Travelodge is thought to be in discussions with pub firms about buying properties to turn into small hotels.
The company's chief executive Guy Parsons told Caterer and Hotelkeeper that Travelodge was looking at further pub acquisitions for its new Metro format, which will offer 20 to 40 rooms in prestigious locations.
However he declined to reveal which firms were involved in the talks until they had progressed further.
Some of the locations the company has previously announced it would target for the Metro format include:
• The City of London
• London boroughs such as: Kensington & Chelsea, Westminster, Fulham and Richmond
• Major UK cities such as: Oxford, Cambridge, Bath, Cardiff, York, Bristol, Chester, St Albans and Edinburgh
• The coastline of the UK
• Popular holiday hotspots such as: Cornwall, Devon, the Lake District, the Scottish Highlands and near to theme parks
Travelodge has already demonstrated its willingness to look to pub firms for new sites, having acquired and converted 52 Innkeeper's Lodges following their purchase from Mitchells & Butlers in July 2010.
The new building approach will run alongside Travelodge's existing growth strategy to expand to 1,100 hotels and 100,000 rooms by 2025.
While it is not clear which firms Travelodge is talking to, several major pub firms including Punch and Enterprise Inns, as well as Mitchells and Butlers, have been actively divesting parts of their estates for the last several years.
By Neil Gerrard
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