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New Tunbridge Wells hotel set to boost local economy

Jerome Smail 8 April 2015
New Tunbridge Wells hotel set to boost local economy

A new hotel, situated in the heart of Royal Tunbridge Wells, will create over 60 full-time jobs locally and represents a huge investment in the local economy, according to the company behind the project.

Following an extensive multimillion-pound building project, the new hotel will welcome its first guests in summer 2016. Combining the existing ten-bedroom Brew House Hotel with the Old School House, the adjacent buildings and a new build complex, it will re-emerge as One Warwick Park, complete with 38 luxuriously appointed bedrooms.

Nick Moore, group commercial director, said: “One Warwick Park will be the most luxurious hotel in Tunbridge Wells. Offering a five-star level of service, it will deliver a luxury experience to a discerning market and promises to have the wow factor in spades.”

Work started on the site in August 2013. Mr Moore said: “With a build of this duration and complexity we have worked very hard to ensure that we did not impact unnecessarily on local residents and neighbouring businesses. The contractors have worked within the ‘Considerate Constructors Scheme’, which monitors the site for appearance, community, environment, safety and workforce.”

Robert Jacobs, head of residential at Savills estate agents, said: “This is going to be great news for the southern end of town. Having a glamorous hotel, plus a great restaurant and a decent place to drink, is only going to draw people in – and who knows, hotel guests from London may even fall in love with the town and decide to relocate here.”

As well as employing up to 100 contractors and subcontractors over the past 18 months, the hotel will recruit 60 full-time staff in the run-up to opening, plus part-time roles for functions and events. The company will begin hiring for key roles this summer, including an operations manager, a front-of-house manager and head chef.

Manager Sarah Freeman said: “Our Talent Development team will run an intensive training package so that our level of service will consistently exceed expectations.”

While the construction work is ongoing, the first test bedroom in the hotel is complete, and six members of staff have already tested out the functionality of the room. Sarah said: “Everything has been designed with guest ease and comfort in mind, so feedback from staff has proved invaluable when making minor alterations to interior features, but we were lucky that we got a lot of it right first time round.”

An unusual feature of the new hotel is the tunnel which runs underneath Cumberland Walk. Sarah said: “The tunnel will be a softly-lit subterranean gallery space. It will act as a transition between the two buildings, from the reception area to the hotel’s centre.”

The hotel’s restaurant will also act as a standalone venue. Ms Freeman said: “It will be open to the public for breakfast, lunch and dinner, seven days a week. We aim to make it a ‘destination restaurant’ in the town, serving modern European cuisine, including a selection of meat, fish and vegetarian dishes.”

Mr Moore commented: “We are working very hard to ensure that this phase of building does not impact unnecessarily on our residential and business neighbours.

“It has been a real feat of engineering to get the sub-basement level constructed, and we thank everyone for their patience. Work is progressing well and we’re confident that when the hotel is finished it will prove itself to be a tremendous asset to the area, benefiting residents, businesses and visitors alike.”