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13 November 2014

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You are in: Birmingham > People > Stories > Skyline for sale

The Rotunda

Birmingham's iconic Rotunda building

Skyline for sale

Apartments in Birmingham's iconic Rotunda building have gone on sale, with buyers queueing through the night for a slice of Birmingham's infamous skyline.


Artist's impression of Rotunda

Dozens of people in Birmingham city centre queued all night in a bid to snap up an apartment in Birmingham's landmark Rotunda building. Doors opened at 11am and by 11.20 all available apartments in Rotunda had been reserved despite the apartments not being ready for nearly three years.

Life begins at 40

The Grade II listed cylindrical building has been part of Birmingham's skyline since the 1960s and celebrates it's 40th birthday this year. Love it or hate it Rotunda is getting a makeover and will be completely restyled by developers Urban Splash, ready to house it's first residents in 2008.

"It's got the X factor; it's iconic; it's THE address in Birmingham. I feel rock 'n' roll when I see the Rotunda!"

Tav, the proud owner of two Rotunda apartments

"We've been bowled over by people's enthusiasm.  We love working with buildings like this - real iconic buildings - the response has been brilliant", said Lisa Ashurst of Urban Splash.  "The architect loved the panoramic views and cylindrical design of Rotunda so much that he has designed cylindrical towers based on the Rotunda for future development."

Piece of cake

The two hundred and thirty two apartments in Rotunda range in price from around £150,000  for a city pad to nearly £500,000 for a penthouse. Each apartment is shaped like a 'slice of cake', radiating out from around a central core, and all boasting views of the city.

Excited new owners reserved their plots on Saturday 15th October at the special launch event near St Martin's in the Bullring.

Sangeeta and Tav

Sangeeta and Tav

THE address in Birmingham

Tav and Sangeeta had just purchased two 14th floor apartments in the restyled Rotunda;

"It's got the X factor; it's iconic; it's THE address in Birmingham.  It's very, very exciting.  You have all the amenities here with amazing shopping centres. 

"It's classy, it's very calm in the evenings here compared to the noise of Broad Street.  It would be a very comfortable place to live indeed.  In fact, I feel rock 'n' roll when I see the Rotunda!"

Richard Lishman and baby son Max

Richard Lishman and baby son Max

Raving about Rotunda

Richard Lishman was celebrating becoming the proud father of son Max, and becoming the proud owner of of a Rotunda apartment.  Richard purchased an apartment with his wife and friends as an investment;

"When I moved to the Midlands from North Yorkshire everyone raved about the Rotunda.  It's the landmark of Birmingham - apart from Spaghetti Junction."

Babra Salem queued from 6am to get her 18th floor apartment. Born and bred in Birmingham 26 year old Babra has lived in Manchester for the last year, but the appeal of living in the Rotunda has lured her back home to Birmingham;

Babram Saleem

Babra Saleem in front of her new pad

"I grew up seeing the Rotunda from the back of my mum's house and always thought 'Wow! What a building'. It's strange, but now the flat I own faces the direction of my mum's house. Owning a piece of Birmingham is very exciting, it's a landmark and has been here my whole life." 

Modern yet old

Designers Fola and Herman live in London, but Herman is originally from Birmingham and they would like to return to the city and set up home in the Rotunda.  They missed out on reserving a flat, and are now on the waiting list;

Fola and Herman

Fola & Herman love the landmark building

"The location of the building and the skyline are a big draw.  We love the roundness and tallness of the building - and the fact that it's modern and old at the same time.

"We love what they're doing to the Rotunda, and changing the facade.  It's dreary and dated at the moment, but as a form it's very, very strong.  We'd like to live in it as a home - it's such a landmark."

The redevelopment of Rotunda, due in 2008, completes the regeneration of the Bullring phase of Birmingham city centre.

last updated: 15/10/2008 at 14:35
created: 15/10/2005

Have Your Say

What do you think of the Rotunda's makeover? Would you like to live in one of the city's most desirable addresses?

The BBC reserves the right to edit comments submitted.

Are these people all going to be buying special furniture for round walls?

a beautiful view especially from the air. Can be seen from miles around. Looks very appealing.

I would rather eat my own hair.

A Sansom
are any parking spaces allocated. if so where

Richard Lishman
When we initially decided to invest into this development we wanted to do our bit in keeping Birmingham's history & heritage in place. So what better than buying an apartment in the rotunda! We are planning to keep it over the long term, so one day it may become Max' home!

I dont think everyones intention is to sell them on for a much higher price, id really want one because the building is one of Birminghams best and its position is just great, i wouldnt be able to afford one, but everytime i walk past the desire gets greater. Any of them being given away?????!!

What does it say about our economy when the majority of people buying these apartments have no intetion of ever living in them. They become properties to be sold on or rented out by landlords to people that cannot afford to get on the property ladder. I accept people want to make good financial investment - which the Rotunda Aparments are - but it does push up property prices at the expense of first time buyers.

I qued from 8.30 Friday morning with pals and we were the first there and bought one is for investment purposes, it was well worth the wait and the company was great, t overall it was so exciting and a very emotional day.

It is sad that an opportunity like this was not well advertised as i would have loved to have bought into it.

We queued from 3.30pm Friday afternoon and finally managed to get one on the 18th floor. We're so excited and although it's for an investment, we will be very reluctant to sell when the time comes. It's a shame people have missed out but you should have got in the queue sooner - unless you arrived at about 6 am, you were never going to get one.

James Baker
I used to work in the Rotuna, on the 10th floor. hmm.. theres a lot of work to be done, to get things looking nice you know! good luck.

Patricia Pearce
We also went today with the intention of buying a place but unfortunately we were too late. I am gutted as I also a born and breed brummie. I wish selection should have gone to those who were acturally born in Birmingham. Oh well my dream shattered.

Wow, really cool - wish I could afford one...I bet some of the owners will sell them too but probably at a really high price...shame, nice location and much sheaper than some of the fancy apartments being built in town - glad ordinary people can buy some stylish pads.

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