Whitbread drops anchor in Torquay
Premier Inn collaborates with Torbay Council to bring new 120-bedroom hotel and restaurant to Torquay’s seafront
Whitbread, Premier Inn’s parent company, has signed an agreement with Torbay Council to bring a latest generation 120-bedroom Premier Inn hotel and Whitbread-branded restaurant to Torquay, in a significant boost to the council’s town centre regeneration plan.
The new Premier Inn hotel will be located on Montpellier Road in central Torquay. The location is minutes from The Strand and Torquay Harbour and the proposed hotel and restaurant will enjoy views over Tor Bay and the English Channel.
Paul Smith, Acquisitions Manager for the South West at Premier Inn, said: “We’re delighted to be collaborating with Torbay Council to bring a latest generation Premier Inn hotel and Whitbread-branded restaurant to Torquay. Our desire for a second site in Torquay reflects strong demand for Premier Inn bedrooms in the town throughout the year and we are confident the hotel will be very popular with our guests.”
Whitbread will be taking a long-lease on the completed hotel building. Approximately 30 new year-round jobs are expected to be created at the hotel and restaurant on opening with recruitment focussed locally through the Torquay Job Centre Plus.
Paul continued: “As most Premier Inn guests book directly with us we have a good idea of how customers use our hotels when they stay. Evidence from our existing Torquay hotel and other Premier Inns in Torbay shows that our guests like to eat and drink out when they stay with us, supporting established businesses throughout the year. We expect the same positive knock-on effect from our second hotel in Torquay.”
Subject to planning permission, the new hotel and restaurant will bring back to beneficial use a piece of under-used land by the main entrance to the Terrace Car Park, on Montpellier Road.
The site is being delivered by TDA, on behalf of Torbay Council, and will be constructed by Midas Construction, part of the Midas Group. A planning application is expected to be submitted to Torbay Council in the next three months and subject to planning approval, work could begin on site this autumn. There will be a public exhibition of the proposed development during the afternoon and evening of 14 March at Torquay Museum.
Andy McAdam, Divisional Director of Midas Construction for Somerset; Devon and Cornwall, said: “We are delighted to be working again with Torbay Council on this new hotel project for Torquay town centre. We have worked alongside many partners in the area including South Devon College, Graphic Controls Ltd and TDA, over a number of years and are proud to be part of Torbay’s economic regeneration.”
Chris Robson, Chairman of the Council’s Investment & Regeneration Committee, commented: “This is a great example of the Council leading the way on the regeneration of Torbay’s town centres, improving confidence and increasing investment in the Bay. The Council is using its borrowing ability to design, build and own the hotel.”
James O’Dwyer, Councillor for Wellswood Ward, Torquay said: “This investment by Torbay Council in Torquay will secure much needed economic and social benefits for the area. The income to the Council, from the lease of the hotel to Premier Inn, will help the authority to pay for valued services. The contract with Midas Construction also requires the use of local labour and businesses, apprentices, skills development and the employment of care leavers along with individuals from disadvantaged areas across Torbay. The hotel will also achieve a very good environmental performance standard. All this provides to the people of Torbay a “win-win” situation that we as Ward Councillors wholeheartedly support and encourage.”
Nick Bye, Councillor for Wellswood Ward, Torquay said: “This development is in a great location for people wishing to stay within walking distance of Torquay town centre and will have significant economic and social benefits for Torbay. It will attract new and additional visitors to Torquay, increasing footfall and investment into the town centre, including the Harbour area, and will benefit businesses in that area.”
Subject to planning permission the proposed hotel will be Premier Inn’s second hotel in Torquay, adding to the seafront hotel on Shedden Hill Road. In the wider Torbay area Whitbread also operates two Premier Inn hotels at Paignton (Paignton Seafront and Paignton South) and an 84-bedroom Premier Inn at Newton Abbot.