Why businesses are worried as the Hilton Sheffield set to close this week
The Hilton Sheffield hotel is set to close for good next Sunday, December 15, after 20 years in the city.
There is still no news as to what will happen to the building on Furnival Road at Victoria Quays, which has 128 bedrooms, a spa with a gym and swimming pool and is home to the Quays Restaurant.
The freeholder New City Hotels has yet to respond to questions about the property’s future, and concerns have now been raised that the hotel’s closure could hit canal-side businesses who rely on trade from Hilton’s guests.
The picturesque spot has enjoyed something of a renaissance in recent times, with a £5.8 million scheme which will help better connect it to the city centre set for completion in March 2020, but it is feared that Hilton’s departure will prove a significant setback.
Jill Lawson, who owns the Victoria Junction cafe beside the canal, said: “We’ve always had quite a few customers from the hotel, especially during the snooker or when you had the swimming championships at Ponds Forge.
“We also used to get people who went swimming at the hotel coming in with their children for coffee and lunch, and there was one group of gentlemen who had been coming three times a week for more than four years but are having to find somewhere else to swim now, which they’re a bit upset about.
“Victoria Quays is getting more well known, and there’s another bar/restaurant opening up. We’ll have to wait and see what happens once the Hilton closes. We just hope the owner gets on with it and reopens the hotel fairly quickly because we don’t want it left empty for a long time and being vandalised.
“The Hilton closing will have an impact on trade, though hopefully only a small impact, and ideally our customers who have stayed there in the past will find somewhere else nearby to stay in future and will come back to us.”
Announcing the closure in October, Hilton said it was working with staff to ‘understand their best options’ and would help any guests affected to find alternative arrangements where possible.
The Star revealed last month how the hotel’s operator, Park Victoria Quays Lessee Ltd, recorded a £2m loss for 2018.