Orchard Hotel

Reflecting heritage in a sustainable build

It’s no coincidence that the stunning new hotel BAM recently built in the heart of Nottingham University’s wooded campus is called The Orchard. It all started with an apple.

Nottinghamshire is home to the world’s favourite cooking apple malus domestica, otherwise known as Bramley’s Seedling. And the campus boasts several rare varieties of this famously long-lived tree.

Project details

  • Customer: University of Nottingham
  • Architect: RHWL Architects
  • Quantity surveyor: Capita Symonds
  • Project management: Christal Management
  • Structural engineer: Clarke Nicholls Marcell
  • M&E consultants: Elementa Consulting
  • Value: £20 million

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Before construction work began on the hotel site, which used to be an orchard, a number of trees had to be carefully relocated.

This attention to detail is unsurprising, as the University is renowned for its commitment to sustainable architecture and construction.

A model of sustainability

For BAM, The Orchard was a great opportunity to match that commitment by delivering a stunning building that makes maximum use of sustainable technologies. 

From ground-source heat pumps and sophisticated ventilation systems to the use of glulam timber for the structural frame, the building is designed to minimise energy use.

But it’s also stunning to look at and highly functional for guests and staff alike.

Hidden benefits

Sustainability on the project ran more than just skin deep. It was about simple but crucial decisions, like reusing 2,500m3 of soil and stones excavated from the site to fill behind retaining walls.

This not only reduced waste going off-site, but also decreased transport emissions and saved tens of thousands of pounds.

And it was about responsible sourcing. Using local suppliers and materials. Supporting our contractors to take on apprentices. Capitalising on prefabrication to save time, money and resources…

The result is a building that sits comfortably in its environment: visually and ethically.