US hotel giant Wyndham Worldwide is in advanced talks with Vermont Developments and Ethel Austin Properties to open a Ramada Plaza hotel at their joint venture The Quarter in Liverpool.
Wyndham operates mainly as a franchiser and has 6,500 hotels around the world under 10 brands.
The 145-bedroom hotel at The Quarter, on Sefton Street south of the city centre, would be managed by Wyndham's joint venture partner in Europe, the Malta-based Corinthia Hotels International.
Mark Connor, chief executive of Vermont, said: "We are hoping to conclude an agreement over the next few weeks. Our scheme has attracted the interest of one of the world's foremost hotel brands and we feel an operator of this quality would be a welcome addition to the emerging hotel strip along Liverpool's waterfront."
From the Malmaison and Crowne Plaza at Princes Dock in the north, the waterfront plays host to numerous hotels, including the Holiday Inn Express and Premier Travel Inn at the Albert Dock, the forthcoming Hilton at Chavasse Park, Jurys Inn and BDL Staybridge at Kings Waterfront, all still under construction.
Connor added: "The Ramada Plaza seal of approval is particularly pleasing – it was an extremely thorough examination of our scheme and we came through with flying colours."
Work on the hotel is expected to start in early 2008, with completion in late 2009. The Quarter will also feature a 22-storey residential tower of 374 apartments, marketed by King Sturge, 13,000 sq ft of offices and associated retail and leisure.