Simon Rhatigan, former managing director at hotel and restaurant group Tom's Companies, which owns the 19-bedroom Seaham Hall in County Durham, has bought a hotel in Helmsley, North Yorkshire.
He has bought the 17-bedroom Feversham Arms and has plans to boost the property from its three-star rating to four-star.
After taking over the 150-year-old hotel for a sum off an asking price of £1.5m, Rhatigan has decided to invest £230,000 into it, totally refurbishing its bedrooms. He said: "Our idea is to run it better than it has been. We want to attract more couples, make it a couples' retreat."
Rack rates range from £120 to £200 per room. Following the refurbishment, scheduled to start on 2 February, these will increase to between £135 and £220 per room. The work is expected to be completed by mid-April.
Rhatigan, a former general manager of Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons in Oxfordshire, announced he was leaving Seaham Hall to start his own hotel in September. He has no plans to purchase any more hotels.