The Essex Hotel Futures Study was undertaken by Hotel Solutions between September and December 2009 for Essex County Council and East of England Tourism. The study built on the research that Hotel Solutions undertook for East of England Tourism in 2008 to assess hotel developer interest in the East of England Region, by providing an in depth assessment of hotel performance and markets in Essex and a full analysis of the potential for hotel development in each part of the county, including Basildon.


The study showed potential for further hotel development in most parts of Essex in the medium to long term as regeneration and economic development schemes are progressed and new offices, business parks and industries are developed.  This included potential for:


  • A new 4 star hotel at Stansted Airport;
  • New 3 star hotels at Basildon, Chelmsford, Colchester, Southend Airport, Stansted Airport and Thurrock;
  • New budget hotels at Basildon, Braintree, Brentwood, Canvey Island, Chelmsford, Chigwell/Debden/Loughton, Clacton-on-Sea , Colchester, Harlow, Harwich, Maldon, Southend-on-Sea, Stansted Airport, Thurrock and Witham;
  • Country house hotels, given suitable properties for conversion, primarily small country house hotels in the west of the county and close to Basildon, Chelmsford, Brentwood and Thurrock;
  • Golf clubs to develop hotel accommodation;
  • Boutique hotels in Colchester and possibly Harwich, Clacton-on-Sea and Southend-on-Sea, Chelmsford, Brentwood and Braintree;
  • Serviced apartments in Basildon, Chelmsford, Brentwood, Colchester, Harlow, Southend and Thurrock, primarily through the letting of residential apartments on a serviced basis.


Alongside the progression of the countywide study, the county’s District and Borough Councils were given the opportunity to commission additional research, hotel demand projections, planning policy reviews, and bespoke reports for their area. Chelmsford, Harlow, Braintree and Maldon took up this offer and Tendring commissioned some work on hotel and guest house retention. Colchester and Basildon had already commissioned hotel studies from other consultants. Hotel Solutions also previously undertook a Hotel Futures Study for Brentwood in 2007.

We are currently in discussions with Visit Essex to look at updating the 2009 Essex Hotel Futures Study in 2016.


A significant number of hotels have opened in Essex since the Hotel Futures Study was completed in 2009, in most cases reflecting the opportunities that we identified for hotel development across the county:


  • Park Inn by Radisson, Southend-on-Sea – opened March 2010 (3 star/137 bedrooms);
  • Holiday Inn Southend Airport – opened October 2012 (4 star/ 129 bedrooms);
  • Premier Inn Southend-on-Sea (Eastern Esplanade) – opened February 2015 (budget/81 bedrooms);
  • Holiday Inn Express Colchester – opened November 2011 (upper-tier budget/ 101 bedrooms);
  • Greyfriars boutique hotel, Colchester – opened July 2015 (26 bedrooms);
  • Premier Inn Colchester Town Centre (Castle) – opened January 2016 (budget/85 bedrooms);
  • Premier Inn Chelmsford City Centre – opened August 2015 (budget/99 bedrooms);
  • Premier Inn Clacton-on-Sea (Seafront) – opened March 2015 (budget/66 bedrooms);
  • Premier Inn Stansted Airport – opened June 2012 (budget/303 bedrooms)


Plans have also been unveiled for a 131-bedroom hotel as part of Southend United FC’s planned new stadium at Fossetts Farm in Southend, and a 357-bedroom Hampton by Hilton upper-tier budget hotel at Stansted Airport;