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Idle Rocks' owners acquire second hotel in St Mawes

21 January 2014 by
Idle Rocks' owners acquire second hotel in St Mawes

The owners of the Idle Rocks in St Mawes have established a firm foothold in the Cornish seaside village with the acquisition of a second hotel for a guide price of £2m.

David and Karen Richards, who bought the 20-bedroom Idle Rocks in 2010, have now added the 14-bedroom St Mawes hotel with the intention of refurbishing the public areas and kitchen before the summer.

A significant area of land behind the St Mawes hotel will provide an opportunity for future development.

David Richards, who with his wife Karen has owned a home in St Mawes for more than 10 years, is the former chairman of luxury car company Aston Martin.

He told Caterer and Hotelkeeper that the purchase of the St Mawes hotel would add scale to the Idle Rocks.

"We now have 34 bedrooms with two restaurants and bars, utilising a number of shared resources and a common management team," explained Richards.

"There will obviously be a common theme to the design of the two properties and yet they will be carefully positioned to appeal to their respective clientele.

"St Mawes has always had a strong appeal as a ‘destination' in Cornwall and with two newly refurbished properties we are confident this will grow."

The Idle Rocks was relaunched in July 2013 following a radical transformation with Karen Richards overseeing the eclectic and colourful design.

Tim House, who originally trained at the Savoy Group before going on to work at the Halcyon hotel in London and Fawsley Hall in Northamptonshire, has been appointed hotel director overseeing the two properties with a combined staff of 40.

In 2001 House joined A Curious Group of Hotels, based at its properties, Cowley Manor, near Cheltenham, and L'Hôtel in Paris. Since 2009 he has worked as a hotel consultant.

House is known to be a fan of the 30-bedroom Tresanton, the hotel owned by Olga Polizzi which put St Mawes on the map as a fashionable resort. In 2002 he said in an interview with Caterer and Hotelkeeper of the Tresanton: "They got it right. It's of an ilk".

The Tresanton is currently closed for refurbishment and is due to re-open on 7 February.

House said: "I am very much looking forward to working with the Idle Rocks' team at this exciting time, supporting the growth of the company and working, once again, on the launch of a new hotel."

Karen Richards added: "We are very excited by this new acquisition and particularly pleased that Tim will be joining us to head up both operations. His reputation for bringing out the best in his teams, coupled with his in-depth knowledge of the luxury end of the hospitality industry makes him the perfect choice to move us onto the next level."

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