Budget hotel brands Premier Inn and Travelodge have both announced a focus on the British coast.
Whitbread, the owner of Premier Inn, has announced a pipeline of more than 1,000 new bedrooms at seaside locations across the country, and Travelodge has announced that it is looking for 10 new hotel sites close to the UK’s busiest cruise ports.
Whitbread said it has seen an increased demand in seaside locations due to significant regeneration in British seaside towns and cities, and said it has been increasingly on the lookout for new coastal sites.
In the past year, the business has secured nearly 400 new Premier Inn bedrooms in seaside locations, while approximately another 500 will be constructed at new hotel sites in the next year in locations including Brighton, Holyhead and Newquay. One hundred bedrooms are being added to existing hotels, including those in Paignton and Southport.
Whitbread has also expanded into new coastal markets with its first Premier Inn hotel in the Channel Islands, in St Helier in Jersey.
Figures from the Great Britain Tourism Survey 2017 show that last year the number of domestic holiday trips taken in England was 6% higher than in 2016, and the number of staycations is continuing to increase in 2018.
Jo Moon, director of acquisitions for Whitbread, said: “With the recent rise in staycations, we’ve found there’s an increased demand for Premier Inn bedrooms in coastal locations around the UK. We plan to build on this momentum over the next 12 months and are on the lookout for more coastal sites for new Premier Inn hotels.”
Premier Inn also has hotels scheduled to complete over the next 12 months in Wadebridge, Oban, Penzance and Skegness, and is extending its hotels in Newhaven and Plymouth.
Meanwhile, Travelodge opened its first hotel in Dover this week – a purpose-built, £9m, 108-bedroom hotel owned by Legal & General.
In response to the growing cruise boom, it said it will focus on the UK’s 10 busiest ports: Edinburgh, Glasgow, Harwich, Hull, Liverpool, Newcastle, Poole, Portsmouth, Southampton and Tilbury, representing a £60m investment.
A record two million cruise passengers from the UK and Ireland took to the seas last year according to the Cruise Lines International Association, and Travelodge also reported that its 32 hotels that are close to Britain’s busiest ports experienced a significant increase in occupancy in 2017.
Tony O’Brien, Travelodge property director, said: “The cruise boom is still under way and predicted to grow from strength to strength; therefore we are getting on board now.”