A dated, run down b&b in Bournemouth has been given a new lease of life, following an extensive £1m refurbishment by its new owners.
Derby Manor, formerly Langtry Lodge, was purchased by URS Hotels & Leisure in 2015 who then spent the next 15 months transforming the property into the group’s first hotel.
Now home to 11 bedrooms and a popular Shades restaurant, Derby Manor has received a four-star rating, is currently number one on TripAdvisor for hotels in Bournemouth, a ‘Best Afternoon Tea’ accolade from the Bournemouth Tourism Awards, and has been nominated to go for a minimum 3 AA rosette for the fine dining, all within 12 months since the takeover.
Managing director James Milligan told Boutique Hotelier that URS Hotels & Leisure originally sought out the property to become a new base for the company’s head office, but this all changed after uncovering some restrictions following the purchase.
“We bought the building in 2015 which was going to be the head office of our main Certification business but after purchasing it we found it there was a covenant that said the building will and can only be used as a house or hotel, so we though, go on then, let’s have a hotel in the group.”
The work began soon after the acquisition and after an initial £70k investment, the direction for the property shifted and the company decided to create luxury boutique hotel.
“It was supposed to be a small B&B, but by the time we got to the third room we realised that we were taking it to another direction, so we decided to try and bring to Bournemouth something different and £1m later ended up with the product as you see today,” Milligan added.
The renovation of the hotel was based on the building’s original Edwardian architecture, with the design reflecting this and also providing a contemporary twist.
Derby Manor, once used by Lord Derby when visiting Bournemouth, with design nods to his keen interest in horses and horse racing around the property.
Derby Manor’s executive head chef was hand picked by the famous Irish chef Noel McMeel, who carried out his own ‘Masterchef’ style auditions to take six candidates down to one.