City hotelier sells part of building as three-bed home for £925k

Georgian-style sitting room at Gurney House, a 3-bed home for sale off St Giles St, Norwich, for £925k

The property is filled with period details - Credit: Sowerbys

The owner of a boutique bed and breakfast in Norwich has recently "downscaled", converting some of the rooms and living quarters into a luxurious three-bed home.

Gurney House on St Giles Street in Norwich feels just as luxurious as it did when it was part of 38 St Giles, the five-star boutique bed and breakfast owned by businessman Dennis Bacon. 

Over the years the family-run business has attracted its fair share of famous faces and Mr Bacon says he hopes this will continue - albeit on a smaller scale.

Luxury double bedroom at Gurney House, a 3-bed home on St Giles Street, Norwich, which is for sale for £925k

One of the double bedrooms on the second floor - Credit: Sowerbys

Mr Bacon has upgraded and separated the building to create a luxurious, self-contained three-bedroom townhouse next door, which is for sale on the open market for £925,000.

“My eldest daughter, Holly, did an amazing job of getting the business named as one of the top 100 places to stay in the UK, as well as maintaining AA’s five-star accreditation,” he explains. “But when Holly decided to return to university to further her professional development, I decided it was time to downscale.” 

The whole building was built in 1700 for the Gurney family and is Grade II listed – but Mr Bacon says converting it has not been without its challenged.

Huge bathroom with bateau style bath at Gurney House, St Giles Street, Norwich

The huge bathroom on the first floor - Credit: Sowerbys

“The conversion has been sympathetic and protects the significant heritage of the building,” he says, but the costs have been “much higher” than forecast, owing to its listed status and location within a conservation area.  

Overall, Mr Bacon says he’s spent 30pc more than he budgeted for – around £250,000 – just to convert the townhouse. “Costs often spiral out of control and unless there is flexibility within the budget, the project can end up not quite as envisaged,” he explains. But this isn’t the case for the townhouse, he says, where no expense has been spared. 

“All the key architectural features have been maintained. Even in splitting the building pretty much down the middle, care has been taken to preserve doorways and some windows so that these can again be uncovered at some point in the future.” 

Huge stained glass door looking into the master bedroom at Gurney House, Norwich, for sale for £925k

Gurney House, St Giles, was once part of a luxury bed and breakfast and is now on the market for sale for £925,000 - Credit: Sowerbys

The semi-detached property is entered through its original Georgian-era door, which leads into a spacious hallway, complete with pamment tiles, and then into an elegant and opulent living room. 

The space mixes heritage colours with oak flooring and classic cornicing details, and towards the rear of the home there is a modern and well-fitted kitchen/breakfast room, offering access to a south-facing garden. 

Mr Bacon says he’s tried to stay true to the property’s distinctive style and architectural features while introducing modernity, combining a traditional period look with something more contemporary and industrial. “It’s a bit of a mix, which carries risk,” he says, “but I think it just about works!” 

Huge fitted kitchen on the ground floor of Gurney House, Norwich, which is for sale for £925k

The beautiful fitted kitchen on the ground floor - Credit: Sowerbys

The conversion has also included transforming the owner’s living quarters – which had included a sitting room, kitchenette, bathroom and loo, to give you an idea of size – into the principal bedroom suite.  

It’s now “particularly attractive”, says Mr Bacon, comprising a one-bedroom suite with original parquet flooring as well as a fireplace and a very luxurious bathroom, featuring a brushed nickel bateau bath, separate cloakroom and a fully tiled walk-in shower. 

Huge bathroom with nickel bateau style bath at Gurney House, St Giles Street, Norwich, which is for sale for £925k

The bathroom - Credit: Sowerbys

On the second floor there are two further double bedrooms, each with en suite shower rooms. 

For more information about Gurney House, for sale at a guide price of £925,000, contact Sowerbys on 01603 761441.