Sopwell House Hotel & Spa (Brasserie)
It's always the sign of a job well done when a client asks you to come back and do more work for them, so KCCJ was delighted to be asked to return to Sopwell House and carry out a kitchen refurbishment as part of the development of the venue's Spa and Brasserie.
Having carried out a major refurbishment of the main kitchen in 2017 KCCJ was invited to design and specify a satellite kitchen to provide a varying menu for the redeveloped facility based around a new charcoal oven.
The existing kitchen area was deemed too small to cope with the planned expansion of the Spa and so KCCJ's first job was to advise on the best way to maximise the space available and create a layout that would not only incorporate all the equipment needed to deal with the increase in covers but also one that would create a more logical, and therefore more efficient, use of the space.
The desire of Sopwell House's owners to incorporate a charcoal oven as the centrepiece of the kitchen was one of the major challenges. Legislation with regards to the fitting of solid fuel ovens is very strict and in order to make sure that the installation was fully compliant KCCJ had to take a number of steps, including the use of spark arresting filters in the ventilation system to ensure that there was no risk of a fire in the ductwork. Other challenges in the kitchen area included upgrading the entire extraction system, re-routing the mechanical and electrical services, fitting bio-cladding to the walls, laying new anti-slip flooring, replacing the ceiling and upgrading the lighting.
With no gas appliances featuring in the new kitchen the existing pipework was not required and was removed. Other pipework was slightly more problematic. For example, water pipes serving other parts of the hotel, and located above the new coldroom, needed to be re-routed. However, it was not possible to identify an isolator for the incoming supply and so the pipework had to be “frozen” in order for it to be safely re-routed.
As well as the addition of new equipment KCCJ also made good use of some of the existing units including a combi oven, which was stacked on top of a new unit, and a number of induction units. In addition, the overhead gantry and ceran top on the hot pass were refurbished and the wiring and ventilation above the pass upgraded to bring it up to scratch.
All of this work had to be carried out with consideration for the fact that Sopwell House remained open for the duration of the works meaning that installation procedures had to be sympathetic to the needs of guests and, in particular, functions such as weddings and parties.
Working closely with the building contractor responsible for the expansion of the building was also crucial, including co-ordinating access for cranes and other lifting equipment required to get the fans onto the roof as part of the new extraction system.
As usual KCCJ rose to the challenge completing the project on time in just under 5 weeks.
It should be noted that our consultancy was central to us initially getting involved with AB Hotels and our return for the Brasserie. We have recently returned again for design work on the hotel Spa. Our consultancy division developed the design with AB Hotels until a package including drawings and specs had been developed; it was only at this stage that our projects division decided to bid on the jobs and won.