Service with a smile 21 February 2020 Tom Kemble of the Pass at South Lodge cooks up a pumpkin masterclass and shares why it’s important for chefs to meet their customers
In this week's issue...Service with a smile Tom Kemble of the Pass at South Lodge cooks up a pumpkin masterclass and shares why it’s important for chefs to meet their customers
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The Caterer

Inside track

27 August 2004
Inside track

What business is it in? It's the UK's largest budget hotel chain.

What's its form? The Whitbread-owned company has just completed the £505m purchase of the Premier Lodge budget hotel chain from pub company Spirit. This gives the company 461 hotels in the UK, which it is currently rebranding as Premier Travel Inn.

Where is its head office and area of operation? The company is based at Whitbread's head office at CityPoint, One Ropemaker Street, London EC2.

What sort of employer is it? Parent company Whitbread has been recognised by industry body Springboard, and featured in the Sunday Times newspaper's round-up of great places to work. Prospective employees can register their details online at www.whitbread.co.uk, in the careers section.

Premier Travel Inn also runs a graduate recruitment scheme called Shooting Stars. The 12-month programme (six, if you have previous experience) pays £16,500 per annum (plus London weighting) and is designed to equip graduates with a broad range of skills. For more information about the scheme, contact recruitment co-ordinator Amanda Paradine for an application form, on 01582 499297.

How does the future look? Whitbread managing director Alan Parker has said that Premier Travel Inn will add 1,500 new budget hotel rooms to the portfolio every year until it hits a target of about 40,000 rooms in the next five to six years.

Did you know? The amount paid for Premier Inn's 141 sites (and 19 co-located pub-restaurants) works out at £54,000 per room. Yet development costs for a room at a new-build Travel Inn are between £35,000 and £40,000 a room.

Not to be confused with… Arch-rival Travelodge, which is owned by private equity company Permira and has about 245 owned or managed properties in the UK and Ireland.

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