Advocate’s Close, Edinburgh Old Town Building, Property, Architect, Picture, Architecture

Advocate’s Close, Edinburgh Old Town

Buildings for The Chris Stewart Group, Scotland – design by Morgan McDonnell

21 Mar 2013

Advocate’s Close Edinburgh

Advocate’s Close News

Design: Morgan McDonnell Architects

Property development and investment business, The Chris Stewart Group, has secured a major restaurant brand for Advocate’s Close in Edinburgh’s Old Town.

Advocate's Close Development
image from The Chris Stewart Group

The Italian restaurant brand Zizzi has agreed a 25 year lease for the flagship restaurant at the heart of the £45m Advocate’s Close regeneration project, and will create a 175 seat (4,160 sq ft) operation, supporting up to 30 new jobs. The restaurant will open ahead of this year’s Festival season.

It is the 4th Zizzi restaurant in the Scottish capital and the first to take advantage of the new leisure and business hub created within some of the Old Town’s hidden lanes just off the Royal Mile. The restaurant, which will have an entrance on Roxburgh Close, will open out on to a public square to the south and have panoramic views across Prince’s Street to the north, and is in the immediate vicinity of the 17th century Mary King’s Close, which attracts nearly 200,000 visitors annually.

Two further restaurant spaces (3,800sq ft and 6,200sq ft) overlooking the square are being marketed at Advocate’s Close, offering particular opportunities for brands looking for a heritage setting with a constant flow of tourist and domestic footfall. The location also includes 29 serviced apartments, office accommodation and the UK’s first Motel One hotel, which opened in January 2013. The whole development is set to be completed for August.

Chris Stewart:
Chris Stewart
photo from The Chris Stewart Group

Chris Stewart, CEO of The Chris Stewart Group said:
“Advocate’s Close is an exceptional location and we’re delighted to have secured Zizzi for the flagship restaurant space.

“The area is in constant use with the numbers that pass Advocate’s Close as they visit the Royal Mile substantial, and yet the setting has a unique charm with the square and vistas through to Princes Street Gardens.

“We’ve been very meticulous with our plans for Advocate’s Close and that includes who we want to attract as tenants. The area has the potential to make a tremendous impact for the local economy.”

Erica Sawer, Operations Manager for Zizzi Scotland said:
“Advocate’s Close is an exciting new location and Edinburgh an incredible place to be launching our 130th restaurant as our business continues to grow. “We are delighted to be part of such a prestigious regeneration project on the Royal Mile and are looking forward to welcoming both local Edinburgh residents and visitors to the new Zizzi restaurant to enjoy the stunning views across the city.”

The deal is worth in the region of £140,000 per annum and the agent involved was Eric Lindgren of Eric Young & Co.

25 Jan 2013

Advocate’s Close Development Edinburgh

Advocate’s Close Development News

Successful completion of first stage of £45m Advocate’s Close redevelopment


The successful completion of the first stage of the £45m Advocate’s Close redevelopment project in Edinburgh has been marked with the handover of a 208 room hotel by development company Chris Stewart Group (CSG) to German hotel group, Motel One.

Advocate's Close Development
image from architects
The hotel, which is the UK’s first Motel One, links five separate buildings to capitalise on the historical character of the site and some of the most captivating views across the city’s Princes Street Gardens.

In addition to the new 85,000 sq ft Motel One, the 140,000 sq ft site includes 29 serviced apartments, three restaurant spaces (covering 18,500 sq ft) and 7,000 sq ft of office accommodation. All are on schedule for completion in the spring and ahead of the 2013 Edinburgh festival season.

The redevelopment by CSG, a property development and investment business, is set to open up some of the Old Town’s hidden lanes into a thriving leisure and office destination. Remarkably, the whole redevelopment has been achieved without the disruption of large cranes or heavy plant machinery, making it a model for city centre regeneration.

Chris Stewart, CEO of CSG, which has grown its reputation for complex transformational developments in city centre locations over the last 16 years, said:

“It is immensely satisfying to hand over the hotel complex on time and on budget. It has been an intense four year project, balancing architectural heritage with modern requirements for comfort and convenience to create a landmark hotel for Edinburgh’s Old Town. Motel One will be able to make a big impact on the UK market with this prime site and I am delighted we secured an international hotel operator for Edinburgh.”

The Advocate’s Close redevelopment project, which was begun four years ago, has involved working on a site of great historic significance, including preserving or recreating extensive historical architectural features and reinstating the original ‘massing’ or shaping of buildings in a contemporary context.

The site includes one of Edinburgh’s oldest town houses and has revealed buried interconnecting passageways linking Advocate’s Close to Roxburgh Close.

Local stonemasons have built the first crows step gable for over a hundred years and the design and construction of the serviced apartments has retained as many original features as possible, including exposed brick work, gabled ceilings and fifteenth century hand painted wall panels.

Chris Stewart added:
“Advocate’s Close is a labour of love with every detail meticulously planned and executed. We have designed-in open spaces and a new ‘square’ as well as ways to create vistas from the top of the close out and over Princes Street Gardens beyond. The serviced apartments and restaurants emerge from the solid remains of fifteenth century Edinburgh, rising above the rooftops to offer a unique 360 degree aspect of the city using materials that will stand the test of modern times and tastes.

“It is a privilege to develop such a site and an opportunity to make an impact with our ethos for quality construction and design.”

CSG is now inviting potential restaurateurs to visit the site and expects to make an announcement about its first letting very soon.

28 Jun 2007

Advocate’s Close Edinburgh

Advocate’s Close – News Update

Old Town development granted by Morgan McDonnell Ltd
Listed Building Consent Application Granted 19/09/2007

Morgan McDonnell Architecture Ltd – Edinburgh Old Town Development PR:

Advocate’s Close approval

Advocate's Close Roxburghs Court Advocates Close Edinburgh

morgan mcdonnell’s development proposal for Advocate’s Close receives planning approval

morgan mcdonnell architecture ltd achieved planning permission this week for a regeneration project within the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town.

The mixed use development, which is being project managed by Graham + Sibbald for Station Properties Ltd of Edinburgh, comprises 80 residential units alongside ground level commercial accommodation in one of the world’s most recognisable built environments which will breathe new life into a long neglected part of the World Heritage site.

Formerly City of Edinburgh Council offices, the majority of the existing buildings on the site are listed and date from the 16th century onwards. Despite their listed and conservation area status, years of public service and the changing face of the city have seen many modifications and changes, both internally and externally. The scheme will restore and reinstate heritage features throughout the site, as well as providing a fresh focus for urban life within the area with landscaped public amenity spaces. Although regeneration is key to this project, the proposals include designs for new build elements, which compliment the complex vertical architectural character of this very distinctive city skyline. The aspect of the site, situated as it is on the sharp incline of the ridge of Castle Rock and the High Street, presents many structural challenges for appointed structural engineers Buro Happold.

The proposal, which has been in development for over a year, has been supported throughout by extensive and constructive consultation, both with the Cockburn Association, Edinburgh’s Civic Trust, and the City of Edinburgh Council, as well as residents and other local parties.

Morgan McDonnell project : Waterloo Place, Edinburgh

Advocate’s Close
18 – 21 Market Street, 2 – 6 Cockburn Street, 343 High Street, 2 – 8 Advocate’s Close, Edinburgh
Alterations and extensions to existing office buildings to form mixed-use development comprising 80 flats with ground level retail, commercial leisure, offices and budget hotel

18 Market Street : bar
19 Market Street: restauarant
21 Market Street : ground level retail
6 Warriston’s Close: restauarant
343 High Street: restauarant

The project involves the re-opening of Roxburgh Close and a new pedestrian link from News Steps to Advocate’s Close

For Euthymios Angelis
Morgan McDonnell Ltd
Application received 11/12/06
Full Planning Application + Listed Building Consent Application: Minded to Grant 28/06/07

Advocate’s Close Edinburgh – architects:
morgan mcdonnell architecture ltd are a creative contemporary architectural studio based in the City of Edinburgh. Formed in 1996, the practice undertakes architectural work of all kinds, from new build to mixed use regeneration projects throughout Scotland and the UK.

The practice recently received the Development Management award at the Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning as part of the Shrubhill design team for the public consultation exercise for this sensitive brownfield site.
morgan mcdonnell architecture ltd: 0131 332 4200 /

Graham + Sibbald is one of Scotland’s largest independent multi-disciplined firms of Chartered Surveyors. The Partnership operates from a network of 14 offices across the UK. The Practice offers a complete range of Property Services including:
Residential & Commercial Valuations, Agency, Asset Management, Building Surveying, Healthcare, Investment, Licensed Trade & Leisure, Development Planning, Petroleum & Roadside, Business Rating & Appeals.

Graham + Sibbald’s client base is extensive with work being undertaken on behalf of both the Private and Public Sectors to which the Firm is determined to offer a first rate professional service, based on the unique combination local knowledge with the
specialist support and a national network of offices.

Graham + Sibbald, Edinburgh: 0131 240 5311

Advocate’s Close information from Morgan McDonnell, Architects, 280607

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