Co-op unlocks Smithfield hotel phase

The Co-operative Bank's Liverpool corporate banking centre has provided a £10m facility to Centre Island Hotels for a new Holiday Inn Express to be built at Ician Development's Smithfield site in Manchester.

The agreement brings forward the fifth phase of development at Smithfield and work is now being carried out to assess potential options for the sixth and seventh phases – which will include the redevelopment of the Grade 2 listed Victorian 'Mackie Mayor' building.

Work has started on the 192-bed, three-star hotel, which is due to open in summer 2011.

The eight-floor Holiday Inn Express, a brand owned by the InterContinental Hotel Group, will have an illuminated exterior that fits in with the modern design of nearby buildings, and work will include the development of the new Smithfield Square.

Centre Island Hotels also manages the adjacent upper four-star Crowne Plaza hotel on the corner of Swan Street and Shudehill, which opened in August 2008.

Martin Griffiths, managing director of Centre Islands Hotels, said: "The new Holiday Inn Express will be a mid-market hotel in a prime location in Manchester's Northern Quarter, near to the MEN Arena, Printworks, and all city centre attractions.

"This is another significant project for Centre Island Hotels, growing our portfolio, and continuing our good relationship with The Co-operative Bank's corporate banking team in Liverpool."

Dave Mathews, senior business development manager at The Co-operative Bank, said: "Martin and his team have a proven track record of successfully running hotels across the North West, and working with the other partners involved we are sure this Holiday Inn Express will be a successful addition to Manchester's hotel sector. This deal once again shows that if the business proposal is right, The Co-operative Bank has funding available."

Since 1999, Ician has developed 318 apartments in three phases, completed the 228 bedroom Crowne Plaza hotel, committed a further hotel development and introduced a successful mix of ground floor complimentary uses at Smithfield.

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