Cristiano Ronaldo once counted Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs among his team-mates – now he plans to rival the former Manchester United pair with a new hotel in the city.
Ronaldo plans to extend his global brand back into the city where he made his name after being given the green light to build a hotel in Manchester’s Northern Quarter.
The swanky tourist pad has been described as ‘four star-plus’, and will contain more than 150 rooms, as well as a a ground-floor lounge bar and a roof terrace for guest and public use.
The project will pit Ronaldo into direct competition with his ex-team-mates Neville and Giggs, who own The Stock Exchange in the city centre, as well as Hotel Football near United’s famous Old Trafford home.
Manchester’s city council has granted planning permission to architects Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios for the 11-storey hotel, which will be on the corner of Piccadilly and Newton Street in the city centre, according to Building.
It will be run by Ronaldo’s Pestana CR7 brand, which already operates hotels in the Juventus star’s native Portugal.
The architects said it would have a “bold and distinctive design that references the unique character of the conservation area through materiality, colour and façade proportions”.
The Piccadilly Tavern will also be refurbished as part of the project.
Ronaldo left United in 2009 to join Real Madrid for £85million, before a £105m switch to Juventus two years ago.
The 35-year-old has won five Champions League titles – one with United and four with Madrid – and is a five-time Ballon d’Or winner.
There has been speculation Ronaldo could be on the move again soon – with a sensational return to United having even been touted.
Whether he ever returns to the club where he became a global superstar remains to be seen, but certainly looks set to join his old pals Neville and Giggs among Manchester’s hotel tycoons.
Back in March, the former United pair announced they were making their hotels available free of charge to NHS workers helping to combat the escalating coronavirus pandemic.
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