Brian Miller, the general manager of Danesfield House in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, is to retire after spending nearly 19 years in the role.
He told Caterer and Hotelkeeper that he stayed in the job for so long because he had been given "exceptional autonomy" for the management and financial success of the four-star, 65-bedroom hotel, by successive owners.
"We have never had the support of a corporate office, so it has always been our total responsibility to ensure the business has been successful and I think that is something that all the staff here responded to," Miller explained.
"I think this also helps to explain that we have a very low turnover of staff at the hotel." Danesfield employs 80 in the hotel and 20 in the spa.
After previously spending 12 years as general manager of the Welcombe Hotel and Golf course in Stratford-upon-Avon, then owned by Orient-Express Hotels, Miller arrived at Dansfield in 1995. At the time, the hotel had only recently been bought out of administration by its new Malaysian owner and was not even in the AA guide. Nine years ago, the hotel went on to be sold to its current Middle Eastern owner.
The hotel's spa, which was added in 2001, was named as Most Relaxing Spa in the UK in 2011 by Natural Health magazine.
Miller, who was part of the second intake of students in hotel, catering and tourism administration at the University of Surrey in 1974, began his career with British Transport Hotels, working at the Central in Glasgow, Charing Cross and Great Northern properties. He became a Master Innholder in 1998 and has been a director of the Heart of England Tourist board and chairman of the Stratford-upon-Avan Hotel Association.
Miller, 62, is to be replaced on 30 September by Anthony Cox, currently hotels director for the Vineyard Group. He intends to spend his retirement split between his three homes in Stratford-upon-Avon, Cornwall and Ireland, as well as travelling.