The Gazette toured the redeveloped building as the final touches were put in place last week ahead of this Friday’s lunchtime opening.
Carnegies International Group chief executive Karl Bullers said there would be a huge sense of relief when the building was finally open.
He said the restoration had been done with a sense of responsibility, for the heritage of the building and length of time it had remained dormant.
It was almost completely renovated when it was gutted by fire in 2007. Since then it was sold and finally brought back from the brink of insolvency.
‘I’ve had times when I’ve felt it was cursed,’ Mr Bullers said.
‘Putting a modern facility into a heritage building and having to meet building codes, it has been a difficult time.’
But by opening day all of that will be over and the challenge will be to ensure plenty of food and drink sells so eventually construction can start on stage two.
The hotel will also host a mardi gras-themed New Year’s Eve party.