Starwood Hotels and Resorts is to open its second Westin property in the UK in 2010. The 198-room new-build hotel will form part of the Snow Hill development in central Birmingham, adjacent to the rail station of the same name.
It’s big news for Starwood, as it represents the group’s first hotel outside London in England, and only the 10th Starwood property in the UK as a whole. The other Westin-branded hotel in the UK is the Westin Turnberry Resort in Ayrshire, Scotland, which is due to host the British Open in 2009.
The Westin Birmingham will feature 1,050 sqm of meeting and conference space, including a 370 sqm ballroom and four meeting rooms. Other facilities will include a gym, swimming pool, spa, two restaurants, a bar and lobby lounge, and a business centre.
For those unfamiliar with Westin properties, the brand aims to ensure that “guests feel better when they check out than they did when they checked in”. With this in mind it offers facilities such as an in-room spa programme, the Westin “Heavenly Bed”, and “Unwind” evenings where guests can listen to jazz, play board games or enjoy wine and chocolate.
Snow Hill is a one million sqft mixed-use development, which will comprise retail space, two 12-storey office blocks and a 44-storey residential tower. The Westin Birmingham will officially be the midland’s first five-star hotel, although planning applications are currently being reviewed for the redevelopment of The Belfry (acquired by the Quinn Group in 2005), which if approved would see the hotel raised to a five-star property when completed.
Report by Mark Caswell