WORK is about to start on the construction of a new Premier Inn in Oxford city centre.

The popular discount chain runs a hotel in Garsington Road at Oxford Business Park and has another hotel in Marcham Road, Abingdon.

But it has no presence in the city centre where there is a high demand for budget-price rooms.

In the summer a Courtyard by Marriott hotel opened in Paradise Street but it is a four-star hotel and its rooms are likely to be more expensive.

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Contractors for Premier Inn have now demolished a former solicitors’ office opposite the Westgate Centre and are about to start building a 90-bed hotel there with the aim of completing the project later this year.

Oxford Mail:

The hotel will feature an in-house Thyme restaurant and will employ about 35 staff.

The contractor for the project is Cardiff-based Carter Lauren.

Gary Poulton, project manager for Whitbread, who is leading the construction of the hotel at Paradise Square, said: “We’re making good progress.

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“Our contractors started piling the foundations of new hotel building this week - a milestone for the build - and will continue to progress the ground work over the next few months.

“All being well we’re targeting to finish the construction work at the end of this year and open the doors to Premier Inn guests in early 2021.

Oxford Mail:

“Paradise Square will be our flagship Premier Inn in Oxford and there’s a real buzz on site as we start to create the new city centre hotel.”

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Mr Poulton said earlier Paradise Square was an excellent location for the new hotel.

He added the hotel would be a key asset for the chain and would bring many benefits including new local jobs and an expected £1.5m of overnight guest spending per year.

Premier Inn is the UK’s largest hotel brand, with more than 72,000 rooms and 800 hotels.

Customers will soon have a lot more choice if they want to book a room with a budget hotel chain.

Thame-based Travelodge has a well-established hotel off Abingdon Road, near Redbridge park-and-ride.

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And building work for a £15m easyHotel is now under way in Banbury Road, Summertown.

Oxford Mail:

The easyHotel chain has confirmed that the 180-bedroom hotel is due to opening in its 2020/21 financial year, from October 2020.

The new £30m Courtyard by Marriott hotel opened in Paradise Street last year with 140 bedrooms and a rooftop terrace offering views of the Westgate Centre and other buildings nearby including including Oxford Castle and St George’s Tower.

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The original application for the new Marriott was approved in May 2017 and the hotel built on the site of the former Cooper Callas building, with about 35 new jobs created.

Oxford Mail:

Rooms, which all have ensuite showers, can be booked in advance from about £140 to 250 for a standard double.

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Dominvs Group is running the hotel under the Courtyard by Marriott brand.

The site was identified by the council for redevelopment within the West End Area Action Plan. Developers said the designs for Courtyard by Marriott were backed by Historic England.

Hayley Beer-Gamage, chief executive of tourism group Experience Oxfordshire, earlier welcomed the latest additions to the city’s network of hotels.