Grand Hotel opens as a Travelodge after £2.3m restoration

Just days after the completion of a £2.3 million restoration scheme, the Grand Hotel in the centre of Northampton is already fully booked.

Budget hotel firm Travelodge bought the listed hotel in Gold Street in December last year and immediately announced plans to overhaul the dilapidated building, which dates back to the 1890s.

Yesterday, the new-look hotel celebrated its first full day of trading and this weekend, all of the 65 rooms are booked out.

Manager Jo Simpson, who also looks after the Travelodge at Sixfields, said customers had so far been very impressed with the modern rooms, which all include flat-screen televisions, large beds and bathrooms. She said: "The guests who have stayed so far have been very positive and we've had a few people just pop in to say they used to stop at the Grand and they're delighted to see it open again, which is really nice.

"The company has spent an absolute fortune doing it up, they've really invested in the hotel, and I think people can see that."

The restoration of the hotel has seen the number of bedrooms in the building increased from 57 to 65.

Travelodge has said it hopes the hotel will prove popular with business visitors to Northampton who work for large firms such as Barclaycard, Panasonic and Coca Cola.

The firm has also said it expects the hotel to be full every year when the British Grand Prix is held at Silverstone.

The hotel does not include a cafe or restaurant, but it is hoped shops on the building's ground floor will be rented out soon, with interest already shown from one supermarket chain.

Because of its town centre location, the hotel also has no car park, apart from a number of spaces which are reserved for disabled guests.

The redevelopment of the hotel has created new jobs for 12 people with most of those who have been taken on by Travelodge to run the venue having been out of work for two years or more.