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Carol Timuss explores the use of Hybrid air conditioning to help a boutique hotel avoid the need for leak detection

A recently refurbished Edinburgh hotel which offers an affordable business class experience in the heart of the capital is using the latest pioneering two-piped air conditioning technology to deliver energy efficient, controllable comfort.

The Haymarket Hub hotel, which is directly opposite Haymarket Station, and a short walk from Edinburgh’s iconic castle, has been installed with a Hybrid VRF air conditioning system which uses water to transfer heating and cooling around the 195-bedroom facility.

The hotel is able to offer elevated levels of comfort to all its guests

Carole Titmuss Refurb projects Carole Titmuss editor and publisher of Refurb Projects

Premium portfolio

The Haymarket Hub was purchased in the Summer of 2017. It is  part of The Edinburgh Collection, which is renowned for its portfolio of premier hotels and serviced apartments in Scotland’s capital.

The hotel offers a "business class" service, which includes enhanced facilities and inclusive offerings for traveller convenience.

Bedrooms feature comfortable beds from Hypnos, mood lighting, power showers, luxury “White Company” toiletries, and TVs with Chrome Cast connectivity.

“The Edinburgh Collection prides itself on modern levels of comfort for guests and when we proposed installing Hybrid VRF, the client was in complete agreement,” explained Simon Smith, Project Manager for All Seasons Group Ltd, who designed, installed and commissioned the system.

No need for leak detection

Eight dedicated outdoor condensing units deliver energy harvested from the outdoor air to special Hybrid branch controller (HBC) boxes strategically placed in laundry cupboards throughout the building.

From these control boxes, plastic water piping runs within the ceiling void to every hotel room rather than traditional refrigerant piping. Each room has its own dedicated indoor fancoil unit to provide the individual temperature required, giving guests the absolute comfort they expect.

This use of water also means the hotel does not have to fit expensive leak detection equipment to comply with BS EN378.

“The previous way of installing air conditioning would have meant copper piping carrying refrigerant around the building,” commented Smith, “Hybrid VRF does away with all this it still offers the flexibility of design, control and ease of installation that VRF is renowned for.”

All Seasons Group Ltd, which operates throughout the UK, is a Diamond Quality Partner with Mitsubishi Electric which demonstrates the highest level of care and quality possible.  DQPs undergo annual independent audits of their work and in return are able to offer their clients extended warranties.

“Not only does the Haymarket Hub benefit from the most advanced and controllable air conditioning but we can back it up with full support from ourselves and the manufacturer,” said Smith.

The Haymarket Hub

The hotel is ideally located directly opposite Haymarket Station, and a short walk from Edinburgh’s iconic castle

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Haymarket Exterior


There's always a warm reception for guests

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Haymarket Reception

Comfort and connectivity

Bedrooms feature comfortable beds from Hypnos, mood lighting, power showers, luxury “White Company” toiletries, and TVs with Chrome Cast connectivity.

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Haymarket Room


Guests can enjoy relaxing in the lounge before and after seeing Edinburgh's sights

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Haymarket Lounge

A quiet night’s sleep

The design of the system also minimises any noise for guests, which is always a major consideration in any hotel. The siting of the HBC boxes in the laundry room allows for easy access for maintenance and means individual rooms can be shut down without having to drain the whole system.

“Simon and his team at ASG had to remove the previous old system which was no longer fit for purpose and then install the new one in time to help with reducing running costs during the Winter heating season,” explained Ricky Kapoor, Managing Director of The Edinburgh Collection.

"This extensive overhaul of our heating and air conditioning provision allows us to offer elevated levels of comfort to all the guests of this key property within The Edinburgh Collection, which welcomes travellers from all over the globe to Scotland's capital.”

A centralised control system also enables the hotel staff to monitor individual rooms whilst allowing guests complete control of their own system. This delivers the individual temperatures for each room but ensures that empty rooms aren’t wasting energy and increasing bills for the hotel.

The individual room controllers are programmable so that they are simple to use for guests for their comfort and convenience.

Carole Titmuss is editor and publisher of Refurb Projects