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Archive for the ‘United Kingdom’ Category

Greenway sold to luxury hotel group

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011
The Greenway Hotel Shurdington

ONE of the county's plushest country hotels has been sold after being marketed for a guide price of £3.5million.

The Greenway Hotel Shurdington has been bought by the Eden Hotel Collection.

The 17-bedroom manor house was previously owned by Von Essen Hotels Ltd, whose holding company went into administration in April.

The sale was negotiated by Christie and Co on behalf of administrators.

Eden Hotel Collection's managing director Mark Chambers said it was exciting times for the hotel, which employees nearly 50 staff.

He said: "Our plan is to bring the profile of The Greenway Hotel Shurdington back to where it deserves to be.

"It has been a difficult six months and I think it is important to give it a fresh approach and a new lease of life.

"This used to be one of the region's most premier hotels and we want to bring it back to that and it will … Read the rest

Head to Bournemouth for Rock’n’Roll Paradise

Monday, July 4th, 2011
Royal Bath

Fans of vintage rock'n'roll are set to descend on Bournemouth's Pavilion Theatre later this summer.

The seaside venue is preparing to stage Rock'n'Roll Paradise, a new show featuring classic music from artists of the 1950s and 1960s, on Sunday August 7th.

Unlike some musicals based on the period, the performance has no plot or storyline, allowing the songs to take centre stage and the audience to join in with their favourites.

The show features a cast of talented impersonators who perform as legends such as Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Eddie Cochran and Elvis Presley in his Las Vegas prime.

In addition, The Big Bopper acts as the compere for the evening, guiding the audience on a journey into the rock'n'roll era.

Allowing fans to step back in time and relive legendary moments in the history of American culture, Rock'n'Roll Paradise promises to be a memorable experience for … Read the rest

The Balmoral, Edinburgh: hotel review

Saturday, July 2nd, 2011
Balmoral Hotel Edinburgh

Lisa Grainger reviews Balmoral Hotel Edinburgh, a grand, glass-domed building with an elegant Bollinger Bar and a decadent restaurant.

The location

Couldn't be more central – on Princes Street, beside the main railway station, overlooking the park, with views on one side towards the castle and the other towards Arthur's Seat.

We like

The grandeur: in austere, Protestant Edinburgh, this 1895 building is a rare romantic construction, all marble and swirls beneath glass domes and pressed ceilings. The friendly doorman, in kilt, cloak and ghillie brogues. The spa, with large heated pool. The spacious areas to lounge in on cold rainy days. The elegant Bollinger Bar, lit by a glorious gilded glass dome, in which every kind of drink is served amid romantic oil paintings, from afternoon tea to nightcaps of single-malt whiskies.

Not so keen

Number One restaurant looks decadent and glamorous, with its tactile velvet banquettes, plump cushions … Read the rest

UK first for city’s new hotel

Friday, June 24th, 2011
Holiday Inn Express Sheffield City Centre

Sheffield’s newest hotel has opened for business a month ahead of schedule, creating 40 new jobs.

The £10 million, 161-bed hotel is the first ‘next generation’ Holiday Inn Express Sheffield City Centre to be built in any major UK city.

The development was undertaken by Amber Hotels, which owns the Grade II listed Holiday Inn Royal Victoria Hotel, with backing from Yorkshire Bank Financial Solutions Centre, through its Investing for Growth initiative.

Amber Hotels director Hermann Beck said: “Trading conditions remain tough in the hotels sector in the regions but this new format of branded, limited-service hotel is outperforming the market because it meets consumer aspirations and offers real value. Because of this we feel that this is right time to open our Holiday Inn Express Hotel.

“Our Holiday Inn Royal Victoria Hotel has significant conference facilities but fewer bedrooms than the new hotel. Apart from the style of accommodation, the new hotel … Read the rest

Luxury hotel part of £200m sell-off

Sunday, June 12th, 2011
Ickworth Hotel and Apartments Bury St. Edmunds

A PRESTIGIOUS hotel has been put on the market as part of multi million pound sell-off of venues after their holding company went into administration.

The Ickworth Hotel and Apartments Bury St. Edmunds, in Horringer, is one of 26 hotels being marketed by agents Christie & Co on behalf of the administrators of von Essen Hotels Limited.

The collection is priced at about £200 million and the firm has received expressions of interest for the whole portfolio and ‘some of the high profile individual assets’.

A spokesman for Ernst and Young, which has appointed Alan Bloom, Chris Marsden and Angela Swarbrick as joint administrators, said it was ‘business as usual’ for the hotels, their staff and customers.

The hotels, which include castles and stately homes, have been classified in the sale as being of three types – classic, luxury family and country.

The Ickworth Hotel and Apartments Bury St. Edmunds, based in the east wing of Ickworth House, … Read the rest

Hotel review: Bloc, Birmingham

Sunday, May 29th, 2011
Bloc Hotel Birmingham

Some might argue that Birmingham's new capsule hotel doesn't really offer penthouse luxury, but few could quibble with its rock-bottom prices

Penthouse proposition, pavement price, says the press blurb for the 73-room Bloc Hotel Birmingham. The concept is based on Japanese capsule hotels, but the construction technique, by a company called Boxbuild, is unusual. Boxbuild manufactured the rooms off-site then stacked them in situ so the hotel exterior could be wrapped round them.

Fundamental to the idea is eliminating unnecessary space (so that rooms can be more densely packed into the site). Research showing that hotel guests rarely unpack an overnight bag (that puts me in a minority, then) has resulted in "space hungry" wardrobes being replaced by something called an "integrated bag storage area".

Bloc Hotel Birmingham claims to have arrived at "the perfect combination of luxury and price", which includes use of "significant" sound insulation, luxurious cotton sheets, … Read the rest

Tale of a True Renaissance: St. Pancras Hotel in London Re-Opens After 138 Years

Friday, May 6th, 2011
St. Pancras Renaissance London Hotel

If you listen closely, you can still hear the swooshing of the wide Victorian dresses on women as they walked down the hallways of the St. Pancras Renaissance London Hotel in the 1800s. Built to accommodate the glamor of the time, the unusually wide hallways at the St. Pancras are adorned with dimly-lit chandeliers and red and gold accents. The suites connect on the first floor of the Chamber's Quarters so guests could have a parlor room, dressing room and bedroom. As the trains rumble into the station below the hotel, you half expect to see men in dress coats and top hats step off the platform, their leather luggage properly in tow, heading into the St. Pancras Renaissance London Hotel for a glass of scotch as the night's party slowly begins. The events at St. Pancras were never less than grandiose, and the re-opening party of this grand hotel kept to the same … Read the rest

Bird Hospitality Group acquires luxury hotel in London

Monday, April 11th, 2011
Royal Park Hotel London

Bird Hospitality Group has acquired a luxury hotel in London, Royal Park Hotel London. The hospitality company has given the management rights of the hotel to US-based Interstate Hotels and Resorts.

“London is an evergreen and stable market. The returns are good and the property adjusted well with our brand,” said Ankur Bhatia, Executive Director, Bird Group. He refused to give the value of the deal, but said the group was planning to invest $400 million on expansion in India and the UK. The company is planning to acquire more such properties in the luxury space.

This is not the first time that an Indian company has acquired a hotel in London. In December 2010, Sahara India Parivar had acquired Grosvenor House hotel from The Royal Bank of Scotland Group in London at £470 million (Rs 3290 crore)—the largest acquisition deal for an Indian company in the hospitality sector. Also, the … Read the rest

Bournemouth hotel bills rise 7 per cent as Britons holiday at home

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011
Sandbanks Hotel

HOTEL prices in UK tourist spots are increasing as more cash-strapped Britons choose to holiday at home.

According to a survey by, rates in Bournemouth hotels rose by seven per cent last year while prices in Brighton went up by two per cent.

Rooms in the Lake District cost more than in London where prices leapt by 10 per cent to £114.

The biggest rise was Norwich’s 38 per cent, while the UK’s most expensive place to stay was St Andrews in Scotland, at £162.

Overall UK hotel prices rose by two per cent to an average of £83.

David Roche from said budget-conscious Britons had taken more breaks at home last year, adding: “This led to well above average price rises but consumers could still find great value.”

Andy Woodland, chairman of Bournemouth Area Hospitality Association (BAHA) said: “Hotel prices here are coming back up to where … Read the rest

Macdonald Hotels looking to golf and spa sectors for growth

Sunday, April 3rd, 2011
Macdonald Cardrona Hotel Peebles

MACDONALD Hotels is investing £10 million in its 44 properties this year as it continues to diversify away from the hard-hit business and conference market.

The Bathgate-based firm, whose hotels include the Macdonald Cardrona Hotel Peebles and golf course in Peebles and Houstoun House near Broxburn, is seeking to improve its spa, restaurant and golf offering in particular amid expectations this year will prove even tougher than 2010 for the hospitality industry.

Next month it is due to complete a £4m spa and swimming pool facility at the Inchyra Hotel in Polmont and it plans to re-launch its golf holidays later this year as it seeks to persuade visitors to spend more during their stay. It is also introducing initiatives such as a "Scottish steak club" to attract locals into its hotel restaurants.

Although parts of the industry such as short-breaks and spa weekends are trading well, the firm, which was … Read the rest

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