Budget hotel chain Premier Travel Inn is to drop the "Travel" from its name at a cost of £22m, and has announced plans for 80 properties in India over the next ten years.
The Whitbread-owned chain of hotels started life as Travel Inn in the late 1980s, before adding Premier to its moniker following the acquisition of Premier Lodges in 2004. But the group has now decided to drop "Travel" from its name, perhaps to avoid confusion with budget rival Travelodge. The company says that the change will "make it easier for consumers to remember, recognise more quickly the premier offering in the budget hotel sector and create blue water between the brand and its competitors".
Premier Travel Inn is currently the UK's largest hotel brand, with just under 500 hotels and over 32,000 rooms. But this figure is set to soar with the brand's plans to create a further 12,000 rooms in India under a join-venture agreement with Indian developers Emaar-MGF. Initial sites under consideration include Delhi, Chennai, Goa, Hyderabad and Chandigarh. Says Alan Parker, chief executive Whitbread PLC:
"Our entry into India will fill a gap in the country's hotel market by providing high quality branded budget hotels. The pace of economic development in India is quite phenomenal; and importantly for us there is rapid growth in both business and leisure markets."
India will represent Premier Travel Inn's second international market, with a property due to open in Dubai early next year, and further expansion planned for the Gulf region.
Visit premiertravelinn.com for more information.
Report by Mark Caswell