Interesting growth news from Accor today, as the European hotel giant announces they are set to open 4 new hotels in London in October; a Novotel and Ibis Hotel in Blackfriars, a second Ibis Hotel in Shepherd’s Bush and a new addition to the growing Mercure hotel portfolio, opening in Greenwich. In these tough times, that’s a lot of investment in the Capitol. The also means 170 new jobs will be created in hospitality – great news.
This year alone Accor UK & Ireland is opening more than 1000 additional bedrooms in London, across six new hotel openings and two extensions to existing hotels. In addition, this year Accor is investing in the refurbishment of a further 12 London hotels. This brings the Group’s London portfolio to 53 hotels and well over nine thousand bedrooms across the Capital. This latest announcement follows recent openings in Croydon, Whitechapel and King’s Cross.
Thomas Dubaere, Managing Director, Accor UK & Ireland commented: “2012 is an incredibly important year for London. As the market leader in Europe and a key business player in the hospitality industry, Accor has treated this important year as a strategic opportunity to boost our presence in the UK’s capital by investing in upcoming areas such as Shepherd’s Bush, Blackfriars, Whitechapel and King’s Cross, and improving the training and development of young people in the hospitality industry, to ensure a long term legacy for 2012 and beyond.”
The newly built Novotel and Ibis London Blackfriars hotels occupy unique expansive purpose-built adjoining buildings, offering easy access to the city and Eurostar connections at St. Pancras International. Forming part of the regeneration of the Blackfriars area, these two new hotels have led to the creation of more than 70 jobs in the local area.
Accor also announced that thew new Novotel London Blackfriars will be using brand new guest technology such as self-service touch screen check in systems. All 182 bedrooms in the hotel include a media hub for iPads, iPods and tablets. The new-build hotel also features restaurant, bar, seven meetings rooms, a state-of-the-art gym, saunarium and swimming pool.
The 297-bedrooms flagship ibis London Blackfriars hotel also comprises a modern and fresh feel with a new-style open plan reception and living space that opens up the hotel’s public spaces with contemporary design and sleek, modern interiors.
The Ibis Hotel in Shepherd’s Bush features 128 rooms and is situated next to the up-and-coming West12 centre and within five minutes of the Westfield Shopping Centre. Westfield was created following significant investment to regenerate the area, investment that continues with the plans to revitalise Shepherd’s Bush Market and the surrounding area including Shepherd’s Green, directly in front of the new hotel. Providing a further boost, ibis Shepherd’s Bush has led to the creation of 30 jobs in the local community and will ensure more visitors to the London suburb.
The 145-bed Mercure Greenwich will open its doors in October, following a major conversion of the 1930’s Maurice Drummond House in Greenwich. The building, which won RIBA’s London Architectural Medal in 1946, will become Mercure’s 72nd hotel in the UK. The opening will create up to 70 jobs.
Dubaere added: “2012 provides a real opportunity for London to raise its profile as a business centre and tourist destination. It’s encouraging to see so many businesses in the hospitality industry responding to this opportunity by investing in the city and its people, so that we can reap the benefits in the long term. It is important to look at the successes of today and the ‘afterglow’; what are we going to do tomorrow? For Accor, the focus remains on our people and the continued investment in their development. Opening four new hotels in the Capital in one month is testament to our commitment to growth in London and in the UK.”
Great news for the industry….