Leisure complex group Muthu acquires the Belstead Brook Hotel in Ipswich

The Belstead Brook Hotel in Ipswich.

The Belstead Brook Hotel in Ipswich. - Credit: Archant

The Belstead Brook Hotel in Ipswich, which was put up for sale in July with an asking price of £2.5million, has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by a leisure company based in India.

Muthu Hotels specialises in resort complexes, operating a total of 14 other properties in Portugal, Spain, India and Singapore, but with the Belstead Brook being its first site in the UK.

It is part of the M G Muthu Group of companies based in the Indian city of Chennai (formerly known as Madras) which also has interests in sectors including logistics, mining, construction and restaurants

The 88-bedroom Belstead Brook Hotel, which also includes a restaurant, conference and wedding facilities, a garden bar and a leisure club with an indoor pool, was marketed through leisure property specialist Fleurets which described the sale as “a unique opportunity”.

The latest sale is thought to represent at least the 10th change in management or ownership since it was first sold in 1988 by the Hatfield family, who founded the business, originally based on a Jacobean hunting lodge, in 1962.

The business was first acquired by Europa Hotels, which embarked upon a major expansion programme but went into receivership in 1991.Ownership transferred to Wimpole Hotels, with management taken over by Butterfly, and control then passed to Manor Hotels. Manor later became part of Swallow Hotels which, a year later, in 1999, was itself acquired by Whitbread.

In 2003, 13 Swallow hotels, including the Belstead Brook, were sold to a property company and leased to London & Edinburgh Inns which acquired the Swallow brand.

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When in 2006 London & Edinburgh went into administration, Crerar Hotels, took over the brand and a total of 26 leases, including that of the Belstead Brook.

Muthu Hotels currently also operates four resorts in Portugal, three in Spain, six in India one in Singapore. According to its website, it is also due to launch a presence in France in the near future.