YOUNG TRAILBLAZERS: Kirsty Schmidt, general manager, The Grosvenor Arms, Shaftesbury


Kirsty Schmidt, age 28, is general manager of The Grosvenor Arms in Shaftesbury. Kirsty’s motivation and hard-work has seen her rapidly rise through the ranks of the Stay Original company, the hotel’s owners. She is an unusually complete operator; a strong and likable leader and a dynamic and engaging host. Good with numbers, good with people and a great multi tasker. A rare thing.

Kirsty was running her own company in The Alps when she returned to the UK to undertake a temporary contract with Stay Original’s property The White Hart in Somerton, Somerset. Her skills were swiftly recognised, and she progressed to team leader in her five months there. Since then she has become a key player in the Stay Original team. She became General Manager of The White Hart in 2015, scooping a clutch of awards including Pub of the Year at the Bath, Bristol and Somerset Awards in 2016.

From there she was promoted to General Manager of The Swan in Wedmore, Somerset where sales of food, drink and accommodation were significantly boosted under her leadership. In the summer 0f 2018 she took over management of the historic 16-bedroom hotel The Grosvenor Arms in Shaftesbury. Since then sales have increased by 13%, with food up by 10%, drinks by 11% and rooms by 18%. Speak to colleagues and they’ll tell you about her outstanding work ethic, humour and leadership skills.

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In all her positions at Stay Original she has enjoyed outstanding reviews from the press, the community and customers. She puts herself at the heart of the local community supporting charities and hosting chamber of commerce and town council meetings.


The Grosvenor Arms

Owned by: Stay Original Co

Bedrooms: 16

Location: Shaftesbury Dorset

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Zoe Monk

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