London's famed BT Tower sold to U.S. hotel group for $347 million

LONDON — British telecoms group BT said Wednesday it had agreed to sell London’s iconic BT Tower — once an important piece of network infrastructure — to developer MCR Hotels for £275 million ($346.6 million).

The 189-meter structure has loomed over the capital city’s central Fitzrovia neighborhood since 1965, when it opened as the Post Office tower.

It carried telecommunications signals from London to the rest of the country, but its microwave aerials were made redundant more than a decade ago by the transition to fixed and mobile networks.

The tower was also known for a revolving restaurant on its 34th floor, which took 22 minutes to complete a rotation.

Now, it is set to become the latest London landmark converted into a hotel, joining the likes of the Old War Office and the former Metropolitan Police Headquarters.

U.S. development giant MCR owns and operates 150 properties, including the TWA Hotel located in the former TWA Flight Center at John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Tyler Morse, CEO of MCR Hotels, said the group would “preserve this beloved building and will work to develop proposals to tell its story as an iconic hotel.

BT, the U.K.’s largest broadband and mobile services provider, is undergoing a massive cost-cutting program that will slash up to 55,000 jobs by 2030.

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