Family business branches out with boutique bedrooms

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A family business which currently owns three pubs in East Anglia, has recently converted one of its establishments into a boutique hotel, with the addition of four en-suite bedrooms.

Stuart Inns is run by three siblings – brothers Oliver and Iain Macmillan and their sister Lorna Pissarro – with the support of their father, Andrew Macmillan, in an executive role.

They run three pubs all under the Greene King name; the Swan at Long Melford, the Ram at Hadleigh and the Greyhound in Lavenham, and have now expanded the Swan with boutique bedrooms next-door-but-one to the popular pub.

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The family bought the Swan in 2011, and purchased Melford House close by before converting it to provide four guest bedrooms.

Despite the transformation running over schedule and over budget, the family is delighted with the result.

Speaking to East Anglia Daily Times, Lorna said: “We have worked hard to create beautiful and individual rooms with personality that we hope will really wow our guests.”

Each element of the bedrooms has been carefully considered, with plug sockets by each bed and a freestanding bath, as well as a shower and bespoke tiling.

Lorna’s brother Andrew continued: “We started by working to a budget but then found we needed to spend more in order to achieve the quality that we wanted. You can do it cheaply, but then in six months’ time it will start to look cheap. I think people staying in our rooms will look at the roll-top baths and at the decor and will think: ‘They have spent a bit on this and have done it nicely’.”

The family hopes the new offering will appeal to those customers dining at the Swan, as well as locals and those looking for a short break.

Guests will typically enjoy breakfast at the Swan, although the largest bedroom offers customers the option of being served privately if they prefer.

Including the purchase and overhaul of Melford House, the work at the Swan and the launch of the Greyhound, the investment over the past six months has totalled more than £500,000. But the family already has plans in the pipeline for a further four bedrooms directly above the Swan.

Lorna adds: “It has been a busy few years as we worked hard to establish ourselves in Long Melford, Hadleigh and most recently Lavenham, and then further work as we have expanded and improved each of the businesses. Moving into bed and breakfast at the Swan is something we have always wanted to achieve and we are all very proud of Melford House.”

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