Debbie Cappadona has been appointed to replace Harry Shepherd as general manager at Palé Hall, one of only three five-AA-star hotels in Wales.
She is to be promoted from front of house manager to her new role on 1 April at the Grade II*-listed, 18-bedroom hotel in Llandderfel, near Bala, Gwynedd, owned by Alan and Angela Harper. Shepherd is looking to spend more time with his family and is searching for a new role closer to home.
At the same time, Philip Newman-Hall, former managing director of Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Great Milton, Oxfordshire, has joined the hotel in an advisory and mentoring capacity.
Angela Harper said: “We are incredibly happy to appoint Debbie as general manager at Palé Hall. Working with her for the last three months, Debbie has been invaluable to us and the wider team and we are delighted she has accepted this role.”
Cappadona joined Palé Hall in October 2018 from her previous role as manager of La Brasserie at the Chester Grosvenor hotel, where she spent nearly three years.
She said: “I’m thrilled and honoured that the Harpers have entrusted me with the responsibility of leading the talented Palé Hall team through the next stage of the hotel’s journey. I’m really looking forward to continuing Palé’s amazing achievements over the last two years and bringing my experience and passion to this magnificent property with its rich history. I couldn’t be more excited.”
Prior to joining the Chester Grosvenor, Cappadona was head of VIP hospitality at Manchester United and ran her own outside catering company. Earlier in her career she was front of house manager at Llyndir Hall and general manager of two Feathers Group properties in Chester: the Westminster and the Queen hotels.
Philip Newman-Hall said: “I am delighted to be working with Angela and Alan Harper on mentoring their young and enthusiastic team at Palé Hall. They have shown by their dedication to this lovely property that it is possible to reinvigorate a house and bring it back to life with the highest standards.
“No other privately-owned country house hotel, that I can think of, has achieved so many accolades in such a short space of time and I am sure that I can, with them and Debbie help develop the team to continue to provide exceptional levels of food and service to their guests in this beautiful part of Wales.”
Located within a 50-acre estate, Palé Hall opened in 2016 following an extensive refurbishment by the Harpers, who are first-time hotel owners. Alan Harper is a telecoms entrepreneur and his wife Angela is a former headteacher. The hotel is a member of sales and marketing consortium Relais & Châteaux.