LIVERPOOL'S historic Adelphi hotel is to get a multi-million pound makeover to restore its faded grandeur in time for 2008.
All 402 bedrooms will be refurbished, and disused parts of the building will be brought back to life as conference and banqueting facilities.
The hotel has also acquired the adjacent former Reece's dairy building and applied for planning permission to convert it into a multi-storey car park.
The outside of the hotel, which enjoys a prominent position in the city centre, will also be cleaned up.
But hotel owner Alex Langsam denied the revamp was forced on the hotel by its poor image in recent years.
He said: "The intention is to put in more conference facilities.
"There will be a whole lot of meeting rooms and there will be a new banqueting suite."
The new facilities will be housed on the lower ground floor at the back of the hotel in rooms once home to a laundry and tennis courts. The old laundry has not been in use for 50 years.
The new banqueting hall will have capacity for 1,000 diners.
Mr Langsam said: "I don't want to do to the Adelphi what they did to the Midland hotel in Manchester. They had a lovely old hotel and they battered it.
"We have marble and panelling at the Adelphi. It is not the sort of hotel that would benefit from a modern makeover.
"We see ourselves as the custodians of a fine old building."
The rooms are to be redecorated and upgraded with new furniture.
Mr Langsam denied his hotel was blighted by a poor image. "We have not been affected by that. The hotel is exceptionally busy. We must be the most popular hotel in town. We have a following.
"People like the style, they like the staff and the fact that we don't rip them off.
"When I took over the hotel, it only had one floor in use. Now it has the highest occupancy rate in town," he said.