The recent appearance of the only two Michelin star restaurant in the North East on Masterchef The Professionals has brought a welcome boost in trade to hoteliers located nearby.
James Close of Darlington’s The Raby Hunt appeared on the BBC TV show last year, and managers of local hotels have told how the media attention resulted in a rise in footfall to the area.
The restaurant, in the village of Summerhouse, has seen ‘thousands’ of people showing interest in the eatery, with this success not just beneficial to The Raby Hunt itself.
Thomas Robinson, managing director of Headlam Hall Hotel in Darlington was full of praise for the profile the restaurant had brought to the area.
“It is a great advert for our area and we have seen a steady increase in the number of people travelling from further afield who visit the Raby Hunt and stay overnight with us at Headlam Hall, including some highly respected people in the culinary world.
“It is quite a remarkable achievement and I’m sure one that has come as a result of not only talent but also serious dedication.”
His words were echoed by Michael Robinson, from Walworth Castle Hotel, who said that they were also benefiting.
“We often have people staying who say they are going to eat at The Raby Hunt,” said Mr Robinson, who is general manager at the 12th century castle turned hotel.
“And hopefully now because of the television exposure that will only get better and better.
Henry Carver of leading Darlington estate agents, Carver Residential, confirmed that the restaurant was a great selling point for the area.
“When we are selling properties in some of the near-by villages we always mention that The Raby Hunt is just a few minutes away,” he said.
“It’s great to be able to market homes in really lovely villages by adding that there is a fantastic two Michelin star restaurant in the area, it is a really positive selling point.”