Smart Alex works wonders at Vidella

Owners John Downer and Neil Williams with The Hotel Inspector's presenter Alex Polizzi.

Owners John Downer and Neil Williams with The Hotel Inspector's presenter Alex Polizzi.

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Hoteliers in Blackpool are to become stars of the small screen after their bed and breakfast was transformed for a popular TV show.

Alex Polizzi, host of Channel Five’s The Hotel Inspector, has been in the resort filming for the past five weeks at the Vidella Hotel, in North Shore.

The Vidella hotel, Dickson Rd, Blackpool  has been revamped by the Hotel Inspector television show.

The Vidella hotel, Dickson Rd, Blackpool has been revamped by the Hotel Inspector television show.

And yesterday special guests were invited to give their verdict on the new look hotel at a wrap party featuring singing, show girls and drag cabaret.

John Downer and Neil Williams, who run the hotel on Dickson Road, were asked to appear on the programme having previously featured on the Channel Four series Four In A Bed - which sees different hoteliers stay at each other’s premises.

John said: “We jumped at the chance and I think this is more of a grown up show.

“The marketing we get from something like this is priceless.

“It’s all about doing something a little bit different to get people into Blackpool.

“We try not to take ourselves too seriously.”

Neil, who also performs for guests as drag act Noleen, added: “Hopefully it’s gone alright.

“It’s not just about the party today but the whole process of getting here.

“We liked having Alex here and used all her knowledge to the best of our ability.”

The show, which is now entering its 10th series, see Alex, herself a former hotelier, tour the country to help transform struggling B&Bs into successful businesses.

Among the changes to have been made are the redecorating of the hotel’s bedrooms and restaurant, as well as some changes to its menu.

And she says the duo have been a pleasure to work with.

Alex told The Gazette: “I love coming to Blackpool, especially in the sunshine.

“It’s always a challenge when I come and do these jobs but John and Neil have worked incredibly hard.

“It’s so much easier when you have hoteliers who work with you rather than against you.

“The fact they’re working together is so much better. They were really struggling and when you’ve got a business not doing well that can put a great pressure on the friendship, so hopefully they can rediscover that love that led them to set up the business in the first place.”

Caryn Steele, owner of Balloonatics, based on Guildford Avenue, Bispham, supplied some of the decorations for the wrap party.

She said: “I actually grew up round the corner from the hotel. It’s lovely and they’ve done a great job.”

The programme will air on Five early next year.

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