One of Sunderland's best-known hotels has unveiled the latest part of a £1million refurbishment which aims to increase its star rating.
The Roker Hotel, on Roker Terrace, was built in 1842 by the north of England’s most prominent architect, John Dobson.
Now its function rooms have been restored to their Victorian elegance, while the hotel celebrates the history of the seafront resort, and offers everything today's corporate guests expect.
The Six Soldiers Suite and The Dobson Lounge form the focal point of the latest work, combining original features with contemporary styling.
With crystal chandeliers and tall, arched, statement windows which flood the space with light, the Six Soldiers Suite is an opulent setting with its own private bar and entrance for up to 350 guests.
During the day, it's ideal for large-scale events such as AGMs and conferences, while in the evening, when the lights go down, its colour-flooding LED light system, stage and sprung dance floor are perfect for corporate dinner dances and awards ceremonies.
For smaller and more intimate events, The Dobson Lounge next door has its own bar, and features architect John Dobson’s signature skylight.
Overnight guests have a choice of 43 bedrooms, all redesigned in a nautical theme to reflect the hotel's seafront position.
It includes 12 superior rooms, which not only overlook the beach, but are equipped with floor-standing telescopes so guests can look miles out to sea.
Feature walls, decorated in the style of 1950s tourism posters for Roker and neighbouring Seaburn, hark back to the heyday of the family seaside holiday.
Guest directories in each room, designed to resemble 1950s newspapers, contain useful information such as breakfast and checkout times, and where to go and what to see in the area.
The hotel, which is owned by North East-based Tavistock Hospitality, also has its own on-site distillery.
Clients and colleagues can enjoy a range of tipples at the distillery bar Poetic License, while gin tastings can be pre-arranged with event bookers.
Tavistock Hospitality managing director Mark Hird said: “The Roker Hotel is a charming combination of period architecture and contemporary style.
“So, while our function rooms hark back to a bygone era of elegance, corporate guests can access all the 21st century facilities they would expect such as free, super-fast broadband, free Wi-Fi and free parking.
“It is the ideal venue for business clients who do like to be beside the seaside – and who wish to mix business with pleasure.”
The hotel, which is aiming to transition from a three-star to four-star venue, also plans to open a treatment spa on-site, for which work is due to begin in late 2017.