2017: CBeebies Land Hotel

GaryH

TS Member
One thing which struck me on the weekend was how the existing hotels cannot cope with the visitor numbers, and the hotels, for August, were not even full.

Splash Landings for example, there was no empty seat in the bar in the evening, it was roasting hot from the amount of people up there, yet the mini disco then for the kids ended relatively early as did the singer.

Alton Towers hotel wasnt overly busy but I think thats mainly due to the poor entertainment offering, with the two girls singing and messing about.... which seemed well scripted as they did the same the night before. Even wore exactly the same outfits, then closed the show at 10.30 with not even a goodbye. They just stopped singing and walked off the stage!

The Spa - quick enquiry at the desk revealed it was full.

Waterpark - absolutely rammed. 45 min queues for the slides. Could hardly move in the lazy river.

Restaurants - Crooked spoon was rammed. Tried to get tables in the other restaurants for the night after but couldnt until late.


So... add another hotel to this lot, and then when the park is back to normal..... it could be pretty chaotic!
 

Jordan

TS Contributor
I suppose it's reached the point where it's just about feasible to go to Alton Towers for a weekend and do everything but the theme park :tongueout:
 

jon81uk

TS Member
*shakes head in disbelief*

Another stupid and ill thought out plan. They messed up the chance to build a linking 3rd hotel by putting that half arsed Enchanted Village mess on the perfect site for it. It looks very small to be its own hotel, it's tucked out of the way, and it's shoe horned into a space that will conflict with their best existing hotel. Therefore it can only be an extension - which means having 2 entrances and 2 car parks. Stupid.

This is the 3rd time they've looked at extending ATH and quite frankly the worst plans of them all. Why even bother? Just leave ATH alone with it's beautiful gardens, and build a new hotel somewhere else. The Spa however does need extending because it's too small.

Best plan would be to build a new hotel on the site adjacent to the Enchanted Village, link to ATH with a bridge going over the road. That way not only would EV be tucked away out the back of the new hotel, eliminating the fact it's plonked in an open field with an ugly fence around it, but they could finally make a grand entrance to make it a bit more magical.

They struggled to get planning permission for the Enchanted Village, I think a full size hotel on that site would have more issues. This is probably the main reason why they are building at the back of the existing building, to keep it out of site better, so less complaints on planning.

And as to why they are building hotel rooms and not rides, hotel room gets guarenteed income if guest come and stay, they alos eat dinner and spend more on site. Whereas new rides may or may not get people into the park who might not even spend that much on top of admission.
 

James

TS Founding Member
They really need more facilities to ease the pressure of what's there. This extension looks like a good start to that what with an entertainments area. Although Enchanted Village should have had more facilities with it from the start, Splash Landings was poorly planned and by now we should be seeing plans for an entertainments complex or more to do at night for hotel guests... the resort side of things is all over the place imo, and they need to get it sorted.

Entertainments needs a good sort out too. I haven't been this year although from what I've heard about hotel ents it sounds a mess.
 

PeteB

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
One thing which struck me on the weekend was how the existing hotels cannot cope with the visitor numbers, and the hotels, for August, were not even full.

Splash Landings for example, there was no empty seat in the bar in the evening, it was roasting hot from the amount of people up there, yet the mini disco then for the kids ended relatively early as did the singer.

Alton Towers hotel wasnt overly busy but I think thats mainly due to the poor entertainment offering, with the two girls singing and messing about.... which seemed well scripted as they did the same the night before. Even wore exactly the same outfits, then closed the show at 10.30 with not even a goodbye. They just stopped singing and walked off the stage!

The Spa - quick enquiry at the desk revealed it was full.

Waterpark - absolutely rammed. 45 min queues for the slides. Could hardly move in the lazy river.

Restaurants - Crooked spoon was rammed. Tried to get tables in the other restaurants for the night after but couldnt until late.


So... add another hotel to this lot, and then when the park is back to normal..... it could be pretty chaotic!

Since Merlin's takeover I think the hotels have suffered not from increased occupancy but from staffing cutbacks. Getting served in the bars is like waiting for rain in the desert, whereas years ago I always remember a speedy service, especially in the Dragon Bar over at ATH.

Splash Landings bar has also had a lot of seating taken away, and now even more so with that stupid pizza place they shoe horned in down at the bottom end. Even the outdoor area I noticed on my last visit was lacking tables and chairs.

Hotel entertainment? Yes, it's dire! Gone are the days of ATH being packed out with lunatics going nuts to Dickie & Tanya's show. Gone are the days when Paradise Plumbers and Mar Garita took over Splashing Landings bar.

Things like the Spa and Cariba Creek (waterpark) have no doubt gained in popularity both from the general public visitors and the resort advertising/pushing staying guests to use those facilities. I still remember the days when the water park was exclusive to hotel guests, and while that was ideal for those staying over, I guess it doesn't make much sense from a business perspective.

The waterpark desperately needs expansion without question, and has needed it for a long time. It also suffers from reduced opening hours which of course makes it busier.

The whole resort is an ill-thoughout, ill-managed mess. They could do so much more with it, but Merlin's way of operating is to charge as high a price as possible and give the guest as little as they can possibly get away with in return.

EDIT - This post makes me sound old and bitter. I guess I am lol! :eek:
 
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jon81uk

TS Member
Looking at the plans again I notice that the new reception area completely wraps around the spa. So the large frosted windows around the whirlpool in the spa will become closed up and it also looks like the conservatory will be removed. This will of course severly limit the amount of natural light at the spa.

Also the changing rooms at the Spa (and a few other bits) are looking very worn out and in need of some attention so I hope the plan to refresh & expand these still goes ahead.
 

Jonathan

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Helix <3
Found an email on the planning application page on SMDC's website (details obviously redacted) which was uploaded today. It reads:

"In light of recent events this is sheer madness. Please don't approve."

I'm not surprised that someone's made comments along these lines, and it wouldn't surprise me either if a substantial proportion of the objections are related to the incident on The Smiler. Makes me wonder how much the incident is going to be a factor when SMDC's planning committee come to make a decision on this hotel extension.
 

Jonathan

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Helix <3
I didn't think it'd play much of a role when SMDC come to their decision, but it was a thought that briefly crossed my mind when I first read the email.
 

Scott

Former TS Team Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
If anything, The Smiler incident would sway the decision positively for Towers as approving developments continues investment and keeps the local tourism industry alive.
 

Stelios

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
Its been approved, but in The Towers current state I'd be hesitant certainly on getting straight to it, how long can you have Planning for until you have to get it re-approved? Or does it vary on a case by case basis?
 

Stelios

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
Enough to recover at least visitor numbers though maybe not the money lost of Merlin as a whole I'd say. It'd take another year almost to build probably anyway in terms of a close season.
 

James

TS Founding Member
It would be a shame if we see this put on hold again. They've shelved the ATH extension so many times now I wish they'd just get on with it.

If they made this as a Spa Hotel then it will be its own product, so I think they'd go ahead with it. The Spa does pretty well.
 

DiogoJ42

TS Member
Favourite Ride
The Metropolitan Line
It'll be downgraded to a "Crash Pad" due to budget cuts. If it gets built at all.
 

delta79

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis, Air
A Photo of the hotal extention mock up have released

strangehotel6.jpg
:D
 
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