PLANS to open a luxury hotel in Newport city centre have taken a major step forward, it has been confirmed.

Initially, the 130-bedroom Mercure Hotel was set to open in early 2020, but delays - including the Covid-19 pandemic - left many questions hanging over the project.

But now, it has been confirmed that quietly, significant progress has been made, with the hotel now seemingly set to open in “the first quarter of 2022”.

What’s more, the operator of the hotel has today been revealed as Interstate Hotels & Resorts, who have revealed what customers will be able to expect.

The global hotel group is set to run the Mercure, which will be located on the top 15 floors of city centre Chartist Tower – Newport’s tallest building.

South Wales Argus: How the tower could look once the hotel moves inHow the tower could look once the hotel moves in

And while the hotel itself will be a major boost to the city, Interstate has revealed what might end up being the star attraction – that the restaurant will have its own outdoor rooftop terrace area, which will offer views across the city and beyond.

The hotel has been designed for both business and pleasure use – with an entire floor given up for business and conference space.

Below, there is mixed use retail and office space – some of which is already occupied by the Argus.

Initially, plans suggested that there would be 163 rooms, which was later reduced to 150, before the latest, 130-room total was today revealed.

It all comes as part of a multi-million pound redevelopment of the tower, which first opened in 1966.

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What has been said about the project?

Today (Friday, November 19), Interstate Hotels & Resorts revealed that they have been signed by Chartist Tower owners Garrison Barclay to operate the Mercure Hotel in Newport city centre.

David Anderson, executive vice president – international at Interstate Hotels and Resorts, said: “The Mercure Newport is part of an exciting development right in the heart of the city centre, converting one of the area’s most prominent buildings – the Chartist Tower – into a travel, leisure and business destination.

“The hotel is in a great location, with the city’s many amenities within walking distance, and transport links within easy reach, too.”

A spokeswoman for Garrison Barclay confirmed the new operator, and said that recruitment is soon set to get underway to staff the hotel and its amenities.