Legal & General Property (“LGP”) has recently announced, on behalf of its Leisure Fund (“the Fund”), that it has secured a pre-let to Travelodge on its development site at Coliseum Leisure Park, Cheshire Oaks, enabling it to kick start its plans to build a 77-bed hotel based above two restaurant units.The development, which is scheduled to start onsite in September 2011 and complete at the beginning of the summer 2012, will comprise a four-storey hotel, arranged above an 800 sq ft hotel lobby and 7,000 sq ft of ground floor restaurant space. The hotel has been pre-let to Travelodge on a 25 year lease. The restaurant space will be divided into two A3 units, comprising 3,000 sq ft and 4,000 sq ft, respectively and will be marketed once work starts on site.
In line with the Company’s ongoing efforts to reduce the environmental impact of the built environment, LGP is targeting a BREEAM “Excellent” Rating for the development, which, if achieved, would make it the first Travelodge in the UK to receive such an accolade. Furthermore, 10% of the predicted energy requirements of the scheme will be utilising renewable energy sources.
The new development is located adjacent to the Prezzo restaurant unit on a cleared ¼ acre site within Coliseum Leisure Park. Existing operators at the scheme include a 16-screen Vue Cinema, which is one of the most successful cinemas in the country, and a recently opened Miller & Carter Steakhouse, which is owned by leading restaurant and pub operator, Mitchells and Butlers, and was the first of its kind to be placed on an out-of-town scheme.
LGP is also in talks with a number of other exciting restaurant operators who are looking to secure representation on the scheme. Located in Cheshire Oaks, the park benefits from excellent transport links, which include easy access to the M53 and close proximity to Ellesmere Port railway station.
The deal signifies further growth of LGP’s Leisure Fund, which already has circa £230 million of assets under management (as at March 2011). Currently rated the fifth highest performing fund within the IPD specialist pooled property funds index, the Fund has consistently delivered top quartile performance over one, three and five years since launch against the IPD Pooled Property Fund Index and outperformed the IPD Leisure Fund benchmark to December 2010 by 1.6% pa over three years and 1.2% pa over five years (ungeared).
Commenting on the letting, Andrew Ferguson, Fund Manager to LGP’s Leisure Fund, said: “This letting demonstrates LGP’s ability to source and attract high quality tenants and also reflects our ongoing belief that there is significant value to be found in the leisure sector, which continues to offer long leases off sensible base rents, providing an attractive alternative to some of the more traditional investment sectors.
“We are extremely pleased to have secured Travelodge as a tenant at Coliseum Leisure Park and believe that its presence will not only complement the existing tenant line-up, but significantly enhance the diversity of the offering at the park.”
Tony O’Brien, UK Development Director for Travelodge Hotels, said: “We trade very well at other major shopping centres throughout the country, such as The Trafford Centre and Sheffield Meadowhall, and have long identified Cheshire Oaks as a destination where we would like a hotel. The adjacent Coliseum Leisure Park is a perfect location for our customers, with its great leisure offering, so we are naturally delighted to have agreed terms with Legal & General Property. It will be an ideal base for visitors to the North West and the facilities at the Park and Cheshire Oaks will mean our customers have a wide choice of places to relax, eat, drink and shop.
“This is one of several Travelodge developments currently being undertaken by the major UK pension funds and again demonstrates the attractiveness of Travelodge’s covenant and lease structure.“
Jones Lang LaSalle is the acting agent on the park. Travelodge was advised on this deal by Whitestone Retail and Leisure.