Bristol heading for spate of new hotel openings as operators target city

August 2, 2019

Bristol’s burgeoning hotel market is set to continue its rapid growth with the opening another ‘quirky’ boutique venue later this year and work starting shortly on up to half a dozen more.

In total these hotels will bring several hundred more rooms to the city centre at a time when many established chains and independent operators are complaining about the ever-growing take-up of Airbnb accommodation in the city. 

Design-led, trendy hotel chain Artist Residence will open its fifth property in Grade I listed building Portland Square – not only adding to the breadth of the city’s offering but playing a big role in the ongoing regeneration of the St Pauls area.

The hotel is opening in October in a former derelict boot factory that has been transformed by Artist Residence co-founders Charlotte and Justin Salisbury, pictured below, with 23 bedrooms above a bar, café, garden, restaurant and events space.

The building was on the ‘at-risk’ register in 2015 when the couple came across it. They described it as their largest, most-challenging restoration project to date.

The Artist Residence will open ahead of the 214-room Moxy hotel a stone’s throw away on Newfoundland Street. The six-storey modular build hotel, pictured, bottom, in a CGI image, will also include a lobby and reception area, bar/restaurant and gym.

Work on the hotel, commissioned by Netherlands-based international real estate group Vastint, is due to start next month, with the hotel opening in autumn next year.

Meanwhile the Redcliff Quarter scheme has signed up an operator for the site’s 239-bedroom hotel which, its developer says, will bring cool European-style ‘upscale lifestyle’ accommodation – equivalent to four-star – to Bristol. 

And ‘super-budget’ chain easyHotel has acquired land in Old Market to build a £12m, 145-bedroom outlet, which it plans to open in 2020 subject to planning consent.

Also in Old Market, London-based property developer First Base has said it plans to open an apart-hotel in its £175m mixed-use scheme on the 2.25-acre site occupied until earlier this year by independent department store Gardiner Haskins.

On nearby Temple Way, Royal London has included a 200-room Jurys Hotel as part of its mixed-used Glassfields scheme.

Looking further ahead, insurance giant Legal & General has included a 345-room hotel – which would be the city’s largest – in its plans for its five-acre Temple Island development while Bristol-based developer Cubex, which is behind the Finzels Reach quarter, plans a hotel on its huge Frome Gateway scheme close to the M32. 

Meanwhile in June the Bristol Hoteliers Association, which represents 40 hotels in the city providing more than 4,000 beds for tourists and business guests, claimed unregulated short-term lets and private properties were putting many businesses at risk – not just those providing accommodation but also restaurants.

It said accommodation listed on Airbnb in Bristol had delivered a £800,000 blow to the city’s hotels and B&Bs during the Cricket World Cup.

Bristol has the highest density of Airbnb properties in the UK outside of London.

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