Strong demand for extended-stay hotels, says hotel chief

There is strong demand and a gap in the market for extended-stay hotels in the UK, according to Staybridge Suites.

European Middle East and Africa vice president John Wagner said the premium InterContinental Hotels owned chain is currently in the process of growing the brand in the UK as it prepares to open its first 135 room hotel in Liverpool in spring next year. Its second, a 120-room hotel in Newcastle is set to open at the end of 2008.

He said the business plan was to have 22 hotels in the UK opened by 2010 in key business destinations around the country. Currently six deals have been signed with hotels planned for London (Southwark and Curtain Road, Hoxton), Birmingham and Glasgow. The brand is targeting domestic and international business travellers.

Wagner said: “I don’t think there really are extended stay hotels in the UK at the moment. There are serviced apartments but I think there is definitely a strong demand for it now.

“We are anticipating that around 60% of customers will stay longer than a week with us. In the US, customers stay eight to 10 nights on average. In the UK it is expected to be closer to five nights.”

Staybridge Suites also unveiled a new concept during the IHG Americas Investors & Leadership conference in Dallas, Texas last week. It is planning to roll out a ‘gathering table’  to all of its 100 plus hotels. It will be a central point where guests can sit or stand at breakfast time to interact with each other.

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