The Ned, London

Tetra Tech’s High Performance Buildings Group provided mechanical, electrical, plumbing, communications, energy modeling, security, and sustainability consulting services converting the former Midlands Bank building into an upmarket hotel.


  • Size: 3,000 square meters (118,403 square feet) over 11 stories
  • Construction Cost: £85 million (USD$93.77 million)
  • Client/Owner: Soho House & Co and the Sydell Group
  • Architect: EPR Architects
  • Contractor: Ardmore Construction
  • Completion Date: 2017

This conversion was a daunting task, particularly as the building had been empty for a decade.

The space includes 252 bedrooms channeling 1920s and 1930s design, a range of men’s and women’s grooming services and ‘Ned’s Club,’ a social and fitness club where members have access to a rooftop pool, gym, spa, hammam, and late-night lounge bar in the bank’s former vault.

The Ned’s historic 3,000-square-meter (118,403-square-foot) former banking hall encompasses eight restaurants. Each of the restaurants has its own distinct space, separated by 92 verdite columns and rows of walnut banking counters.

The original architect was Sir Edwin ‘Ned’ Lutyens, considered one of the greatest British architects of the twentieth century. The Ned pays homage to his work, which earned him an Order of Merit, the title of Knight Commander in the Order of the Indian Empire, and a knighthood from King George V.

Tetra Tech provided designs for the Mechanical, Electrical & Public Health (MEPH), security, and communications services. These solutions required careful planning of plant areas and service routes, with heating, cooling, electrical, fire, plumbing, and communication infrastructure all carefully integrated into the service spaces. This ensures that the heritage-listed features of the building interior are preserved, while providing modern levels of comfort, luxury, and digital communication.

Client benefits:

  • Minimal visual disruption of heritage décor
  • Preservation of irreplaceable fixtures, such as vent covers and lighting
  • Consolidating services into existing access points in the former vault (now members’ club) area, reducing the need for expensive and time consuming drilling processes
  • Lower costs for environmental control without compromising comfort

The vaults were destined to become a focal point of the hotel. Ned’s Club downstairs features the original 1920s bank vault door entrance, and embraces the existing safety deposit box interior. The prevalence of marble, metal, and the reinforced concrete walls provided a challenge for the necessary circulation of air and maintaining internal environmental conditions at a comfortable level. Providing services to this required the expensive and time-consuming process of drilling through the three-feet-thick, steel-reinforced vault walls.

Tetra Tech’s design was able to maximize the usage of existing openings in the vault area, while adding only minimal new penetrations, providing the client with time and cost savings, while preserving the internal aesthetic of this unique space. The ventilation, heating, and cooling solution is concealed by, and integrated within, the original ceiling and wall linings that provided the secure safe deposit boxes.

To ensure that all service installations would require minimum alterations to the building’s original features, the design was coordinated through REVIT 3D design imaging software. This allowed Tetra Tech to collaborate with all key stakeholders to show how the complex design would integrate into the existing structure and pinpoint any areas of concern long before the installation began.

By taking this approach, Tetra Tech, EPR Architects, Elliot Wood (structural engineers) and the Soho House Design team were able to collaborate to ensure that the interior design fully considered the requirements of the engineering services, the existing structure, and integrated the necessary infrastructure features into the fitout.