The Caterer

Von Essen hotels on the market

03 June 2011 by
Von Essen hotels on the market

Twenty-six of the UK's most iconic country house hotels have officially put on the market following the collapse of Von Essen into administration in April.

Christie + Co, who have been appointed to handle the sale, say that they expect widespread interest in the properties from both UK and overseas buyers.

Jeremy Jones, group director of corporate hotels at Christie + Co, confirmed that the asking price for the complete portfolio is in excess of £200m.

"We have already received many inquiries from major hotel groups, high net worth individuals and people who live nearby specific hotels they are interested in," he said.

"The preference would be to dispose of the group as a whole group, but the priority is to maximise the value of the assets as a whole."

Jones said he is looking for initial offers for the hotels to be made by mid-July.

Meanwhile, the administrators Ernst & Young are believed to have found discrepancies in Von Essen's company accounts for 2010. According to The Times today, accountants have found underlying profits of about £8m from turnover of £53m, compared to the £24.9m profit and £74.2m turnover which appeared in the company's annual report.

Andrew Davis, the founder of Von Essen, continues to own just three of his original extensive portfolio of hotels - Verta in London, the Forbury, Reading, and Llangoed Hal, Powys.

The hotels for sale are classified across three types - Classic Hotels, Luxury Family Hotels and Country Hotels - and include:

• Amberley Castle, near Arundel, West Sussex

• Buckland Manor, Near Broadway, Gloucestershire

• Cliveden, Taplow, Berkshire

• Lower Slaughter Manor, Lower Slaughter, Gloucestershire

• The Royal Crescent, Bath

• The Samling, Windermere, Cumbria

• Sharrow Bay, Ullswater, Cumbria

• Ston Easton Park, near Bath

• Thornbury Castle, near Bristol

• Ynyshir Hall, Machynlleth, Powys, Wales

• Seaham Hall, Seaham, County Durham

• The Elms, Worcester

• Fowey Hall, Fowey, Cornwall

• Ickworth, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

• Moonfleet Manor, Weymouth, Dorset

• Woolley Grange, Bradford upon Avon, Wiltshire

• Bishopstrow House, Warminster, Wiltshire

• Callow Hall, Ashbourne, Derbyshire

• Congham Hall, King's Lynn, Norfolk

• Dalhousie Castle, Bonnyrigg, Midlothian

• The Greenway, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

• Homewood Park, Bath

• Lewtrenchard Manor, Okehampton, Devon

• The Mount Somerset, Taunton, Somerset

• New Park Manor, Brockenhurst, Hampshire

• Washbourne Court, Lower Slaughter, Gloucestershire

Von Essen falls into administration >>

Von Essen administrators send Hunstrete House into liquidation >>

Von Essen woes highlight struggle of regional hotels >>

By Janet Harmer

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