In March Stephanie Hocking celebrated her two-year anniversary as CEO of Andrew Brownsword Hotels, the 13-strong brand renowned for luxury, country-class hospitality.
In 2016 when she made the move she wasn’t particularly looking to jump ship from her position with Malmaison, but it was the lure of the simplicity, clear ambition and quality at the core of the Brownsword group that proved too strong to resist.
This was March 2016 when the group was made up of 12 hotels stretching across the west of the country, including iconic industry greats such as Gidleigh Park and The Bath Priory and was going from strength to strength. Now consisting of a total of 13 properties – Hocking played a key part in the acquisition of the Old Swan and Minster Mill – the group is divided into two brands; Brownsword Hotels and the Abode group.
Previously Hocking’s background was with Macdonald Hotels and prior to that with Forte Hotels, where she got her first taste of managerial experience after swiftly moving up the ranks. Her love of hospitality started long before that however, with her school holidays spent working in a local diner in Cornwall, flipping burgers and brewing teas.
Now an integral part of the Brownsword DNA, Hocking has a clear focus for 2018. The rebuild of the Royal Clarence Hotel, which was devastated by fire in October 2016, and the brand has also turned their attentions more closely to recruitment and the development of its workforce. New acquisitions for the brand are also never off the table.