THIRTY new jobs have checked into Dorchester with the opening of a new hotel.

Premier Inn has opened its doors in the £100million Brewery Square development and is already proving popular with visitors to the county town.

The hotel is the latest business to set up in the development, following the arrival of the Odeon cinema, Carluccio’s Italian restaurant and Nando’s.

A host of other restaurants and businesses are due to open in the coming weeks as the latest phase of the town centre scheme gathers pace.

General manager for the new Premier Inn Laura Ballingall said that the hotel was nearly fully booked for the coming weekend and bookings for the first week had been far more than what new branches normally experience.

She said: “Occupancy this week is absolutely fantastic. That’s unusual for the first week of opening – it’s not normally so strong.

“It’s been a busy few weeks getting ready but it’s really good to be open now.”

As well as three managers the hotel, which boasts 76 bedrooms and a modern restaurant, employs 27 staff across a range of jobs.

Andrew Wadsworth, director at Waterhouse, which is developing the Brewery Square site in partnership with Resolution Property, said he was delighted to welcome Premier Inn as the latest addition to the scheme and was pleased to learn that early business had proved strong.

He said: “It’s very exciting and we hear their bookings are going extremely well.”

As well as opening a hotel in Dorchester, Premier Inn – which has more than 600 branches across the UK and Ireland – is also due to open a hotel at the Weymouth Gateway site next month that is expected to create more than 50 new jobs.

Mr Wadsworth said that the addition of Premier Inn would offer something different to the other Dorchester hotels.

He said that the idea for the latest phase of the development was to have businesses opening separately over the coming weeks.

Others due to open are restaurants Zizzi, Wagamama and Pizza Express.