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ZETA JONES'S FAVOURITE TOPS AA'S HOTEL LIST

LEON WATSON

14:00 - 05 September 2003

It comes with the best recommendation in town. . . Now Catherine Zeta Jones's celebrity stopping off point has won a top award.

Morgans, Swansea city centre's first five-star hotel, has played host to the Chicago star and her Hollywood hubby every time she has visited her home city since it first opened last year.

But today the hotel, created from an old docks office in Adelaide Street, has won an even more prestigious honour.

It has been named the AA Hotel of the Year for Wales and will feature in the AA's elite top 200 hotels in Britain.

Experts say it is a major achievement for a venture in its first year of existence.

Manager Gill Lewis said: "We have really worked our socks off to achieve this.

"The building has been transformed by our dedicated team who have been really committed to creating something Swansea can be proud of.''

Speaking of the hotel's reputation as the celebrity haunt of Wales, she said: "We're very flattered to have any guests coming to stay here but it is especially lovely to have our reputation enhanced by people like Catherine who are used to staying in superb places all around the world.

"I can't comment on Catherine specifically because we always respect our guests' confidentiality but we do get a lot of celebrities staying here.

"We try to keep it low key but you would be very surprised who comes in and out unnoticed."

Later this month it is rumoured the venue will play host to an array of stars - invited by Catherine herself.

Guests are expected to include movie legends Goldie Hawn, Danny DeVito, Meg Ryan and director Steven Spielberg who are all jetting in to celebrate the christening of Catherine's son Dylan.

And last month Morgans hosted another family event for the Zeta-Douglas family - a special third birthday party for Catherine's son Dylan.

But the Zeta Jones connection with Morgans doesn't end there - one of the rooms in the lovingly restored Grade II listed building even carries Catherine's family name.

The Zeta room - one of the 20 nautical themed rooms - gets its name from a ship Catherine's great granddad sailed on.

It is also the ship that Catherine inherited the name Zeta from, via her grandmother.

Zeta Jones senior was said to have been very impressed by the room when granddaughter Catherine gave her a tour. And a quick glance around the building will tell you exactly why it is now being ranked as one of the hotel world's most stylish venues.

Fittings have been individually designed and every room is a different, more detailed variation on the hotel theme.

And if that isn't enough for you then maybe you will be satisfied by the leather-lined televisions, laptops and wine racks in each room - or even the Sky Sports screen in the men's loos.

It doesn't come cheap. An evening meal can set you back £50 with alcohol, a double room can top £250 for the very best.

Gill Lewis added: "It is lovely to see people coming from all over the world and saying they did not expect to find a place like this here. But Swansea is really being regenerated at the moment."

She added: "There is a real buzz around the place and we are proud to be part of that.''

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