A HOTEL redevelopment launched after it was ravaged by fire is entering its final stages.
The Quality Hotel, in Witney Way, Boldon Colliery, was wrecked in November 2010.
The blaze was caused by a towel left on a sauna heater.
Firefighters spent three hours tackling the fire, which tore through the single-storey health spa, reception and function room, as about 20 guests and staff fled the scene.
The first phase of the refit was completed a year ago at the 82-room hotel and the next stage of the project is expected to be finished by the end of October.
Company director Mike Chawla said: “Things are going very well and we’re hoping that work will be completed very soon.
“We’re building a full-length swimming pool with a whirlpool, sauna and steam room as well as a gym and a function room big enough for 400 people.”
Although the company was set back by the fire, the incident has given the business a chance to develop its services.
Mr Chawla added: “It’s a very exciting time for the hotel and we can’t wait to have everything up and running.
“We want to offer more than just a hotel where people come to sleep and, hopefully, the pool facilities and the function room, which will be the biggest in the area, will do that. We’re also building a conference suite on the first floor.”
The project is to also create 50 new jobs.
“Hopefully these regenerations will benefit the people using the hotel as well as people in the local area in need of employment,” said Mr Chawla.
After the blaze, construction workers from Meldrum spent six months working on the refurbishment of the hotel’s accommodation and a sitting room area.
Mr Chawla added: “It has been hard work, and obviously we were all devastated when the fire happened.
“But our main concern was that none of our staff or guests were injured, and thankfully, everyone was OK, so we were very lucky.”