Highlands & Islands

Design for £16m Inverness training hotel released

Training hotel. Pic: Albyn Housing Society/Calman Trust
Image caption The hotel would cost £16m to complete to a four star standard

The design of a planned hotel where vulnerable young people would be offered training in hospitality has been unveiled.

Albyn Housing and the Calman Trust have been trying to secure funding for the £16m 120-room hotel in Inverness.

The Highlands-based charities hope it could be opened in 2014.

The Calman Trust will shortly open Artysans restaurant in Inverness, which will work along the same lines as the proposed four star social hotel.

Dr Isobel Grigor, chief executive of the Calman Trust, said the hotel would offer training to young people facing the risk of falling into a cycle of life-long unemployment.

She said: "Young people will work alongside professionals in all areas, including reception, maintenance, housekeeping, the kitchen and food service.

"The hope is that, as well as leaving with skills and a desire for further training and employment, individuals will have also learnt important skills for independent living."

Albyn Housing said work has also started on 24 new affordable homes in Telford Street, Inverness.

Construction company UBC expect to finish the project within 12 months.

Fifteen of the energy efficient flats will be offered for rent through the Highland Housing Register.

The remaining nine will be marketed for sale under a shared equity programme.

Buyers will pay between 60 and 80% of the equity in a property with the rest of the cost covered by a Housing Association Grant provided by the Scottish government.

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