The £6m investment in Sunderland High Street West Travelodge adds a further 82 hotel bedrooms to the city, and complements the existing Sunderland Central Travelodge in Low Row near Sunderland Minster.

The hotel was officially opened on 13 November by the Mayor of Sunderland, Cllr Iain Kay.

The hotel opening has created 18 jobs, and the new team includes hotel manager, Bill Johnson, who has worked at Travelodge for two years, previously working at Sunderland Central Travelodge.

The new team have all been recruited by the Job Centre Plus’ Long Term Unemployed Scheme – which helps to get the long term unemployed back into the workplace. As part of their induction training, staff members undertook a comprehensive four-week training programme at nearby Travelodge hotels. They also attended a sleep seminar to ensure that they are fully equipped to make sure their customers get a good night’s sleep.

These jobs are in addition to the 125 jobs created by developers Kier Property and the Calmont Group during the hotel's construction phase, many of which were filled by local people.

Sunderland High Street West’s hotel manager, Bill Johnson, said: “By attracting new visitors to Sunderland High Street West Travelodge, we will boost the local economy by £1.2m as our research shows the average Travelodge customer will spend on average £36 a day in local shops, restaurants and bars during their stay.”

The Mayor, Cllr Iain Kay, said: "The opening of a second Travelodge in the city centre is great news for people visiting Sunderland for work or pleasure, and for the city's ability to stage large scale events like the stadium concerts and the Sunderland International Airshow."

Leader of Sunderland City Council, Cllr Paul Watson, said: “This £6m investment is further evidence of growing confidence on the part of the private sector in investing in Sunderland city centre.

"Sunderland has long been in need of additional hotel beds. The opening of this second Travelodge means people visiting the city can stay in the heart of the city centre, which will be a real boost for city centre businesses."

James Nicholson, senior development manager at Kier Property, said: “We are delighted to have completed the new Travelodge hotel at Sunniside on time, on budget and to a very high quality. The hotel will further bolster the already successful regeneration story of Sunniside.”

One ground floor unit is under offer. However, there is an opportunity for a retailer/operator to let the remaining 4,670 sq ft unit, fronting onto the High Street West.

The ground floor leisure, retail and office opportunities in the development are being marketed by Lofthouse and Partners and BNP Paribas.