International hotelier Park Regis have opened their first European hotel in Britain’s second city Birmingham. Towering over the skyline at 16 storeys the £50 million pound hotel offers 254 rooms, a gym, various bars, business and conference centres and a 2 storey glazed terrace sky bar delivering high end dining to Birmingham.


Comar Architectural Aluminium Systems were selected to provide the façade with curtain walling, windows and entrances. The key element of design for the Rofuto Sky Bar was to allow diners to enjoy clear uninterrupted views across the city, a double height Comar 6EFT Curtain wall was selected as it offers strength with a sleek 50mm sight-line. This ground breaking system, leads the way by offering a 50mm stick system with the capability to span further as the mullions and transoms have the highest Ix and Iy values on the market today. The design is also in keeping with the hotels minimalist Japanese Interior which echoes the “Byoba” art of Japanese screens. The curtain wall grid was off-set with symmetrically staggered mullions and transoms which create the typical lattice effect found in Japanese interiors.

The profiles where finished in RAL 7016 Matt Grey which seamlessly blends into the mahogany, cream and gold interior. All structural calculations were carried out by Comar’s Special Projects Team who ensured all Comar bracketry and fixings will withstand any sway, dead or live loads.

The cladding to the façade below the Rofuto Sky Bar was a palette of Ruukki panels, polished stone rain screen, and Kingspan Benchmark, A. Comar’s interface range of adaptors allowed the Comar 5Pi Advanced Windows to seamlessly integrate with the differing cladding elements. The design detailing of all these elements ensured that the façade had no thermal bridging and will maintain it’s air and water-tight solution.

Moving to the base of the building, Comar 6EFT capped curtain walling was used. Comar 6EFT interfaces with the dramatic angled cantilevered entrances. For this element of the face design the detailing and installation had to be precise to ensure that drainage and seals create a future-proof water tight solution.

Integrated into the curtain wall the entrances have to provide both a statement of welcome and ensure uninterrupted access. Often the first experience of a hotel is the entrance, which needs to provide form as well as function. The Comar 7P.i Commercial Door system is one of the most comprehensive on the market today. Sections are robust and offer an ideal solution for high traffic entrances. The doors selected were auto sliding which allow uninterrupted passage into the double storey entrance lobby.

APiC, a Comar Approved Fabricator were involved throughout the specification stage with both Comar and the Architect. APiC also worked closely with the Contractor to ensure that the project programme was met to ensure the time critical opening of March 2016 was achieved. Steve Tycer Managing Director of APiC UK, said. “We enjoy working with Comar as I know we can reassure our clients that site deadlines will be met. Comar’s Market Leading delivery is a key factor when we are up against a tight programme.“

Developer: Colmore Tang Construction
Architect: BDG (Building Design Group) Tamworth
Project Value: £50million

Comar: Designed for Performance, Backed by Delivery

For further information about Comar Architectural Aluminium Systems, please visit call 020 8685 9685 or email

Glazing systems specialist Kawneer expands its curtain wall portfolio.

Today’s safety-conscious and fast-paced construction schedules demand high performance, fast installation, simplified fabrication, superior performance and design flexibility.

The DTI document “Manufacturing for the future” has long pressured the industry to increase awareness of off-site construction and build on the knowledge available across Europe and America.

It clearly highlights that off-site construction should be considered for hotels, hospitals, schools and supermarkets. But in reality, because systems such as unitised curtain walling do not require scaffolding, they are suitable for any site where access is difficult or restricted – in itself a growing phenomenon, with 70% of new-build now on brownfield sites.

With curtain walling being one of the most eye-catching elements of a façade, its evolution from the traditional stick system to a unitised one is perhaps one of the most obvious signs that the Government’s drive off-site is being embraced.

The factory production of unitised curtain walling from leading UK architectural aluminium systems supplier Kawneer gives predictability of time and cost, guarantees quality that reduces problems, delays and snagging on site, and avoids delays caused by adverse weather conditions.

On-site time can also be reduced substantially, saving labour costs and minimising local affects such as noise, dust and traffic congestion. Where there is a shortage of skilled site labour, off-site manufacture ensures high build quality is maintained.

Now Kawneer, which has 50 years of unitised curtain walling expertise, has enhanced its extensive curtain wall portfolio with the launch of a new fast-track dry-glazed unitised system.

The AA®265 incorporates a three-chamber system and overlapping gasket design for optimum weather tightness. Its dry-glazed assembly combined with the use of the same extrusion to all four sides provides both ease of fabrication and the opportunity for effective bar optimisation.

In addition, if access during installation is limited, the AA®265 system can be installed under restrictive working conditions, with the building remaining occupied.

The optimum weathering is achieved by zone-drained pressure equalisation, with the glazing providing a positive weather seal for high performance. The system also features an exclusive high-performance thermal break.

Its slim 65mm sightlines, picture-frame style capping, integral vent option and dual-finish gives specifiers a wide choice of options to create individual and exciting building facades as the AA®265 can accommodate spandrel infill panels of glass, stone and metal up to 50mm.

Adaptable to any new construction project from two storeys upwards, the AA®265 system has been exclusively designed and developed by Kawneer, with installation contracts undertaken in collaboration with its network of authorised dealers.

Kawneer’s unitised range of curtain walling also includes the AA®201 unitised system which suites with the company’s AA®130 Brise Soleil, has 63.5mm sightlines and can accommodate infill panels up to 32mm.

As well as many of the features of its sister AA®265 system, the AA®201 is available with fully-capped and SSG (Structurally Silicone Glazed) options in addition to a horizontal cap with vertical silicone joint, vertical cap with horizontal silicone joint and a range of mullion, transoms and face cap options with 63.5mm sightlines.

Both the AA®265 and AA®201 systems have been tested and certified to the stringent CWCT (Centre for Window and Cladding Technology) Curtain Wall testing standards.

A more detailed guide to the benefits of unitised curtain walling for off-site construction are contained within Kawneer’s RIBA-approved CPD which advises architects and specifiers about the manufacturing process and testing regimes for such systems, how they are different to traditional, “stick” curtain walling and how they are installed.

Kawneer is also able to offer a range of stick curtain walling systems including the AA®100 and AA®110 systems with 50mm and 65mm sightlines respectively. The AA®100 system is also available in a fire-rated version.

Leading window, door and curtain walling manufacturer and installer CMS Window Systems has boosted its aluminium division by adding one of the world’s leading systems to its portfolio and obtaining CWCT membership.

The company, which employs more than 200 people at its HQ and main manufacturing facility near Glasgow, has joined forces with Kawneer to become an authorised partner in a move which gives customers access to an even greater range of fenestration and building envelope solutions.

Since its launch almost a decade ago, CMS has enjoyed continued growth as one of Scotland’s market leading design manufacturers and installers of aluminium, PVCu and timber hybrid, window, door and curtain walling systems. The company works with a wide variety of commercial developers and main contractors delivering projects such as newbuild student accommodation, schools, hospitals and commercial offices.

Director of the Aluminium Division at CMS, Stephen Anderson says the decision to join the Kawneer authorised dealer network was born out of the company’s ethos of continual improvement:

“We are constantly investing in our manufacturing processes, design and technology resources to increase production efficiency and make life easier for our customers. We’re also committed to investing in our product range, and becoming part of the Kawneer dealer network reflects this commitment, giving our customers access to an even broader range of architectural aluminium building products and systems from a business that has a reputation as an innovator in the market.”

Strengthening its technical credentials further, CMS has also become a member of the renowned Centre for Window Cladding Technology (CWCT). This reinforces the company’s commitment to delivering the highest technical standards within the building envelope market and its dedication to continuous improvement.

CWCT uses various testing methods, which determine the level of serviceability of a window, façade or cladding system when subjected to various levels of water, air and solid object impact. The final level of certification depends on the pressure reached or the degree of damage caused after impact. The standards that make up the CWCT tests are calculated to give independent verification that windows and cladding designed for the building envelope, will achieve the values expected.

Its membership provides additional assurance to clients and main contractors and sits alongside a variety of key industry memberships and accreditations that CMS currently hold. These range from Investors in People and ISO 14001 at a business management level, right through to Constructionline, CHAS, Secured by Design and Energy Saving Trust recommended status which directly benefit clients

CMS operates from a 15-acre modern manufacturing and recycling facility in North Lanarkshire, with additional facilities in Fife, producing more than 100,000 window units and thousands of square metres of curtain walling every year. The firm provides a 360-degree building envelope solution from design through manufacture, installation and aftercare, an approach that has seen it work on some of the largest housing investment programmes and commercial building projects throughout the UK since its formation in 2006.

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