Located in 12 acres of landscaped gardens overlooking Lake Windermere in Cumbria, Linthwaite House will be Leeu Collection's first property outside of Franschhoek, South Africa, where it operates two hotels (Leeu House and Le Quartier Francais). A third property in Franschhoek, Leeu Estates, comprising a 17-bedroom boutique hotel within a 68 hectare vineyard, is due to open in June 2016.
Leeu Collection is owned by Analjit Singh, one of India's richest entrepreneurs. He is the founder of Max India, which has interests in insurance and health care, and recently stepped down as chairman of the company. In South Africa, Singh is a partner in Mullineux & Leeu Family Wines and Tuk Tuk, a craft beer microbrewery.
Hector de Galard, managing director, Leeu Collection, said: "Linthwaite House is a perfect fit for Leeu Collection and the first step in expanding the Leeu Collection footprint internationally
"It strengthens Leeu Collection's position in the hospitality sector and underlines our determination to create exceptional retreats, not only in South Africa, but around the globe."
Singh summed up the key pillars of the Leeu brand: inspiring art collections, unique architecture and design, landscaping that reflects the surrounding environment. superlative service with attention to the smallest detail, spectacular views and a world class wine portfolio. "We are determined to create unforgettable experiences in superb settings and Linthwaite offers just that," he added.
Originally built as a country house in 1901, Linthwaite House has been run by the Bevans since they acquired the property in 1990.
In 2012 Mike Bevans told The Caterer that he and his wife had risked everything financially to buy what was a 11-bedroom bed and breakfast and transform it into a hotel.
"Probably stupid," he explained. "Definitely exciting." Simon Doddrell joined the business as a partner in 1994.
Words from the Wise - Mike Bevans >>
Andrew Nicholson is new general manager of Linthwaite House >>
Latest video from The Caterer