Crowne Plaza Glasgow

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Crowne Plaza Glasgow
Armadillo Reflections - - 933710.jpg
Crowne Plaza tower on the banks of the River Clyde, with the reflection of the Clyde Auditorium on its east face. Bell's Bridge is in the foreground
Former names Forum Hotel
Glasgow Moat House Hotel
General information
Status Complete
Type Hotel
Architectural style International Modern
Location Finnieston
Address 3 Congress Road
Town or city Glasgow
Country Scotland, United Kingdom
Coordinates 55°51′35.05″N 4°17′25.16″W / 55.8597361°N 4.2903222°W / 55.8597361; -4.2903222 (Crowne Plaza Hotel)Coordinates: 55°51′35.05″N 4°17′25.16″W / 55.8597361°N 4.2903222°W / 55.8597361; -4.2903222 (Crowne Plaza Hotel)
Construction started 1987
Completed 1989
Cost £22.5M
Owner Queens Moat Houses
Roof 180 ft (55 m)
Top floor 16
Technical details
Structural system Reinforced Concrete
Floor count 17
Lifts/elevators 4
Design and construction
Architecture firm Coban & Lironi
Structural engineer W.A Fairhurst & Partners
Quantity surveyor W.T Partnership
Main contractor Rush & Tompkins Group PLC
Other information
Parking On site, chargeable

Crowne Plaza Glasgow is a high-rise hotel in the Finnieston area of Glasgow, Scotland. Originally opened in 1989, it is a 4-star property on the banks of the River Clyde adjacent to the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) and the Clyde Auditorium (Armadillo). The building (along with the adjacent Armadillo), is frequently used as one of the most recognisable images of modern Clydeside


The need for a new hotel next to the SECC had been recognised since the scheme's inception - the initial plans for the building were first unveiled in 1984. The Glasgow Hoteliers' Association blocked the plans initially clamining that the city didn't need any more hotel capacity,[1] but later relented when an agreement was struck with the Scottish Development Agency (SDA) that it would only contribute taxpayer funding to new hotels of up to 200 bedrooms.

However, further controversy erupted two years later when it was revealed that the SDA's grant to the project totalled £3.4m,[2] whilst at the same time the plans had now grown in size that the proposed hotel now had 300 bedrooms - effectively breaching the earlier agreement that the Glasgow Hoteliers' Association had reached with the SDA. Nonetheless, the then Secretary of State for Scotland, Malcolm Rifkind approved the development, and groundbreaking began in 1987.

Construction of the building's superstructure began in 1988, its construction featuring prominently across the Clyde from the Glasgow Garden Festival of that year. It opened the following year as the Forum Hotel, and later came under the ownership of Queens Moat Houses where it was renamed the Glasgow Moat House International, which was later shorterned to Glasgow Moat House.

In 2005, Queens Moat Houses entered into a franchise agreement with InterContinental Hotels Group to operate the hotel as a Crowne Plaza hotel.

In popular culture[edit]

The building frequently appears on current affairs TV programmes broadcast from the STV and BBC Scotland studios on the opposite bank of the river.

The building is notable for having no designated thirteenth floor, meaning that despite the top floor being designated "16", it is really a fifteen-story building (an example of Triskaidekaphobia). One of the three lifts serving the main tower of the hotel is glass-sided, giving views upstream of the Clyde and the Kingston Bridge. It has the second-largest function room in the city, just behind that of the Glasgow Hilton.

The hotel’s ballroom was frequently used as the location of the Glasgow auditions of The X-Factor (most notably 2007 winner Leon Jackson's initial audition was filmed there) before they moved to Hampden Park in 2008, and then to the neighbouring Armadillo when the show changed to a live audition format.


  1. ^ McLaws, Ally (October 25, 1984). "New Scheme to boost hotel beds in city". Glasgow Evening Times. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  2. ^ Cram, Auslan (Nov 15, 1986). "Rifkind under attack from £18m hotel plan". The Glasgow Herald. Retrieved 19 September 2012.