Louvre Hotels has launched a new super budget hotel brand in the UK with the opening today of the 47-bedroom Premiere Classe hotel in Coventry.
The company hopes to expand the brand across the country, but will first study the success of the Coventry hotel, which has been converted from a Campanile - another brand within the Louvre Hotels portfolio - before making a commitment.
David Anderson, Louvre Hotels' operations director for Northern Europe, said that Premiere Classe will be offering a very aggressive rate of £32 per night, with breakfast at £4.95, which is the kind of rate that the main budget brands of Premier Inns, Travelodge and Holiday Inn Express only offer if booked in advance.
Premiere Classe is well-established in France - where it has a one-star rating - with 225 hotels, and also has one property in each of Belgium, Holland and Poland. Its sister brand, Campanile, which has 18 properties in the UK, has two stars.
"Premiere Classe has proved to be a budget hotel tour de force in France and, with the tremendous demand we are seeing for true budget hotels in the UK, we anticipate that this success will be mirrored here," said Anderson.
All en suite bedrooms at the Premiere Classe Coventry offer free Wi-Fi, flatscreen television with a satellite package, and a Hypnos bed. The hotel also has a licensed bar, with food served from noon until late evening, and provides conference room facilities.
Anderson said he does not believe there would be any confusion with the name of Premiere Classe being similar to the country's largest budget chain, Premier Inn, which currently has more than 580 hotels in the UK.
"We have been established an awfully long time in France and have a very different logo, colour scheme and spelling to Premier Inn," he explained. "Being situated only 10 miles from the NEC in Birmingham, we believe the Premiere Classe Coventry will attract a lot of business from European travellers visiting the centre who know us well."
\* Travelodge is due to open its 400th hotel in Waterloo, London, soon. It is one of seven new properties set to launch this summer, creating a total of 185 jobs. The other hotels are in Edinburgh, Chester, Dundee, Northampton, Horsham and Newcastle under Lyme.
By Janet Harmer
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