American hotel giant Hilton is planning on increasing the size of its UK estate by almost 25pc in a vote of confidence in the British economy as it moves to leave the European Union.
Hilton, which is majority owned by US private equity giant Blackstone, is due to open 30 hotels over the next two years as it moves to cement the nation’s place as its second largest market outside the US.
The new openings will include sites in London, as well as regional cities like York and Leeds, with a particular focus on its Hampton and Hilton Garden Inn brands. The company only opened six UK hotels in 2016 so the growth rate is a step up.
The plans will include the Lincoln Plaza London in Canary Wharf, the second UK hotel in its Curio division, a collection of independent hotels that retain their identity but are run by Hilton or under a franchise agreement. The latest set of growth plans follow the company opening the largest Hampton by Hilton hotel in the world at Stansted, meaning it now has sites at 18 UK airports.
The British boost from Hilton coincides with a report from HVS that shows 7,500 new hotel rooms came to the market in the first six months of 2017 – the most in such a period since 2012. HVS also cited growth in revenue per available room in all but two UK cities, with double-digit growth in Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast. London saw an 8pc uplift.
Simon Vincent, the president of the Europe, Middle East and Africa division at Hilton, confirmed its 138-strong estate in the UK had performed exceptionally well after being “buoyed by the devaluation of sterling”.
“I think there will definitely be growth but certain segments will perform less strongly than others,” he said. “But on average I think we will see positive growth year on year.”