Stuart Procter, who has spent the past five years creating the Hotel and Café Football concepts, has returned to his former haunt of the Stafford London as general manager.
Procter's departure as managing director of GG Hospitality, the company he co-founded with Manchester United football legends Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville, has come as a surprise. A statement on the company's website said: "GG Hospitality MD Stuart Procter has resigned from his position and is no longer working within the business. Stuart has accepted a role elsewhere and we thank him for his contribution."
At the time of the launch of GG Hospitality in 2013, Procter said that the experience was "a once-in-a-lifetime" opportunity to create two global brands.
Later that year Café Football opened as a 120-seat outlet in Westfield Stratford, London. The 133-bedroomHotel Football launched adjacent to Manchester United's Old Trafford ground in February this year and five months later won the 2015 Catey award for Best Marketing Campaign.
In August Singapore investment company Rowsley bought a 75% stake in GG Hospitality, which as well as operating Café Football and Hotel Football, is set to open a 35-bedroom boutique hotel in the former Stock Exchange building in Manchester city centre.
Having left the Stafford (pictured below) in 2011, Procter is set to take up the reins again at the five-red-AA-stars, 105-bedroom hotel on 2 November. Since his departure, three incumbents have filled the role of general manager: Leon Baum, Christine Hodder and Spencer Yeo, who left after just a few months after being appointed earlier this year.
Procter previously joined the Stafford in 2006, replacing the 1985 Hotelier of the Year Terry Holmes. During his five years at the helm, the hotel achieved its five AA red star rating and won the Catey award for Group Hotel of the Year in 2008.
Procter said that he was returning "with great excitement" to the hotel. "I am looking forward to re-connecting with the extremely talented team of old colleagues and with loyal guests that over the years have become my friends."
"I very much enjoyed putting together Café Football and Hotel Football, which are both doing very well and are under good management, but with the development of the new hotel in Manchester I was spending more time away from my family in London. I was also keen to return to the luxury sector."
Founded in 1912, the Stafford was bought in September 2009 by Britannia Hospitality, owned by Egypt's El Sharkawy family, for a reported £77.5m from pubs and hotel firm Daniel Thwaites. A four-year management agreement between the hotel and Kempinski ended in August 2014.
A spokesperson for Britannia Hospitality, said: "Stuart's knowledge and deep understanding of the Stafford coincides well with our business strategy and how we see the Stafford as a leading legendary London hotel."
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