The new Holiday Inn Blackpool and Marco Pierre White New York Italian restaurant has this week opened its doors, following a hugely successful recruitment campaign with a difference.

The four-star, four storey 144-bedroom hotel – part of Blackpool Council’s £350m Talbot Gateway regeneration project – has seen General Manager Mark Winter spearhead the innovative ‘Be More You’ campaign, resulting in over 3,600 applications, including 850 across the hotel’s managerial positions.

The campaign, which had its own website and promotional video filmed as a parade around Blackpool, sought to reposition the perception of hospitality careers and attract professionals that can be completely themselves in the workplace.

Having joined the RBH team in 2015, Mark became the company’s youngest ever General Manager at 25 years old, and this marks his third IHG opening project under RBH.

The new hotel has opened its doors with a team of 80 staff, including an F&B department operating the latest Marco Pierre White restaurant – Marco’s New York Italian – alongside business conferencing facilities and a fitness centre.

The development has been funded and is owned by Blackpool Council, with RBH managing the running of the hotel under the Holiday Inn and Marco Pierre White brands.

The hotel and restaurant sit adjacent to Blackpool North train station, and above a new tramway and transport interchange which will open in June.

RBH’s CEO David Hart said:
“This has been a highly anticipated hotel opening for Blackpool and the whole team at RBH following the excitement that the vibrant pre-opening campaigns have evoked. It’s been one of our most popular recruitment campaigns to date, and shows the encouraging enthusiasm for careers in hospitality – an industry that prides itself on embracing talented individuals for who they are.

“As our 26th IHG new opening, this hotel is testament to the successful working relationship of a key brand partner for us. And, as our third Blackpool hotel specifically, it’s an area we know to be positively developing thanks to the significant investment in building a thriving economy and growing tourism industry.

Joanna Kurowska, Managing Director, UK&I, IHG Hotels & Resorts, commented:
“We’re thrilled to announce the opening of our 26th property in partnership with RBH, located in the vibrant coastal town of Blackpool. Hats off to RBH on a successful recruitment drive, bringing great talent to the hotel and boosting the local economy. This passion for people is something we share at IHG Hotels & Resorts, and we understand the importance of making a positive impact through the hotels that are at the hearts of communities. We are proud to work with partners, like RBH, to ensure all colleagues feel valued and empowered to bring their whole selves to work.”