A Bristol hotel is taking steps to boost its business by breathing new life into its ballroom through a £100,000 refurbishment and extension. The aim is to become only the third residential venue in the city that can accommodate more than 300 delegates for a conference. Work is due to start at the DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol City Centre later this month and will take around five weeks to complete.
General Manager Imran Ali said: “The hotel has been wi-fi hybrid-ready for a long time and the ballroom upgrade will help set us on a firm foundation for the future. We were delighted when the owners agreed to make this significant investment which is a real vote of confidence in our hotel. The work will involve increasing the capacity of the room and making it a lot more welcoming by adding windows to provide natural daylight. We are future-proofing it with an energy-efficient IT and electrical upgrades and will end up with a facility that no only we can be very proud of, but which will also be of benefit to Bristol as a whole. A need has been identified for a large conference space in Bristol that can cope with 300 people in cabaret and 350 in theatre style.”
He continued: “Meet Bristol, which is part of the Visit West destination management organisation, has said it would be very beneficial to have a third venue that can provide this kind of capacity. The city receives a good volume of enquiries for these numbers and above. Recent research shows that the top event planner priorities when choosing a venue are location and access. Our location, just a five-minute walk from Temple Meads railway station and within a mile of major attractions, entertainment venues and shops, would make us a very desirable choice for larger businesses.
The increased capacity and much-improved setting would also give us the ability to host some of the city’s most high-profile events and conferences. We’ve had an extremely busy past three months, which has been great, but the corporate business has been softer so far. But as that starts to pick up again post-pandemic, this significant investment in our hotel will put us in the perfect position to be able to attract that corporate business.”
The 206-bedroom hotel is managed by Focus Hotels Management.
Peter Cashman, Chief Executive Officer of Focus Hotels, said: “The hospitality sector has been one of the hardest hit by the effects of the pandemic and various lockdowns. Foreign travel restrictions have meant that, thankfully, many hotels have been able to benefit from a strong staycation summer. Conferences and events make a significant contribution to the overall revenue which is generated in many hotels and we welcome this investment in the DoubleTree by Hilton Bristol City Centre, which will enable it to compete for business it has not had the capacity to attract in the past and which will further help it on the road to recovery from the pandemic.”