The history of Preston Palace
Preston Palace is an all-inclusive hotel and entertainment centre in the city of Almelo in Twente. You can read here how this all-inclusive resort of Preston Palace came about, how it successfully established itself and what its golden future holds in store.
Preston Palace was established in the former Prinses Irene Hospital that opened its doors in 1960. In 1987 the hospital was sold to Mr Van der Most. He had an innovative idea: set up an all-inclusive hotel in this former hospital. After a number of years of demolition and subsequently construction work, in May 1990 the first part was opened: the entertainment centre. Preston Palace had arrived.
The entertainment centre
The entertainment centre offers a wide range of facilities. The many guests can now enjoy a modern coffee corner, a cosy bar street that features various bars (Scheepsbar, Skihut, English pub, Piano Bar, Bruin Café and karaoke), two delicious à la carte restaurants (Bistro de Heerlijkheid and the Piri Piri familyrestaurant) and various buffets. Other facilities at Preston Palace include a cinema, bowling lanes, snooker/pool/billiard tables, miniature golf, children's indoor play area with children's entertainment and the attractive wedding hall, Gasterij De Boekerie.
Two years later, in February 1992, we opened the hotel that comprises a grand restaurant. The development of Preston Palace has been an ongoing project ever since. The large and multifunctional hall, the "Preston Hall", was opened in October 1995, which normally has live music on every weekday evening and in the weekends well-known national artists or DJs entertain our guests. Live music is set up in the coffee corner every day.
Subtropical swim paradise
In October 1997 the first guests used our subtropical swim paradise and they were not disappointed! The hotel guests, whose all-inclusive package deal gives them access to everything, are not the only ones who can enjoy the subtropical swim and sauna paradise, as many guests (in particular) from the region come for a visit as well.
Indoor fun fair
In July 2008 we added the indoor fairground, a unique feature in its own right, to our other unique facilities at Preston Palace. An indoor amusement park that includes seven marvellous attractions and many fairground games in an attractive, wonderful, décor that reflects Twente. A welcome addition for many families, young people, elderly people with their grandchildren, school parties or children's parties. Just like the subtropical swim paradise and entertainment centre, the indoor fairground is open to guests from the region.
A unique concept with a unique entertainment centre, AND unique subtropical swim and sauna paradise, AND unique indoor fairground, and and and .. that is Preston Palace: unique in many ways and suiting all tastes and ages.
Apart from the leisure sector, Preston Palace also caters for the business market. Larger conferences are held in the Preston Hall, but Preston Palace also has 14 meeting rooms equipped with all possible requirements. Modern flatscreens for the smaller rooms and professional beamers in the larger ones. Naturally, each room is equipped with individual climate control and, if required, other office tools (flip charts, white boards, projection screens, etc.).
In 2011 the hotel was taken over by a new management board, comprising three board members. The new owners have adapted the strategy, which makes a positive impact. Many facilities at Preston Palace have since been updated or added, based on the wishes of our guests. This ranges from free WiFi facilities and charging points for electric cars to the now diverse range of hotel rooms and a modern, fully appreciated and grand hotel restaurant.
Apart from the leisure sector and the business market, we focus particularly on what people regards as their "special day". A wedding is a unique event and it requires a unique location: Preston Palace. To make it the perfect day, Preston Palace has engaged a wedding planner who can take care of all or some of your concerns for the big day right from the very first meeting. Preston Palace is now, partly thanks to Gasterij De Boekerie, an official wedding location in Almelo. Gasterij De Boekerie, with its own attractive terrace, is a favourite for many wedding couples who chose Preston Palace as their perfect location for their wedding day.
Children's play area
The children's indoor play area for the smaller guests has been completely renovated and we added a new colourful entertainment area where you can often find the mascots Preston and Alice if they are not in their new Berenhut home. Preston Palace is also a great location for children to have their parties in all kinds of different ways. It could be a Cupcake party, or High Tea Jewellery party, or an Apple Cake party, or a Bowling party: success (and of course lots of fun) guaranteed! In 2012 the bowling lanes were completely renovated and designed on a theme.
In 2013 the Coffee Corner was given a full transformation. This room is multifunctional and the stylish renovation has received many positive responses from (returning) guests. Speaking of returning guests: at the end of 2014 we had the first hotel guest who passed the milestone of 100 hotel visits!
Over recent years the subtropical swim and sauna paradise has been extended with a wide range of wellness package deals. Guests can enjoy Rhassoul, Zithammam and relaxation massages at Preston Palace as a pure treat for body and mind. In addition to our hotel guests, more than 100,000 guests from the region visit our subtropical swim paradise. We also welcome an increasing number of German guests.
During the day Preston Hall is regularly used for exhibitions, private parties, fashion shows and conferences.
All of the Economy hotel rooms have now been renovated into modern Classic and Royal hotel rooms. The number of guests keeps increasing, which is why another 30 hotel rooms were added in 2014. During the renovation, a number of hotel rooms were given a luxury make-over (2015, 2016 and 2017), and our guests can now choose from 6 luxury suites, including bridal suites and family suites with four beds for parents and children. Preston Palace now has 318 hotel rooms with a total of close to 1,000 beds. With more than 200,000 overnight stays each year and an occupancy rate of more than 85%, Preston Palace is enjoying more success than ever before. Preston Palace’s market share for overnight stays in hotels in the entire province of Overijssel is now 12%. All this makes it the second largest hotel in the Netherlands, the largest being a hotel at Amsterdam Airport.
Guest numbers continue to rise as appreciation for Preston Palace continues to increase. The newly chosen strategy is bearing fruit in that respect as well, which is why Preston Palace has regularly been receiving awards over recent years. In 2013, 2014 and 2015, guests chose the swim paradise as one of the best swimming pools in the Netherlands and in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Preston Palace was chosen as THE family hotel of the Netherlands.
All this is reflected in the quality and quantity of our staff members. The 400 staff members in 2011 have, in 2020, increased to 500 highly motivated and hospitable employees. This makes Preston Palace one of the major employers in Twente and the major employer in the tourist sector in the east of the Netherlands.
The latest addition that was realised at the end of 2016, is a larger and totally new hotel restaurant. The end result is a refreshing and modern restaurant with almost 650 seats that is set in an ultimate living room ambiance. It is equipped with the latest technologies for buffets, show cooking, refreshing salad bars, a cool children's buffet, a sparkling bar, and has a modern interior design with handcrafted wall decorations, cosy seating areas, benches and cosy corners.
One of the latest acquisitions is the grand metamorphosis of the hotel lobby. The latest innovation has ensured that the new show pond, hotel entrance and hotel lobby fit in well with the unique character of Preston Palace. On Monday, July 2 2018, Mayor Gerritsen of Almelo performed the official opening.
At the end of 2019, a wonderful renovation in the heart of the entertainment center was completed. The former Central Terrace has been transformed into Preston Palace Central, Terrace & Bar. Preston Palace Central exudes an atmosphere that can best be described as "dandy, world-wise, successful and enjoying the joys of life" Themes that perfectly match the wishes of the valued guests and the renewed image of Preston Palace.
Plans for the coming years are predominantly based on the path we have chosen.
But, ... what will always be at the heart of Preston Palace: you can make the most of your all-inclusive stay without a care in the world!