Robert Cook reveals details of first De Vere Village Scottish hotels

By Peter Ruddick

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Scotland, Hotel

Robert Cook, chief executive of De Vere Village Urban Resorts, has revealed details of the brand's first three hotels in Scotland which will be open by autumn 2014
Robert Cook, chief executive of De Vere Village Urban Resorts, has revealed details of the brand's first three hotels in Scotland which will be open by autumn 2014
De Vere has signed three deals to launch its first Scottish hotels under the Village Urban Resorts brand with chief executive Robert Cook hoping the properties in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen will be open by autumn 2014.

Cook has previously declared an intention to take the expanding hotel brand to his native Scotland​ but the company has this week confirmed three locations have now been finalised.

Scotland

Speaking to BigHospitality, the experienced hotelier​ revealed all three venues would be new-builds as part of the trademark 'black box' model and would fit into the company's recently-updated strategy of operating sites slightly closer to city centres.

"I felt it was important the Village brand got into Scotland because there is great opportunity there," said Cook. "The Aberdeen market is booming and will continue to boom because of its oil and oil servicing."

De Vere Village Urban Resorts will operate the sole hotel in Aberdeen's new Prime Four oil and gas sector business park in Kingswells. The other two Scottish hotels will be located in the south Crewe Toll area of Edinburgh and Glasgow city centre.

"We are going through the planning process at the moment with the various councils," Cook explained. "I would be hoping to have all the Scottish properties open by late summer/early autumn next year. The Ryder Cup and Commonwealth Games are in Scotland next year so I really need to get these things open by the summer, particularly Edinburgh and Glasgow," he added.

The three hotels will join De Vere's only other property north of the border - the luxury, flagship De Vere Hotels venue Cameron House Loch Lomond. In the future, Cook hopes to open a further hotel under the Village brand in Dundee.

De Vere Group

At the end of last year, De Vere announced it had secured a site in Portsmouth​ for the first new-build under the brand since Cook took over as chief executive​ and relaunched the portfolio previously known as De Vere Village Hotels.

Now, the former Malmaison & Hotel du Vin chief executive has confirmed he is hoping to finalise negotiations on sites in Milton Keynes, Oxford, Cambridge and York in the coming months. 

More than a year into his new job, which has recently been expanded giving him responsibility for De Vere Hotels too, Cook revealed the new properties would feature slight tweaks to the Village Urban Resorts offer.

The pub and restaurant concepts within the hotels will be merged to create the Victory Chop & Ale House, all three will have the new Viva Urban Spa and a new 18 m2​-bedroom design will also be launched.

Elsewhere, Cook is opening the relaunched De Vere Mottram Hall hotel in Cheshire in April following a £6m refurb which has created the UK's first outside spa. A refurb is also on-going at The Grand Hotel in Brighton where a new seafood restaurant​ - GB1 - has already opened.

"We have invested a lot over the winter in our golf courses, improving the drainage, the course and the equipment," Cook revealed. While both De Vere Village Urban Resorts and De Vere Venues expand,​ the focus within De Vere Hotels has been to dispose of some properties to concentrate on golf resorts within the portfolio.

That disposals process has now concluded, Cook revealed: "What it is about now is current investment within the existing portfolio and the growing of Village."

Related topics: Business, People, Hotels, Venues

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