George Hotel in Colchester is acquired by Surya

Suki Dulai, right, managing director of Surya Hotels, outside the George Hotel in Colchester, with,

Suki Dulai, right, managing director of Surya Hotels, outside the George Hotel in Colchester, with, from left, Anthony Elie, floor supervisor, Denise Earle, general manager, and Sarah Head Anderson, group head of marketing.

The historic George Hotel in Colchester’s High Street has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by Harwich-based Surya Hotels.

The George, which was previously owned by Grangeside Ltd and managed by Bespoke Hotels, will now be run by Legacy Hotels, which manages the Surya portfolio.

However, the new owners say there will be no impact on jobs, with the hotel’s 50 staff transferring to Surya Hotels under protection of employment rules, and “significant investment” is also planned.

Suki Dulai, managing director of Surya Hotels, said: “As a local business we are excited to have successfully acquired such an iconic hotel, which we know and love.

“The George is a very emotive place for the people of Colchester. It is one of the most stunning buildings on the historic High Street, which has an amazing sense of heritage, not to mention a fantastic place to meet, eat and stay.”


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Denise Earle, general manager at the hotel, added: “The George is privileged to have an incredibly loyal staff that are very passionate about their work and our customers and we are excited about the future of the hotel and what we can achieve under the Surya Hotels umbrella.”

The George, a former coaching inn, is around 500 years old but stands above medieval cellers which include remnants of a Roman road and even ashes thought to have been left by the fire which destroyed the town during the revolt against the Romans led by Queen Boudicca in AD60.

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The acquisition of the George, which has a total of 47 bedrooms, brings Surya Hotels’ portfolio to nine, also including Great Hallingbury Manor, near Stansted, the Kingscliff Hotel at Holland-on-Sea, the Mill Hotel in Sudbury and the Duke’s Head Hotel in King’s Lynn.

Surya Hotels is part of the Flying Trade Group, headed by Suki Dulai and his brother Harry, and a sister company of world foods company Surya Foods, which is also based in Harwich. The group has a turnover of more than £100million and employs around 600 people.

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