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Serviced apartment operator, BridgeStreet Worldwide, has had its first property assessed under the new UK serviced apartment grading system, with The Atrium in Manchester awarded four-star status.
Explaining what the new rating means, The Atrium general manager, Martin Jones, said:
”Visit Britain”s definition of a four-star rated establishment, reads: ”Accommodation offering superior comfort and quality; all bedrooms with en-suite bath, fitted overhead shower and WC, spacious and well appointed public areas, dry cleaning service available and excellent customer service.”
The new grading system was introduced in May this year by Quality in Tourism, in conjunction with Visit Britain and the Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP), whose membership includes companies such as BridgeStreet Worldwide, Oakwood Worldwide and Executive Roomspace (see ABTN 31 May).
”The idea of an industry-wide grading system emerged when we met with Quality in Tourism more than two years ago to discuss the grading of The Atrium by BridgeStreet Worldwide Apartments in Manchester,” said vice president sales and marketing EMEA, Jo Layton.
”It was only right that our Atrium Apartments should be the first to undergo the assessment. Our discussions two years ago with Quality in Tourism led us to conclude that the industry would benefit from a formal grading system against which all providers could be measured.”
Similarly to the hotel industry standards, the new rating system addresses important issues such as health and safety, fixtures and fittings and cleanliness, in addition to amenities available and general services. However, as a voluntary scheme it is not compulsory for all apartments to be assessed.
”The new system is less about achieving the highest number of stars for our apartments and more about offering travellers an independent, reliable and objective rating against which to judge each serviced apartment provider,” added Layton.