Independent hotelier Dakota is promising to bring a taste of Mayfair to Manchester when it opens here in May next year.
Located on Ducie Street, just a stone’s throw from Piccadilly Station, the Dakota Manchester will offer 137 luxury bedrooms and 27 suites – with some of the largest hotel bedrooms and suites Manchester has ever seen.
The new Manchester hotel will be the fifth in the group, but operations manager Andrew Ovenstone told us that it is much more than just another hotel construction.
“It’s very much a lifestyle brand, it’s design led and is much more crafted than it is constructed,” said Andrew.
“Now the building is up it’s starts to look quite imposing in its location, with the elevations looking really strong. Internally, now we start a very detailed fit out with the plan at the moment to open in May 2019, all being well.”
If the response to the Dakota Leeds, which opened last year, is anything to go by, the Manchester hotel is set to make quite an impresssion.
“The response to the Dakota Leeds has been fabulous,” Andrew told us. “It’s been a real good opening for us. I think Leeds as a city has a big population and it’s a strong hotel market, but most of them are the big chains. Within a few weeks we built up a strong reputation and were enjoying good occupancy levels and good rates. And it became a hotspot for the celebs as well.
“When Katy Perry was in town she stayed with us, and we had Arnold Schwarzenegger call in when he was in the area. We managed to ask him the vital question – would he be back? – and had a good response.
“Without singing it from the rooftops and bragging about, Dakota Leeds has gained that credibility which is something we enjoy. But for us the main thing is that it’s seen as a place where you go to entertain and impress your clients or colleagues.”
Acclaimed interior designer Amanda Rosa is determined to ensure there is luxury and elegance in every aspect of its creation.
“We’re inspired by places like Manhattan, New York, Chicago – and it’ll feel quite old world in terms of its design. It’ll have a brasserie-style restaurant, so you can expect it to be bustling with wood and leather throughout and very nicely decorated thanks to our fabulous interior designer and the great team that work with her.
“We’ll have a good team of chefs, our emphasis with our food offering is doing a simple thing brilliantly. We will look to celebrate local Manchester suppliers. We like to look backwards for inspiration so our cocktail menu and bar offering is very classic and quite romantic in that sense. We’ll also have a beautiful champagne room where guests can enjoy a glass or two of the finer things in life.
“And the new thing for us in Manchester that we’re excited about is our Cigar Terrace. We’re bringing the essence of Mayfair to Manchester. An outdoor space for people to be able to go and enjoy a cigar. It’ll be very nicely lit with a fire and offer a really sophisticated environment with great service and a lot of fun as well.”
And the icing on the cake? A stunning penthouse suite called the Grand Deluxe, offering guests the largest and most elegant suite in the entire city, or so we’re told.
“We have ambitious plans, and Manchester for us is very much on everybody’s lips. It’s a buoyant city and even just from being on the ground in the city you can feel it. There’s a real buzz in Manchester.
“Manchester gives us the opportunity to put ourselves on the map because it’s a city that’s on the world stage with a huge media presence and a vibrant bar and restaurant scene with lots of independents. We very much see it as the right city for us and hopefully we can play a part in Manchester’s ongoing success”.
But with Manchester already boasting a strong hotel scene, what’s going to make the Dakota stand out?
“I know it sounds very generic and everyone would tell you the same thing, but we’re in the fortunate position of being independent so our focus is long term and we’re committed to getting it right.
“We look for talented and passionate individuals and we like to take them on the hospitality journey. There are lots of great hotels in Manchester but I think the one main thing the Dakota will become established for is real service and great hospitality.”