The Albion will open its doors this August in the Welsh town of Cardigan. It marks the lifestyle brand’s arrival into the hotel industry following the success of its farm campsites.
The hotel will be housed inside a pair of former Grade II listed warehouses. Its name and design are both inspired by Albion, a ship that transported 180 people from the town to Canada in 1819. The hotel will boast 23 rooms once fully opened, a first phase opening in August will feature 12 guestrooms and the second phase will see the opening of a further 11 in spring 2023.
The Albion’s amenities will consist of a lounge/workroom reserved exclusively for guests, a restaurant called Yr Odyn that serves local and seasonal cuisine inspired partly by Scandinavia and Japan, and a cocktail bar known as The Galley complete with a riverside courtyard. An outdoor sauna and onsen, a Japanese bathhouse that is a signature of the brand, will be located in a private glade behind the hotel.
The structure of the hotel as well as its rooms are thought out to respect the original structure of the warehouses. Its design is heavily influenced by 19th century ship cabins. The wood-panelling and most of the furnishings are made from reclaimed timber in fforest’s workshops and the wool used for blankets, cushions and bed covers is woven at a local mill. Historic graffiti etched into the warehouses’ walls two centuries prior is preserved as part of Albion’s décor as well as sketches of ships, signatures and calculations for rope and sail cloth.
Working with our colleagues in Welsh Government, we are working hard to fund projects that help to boost our vital tourism and hospitality sectors in Wales. Our continued support for James and the wider team at fforest is a reflection of our belief in their business and the opportunities that they are bringing to Cardigan.
Richard Easton, Portfolio Executive at the Development Bank of Wales
This has been a real passion project of mine over the pandemic. With funding from the Development Bank of Wales, the ambition was to restore the existing building; to emphasise its heritage qualities, its original and unique features, then design and craft spaces within the open floors that would embrace and complement those qualities. To fold rooms into the shell created, that deliver on comfort and beauty as standard, but make every stay a special experience of its own. Contemporary services, comfort and style with the particular qualities of these heritage buildings: historic, high quality, unique; the essence of place, and of history, embedded in the fabric.
James Lynch, Founder of fforest and Chief Designer for The Albion