Citadines Holborn-Covent Garden London has recently upgraded its hot water generation plant using the innovative Q-ton Air to Water Heat Pump system, manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), an environmentally friendly system installed as part of Citadines’ sustainability targets, strategies and plans to create a larger positive impact for the environment and society.

The property originally had gas-fired boilers, which provided potable hot water to the apart’hotel’s 192 apartments and communal breakfast area. Instead, Citadines required a replacement that could provide water at high temperatures whilst ensuring minimal environmental impact.

The project at Citadines Holborn-Covent Garden, part of The Ascott Limited (Ascott) portfolio – CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit – is part of CapitaLand’s 2030 Sustainability Master Plan targets. The 2030 Sustainability Masterplan launched in October 2020 to elevate CapitaLand’s commitment to global sustainability.

Ryan Jules, Regional Maintenance Manager at The Ascott Limited UK, who hired K.I.P.O Consultancy to assist with the key sustainability carbon reduction project, said: “This a significant investment and action towards meeting both the UK Government and CapitaLand’s 2030 Sustainability Master Plan target of a 78 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2035, for the UK Government, and 2030 for CapitaLand.”

Martin Craxton, Senior Mechanical Engineer at KIPO consultancy, worked closely with Citadines Holborn-Covent Garden to develop a complete renewable solution for the apart’hotel. He said: “Q-ton is an ideal product for commercial water heating applications. It uses CO2, a natural refrigerant with ultra-low global warming potential to produce hot water ranging from 60-90˚C. Q-ton is efficient when operating right up to 70˚C, which is required to combat legionella growth. This solution saves on capital costs as alternative back-up heat sources are not required; Q-ton holds its capacity down to -7˚C ambient and still provides full operation at -25˚C.”

Unlike water heaters using gas or oil, renewable heating systems are not usually designed for instant hot water. Instead, K.I.P.O designed the system using a method known as energy accumulation to meet the apart’hotel’s usage profile and peak load. The heat pump generates the energy, and a thermal store holds the hot water until it is used.

The new system will be introduced across Citadines’ four other residences in the UK including Citadines Islington, Citadines Barbican, Citadines South Kensington, and Citadines Trafalgar Square in a phased approach as part of CapitaLand’s 2030 Sustainability Master Plan.

Germana Genovese, Residence Manager at Citadines Holborn-Covent Garden said: “We are delighted to be using heat pump technology as a primary method for our hot water generation. The Q-ton’s operation has been perfect, and we’re looking forward to seeing how efficiently the system works during its first winter compared to the gas boilers we previously had. Everyone needs to do their bit to help achieve the government targets of net zero and we are proud to play our part.”


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