A former convent in Northumberland is being transformed into a ‘high-end’ boutique hotel and restaurant, with the project headed up by the wife of former Hotel du Vin and Malmaison chief executive, Robert Cook.
St Marys Convent on Bailiffgate, Alnwick, which closed in 2015, will be converted into a 11-bedroom boutique named Cookie Jar Hotel under the watch of Debbie Cook, who has lived in the area for 17 years.
The new property will also be home to a 30-cover restaurant, The Holy Cow, which will focus on steaks and burgers and will open in spring 2018.
Mick Holland of catering firm Holland & Paige has been appointed as general manager and chef, with approximately eight more jobs created in the first year.
Debbie Cook says: “We want to offer a really great experience and outstanding accommodation – we are going for stylish and cosy.
“The opportunity came up to purchase the convent and we wanted to create something very special in Alnwick.
“We are completely refurbishing the building; we have taken some very basic accommodation, made up of about 24 small rooms, and transforming it into 11 rooms, all with first-class facilities.”
As well as a suite in the chapel, The Cookie Jar will boast two Mother Superior luxury rooms, featuring free-standing baths.
There will also be four luxury and four cosy rooms.
All 11 bedrooms will have drench showers; super-fast wifi; plasma television screens; and Penhaligon’s toiletries.
The hotel will look to target both golfers and shooting groups, with individual gun cabinets assigned to each bedroom and stored in a safe area. There will be drying facilities and six kennels.