The Mount hotel in Scarborough has been acquired for an undisclosed sum off an asking price of £2m to industry stalwarts Simon Rhatigan and Simon Kershaw.
The 50-bedroom, five-storey hotel is situated in an elevated position in the seaside town overlooking the iconic Spa Bridge. It has been sold by the Lothian family from Scotland.
Stewart Lothian said: "It is with a heavy heart that the family chose to sell the hotel, which was largely for logistical reasons given the commuting distances between Scarborough and Glasgow. Our strong hopes were that the Mount would be sold for ongoing use and to a buyer who would invest and reinvigorate the hotel."
Under their newly launched brand Bike and Boot Inns, Rhatigan and Kershaw intend to close the business to undertake "significant investment, alterations and upgrades to the hotel". The Mount will reopen, fully refurbished and rebranded with 59 bedrooms, in summer 2019.
Kershaw said: "This is our first acquisition and our intention is to roll out the brand, initially across the north of England in key leisure and tourist locations, such as coastal towns and national parks. Our target client base is the short break market but with facilities for cyclist, walkers, dog owners and those who simply enjoy some of the most beautiful areas in the country."
Rhatigan and Kershaw announced their intention to create a small group of boutique hotels in 2016 when they launched Helmsley Hospitality, which secured venture capital funding to buy existing hotels to refurbish, as well as build new ones.
Rhatigan, who until 2016 was managing director of Devonshire Hotels & Restaurants, achieved widespread success as owner of the Feversham Arms Hotel and Verbena Spa in Helmsley, North Yorkshire, where he won the Catey award for Independent Hotel of the Year in 2011. The Feversham Arms was sold soon after Rhatigan's divorce from his wife Jill.
Kershaw is a former chairman of the northern region of the British Hospitality Association, who headed up the hospitality team as Carlton Towers, the events and wedding venue owned by Lord and Lady Fitzalan Howard in Carlton, North Yorkshire.
Mark Worley, director at Christie & Co, which handled the sale, said the Mount attracted "a huge amount of interest and a number of credible offers". He added: "With its elegant Georgian style facade and grand bedroom suites, most of which boast stunning views, the Mount is truly one of Scarborough's gems."