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Stampede for 45 jobs at Birmingham hotel; LEISURE.

Byline: ANNA BLACKABY

A new hotel opening in Birmingham city centre has been swamped with applications for the 45 jobs it will create when it opens in July.

The 131-room Ramada Encore Birmingham City Centre, to be operated as a franchise by hotel group BDL Management when it opens at Holloway Head later this year, is aiming for a market which sits between full-service three or four-star hotels and a limited service two-star brand.

Ramada Encore Birmingham City Centre general manager Luc Perquin said the hotel will create a total of about 45 jobs including housekeeping, managerial, food and beverage and reception staff.

He said the hotel had been overwhelmed by applications for the jobs, many from people who have been made redundant from other sectors such as building and retail.

"The response is unbelievable. Just to give you an example, when I started the recruitment for an administrator I received 454 CVs.

If that's anything to go by I expect a similar number for the other positions."

Despite the recession, Mr Perquin was confident that now is a good time to open a hotel like the Ramada Encore in Birmingham city centre owing to the strength of the Birmingham market and the positioning of the Ramada Encore brand.

"Obviously we are in a recession but by the end of the year I am sure that we will be out of it.

"The Birmingham market is still strong thanks to events at the ICC and NIA, especially those coming up such as the Liberal Democrat conference and gymnastics events.

"We still have a strong financial district, good business parks and good schools so it's a combination of everything. Because we have such a unique product, we have confidence.

We are positive and that is driven by the fact that we are not the most expensive hotel." The opening of the city centre hotel follows the launch of another Ramada Encore franchise at the NEC, which saw the NEC Group's former head office transformed into a 166-bedroom hotel opened in March.

Developed by Carillion and joint-venture partner New World Leisure, the 166-bedroom was officially opened by the Mayor of Solihull, Coun David Bell.

Formerly home to The NEC Group's central offices, NEC House was sold to Carillion in 2008, with the 400 staff based in the building transferred to new offices above the NEC itself..
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Apr 23, 2009
Words:394
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