Budget hotel chain Travelodge has announced it plans to open in three more locations in the Wandsworth area of south London as it looks to take advantage of what it calls the 'Nappy Valley effect'.
The company says its existing hotels in the Wandsworth area, as well as nearby locations such as Fulham, have seen a change in the demographic of their customers over recent years as these parts of London increasingly become home to young families.
Whereas most visitors to hotels in the region were business customers and tourists, a growing number are the parents and other relatives of families living nearby, with many modern London households without the room to accommodate them when they come to visit.
"Our hotel staff are now saying that over a third of customers tell them they are actually in London to visit their children and grandchildren," said Tony O'Brien, Travelodge UK development director.
"With so many young people in London, especially in Nappy Valley, starting their families whilst living in small flats and houses, the only option for Granny and Granddad to come and visit is to stay in a nearby hotel.
"It is a remarkable trend, but one that we are poised to capitalise on as part of our wider growth story in London."
Travelodge's planned expansion in the capital could provide a welcome boost to London hotel recruitment activity, with the company planning to open at least another three further locations within the Battersea Old Town, Clapham Common and Clapham Old Town/Lavender Hill areas.
The chain already has a sizeable presence in the area and opened a new £10 million, 84-room hotel in Clapham Junction just last week, adding to a 90-room location opened by Travelodge in Balham last month.
Altogether, Travelodge owns 54 hotels in London comprising over 7,000 rooms, representing a four per cent share of the capital's hotel market. It has opened a total of 11 new hotels in London this year alone.
Berkeley Scott is a leading London hotel recruitment agency