The Grosvenor hotel in Torquay is to be re-branded as the John Burton-Race Restaurant with Rooms.
The Devon property, which gained notoriety in Channel 4’s The Hotel reality show, relaunched last year with a restaurant overseen by former two-Michelin-starred chef John Burton-Race.
While Keith Richardson, owner of the Richardson Hotel Group, will remain the sole owner of the hotel, Burton-Race will have his name above the door as chef-patron when the venue re-brands on 2 February, in a bid to shake off its former reputation.
Restaurants with rooms are traditionally smaller properties, however the John Burton-Race Restaurant with Rooms has 46 bedrooms and will be increasing this to 50.
A spokesperson for the group explained the history associated with the name no longer reflected the offering, and having appointed Burton-Race to make the offering more food-focused, “we decided to lead with restaurant as a call to action”.
“Although most [restaurant with rooms] seem to indicate a smaller number of rooms it was the synergy between dining and staying overnight that captured our imagination… We still have a strong offer for our holiday guests but the menus now on offer encourage a more food-focused target audience, which we hope will please both audiences.”
Richardson bought the hotel in 2012 from one-time hotelier Mark Jenkins, who has relaunched himself as a comedian and entertainer.
To date the group has spent £750,000 on an ongoing refurbishment, which has included structural changes; refurbishment of the restaurant; a re-designed reception; and the former ‘Keith’s Diner’ is being transformed into a suite of four luxury rooms. A Champagne bar is also planned.
Richardson said the decision behind the name change was born from the idea that “lovers of great food do not need to pay astronomical prices to enjoy a gourmet dining experience”.
Burton-Race said the re-naming marks “the next chapter” of his partnership with Richardson and the group and is intended to raise awareness of the restaurant in Torquay.
Burton-Race’s career has included running his own restaurant L’Ortolan in Shinfield, Berkshire, where he achieved two Michelin stars, and his eponymous restaurant at the Landmark hotel in London. His New Angel restaurant in Dartmouth, Devon achieved a Michelin star, but fell into administration, and later the relaunched New Angel in Notting Hill, London, closed after just a year.
Richardson Hotels owns five other properties in Devon and Cornwall: the Grand hotel in Torquay; Fowey hotel in Fowey; the Metropole hotel in Padstow; the Falmouth hotel in Falmouth; and the Royal Beacon hotel in Exmouth.
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