First look at new Waterfront hotel

IPSWICH: This will be the view greeting people along Ipswich's one-way system when a new budget hotel sails into the Waterfront.

IPSWICH: This will be the view greeting people along Ipswich's one-way system when a new budget hotel sails into the Waterfront.

Work on the 88-bedroom Travelodge will begin in early spring next year at the Regatta Quay development along Key Street.

The firm, which has signed a 25-year lease, expects to have the hotel up and running in the summer of 2011.

Vanessa Penn, of property agents Penn Commercial, said the development would be a major boost to the area.

A study has revealed that Travelodge customers spend on average �36 in a town on food, drink and entertainment during an overnight stay. This could amount to hundreds of thousands of pounds every year.

Ms Penn said: “Negotiations have been underway with Travelodge for some months.

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“Clearly we are absolutely delighted that they have decided to go ahead, bearing in mind the current economic climate. It says a lot about the appeal of the Ipswich waterfront.”

Building work has stalled on the main block of flats at Regatta Quay because of the recession, but two other blocks of flats have now been completed and are open to buyers and tenants.

Three retail or business units still remain available. Unit 6 has more than 6,000 sq ft of floor area within the conversion phase of the development, called The Shamrock.

Just along from this, there is a smaller unit of around 850 sq ft of space on the promenade with waterfront views, close to the university and student accommodation.

The third unit will front on to Key Street beneath Travelodge. Developers believe this would be ideal for food retailing.

Samantha Kirk, sales and marketing director for developers City Living Developments, said: “We view the deal with Travelodge to be a catalyst to attract strong interest in the final phase of development.”

Will the Travelodge be a good thing for Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk