Samuel Palmer's youngest daughter died in 1948 his private papers and letters were destroyed. Because of this, and his consistency in declining all offers to enter public life, relatively little is known about him compared to his brothers. He does appear to have lived wholly for his family and his work in which he was a thoroughgoing professional. 

Samuel Palmer created the London Office of Huntley & Palmers and was responsible for not only sales into London but also for all those overseas. Whereas his brothers were considered provincial, Samuel was a true cosmopolitan.

Towards the end of 1887 Samuel Palmer fell sick and an attack of rheumatism was diagnosed by doctors. He never fully resumed work and travelled, with his two unmarried daughters, from one English spa to another. It is now suspected that he was suffering from Parkinson's disease.

When Samuel Palmer died in 1903 the house, known then as "Northcourt", was gifted to a hospital charity and in 1903 it became the permanent location for the Home for Incurable Children. By 1919 many diseases which would once have rendered their sufferers incurable could be treated and the hospital changed its name to Northcourt Hospital and Home for Sick Children. There were further changes of name: the hospital became known as the Hampstead Hospital for Children in 1928 and the Children's Hospital Hampstead in 1929.

At the outbreak of the Second World War the house was requisitioned by the war office. Throughout the war years various plans were proposed for its future use but the hospital eventually joined the Royal Free Group when the National Health Service came into being in 1948. At first the building was used as the School of Nursing Preliminary Training School and then as accommodation for nurses.

In 1995 the house was vacated and it lay empty and neglected until 2004 when it was acquired by Harvestglen Properties Ltd. 

The Directors of Harvestglen then had to meet the challenge of adapting the house to provide budget accommodation whilst restoring many of the unique features protected under the building's listed status.  The Directors appointed the Keith Farmer [Building Services] team to design and project manage the redevelopment and refurbishment of the house into a boutique hostel - blending the traditional backpacker's hostel with the high standards set by today's affluent younger travellers.

"The refurbishment has been a substantial achievement that will allow budget travellers to enjoy modern facilities and also the unique character of this beautiful Victorian house. The building can now be enjoyed by travellers from all other the world ensuring, the Directors hope, that it is never let to fall in disrepair again."

Many travellers are attracted into London because of the City's historical attractions, at Palmers Lodge Swiss Cottage the visitors are invited not only to see the history but to live in it to!

Visit: www.palmerslodge.co.uk

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