Solving the challenge of air conditioning a listed apartment by Cool You UK

Air conditioning individual rooms in listed buildings is one of the core parts of our business, in fact, it is the reason behind our formation. We were formed after struggling to find a solution to air condition a Grade II listed apartment. The problem came down to planning permission, to install a conventional air conditioning system, which always requires an outside condenser, the lengthy process and cost of applying for planning permission,  would need to be endured. Plus, if planning permission was sought, it would almost certainly be rejected. This is a challenge that our clients still find themselves coming across day in, day out. There is a solution though and it is one that we came across after a lengthy search ourselves prior to our formation.

The solution, which requires no unsightly outside condenser, but rather an easily concealed small internal condenser allows for perfect air conditioning to be fitted in a property. The internal condenser, which uses in a very controlled manner mains cold water to remove the heat, which an outside condenser uses air to disperse, is connected to a choice of room cooling units, by discreet relatively standard refrigerant pipe work.

It is this internal water cooled condenser solution connected to simple high wall cooling units which we installed into an apartment in Cumberland Terrace. Designed by British architect, John Nash under the patronage of the Prince Regent, Cumberland Terrace is a Crown Estate Grade II listed terrace. Because of this, there are several restrictions on the building which prevent outside condenser units from being installed to the exterior of the property and which also prevent holes from being drilled through the walls.

Complications involved in installing conventional air conditioning to a listed building:

  • The need for a condenser to be installed to the exterior of the property
  • The need for holes to be made in exterior walls
  • The need for planning permission to be sought before the air conditioning solution can be installed
The solution for eliminating the need for air conditioning planning permission:

If conventional air conditioning with an outside condenser can be fitted to the property, we would always recommend that it is. The main reason is that it is likely to be less expensive.

If you are not allowed to install conventional air conditioning to your property, or it will mean applying for planning permission, then we have the solution. We can provide the same quality of air conditioning without having to install a condenser to the exterior of your property, nor will we have to make holes to any outside walls. The only difference with our air conditioning is that it is completely internal.

As everything is internal, the pipe work connections between the condenser and the room air conditioning unit are minimised. Also because everything is installed internally, there is no impact on the exterior of the property and normally, no need for the planning permission which would usually be required for installing air conditioning into a listed building or a property within a conservation area.

Everything is planned in advance:

To ensure the air conditioning solution is right for the property in which it is being installed, Cool You UK conduct an incredibly detailed site survey. As part of this site survey, we conduct extensive planning to ensure the small internal condenser is installed as close to the rooms to be air conditioned, as possible.

When retrofitting our air conditioning solutions into a finished apartment or property, the planning will be different to if the installation is part of a refurbishment project. However, there will always be a solution.

The rules and regulations surrounding listed properties and properties in conservation areas

Every property has different regulations. However, with our solutions it should not be necessary to apply for any permissions. This is because the internal condenser connections are similar to that for a domestic washing machine or a domestic dishwasher.

The project details:

Cumberland Terrace benefits from a very prestigious location, located on the eastern side of Regents Park, it is just a stone’s throw from everything Central London has to offer. However, as an apartment development within an old building, our client also found that it would also be an uncomfortable place to live when the temperature rose, due to not being able to install a premium air conditioning solution.

Our client was desperate to have air conditioning in their master bedrooms and approached us specifically because of our expertise in air conditioning apartments within listed buildings.

Due to the restrictions placed on the building, the only available air conditioning solution was our A** rated energy efficient DC inverter water cooled internal condenser, which allow everything to be retained within the property.

Our water cooled internal condensers work by using mains water in a controlled manner to remove heat, refrigerant pipework is then used between the internal condenser unit and the room units. There are a number of ways in which the exiting water can be then be treated.

Installation took place whilst the apartments were being refurbished, this enabled of the refrigerant pipework between the condensers and the room units to be fully concealed. No planning permission was required to fit our air conditioning systems in these apartments.

The internal condenser was located within a utility cupboard in the hall, close to the incoming services. The refrigerant pipework was routed through the en-suite bathroom and connected to a quiet DC inverter high wall room unit in the master bedroom.

Within the apartment, we installed:

Master Bedroom 1 x 3.5kw (12,000 Btu) water cooled DC Inverter condenser to serve:

1 x 3.5kw (12,000 Btu) DC Inverter concealed ducted room unit

Find out more about how Cool You can assist you in air conditioning your listed apartment at or by calling us on 0207 043 2275.