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Whitbread uplifts its bedroom target for Ireland

Whitbread PLC has confirmed fresh confidence in the Irish hospitality market by uplifting its bedroom target for the country. The company has revised its medium-term growth target to 5,000 bedrooms in Ireland – a 30% increase on its current network target of 3,500 bedrooms – and has released an updated list of target locations where it wishes to operate a hotel across the country.

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These include additional sites across Dublin City Centre, four new locations in Outer Dublin as well as eleven target towns and cities across Ireland. Whitbread's confidence for Premier Inn in Ireland is underpinned by an analysis of the performance of its trading hotels in the country and an assessment of future hotel demand in the country. The uplifted requirement forms part of the company's established medium-term growth plan of 125,000 Premier Inn rooms across the UK and Ireland.

„Our confidence for Premier Inn in Ireland is driven by the positive performance of our trading hotels in Dublin and Cork as well as our belief in the growing demand for high-quality budget hotel rooms in Ireland. We believe there are many further opportunities for Premier Inn in inner and outer Dublin and are confident the brand will perform well in towns and cities across Ireland with strong local business economies and drivers of year-round tourist demand. It continues to be an exciting time for us in the country“, Matt Gent, Development Manager for Whitbread in Ireland, said.

Whitbread re-launched Premier Inn in Ireland following the acquisition of a prime development site in Dublin City Centre in 2018. It now currently operates a network of six Premier Inn hotels in Dublin and Cork and employs more than 200 people across the country. Through its new network plan for Ireland, the company is seeking new hotel locations for Premier Inn in Dublin City Centre at Heuston and Connolly stations, South Docklands and Dublin 2. In addition, the company is seeking new locations in Outer Dublin to build on success of the sites at Dublin Airport and Sandyford.

Outside of the capital, Whitbread is targeting locations which have strong leisure and business economies and are likely to experience a growth in visitor numbers. These include tourist hotspots such as Killarney, Kilkenny, Kinsale, Sligo, Westport and Tralee alongside the larger towns and cities of Cork, Galway, Limerick, Waterford, and Wexford. Whitbread is predicting total consumer demand for hotel accommodation in Ireland will surpass 20-million-bedroom nights towards the end of the decade, driven by the country's strong economy, low unemployment rate and a predicted rise in international visitors.