Window on Europe
A new Travelodge will open at Haymarket, Liverpool this month, adding to the growing portfolio of the UKÕs best-known budget hotel brand.The £5 million ($7.5 million) investment, which took 12 months to build, is part of an Urban Splash development. It brings the total number of Travelodge properties in the UK and Ireland to 225. The 105 bedroom Travelodge is conveniently located in the heart of the city centre. In addition to the high quality bedrooms, the hotel will feature state of the art conference facilities as well as substantial retail space on a mezzanine floor. ÒTravelodge Liverpool is ideal for business and leisure travellers to the city,Ó said managing director Simon Turl. ÒIn the last 18 months or more, we have seen a significant rise in the demand for budget accommodation. Where Travelodge can outstrip its competitors is in the acquisition of strategic locations. ÒA perfect example of this is the prime Haymarket site in Liverpool. This is the third Travelodge for the Merseyside area, with another opening planned for later in 2002. Like all Travelodge accommodation, rooms in the new property at Liverpool will be ensuite with television, luxury Hypnos beds, and tea and coffee making facilities. Prices start at £52.95 ($78.5) per room per night. Construction is underway for the £21 million Holiday Inn London-ExCel hotel located in the British capitalÕs prestigious Docklands area. The hotel, which is due to open in summer 2003, is situated adjacent to Victoria Dock Station on the Docklands Light Railway at the West End of ExcelÕs new exhibition site, only a short distance from London City Airport. The hotel will have splendid views of Canary Wharf, the River Thames as well as the Dome. The seven-storey hotel will provide 210 guestrooms and suites, gymnasium with full wet leisure facilities, contemporary restaurant, lounge serving all day refreshments and stylish island bar. It will also boast 11 purpose built meeting rooms which will include a range of suites for training and events. These self-contained, state-of-the-art meeting facilities will also have a dedicated reception area, full business support, air conditioning, adjustable lighting, modem points and ISDN facilities. The Express by Holiday Inn Swindon in the UK celebrated its first birthday recently. The hotel said it continues build on its achievements since its opening last May. ÒOur first year has been a great success with excellent customer feedback about both the product and service delivery within the hotel. We are also delighted with the high levels of business we have enjoyed throughout our first year,Ó said operations manager Graham Norris. All guest bedrooms, which accommodate up to 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children, or 1 business executive are equipped with en-suite facilities, tea/coffee making facilities, power shower, direct dial telephones, satellite television, in-room movies, workstation and modem points. Also boasting four meeting rooms, each with space for up to 50 delegates in a theatre style layout. All meeting rooms contain natural daylight, air conditioning, ISDN Lines and free flowing hot beverages. Following the repercussions on the travel trade of September 11, Primary Insurance Group has reported that there has been a return in consumer confidence, although sales of long haul policies are still down on previous years, with short haul increases making up the difference. The most popular policy purchase through agents is the single trip travel cover option covering one or two weeks in Europe. The company said that business generally declined by 30 to 40 per cent, following September 11, but picked up again in January and is now almost back on track. Premiums from insurers are generally increasing as a result of the hardening market and these increases are also due to shrinking capacity and a number of recent high profile failures in this sector. Primary Insurance, based in Altrincham, Cheshire, UK, is a specialist travel insurer with years of experience in the travel market.