The Beresford Hotel: Glasgow’s Art Deco Gem with a Touch of Glamour

Glasgow, a city known for its architectural diversity, houses a variety of landmarks that could easily grace the streets of Miami’s Ocean Drive. Among these extraordinary structures, the former Beresford Hotel in Sauchiehall Street stands tall, showcasing Glasgow’s stunning Art Deco style. Built in 1938 for the prestigious Empire Exhibition, this plush hotel has a fascinating history and unique features that set it apart. This article delves into the charm, significance, and exciting plans for the Beresford Hotel, a testament to Glasgow’s architectural heritage.

A Luxurious Time Capsule:

Originally constructed to accommodate affluent visitors attending the Empire Exhibition in Bellahouston Park, the Beresford Hotel exudes the elegance and grandeur of the Art Deco era. Designed by architect William Beresford Inglis, known for his work on Glasgow’s Art Deco cinemas, the hotel stands as a striking example of this architectural style. When it was first built, the Beresford Hotel stood as one of the tallest buildings in the city center, commanding attention with its remarkable presence.

Distinctive Features:

The Beresford Hotel boasts distinctive features that contribute to its allure and would not look out of place alongside the many Art Deco hotels in South Beach Miami. Inside, guests were treated to a bespoke cocktail bar, where they could indulge in exquisite drinks in a glamorous setting. An intriguing and luxurious touch was the presence of an entire floor dedicated to kennels, providing accommodation for guests’ beloved canine companions.

A Historic Speech:

The Beresford Hotel holds a special place in history as the location where John F. Kennedy, the future American president, delivered his first public speech. In the aftermath of the tragic sinking of the Athenia, a passenger liner built in Govan, Glasgow, which fell victim to a German U-boat in September 1939, Kennedy addressed the public from this newly established Glasgow hotel. The attack claimed the lives of 117 people, including 28 Americans. The Beresford Hotel witnessed a significant moment that would shape the future of the United States.

Preserving the Beauty:

Although the Beresford Hotel has been transformed into apartments, its stunning exterior still captivates those who pass by. Best viewed from Elmbank Street, this Category B listed building stands as a testament to Glasgow’s architectural heritage. The city recognises the importance of preserving such landmarks and celebrating their beauty.

The Rebirth of the Beresford Lounge:

Exciting plans are underway to revive the glamour of the Beresford Hotel. A public cocktail bar, aptly named the Beresford Lounge, is set to reopen on the upper floors of the building. This restoration project aims to bring back the splendour and charm of the Art Deco era, providing visitors with a unique experience and an opportunity to immerse themselves in the hotel’s illustrious history.


The Beresford Hotel, with its Art Deco allure and fascinating past, adds a touch of glamour to Glasgow’s architectural landscape. This iconic structure, once a luxurious haven for visitors, now serves as a reminder of the city’s rich heritage. As plans to reopen the Beresford Lounge take shape, visitors and locals alike eagerly anticipate the opportunity to step back in time and experience the elegance of this remarkable building. The Beresford Hotel stands as a proud testament to Glasgow’s architectural excellence and its ability to blend history, style, and modernity into a single captivating landmark.