March 10 2014 Latest news:
Duncan Brodie, business editor
Thursday, February 6, 2014
A Suffolk-based hotels group is to invest £2million in a new spa complex which could create more than a dozen extra jobs.
And TA Hotel Collection, which announced the upgrade for the Swan at Lavenham yesterday, is also to expand its outside events company, Bespoke, which will now have its own dedicated management.
The new spa at the Swan − which has a four Red Stars rating from the AA and last year won a Visit England Gold Award for Excellence − will offer treatment rooms, steam rooms and a “vitality pool” when it opens later this year.
Grahame Tinnion, managing director of TA Hotel Collection, said: “We will be investing £2m in the new spa at the Swan and this is to ensure state-of-the-art facilities and a premium experience for visitors.
“We anticipate the spa will create between 10 and 12 jobs, from a spa director role to the therapists. It is also likely that the spa will boost trade at the hotel, warranting further recruitment hotel-side to support the growth.”
Changes elsewhere within the group will see husband and wife team Stephen David and Rebecca Mackenzie reqlinquish day-to-day responsibility for running the Crown at Woodbridge to focus on the development of the Bespoke events business.
“Bespoke’s expansion will also warrant job creation, although these opportunities will arise more steadily in line with its growth,” said Mr Tinnion.
Garth Wray, currently general manager at the Brudenell in Aldeburgh, will take over the running of the Crown although Mr David will continue to lead the food offer and oversee menu development in addition to a food advisory role across the group.
Peter Osborne, currently general manager at the White Lion in Aldeburgh, will now have responsibility for both the White Lion and the Brudenell.
Besides the Swan, the Crown, the Brudenell, the White Lion and Bespoke, TA Hotel Collection also owns the Thorpeness Hotel and Golf Club, Thorpeness Country Club and Aldeburgh Bay Holiday Lettings.
Mr Tinnion added: “2013 was a challenging but successful year for the group. To enable our diverse portfolio of businesses to evolve, we have to support their growth. These strategic moves, investments and appointments are the first step.
“Bespoke, under Stephen and Rebecca, has achieved a formidable reputation in a market where word-of-mouth and personal recommendation is so important.
“We believe there is an opportunity for Bespoke to become the number one events company in the East of England, so freeing them from the day to day business from the Crown at Woodbridge is the platform they need to lead it through its next period of growth.
“Similarly, diversifying the offering at the Swan will enable us to attract new audiences and offer our loyal customers another premium element to their stay.
“With change afoot we saw this as the perfect time to elevate the roles of two of our loyal and successful hotel managers; I have no doubt that Garth and Peter’s experience, intensely proactive attitudes and community focus will enable them to bring great perspective and opportunity to the ongoing development of our hotels. We are passionate about recruiting from within and these new appointments are proof of this.”