The Jewish Chronicle - - Life/travel -

THE Park is the lat­est in a chain which is branch­ing out na­tion­ally. Think a no­tion­ally up-mar­ket Trav­elodge and you’re just about there.

This one opened in June. Its best as­set is its lo­ca­tion, bang op­po­site the Arena sta­dium, and just a short walk to the city cen­tre, — Sel­fridges and Har­vey Nicks. The night I stayed, Boy­zone were play­ing, so there were quite a few podgy mums chap­er­on­ing their tat­tooed kids.

Any­one plan­ning to stay for more than a night should be­ware: there is no park­ing at the ho­tel and guests are en­cour­aged to leave their cars at the NCP Arena park across the road. If there is a con­cert on, charges triple; oth­er­wise it’s a rea­son­able £3 for up to 24 hours.

Rooms have been de­signed with busi­ness­men in mind rather than busi­ness­women: there are no draw­ers, just shelves, and a hang­ing rail with space only for suits. Bed­room doors are fire­doors, so heavy to shift; the phone, oddly, is not by the bed, but on the cen­tral ta­ble, where, use­fully, there is a ket­tle and good tea and cof­fee on of­fer, and a nice flatscreen tv. Rooms have safes, but no fridges or mini-bars. If you get the munchies in the night there are snack vend­ing ma­chines on ev­ery floor. There’s also a spa with fairly hefty treat­ment prices.

Buf­fet break­fast is gen­er­ous. But there is very lit­tle on the evening menu for non­meat eaters; if you opt for lo­cal fish and chips, you’re in for £12.

Over­all, the im­pres­sion is of a ho­tel which has been dec­o­rated on the cheap: brand new, it looked good. Six months down the line may be a dif­fer­ent story.

The Park Inn: a no­tion­ally up­mar­ket Trav­elodge. But the po­si­tion is an as­set

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