Hotel works start

DEVELOPER Saracen aims to submit a new planning application for an apartment complex behind East Freo’s Royal George Hotel later this year – despite previously claiming the planning rules its now bound by would “get in the way of good design”.

The Royal George Hotel was built in 1903, and sold to Saracen in 2017. The developers promised to return the building “to its former glory.” They also submitted an application to build a 24-storey apartment complex directly behind it. 

The plans were scuppered in December 2018, when WA planning minister Rita Saffioti put a seven-storey cap on the development.  

At the time, project director Joel Saraceni warned the Herald that the cap would compromise future designs. 

“It would not be the first time planning rules have got in the way of good design, and that’s what people complain about in Perth – the lack of good design,” submitted an application to build a 24-storey apartment complex directly behind it. 

The plans were scuppered in December 2018, when WA planning minister Rita Saffioti put a seven-storey cap on the development.  

At the time, project director Joel Saraceni warned the Herald that the cap would compromise future designs. 

“It would not be the first time planning rules have got in the way of good design, and that’s what people complain about in Perth – the lack of good design,” Mr Saraceni said.

But this week, the developer told the Herald plans are afoot once more. 

Mr Saraceni’s earlier concerns seem long forgotten. The company spokesperson promised that they have determined a “completely new design,” which “will deliver a high-quality outcome and aesthetic appropriate to the site”.  

Restoration of the hotel itself will begin this month, with work planned to commence on the hotel’s cupola, facades, and veranda.

by LOTTIE ELTON

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