Intercontinental Hotels Group has opened new Holiday Inn and Staybridge Suites properties within the Westfield shopping centre next to the London 2012 Olympic Park, with features including terraces overlooking the Olympic Stadium.
The two hotels were officially opened at an event attended by IHG’s CEO of Europe Angela Brav, and the group’s ambassador for London 2012, former gold medal heptathlete Denise Lewis.
Instead of the usual ribbon cutting ceremony, guests were also treated to a ribbon routine by British Rhythmic Gymnastics Champion Frankie Jones.
The two hotels are housed within the same 12-storey building within Westfield Stratford City, with the reception of the Holiday Inn on the third floor, and the Staybridge Suites lobby on the 12th floor.
It’s the third property under the extended-stay Staybridge Suites brand in the UK, joining existing hotels in Liverpool and Newcastle. Rooms span floors 8-12 of the property, with many enjoying views of the Olympic Stadium, Aquatic Centre and the Orbit tower, and further afield to Canary Wharf and the O2.
Features include kitchens in all rooms, a 12th-floor outdoor terrace with BBQ facilities, a 24-hour gym with views over the Olympic Park, complimentary breakfast from the Hub Kitchen, and evening manager receptions where free drinks and snacks are available.
The hotel says it is also the first in the UK to offer Apple TV facilities, allowing guests to stream content from Apple devices through the TV, as well as access films through their personal iTunes library.
The Holiday Inn offers a mixture of standard and executive rooms, with facilities including Twenty Twelve restaurant and The Stadium bar featuring an outdoor terrace, a small business centre in the lobby, a 24-hour gym, and seven meeting rooms.
Both hotels also offer free limited-bandwidth internet access (standard for Staybridge Suites guests but unusual for Holiday Inn properties), with higher broadband speeds available at a charge.
With Holiday Inn the official hotel sponsor of London 2012, it’s not surprising to hear that both of the new hotels are full during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, but John Wagner, director at Cycas Hospitality (the joint owners of the hotel) was keen to stress the legacy of both properties.
“You don’t build a church just for Easter Sunday, and you don’t build two hotels just for the Olympics,” said Wagner. “Both of these properties will have life long after the Olympics leave town.”
With direct links to the Central and Jubilee Underground lines, as well as the Docklands Light Railway and mainline railways services, the hotels will benefit from the transport infrastructure legacy of London 2012. Canary Wharf is just four stops away on the Jubilee line, with London City Airport eight stops on the DLR, and Liverpool Street Station just one stop on overground rail services.
Meanwhile the Westfield shopping centre is the largest of its kind in Europe, and is already drawing large numbers of leisure customers to the area.
Business Traveller stayed at the property as part of the launch event, and will publish a full review of facilities at both the Staybridge Suites and Holiday Inn hotels later this week.
For more information visit ihg.com.
Report by Mark Caswell