Hotel group Rezidor is planning to launch a "colourful" budget hotel brand, claiming that rival chains are offering "boring and depressing" architecture, Caterer can reveal.
Kurt Ritter, chief executive and president of the group, which currently operates in the three-, four- and five-star markets, said he believed there was "room for another budget brand". Ritter said the budget sector - which accounts for about a quarter of the UK hotel market -had shown great resilience since the 9/11 slump but suggested there was a need for a more effervescent brand.
"You have the Accor and Holiday Inn budget brands and they do a great job but I think there's room for more - there's not a good alternative. When you look at their architecture it's deadly boring and depressing," he told Caterer.
"We don't have concrete plans at present, but when our other brands are settled, I would like to launch a good two-star brand. I dream of it being very colourful, very happy, because it doesn't cost more if you paint something happy or sad."
Ritter said he didn't plan to go down the basic route offered by the likes of Easyhotel, adding that there was a point where budget became "too low".
Rezidor operates a portfolio of 330 hotels in operation with 68,000 rooms in 51 countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa under the luxury brands Radisson SAS, Regent Hotels & Resorts, and midmarket brands Park Inn and Country Inns.
It plans to open its first designer brand, Missoni, in both Edinburgh and Kuwait by the end of this year.
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By Gemma Sharkey
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