Laverstoke Mill is the home of Bombay Sapphire Gin, featuring a distillery and visitor attraction within the restoration of a derelict Victorian paper mill on the River Test in Hampshire.
The complex site of National Heritage and Conservation Area listing included over 40 existing buildings, of which many have been retained to feature in the journey of the distillation process, and the widening of the River Test to re-engage the river with the site.
The development is also looking to become a leading example of sustainable design and refurbishment. It has secured a BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ rating at design stage – the first refurbishment scheme of any type to achieve such a high standard, and uses of a range of site generated renewable energy including Biomass, Photovoltaics and Hydropower. The development also includes significant rainwater harvesting and has taken exemplary steps to engage with local residents and interested community stakeholders.
The focal point of the scheme are two new botanical glasshouses designed by Thomas Heatherwick, which will feature one humid and one dry temperate interactive enclosures, housing Bombay Sapphire Gin’s unique range of 10 separate botanicals.
The challenge was to balance a significantly industrial process related building use, with a site that had to be extremely sympathetic of the local context and wildlife, whilst containing a visually stunning design element that would attract national and international visitors. Strategic input on the sustainable design implementations and approaches towards reducing impact on the local environment were essential from the outset to achieve such exemplar BREEAM performance.
GWP Project Services are also assisting Bacardi Martini in exploring the value and potential rating of LEED certification within their global distillery portfolio.