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Budget hotel chain Travelodge is planning to grow its portfolio in the UK by teaming up with pubs.
The hotel group has earmarked the pub co-location strategy as a key route to future growth – it has already opened 15 such developments in the UK.
Travelodge has named pub operators Greene King, JW Lees, Marston’s, Mitchells and Butlers and JD Wetherspoons as future partners.
Paul Harvey, Travelodge’s managing director for development, said: “The pub companies have noticeably stepped up their development plans over recent months and in many parts of the country their target locations correspond with ours.
“We have been contacted by all the major players in the market and we are now pro-actively seeking out sites with them. A combined hotel/pub development is attractive to banks and funders, making the development process a lot quicker than it otherwise may be”.
Premier Inn, one of the main competitors on the UK budget hotel-scene, has already been expanding its co-located pub and hotel empire for some years.
The hotel group’s parent company Whitbread owns the pub restaurant chains Brewers Fayre, Beefeater and Table Table, as well as Costa Coffee.
A large number of the Premier Inns in the UK are located near to one of Whitbread’s pubs, and have a Costa Coffee within the building.
Brigid Simmonds, CEO of the British Beer and Pub Association, said there has been an upsurge of activity in the pub sector, as people have continued to dine out despite the recession.
“While pubs have faced tough times in recent years, this is a great example of how they are fighting back. Pubs are perfectly placed to provide the hospitality at sites next to hotels,” he said.
“Pubs now serve more than one billion meals each year and are diversifying in many ways to serve their local community. Innovation like this is a key ingredient in making a success of new pub openings – and it’s a success story we should be highlighting.”
Travelodge has announced two new joint developments, signed in the past six months: In Kidderminster the development of a 53-room Travelodge on land adjacent to an existing pub has been forward funded by Marstons; and in Glossop a 62-bed Travelodge will open alongside a new 7,000ft JD Wetherspoon.