Nichols has served as general manager for Hotel du Vin brand at its original locations of Winchester, Bristol and Henley on Thames, and also worked for Caracoli, a high-end food and beverage business which now has five sites across the south.
While operations director and owner, Caracoli won The Telegraph Magazine' Best Small Shop in Britain 2012, for food. Nichols was also recognised in 2006 as one of the top 30 young managers in the UK.
Nichols said: "As a city Southampton is known for its innovation and willingness to adopt new ideas. Not only that, it's an excellent location, both as a destination in its own right and a base for visiting the region … and room2 is challenging the status quo. It's the perfect combination. To be in at the beginning of this journey is really exciting. The market is evolving and so are customers and the typical hotel guest. They are seeking somewhere with fewer rules - somewhere they feel at home without having their schedule and routine interrupted. The room2 concept is derived from these needs."
room2 says it is looking to bridge the gap between an Airbnb and a hotel with its hometel concept. Nichols added: "As essential as the concept is, it's the people that live the brand and make the experience feel more homely. We are currently in the recruitment process and looking for 'roommates' as we like to call ourselves. The ideal candidates will be people with passion, enthusiasm and character. Real people with real personalities who will genuinely want to make our house a home for our guests. More than anything we want bright engaging people who have a story to tell. We all have passions and things that fascinate us… whether they be DJing, organising talks, speciality cooking, teaching yoga, flower arranging, or running beehives and making honey. We bring our interests to work and we want our team to spend time sharing their passions with colleagues and our guests"
"We like to approach things in a slightly different manner, so we are running a series of group style challenges and teamwork sessions where we hope to see candidates' passion, individualism and expertise come to the fore. At the moment we're recruiting for key roles, which are flexible in nature, so I would like to hear from anyone who is as excited as I am about what we're looking to deliver," he concluded.
Bookings have just gone live for room2's Southampton hometel, which is due to open its doors in June. Among its features are 71 rooms, which all come with their own kitchen, large smart TV, comfy bed, seating area, equipped bathroom, USB chargers, free wifi and hairdryers.