Travelodge offloads properties

Travelodge, the budget hotel chain that originated in the USA, is offloading 18 of its UK hotel properties.

Following financial difficulties last year, the company agreed a restructuring package with its creditors in October, and the property sale forms part of that restructuring. Beneficiaries of the sale include rival hotel chains Best Western, Ibis and Metro Inns, who have all committed to taking some of the properties. Customers that have pending booking at the hotels in question will either have those bookings honoured by the new owners or have them transferred to another Travelodge property nearby.

In addition to the outright sale of the 18 hotels that will be re-branded, 20 more Travelodge properties have been sold to new owners, but as franchises that will continue to be operated under the Travelodge banner. A further 11 properties will continue to trade as Travelodge for the time being, but only until new owners are found for them.

Grant Hearn, chief executive of Travelodge said, ‘It is great news that we have been able to find new operators and introduce franchise contracts for the majority of these hotels. We were always confident that we would secure a future for these properties and the deals that have taken place just demonstrate the huge strength of the Travelodge brand and the success of our operations model.

‘Going forward, we are very excited to continue to grow our business, strengthen our product offering and make Travelodge the best value hotel chain in the UK.’

By the end of this year, Travelodge intends to have refurbished around 20,000 of its 37,000 rooms as part of a £57 million project.