Wasps today has announced a series of planned upgrades at the Ricoh Arena over the coming months, which will improve access, customer experience and increase footfall.
Located within two hours of 75% of the country, access to Wasps' new home will be further enhanced in June 2015 when a railway station opens on-site at the Ricoh Arena with direct links to Coventry and Nuneaton railway stations.
Wasps have also announced that Hilton Worldwide have agreed terms for the conversion of the Ricoh Arena Hotel into a DoubleTree by Hilton. The Franchisee agreement will be signed upon finalisation of the refurbishment plan and Hilton Worldwide Board Approval. It is the intention that work will start on the conversion in the second quarter of this year with the new hotel brand launching in early Autumn.
Further improvements will include upgrades to existing bars and restaurants. When finished, the Ricoh Arena will offer five great bars, three restaurants on-site and over 20 other food and beverage outlets to customers visiting the Arena.
As well as being home to Wasps, the Ricoh Arena is one of the UK's leading multi-purpose venues for business, sport and entertainment. In addition to the 121 bedroom hotel onsite, the Arena also houses a Grosvenor Casino, 20,000 sqm of flexible event space, 80 versatile suites, two restaurants, a Costa Coffee Lounge and the Jaguar Exhibition Hall, which can accommodate up to 12,000 for events, concerts and sporting occasions such as Davis Cup tennis, alongside the 32,600 seater stadium for rugby and football, which increases to a capacity of 40,500 for concerts within the stadium bowl.
David Armstrong, Group Chief Executive Officer of Wasps, said: "We are thrilled that another global brand has recognised the powerful potential created by the combination of the Wasps brand and the award-winning venue of the Ricoh Arena - one of the UK's leading conference, exhibition and entertainment centres.
"Working with a high profile hotel partner is a key element in Wasps and the Ricoh Arena's strategy to position itself as the UK's leading multi-purpose venue.
"Following Wasps' transformational move to Coventry, we have not only seen the club's match day attendances triple and hospitality increase by over 500%, but also ACL's Conference & Exhibition business turnover increase by 50% in the first four months since Wasps purchased the Ricoh Arena.
"We are proud to have established a wide range of blue-chip partnerships since our move, including partnerships with two Fortune 500 companies in our Main Club Partner Land Rover and official partner EMC, with more exciting additions to our partner family to be announced in due course."