Star to invest £42m in estate this year
Star Pubs & Bars has announced that it will invest £42m in upgrading more than a quarter of its estate in 2022.
Heineken-owned Star Pubs & Bars has announced that it will invest £42m in upgrading more than a quarter of its estate in 2022.
The investment, which the operator says will create over 700 new jobs, will see 660 pubs benefit from the expenditure, 137 of which will have a makeover costing above £125,000.
With more people working from home for at least some of the week, Star Pubs & Bars has said it will focus the spend on suburban pubs and those on high streets near residential neighbourhoods. The revamps will reflect two long-term trends that have been accelerated and amplified by the pandemic – premiumisation and outdoor socialising. Schemes will be individually designed to suit each pub and its location.
“People have stayed closer to home over the last two years due to the pandemic and have turned to their local for the kind of experience they’d previously have travelled to a city centre, restaurant or bar to find," says Lawson Mountstevens, managing director of Star Pubs & Bars. "They don't want to turn back time: they expect better quality including food and specialty drinks – such as cocktails – that are harder to recreate at home. It’s the same with gardens. Sitting outside at the pub has become a new occasion and, if the outside space is good enough, customers will wrap up to enjoy it even in the winter months. Outdoor facilities also remain important for those who are still cautious about going out as the UK learns to live with Covid.
“The cost-of-living squeeze is magnifying these trends. People are looking for a really great experience when they go out. These are challenging times. However, we are confident that well-invested pubs that adapt to market changes will have a bright, long-term future.”
Heineken owns around 2,400 pubs as part of its Star Pubs & Bars business.