One of Leeds’ most popular hotels is to remain shut until March after its entire basement was flooded on Boxing Day.
The Crowne Plaza, on Wellington Street, was hit badly in the deluge, with its car-park, IT systems and maintenance rooms all flooded.
And nearly two weeks on from the floods, the hotel is still without power.
General manager Marco Frik said: “The water came from Kirkstall Road into the basement, into the car park. The whole of the car park flooded, all the way up to the ceiling. It was two and a half metres high.”
The decision was taken to close the hotel on December 27, and guests were moved to the nearby Novotel on Whitehall Quay.
The Crowne Plaza is a popular choice with visitors on business trips to the city. It boasts seven conference rooms, a gym and health spa and indoor swimming pool.
Mr Frik said that informing guests about the closure has been difficult as their details were stored on the destroyed IT system, but that they have managed to get in touch with the vast majority of reservation holders.
The 80 staff at the Crowne Plaza are all continuing to receive full pay whilst the hotel is closed. Several staff members were forced to stay in the hotel overnight on Boxing Day to help sort out the chaos.
Mr Frik said: “99 per cent of our customers have been very understanding. We are holding a drinks party for our regular customers next week to apologise.”
And he threw his weight behind the YEP-backed Leeds Floods Appeal.
He said: “Please support the appeal.
“Being in this situation myself, there is nothing worse than to lose your livelihood.
“People with small businesses should get support from the public because it is their life.”
Mr Frik said the Crowne Plaza will hopefully reopen on March 1.