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Time is tight

Three months into an electrical fit-out at the Double Tree hotel at London Docklands, Syncore got the nod to install a full AC system incorporating 100 rooms

The historic Double Tree by Hilton Hotel at London Docklands has recently received a contemporary refurbishment, with hints of the building’s traditional maritime routes, from interior specialist Fileturn and M&E contractor Synecore.

The development comes as part of the hotel’s rebranding. The hotelier’s extensive refurbishment plans comprised two blocks – Block A and Block B – with 220 bedrooms, 16 meeting rooms, the Terrace restaurant, Terrace lounge bar and reception. 

The six-month project was done in conjunction with long-term M&E partner, Synecore, for support. 

Synecore was initially appointed to initially carry out a complete electrical fit-out of the hotel, equating to £500,000. But three months in, the hotel asked for a full air conditioning system to be fitted in Block B, at a cost of £400,000.

Paul Thomas, managing director of Synecore, says: “The Hilton project was, on face value, not dissimilar to other electrical installations we carry out for clients within the hospitality sector.

“We have been involved in hotel refurbishments before, so we knew what to expect regarding the air conditioning request, which was a late addition.”

Before the strip-out work could begin, each room at the Hilton had to be made electrically safe. Once the floorboards were lifted, the first fix could begin with rewiring back to the distribution board.

COAX and data cabling were also run to enable internet for guests throughout their stay.

After each room had been carpeted, Synecore’s team awaited the case goods, which were unfortunately delayed when the manufacturer went into liquidation midway through the project.

Eventually, alternative case goods were sourced and the second fix electrics got under way. 

“The delay in receiving the case goods was an issue,” says Mr Thomas. “We were concerned about the timings, especially as we were receiving some items days before the project deadline.

In each room there were 22 points to be fitted to the case goods, such as desks, headboards and bathroom units – that’s a total of 4,840 second fixings in the bedrooms alone.

“However,  we were determined that the project remained on schedule. Thanks to our team, who worked day and night, we were able to hand the project over on time.”

While Synecore faced some delays with the electrical element of the build, which was out of its control, three months into the programme the firm welcomed the request from the hotel to provide a complete air conditioning system for five of the six floors belonging to Block B.

Gary Piper, Synecore’s air conditioning expert, explains: “The air conditioning system needed to serve 100 bedrooms within the block, so after much consideration we chose to install Toshiba’s new three-pipe heat recovery VRF system, which is designed to deliver simultaneous cooling and heating in large buildings.”

Heating distribution

The compact unit recovers energy in areas with excess heat, it redistributes it to other areas in a large building that require heating.  Synecore coupled this intelligent system with slimline ducted indoor units in each room.

“For such a large building it’s essential any faults or leakages in the air conditioning system are detected immediately, so we fitted Toshiba’s RBC Leak Detection system, which uses software to transmit data from sensors in each room to a central reception computer,” says Mr Piper.

“This triggers an alarm in the room and at reception if the system develops a leak, ensuring it constantly performs at optimum efficiency.  Its sophisticated software is ideal for maintaining the system and will help the hotel remain F-Gas-compliant.”

The air conditioning installation was well under way when the hotel asked for an additional air conditioning system to be installed into the sixth floor of Block B, consisting of a further 12 bedrooms and four suites.

With the Toshiba three-pipe heat recovery VRF system at its full capacity, to accommodate the additional request, Synecore used Toshiba’s Multi-Split Inverters with a split wall mounted unit in each of the 12 rooms and two in the suites.

Richard Dray, Fileturn’s director of hotels and leisure, says: “When it comes to M&E contracts for large developments such as the Hilton project, we know without doubt that Synecore will deliver a superb result.

“Synecore’s team worked well with all the other trades on site to ensure our deadlines were achieved –  not to mention the request for a complete air conditioning system midway through the project, which we happily let Synecore plan directly with the client.”  

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