A double decker hotel in the heart of Slough opened its doors yesterday - making a UK first for the parent hotel chain and the council.

The Moxy and Residence Inn hotels form part of a wider residential, retail and leisure hub built on the former Slough library site at the junction of Bath and Windsor Roads.

Developed and owned by Slough Borough Council and delivered via Slough Urban Renewal, SUR - a property partnership with between the council and Morgan Sindall - the dual brand hotels have been built and fitted-out three months ahead of schedule.

ALSO VIEW: Trying out the new hotel on Slough's old library site

Each has opened within the parameters of coronavirus guidelines and is taking bookings for guests exempted by the government during lockdown. Those exempted include people who need it for work purposes or to provide charitable or voluntary services, to attend a medical appointment, to undertake education or training, or are moving home.

With its 152 rooms The Moxy incorporates Thunderbirds graphics in its décor in honour of the popular vintage puppet series filmed in the town by its creator Gerry Anderson.

The Residence Inn’s 92 suites meanwhile are designed with longer-staying guests in mind and boast views of the London skyline.

ALSO VIEW: New grand Slough hotel and apartments ahead of schedule

A team of 25 people have been hired to operate the hotel after an X-Factor style audition process at the end of last year with the emphasis on creating local employment.

Cycas Hospitality is a specialist hotel management company with experience of running other dual-branded hotels across Europe and will be operating both Marriott International-branded properties.

Next door is Novus Apartments a new collection of 64 studio, one and two bedroom apartments which have recently been launched for sale.

Cllr James Swindlehurst, council leader and cabinet member for regeneration and strategy, said: “Despite the lockdowns and restrictions during 2020, construction work continued on the Old Library site to build out this major town centre project.

“Since the scaffolding and hoardings were removed from the buildings before Christmas, it has been easy to see only finishing works remained and these have been racing towards completion. The Moxy sign on top of the building is now visible from around the borough and already beginning to feel like an established town centre landmark."