Dan Brod is co-owner of the multi-award winning Beckford Arms in Fonthill, Wiltshire and Talbot Inn in Mells, Somerset. He admits his background is a bit of a ‘mixed bag’, having worked in film industry product design and engineering, dabbled with new technology start-ups, patent law, furniture and interior design, then onto cafes and now posh pubs with rooms, it seems he may have found his winner.
In his mid-twenties he trained to be a chef with the Conran Group and found his first job in the kitchen at The Bluebird Cafe on London’s Kings Road, a role he says gave him a ‘deep respect’ of how hard chefs work.
Having seen the ‘pubs with rooms’ trend early, he developed The Talbot Inn together with co-owner Charlie Luxton in spring 2013, two years after the launch of the hugely-successful Beckford Arms, which opened in 2011 and shot to wide acclaim almost immediately. The Talbot Inn followed suit and just six months after welcoming its first guests, the small eight-bedroom pub with rooms beat off the big boys – think Chewton Glen and Le Manoir – to top The Sunday Times list of Ultimate 100 British Hotels. Both sites still get great reviews in the press and most importantly, have continually happy guests.
Keen to share his expertise with the industry, he also consults for hotels, pubs and restaurants on design, marketing, finance and operations. “I like looking after people, making them feel good and have always been attracted to that,” he says.