It's been a Hard Days sight
August 25, 2006
Exclusive By Catherine Jones, Liverpool Echo
The restaurant will be one of the focal points of Hard Day's Night hotel.
American artist Shannon on the staircase of the new Hard Day's Night hotel.
An artist's impression of one of the bedrooms at the new Hard Day's Night hotel.
How the reception area of the Hard Day's Night is set to look.
TODAY the ECHO takes you on a magical mystery tour of the stunning interior planned for Liverpool's most unique hotel.
The 110-bedroom Hard Day's Night hotel is the ultimate homage to the Fab Four and their music.
The team behind the £17m four-star venuesays it will belie its name when it opens its doors in 12 months' time.
On the eve of the Mathew Street festival, they have revealed some of the impressive images which will adorn each bedroom in the six-storey hotel, together with the reception and public areas.
The concept of the Beatles-themed hotel has been developed with the help of the team behind the Cavern, including Bill Heckle of Cavern City Tours.
It is being created within a grade IIlisted building dating back to 1884, using local construction workers. The hotel promises it will not be overloaded with kitsch Beatle memorabilia.
Starting at the lowest level, the plans link the basement of the North John Street site, via a tunnel, right into the Cavern Club.
Each floor is dedicated to a phase in the Beatles' lives, chronologically from their births to their solo careers and the untimely deaths of John and George.
Every room will tell a different part of the Beatles story.
Each will be uniquely decorated with paintings created by Hollywood's favourite airbrush artiste, Shannon, who could end up in the Guinness Book of Records for the number of canvasses she will have completed by the time the hotel opens.
The works are created at home in America, scanned, and the originals flown over to Liverpool.
Some can take three days to complete, but a 6ft painting of John Lennon with a macaw on his shoulder - entitled And Your Bird Can Sing - took the artist six weeks
She said: "Every room will have a picture which will try and tell the theme of that room. Every painting has to tell the story, and there are hidden messages in them.
"I tend to have 10 canvasses on the go at one time and I do it one colour at atime.You don't enjoy it as much as if you're watching each one growing, but it's the only way to complete it in such a short time.
"It's not just the art work itself, it's a lot to do with knowing exactly what was going on in the Beatles' lives at the time.
"It's nine or 10 years since I first chatted to Bill Heckle about the hotel. Now everybody is very excited about it. It just seems to be the right time."
The images will be turned into post cards which hotel guests will be able to buy - an idea Mr Heckle picked up from a themed hotel in California - and could also be compiled in a book.
The Hard Day's Night hotel will have two suites, with the John and Yoko suite on the fourth floor coming complete with a white grand piano.
Each floor will be linked by a New York-style cage lift, with a glass wall revealing the story of The Beatles in images around the grand, granitepillared sandstone stairwell.
One in 10 of the rooms will be fully accessible for disabled visitors.
Guests will enter the hotel through a marble entrance hall and past full-size statues of John, Paul, George and Ringo in the niches on the outside.
John's, on the corner of Mathew Street, will face in the direction of New York.
It will have two restaurants,a cock-tail bar, lounge, souvenir shop, gallery and three rooms for private entertaining or conferences.
There will be a Yellow Submarine-shaped jukebox, one of only a small number in existence.
The hotel will also be licensed for weddings.
Jonathan Davies, director of developer Bowdena, said: "Nothing else exists like this in the world and the fact it's in Liverpool, which was where The Beatles started, makes it even more special.
"The website is currently under construction and we have a holding page with an information request form on it.
"At present we're receiving high volumes of requests from around the world. Not only is this good for the hotel but also for Liverpool.
"When people walk into the hotel they'll get a unique experience.
"I recently heard someone say The Beatles were no ordinary group and this hotel won't be an ordinary hotel."