Two Scottish hospitality entrepreneurs form new hotel venture after debut £1m acquisition

strathaven

Two hospitality entrepreneurs are to launch a new hotel venture following the acquisition of a country house hotel in South Lanarkshire.

Hans Rissman and Peter Taylor, who worked together to launch the five-star Blythswood Square Hotel in Glasgow, have invested £1m in transforming the 18th century Strathaven Hotel into the first property for the pair’s new portfolio – The Rissco Collection.

Rissman and Taylor acquired the 22-bedroom hotel in January, after spending two years searching for the ‘perfect opportunity’ and have been renovating the building ever since.

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The hotel’s restaurant and bar have been redesigned with the final phase of redevelopment being the grand ballroom which is due to reopen imminently.

Once all areas are finalised and open, the duo are looking to reposition the Strathaven Hotel as a destination for weddings and business conferences, with a plan to double turnover to £2m a year.

The first acquisition marks the launch of the Rissco Collection, with more acquisitions scheduled for the coming years.

The two businessmen are aiming to create a group of five hotels over the next decade, with a plan to open properties of character in rural and urban locations.

Speaking to the Scotsman, Hans Rissmann said: “My father was a hotelier so I was born and bred into the industry and it has always been my ambition to have a hotel of my own.

“When we found the Strathaven Hotel we immediately loved the Georgian front to the building and we liked the challenge of reinvigorating the interiors to bring them up to date.

“The hotel had lacked investment in recent years and the local competition had improved, so it had lost trade, but this is a great area and Strathaven has great potential.”

Taylor founded the Town House Collection in 1989 and oversaw the refurbishment of the former Royal Scottish Automobile Club in Glasgow into the Blythswood Square hotel and spa.

He sold the Town House ­Collection to an American ­private equity firm more than two years ago.

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