Crerar Hotel Group has sold its Eight Acres hotel in Moray to Thailand-based Lake Merritt Group off a guide price of £3.5m.
The 52-bedroom Elgin hotel is the third and final property of a portfolio it brought to market last year, following the decision of chief executive Paddy Crerar to reduce his involvement in the business, which the group said led to a new target scale and consequent need for disposals.
Its two Highlands hotels have also been sold; the 83-bedroom Craiglynne hotel in Grantown-on-Spey was sold to Bespoke Hotels, and the 92-bedroom Ben Wyvis hotel in Strathpeffer to Strathmore Hotel Group. 7H has been appointed to manage the Eight Acres hotel.
Crerar Hotel Group has now started work on a £3m investment into its 85-bedroom Isle of Mull hotel on top of a £10m investment into its reduced portfolio of seven hotels.
Prab Thakral, an adviser to Lake Merritt Group, said: “The Eight Acres hotel is Lake Merritt Group’s second hotel in Scotland and fourth in UK and we are aggressively and diligently expanding our hotel portfolio, as we have a long term positive view in UK’s hospitality industry as a whole.”
Paddy Crerar, chief executive of Crerar Hotel Group, added: “We are very pleased with this sale, which is another key milestone in our right-sizing strategy and takes us even closer to achieving our aim of being Scotland’s highest quality family of hotels and Inns.”
Julian Troup, head of UK hotels agency at Colliers International, which brokered the deal, said: “The sale is indicative of a wider trend of increased demand for quality provincial hotel opportunities from a diverse range of potential buyers, ranging from international investors attracted by weaker sterling and improving trading prospects, private buyers seeking the benefits of a lifestyle opportunity and corporate investors focused on favourable returns and real estate alternatives.”
Lake Merritt Group also owns the 78-bedroom Windermere Hydro hotel, which it bought out of administration last year, and the Braid Hills hotel in Edinburgh.