Room2 launches its aparthotel concept in Southampton

Bridging the gap between Airbnb and traditional hotel accommodation, Room2 has announced its latest ‘hometel’ will open in June 2018 in Southampton.

James Nichols of Room2

Room2/James Nichols

The 71-room, serviced accommodation-style offer, which Room2 defines as a hometel, seeks to offer a flexible, relaxed living and working environment by combining the "best bits of home" with the services of a hotel.“Speaking to guests we discovered they were finding it hard to live their life the way they do at home when they stay in hotels," said Robert Godwin, Room2's founder and managing director.“For example, we had business people saying they lost their healthy routines every time they stayed in a hotel because they couldn’t cook their own meals.“Room2 is our solution to all of those problems. You have your living room and kitchen space, but you also have the peace of mind of hotel-level security and cleanliness.”

What is a hometel compared to an aparthotel? 

Each room comes with its own kitchen, TV, bed, seating area, bathroom, USB chargers, free Wi-Fi and hairdryers. When it launches in June, Room2 Southampton will also offer a selection of rooms with split-level mezzanine bedrooms – perfect for families – as well as a:
  • coffee bar
  • pantry-style shop selling ingredients and food that guests can cook in their rooms
  • gym and workout space
  • bar selling a range of beers, wines and spirits
  • laundry facilities
  • flexible communal space for working and socialising known as The Living Room.
“It’s elements like this that make our ‘hometels’ completely different to aparthotels or anything else out there,” says Mr Godwin.Seeking to be a home from home for Room2’s guests, the hometel’s success rests on having the right front-of-house team. “As essential as the concept is, it’s the people that live the brand and make the experience feel more homely,’ said James Nichols, general manager of Room2 Southampton. 
Other news and features from Relocate Global:

Combining business opportunities with leisure

Room2’s investment – its second after its first launch in Hammersmith in 2016 – follows Southampton’s growth across the business and leisure sectors. It seeks to meet both groups’ needs with a flexible product.“Southampton’s a growing city that’s recently seen significant investment across its retail and leisure industries so we’re expecting a real mix of guests; from leisure tourists and cruise passengers to travelling business people and those visiting friends and family at Southampton’s two universities,“ said Robert Godwin. James Nichols added: “As a city, Southampton is known for its innovation and willingness to adopt new ideas. Not only that, it’s an excellent location, both as a destination in its own right and a base for visiting the region. It’s the perfect combination.”

Serviced accommodation's popularity continues to grow

Room2’s 71 rooms in the city add to the UK’s growing inventory of serviced accommodation. The latest report from the Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP) – the not-for-profit trade body for the serviced apartment sector – shows the sector's recent strong growth is on track to continue in 2018. More than 2,000 new units are set to open this year, incuding the 71 in Southampton by Room2, representing a 9% increase on current stock in the UK."We couldn’t be more excited about opening our doors in Southampton in June and hope the hometel will form a blueprint for us to continue the hometel concept across the UK,” said Mr Godwin.
Relocate Magazine Winter 2017 front cover
Read more about developments in the serviced accommodation sector in the Winter issue of our magazine
For related news and features, visit our Serviced Apartments section. Relocate’s new Global Mobility Toolkit provides free information, practical advice and support for HR, global mobility managers and global teams operating overseas.Global Mobility Toolkit download factsheets resource centreAccess hundreds of global services and suppliers in our Online DirectoryClick to get to the Relocate Global Online Directory