The owners and neighbours of a Perth holiday flat with rooftop hot tub will have to wait to find out if it has permission to open to visitors.
Perth and Kinross planners refused to allow the property on the city’s Dundee Road to operate as a short-term let.
But the owner, Lee Deans, appealed against that decision.
He says the council asked to take photographs of Knowehead Apartments Penthouse, complete with hot tub, so it could use them to promote Perth.
And he points to its inclusion on the council’s own Perth City and Towns website as one of the premium places for visitors to stay.
Councillors on the local review body met to consider the appeal on Monday.
They agreed to defer a decision to allow council officers time to discuss the case with Mr Deans in the light of new guidelines on short-term lets.
These were introduced at the end of 2023, between the application being turned down and the appeal being heard.
Perth hot tub ‘an accident waiting to happen’
Knowehead Apartments Penthouse has been operating as a holiday flat for some time.
It was advertised on the Deans Retreats website, as well as popular sites such as Airbnb.
But owners now have to apply to the council for change of use to form short-term let accommodation.
Neighbours objected to Mr Deans’ application, saying noisy guests in the hot tub were making their lives a misery.
One wrote: “The mix of alcohol, water and only a short glass balustrade between the balcony and a significant drop seems like an accident waiting to happen.”
But a number of people also wrote in support, saying the Perth visitor economy could ill afford to lose this kind of property.
One said he and his wife-to-be had been forced to find alternative accommodation for their wedding night following the council’s “short-sighted” decision to refuse the application.
“There is an incredible shortage of accommodation for guests in Perth city centre,” he said.
Three other cases considered
The Knowehead Apartments case was one of four appeals which the local review body considered on Monday.
The panel, made up of three councillors, agreed to allow a change of use for a ground-floor flat at 81 Balhousie Street. The property had its own entrance and parking space and there had been no complaints from neighbours.
Another application for a change of use for a flat in Bonnethill Road, Pitlochry, was refused. Objectors said there was a shortage of accommodation in the tourist town, and this was having an impact on health and other services.
And decision on a fourth, for a property at South Inch Court, Perth, was also deferred. This is so officers can hold discussions with the owner in the context of the council’s new guidance on short-term lets.