A FORMER nightclub in Newport city centre could soon be turned into a budget hotel.

Earlier this year, plans to transform the iconic TJ’s nightclub in Clarence Place into an easyHotel took a major step forward.

Planning permission was granted, allowing the former club, which is at risk of falling into disrepair, back into life.

In its place would be a 58-bedroom no-frills budget hotel.

As part of these plans, the roof and rear extension of the property would be demolished, and a fourth storey would be added to the Grade-II listed premises.

The frontage of the building, which looks out onto Clarence Place, would also be restored.

South Wales Argus: An artist impression of the new hotel in Clarence Place - though it is thought that it will look suitably more orangeAn artist impression of the new hotel in Clarence Place - though it is thought that it will look suitably more orange

An international chain of hotels, they are part of the easyGroup, which includes budget airline easyJet, and fitness brand easyGym.

Just like the other businesses under this umbrella, the colour orange features prominently in these hotels.

But, unlike other budget hotel chains, easyHotel has something of a reputation for going one step further than its competitors, in a bid to save its customers a few pounds.

And, while there is no opening date for their Newport hotel at this time, here at the Argus, we went along to an easyHotel across the border to see what all the fuss is about.

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EasyHotel: What you can expect

To see just what visitors to Newport will soon be able to experience, we spent two days at the easyHotel in Birmingham city centre.

For a busy city centre in December, £95 for a twin bedroom is something of a steal.

But, for that price, you do miss out on a few comforts – such as a window that you can look out of.

The room was sold as a windowless room, and upgrades to rooms with a view were available – at roughly £20 more.

Strangely enough, the windowless room actually had a window – covering an entire wall. But, this was completely covered by blinds, with no pulley in place to ever actually bring natural light to the tiny, if functional room.

South Wales Argus: The easyHotel in Birmingham city centreThe easyHotel in Birmingham city centre

Another quirk is the complete lack of drink making facilities. Admittedly, these are not mentioned on the company website, but, given that they come as standard in virtually every other hotel, their absence was something of a surprise. That being said, there are hot drink vending machines on site – but an early morning trek to the reception is not everyone’s cup of tea (or coffee).

Budget hotel bathrooms are typically a breeding ground for red flags, but it has to be said – the bathroom in this easyHotel room was pretty good.

Compact, as you might expect, but the facilities were clean, and the shower was pretty great. An added bonus was that it was fully adjustable, unlike other budget chains – which is a godsend for taller people.

Back in the room, there are plenty of plug and USB sockets, making charging devices a dream – even if there is an absence of desk or cabinet space.

Ultimately, you would appear to get what you pay for – a compact, but functional room, with windows optional.

Currently, Newport city centre has a shortage of hotel rooms, and the arrival of easyHotel is almost certainly set to be to the benefit of the city.

EasyHotel has been contacted for comment.